tradition

Why is the relational view difficult for many educators?

The relational view is hard for some American thinkers to accept because the Western tradition puts such great emphasis on individualism. In that tradition, it is almost instinctive to regard virtues as personal possessions, hard-won through a grueling process of character building. John Dewey rejected this view and urged us to consider virtues as “working adaptations of personal capacities with environing forces”. Care theorists expand this Deweyan insight and emphasize the role of our partners in interaction as a central factor in “environing forces.” We recognize moral interdependence. How good (or bad) I can be depends in substantial part on how you treat me. Acknowledging our moral interdependence means rejecting Kant’s claim that it is contradictory to make our ourselves responsible for another’s moral perfection. Care theorists insist that we must, indeed, accept such responsibility. Without imposing my values on an other, I must realize that my treatment of him may deeply affect the way he behaves in the world. Although no individual can escape responsibility for his own actions, neither can the community that produced him escape its part in making him what he has become.

I regard it as a duty which I owed, not just to my people, but also to my profession, to the practice of law, and to the justice for all mankind, to cry out against this discrimination which is essentially unjust and opposed to the whole basis of the attitude towards justice which is part of the tradition of legal training in this country. I believed that in taking up a stand against this injustice I was upholding the dignity of what should be an honorable profession.

A free society is a society in which all traditions have equal rights and equal access to the centers of power. A tradition receives these rights not because the importance the cash value, as it were) it has for outsiders but because it gives meaning to the lives of those who participate in it.

Traditions are neither good nor bad, they simply are... Rationality is not an arbiter of traditions; it is itself a tradition or an aspect of a tradition.

Results from a given approach are "facts" as long as the approach fits the group or the tradition that is being addressed.

Everyone seems to have a clear idea of how other people should lead their lives, but none about his or her own… Everyone when they are young knows what their destiny is. At that point in their lives, everything is clear and everything is possible… Everything depends on which path you take… Everything in life has its price… Everyone's looking for the perfect teacher, but although their teachings might be divine, teachers are all too human, and that's something people find all too hard to accept. Don't confuse the teacher with the lesson, the ritual with the ecstasy, the transmitter of the symbol with the symbol itself. The Tradition is linked to our encounter with the forces of life and not with the people who bring this about. But we are weak: we ask the Mother to send us guides, and all she sends are signs to the road we need to follow… Everything has changed; it's just that we can't see it… Everything on earth is being continuously transformed, because the earth is alive... and it has a soul. We are part of that soul, so we rarely recognize that it is working for us.... we continue to change as change is the nature of man. No one is just this way. That is who they are today - it will not be who they are tomorrow.

Here is an old tradition badly in need of return: You have to earn your way into politics. You should go have a life, build a string of accomplishments, then enter public service.

In the world today many people think that one can do without religion, and that they themselves have outgrown religion by reason of their evolution. Many have no religious belief, and therefore the world has never been in a more chaotic condition. No doubt one finds in tradition and in history that in the name of religion the selfishness and ignorance of mankind have been given free reign. This is the reason why man, revolting against this state of things, has forsaken religion and forgotten that spirit which, in the name of religion, has also played its part in the world.

Seven marks characterize the clod and seven the wise man. The wise man does not speak before one who is greater than he in wisdom and he does not break in upon the speech of his fellow. He is not hasty to answer. He asks what is relevant and answers according to the Halakah. He speaks on the first point first and on the last point last. Where he has heard no tradition he says, "I have not heard"; and he agrees to what is true. The opposites of these attributes are the marks of the clod.

Rabbi Akiva said: “Jesting and frivolity lead a man towards promiscuity. Tradition is a safeguarding fence around the Torah. Tithes are a fence to wealth. Vows a fence to abstinence. Silence is a fence to wisdom.”

Open Letter to the Holy Father. I take the liberty to write to You again… I can’t imagine that any other person in the world would have Your courage, Your credibility, as well as Your personal talent and God's grace to be able to speak up against an old tradition [of parents beating their children]… I am asking You again to make an appeal to all parents urging them to no longer beat their children, and to tell them that it is highly dangerous. If the Church continues to ignore the new scientific information and to stay silent about this issue in spite of the lessons of Jesus, who else can be asked to open the parents’ eyes in order to prevent the blind escalation of violence? I am sure that if my letters succeed to reach You personally You will not stay indifferent to the knowledge they are trying to pass on to you. With my most profound respect, Alice Miller.

