Natural Giving

Years ago I described two feelings or perceptions of self or me-ness. The first is a physical proprioceptive-self. That is, the feeling of this body separate from and moving in the larger environment. And, there is an autobiographical-self, the accumulation of associative past experiences, pleasers and pain, fears and joys, the latent memory of which stimulate or trigger, the re-membered past in the present. And, of course, the abstract intellect then creating personal images of self, that is me, from these collected ghost images. Though discrete these two ebb and flow moment by moment, forming what we call our social ego.

Themes: 
self image
nurturing

Promise First Do No Harm

We forget. Nonviolence begins in the arms of nurturing mothers and fathers.

We feel numbed-shock, sadness and rallying pockets of rage as another wave of violence ripples through our collective psyche. Personally, I celebrate our nation’s youth, like the boy in the Emperor’s New Clothes, exposing the hypocrisy of the gun-lobby and implicitly the greed of the military industrial complex, hiding behind flag-waving (pseudo) patriotism that worships killing.

Themes: 
nurturing
touch
parenting
violence
culture

Youth Suicides in America

Youth Suicides in America

Abstract: This post and the accompanying full PDF documents the relationships between cultures with high infant and early childhood nurturing defined by affectionate touch, extended breastfeeding and accepting attitudes towards pleasure with low suicide rates and cultures with low infant and early childhood nurturing; weaning ages of less than 2.5 years and punishing pleasurable behaviors with high suicide rates. High early nurturing = low childhood suicide and homicides. Low early nurturing = high childhood suicide and homicides.  

James W. Prescott, Ph.D.
BioBehavioral Systems

Themes: 
suicide
nurturing

A woman’s right to play the role of a nurturing mother

A woman’s right to play the role of a nurturing mother
Joseph Chilton Pearce

First of all the irony of it is that we’re ending up with more and more dysfunctional children, higher and higher mortality rates. Twenty other nations are way ahead of us in actual death of mothers and infants and the 600 percent higher rate of hospital deaths than in natural home births and so on. So it’s extremely ironic and paradoxical that the more we attempt to predict and control, the greater the casualty rate. And no one will pay any attention to that because by now the woman is terrified of all the consequences that can happen outside the medical umbrella.

Interference of the mother and her own infant starts practically from conception. For one thing, even the abortion issue, which certainly is a nasty issue all the way around, but there the real issue is the woman’s right to play the role of the mother, the mother’s right to make decisions concerning the reproductive process which she has done throughout human history, and we started interfering with that right from the very beginning. That she is no longer, that’s to be taken out of her hands and put into the hands of a group of experts or legalistic processes. So, from the very beginning the capacity for mothering is cripples right from the beginning. 

The next thing is our interferences that run throughout the uterine experience itself. We are turning our women more and more over to what we call prenatal care and all the great concerns over prenatal care and all