No practice or tradition trumps the human rights that belong to all of us.

This is the way things go in philosophy. There are traditions and winds of doctrine and many seem shut into the tradition in which they have been brought up. There is vital need of communication. I may remark here, incidentally, that I have found European philosophers more shut into their traditions than Americans. This is not a matter of virtue of American thinkers but of historical circumstances. They have had to learn and assimilate until it came about that they could strike out on the paths which appealed to them. Such independence was not always welcomed abroad when it occurred. This, I think, happened in the case of pragmatism and, in some measure, with realism. And, then, curiously enough, when what was regarded as a stalemate in the realistic movement occurred—how justifiable remains to be seen—a new kind of colonialism manifested itself in the United States. One soon heard only of analysis a la Moore, of Wittgenstein, and of logical positivism. This to be followed by existentialism. I do not say this attitude was universal. There remained many Deweyites and the study of Peirce increased. But I had to work rather alone. I continued to circle around perceiving, evolutionary levels, double knowledge of the mind-brain functioning and humanism. That is the way things go and one must have what has been called intestinal fortitude. I think the situation is somewhat altering and more of an international equilibrium is getting established. But what I call journalistic philosophy still echoes the period of neo-colonialism. Literary critics, whose philosophy is second-hand, mouth the accepted terms. And I find that many young philosophers in the United States seem to have little knowledge of past developments. In their eyes, one must be analytic, or a logical positivist or a defender of ordinary language.

The faery tradition is about spiritual forces, natural forces, embodied as beings that live in the land. If we want to be whole and healthy, we should know more about them, have a better relationship with them. And this is exactly what the old Irish faery tradition us: how to relate to these beings.

Thus the faery tradition inspires us, teaches us, that there are other ways to relate, other ways of living and dying. And in Irish tradition we learn that such ways are about our intimate relationship to the land and sea, the two powers of this world that shape us, nourish us, and enable all that we are. What is true of Ireland is true of all lands; but Ireland demonstrates this truth so amply for Westerners, with her potent faery tradition.

I am... by tradition and long study a complete snob. P. Marlowe and I do not despise the upper classes because they take baths and have money; we despise them because they are phony.

You remember that from the first the Clarion crowd and the Hardie crowd were out of harmony...I loathe the “top-hatted, frock-coated magnolia-scented” snobocracy as much as you do; but I cannot away with the Keir Hardies and Arthur Hendersons and Ramsay MacDonalds and Bernard Shaws and Maxtons. Not long ago you told me in a letter of some trade union delegates who were smoking cigars and drinking whisky at the House of Commons at the expense of their unions. You liked them not. Nor do I like the Trade Union bigots who have cheated J. H. Thomas of his pension...I am glad the Labour Party is defeated because I believe they would have disrupted the British Empire. I dreaded their childish cosmopolitanism; their foolish faith that we could abolish crime by reducing the police force. ... The England of my affection and devotion is not a country nor a people: it is a tradition, the finest tradition the world has ever produced. The Labour Party do not subscribe to that tradition; do not know it; could not feel it.

People think of saints as people who lived an awfully long time ago and whose validity has disappeared. I think of them as people who didn't live such a long time ago, only a few hundred years or so. There must have been something about them that impressed people who were very much like me. What was it? And they must have been much more like somebody living today than we commonly think. What was behind it? What made these people special and what made a lot of other people regard them as special, either hating them or loving them? This is fascinating. It enlarges the whole world, and because it does so, it gives you great hope and sympathy with the future. You find yourself not an isolated miserable little wretch who has got seventy or eighty years to struggle along and then perish like nothing. You are the continuer of a very great tradition which you are going to pass on to the next lot. And you're right in the middle of the great stream of life. You see? Wonderful thing.

Secure in whom we are, rooted in one particular tradition or none at all, we have no reason to fear discovering God in the truth and wisdom of many traditions. Love casts out fear inviting us into happiness for all people and Creation.

If people who want to make change lack awareness, they can cause side effects that aren’t desirable. Developing our own inner wisdom increases our capacity to see cause and effect, have patience, have more harmony and wisdom in human relationships, and be open to new ways of doing things. There is an Einstein quote about not being able to solve a problem with the mindset that created it.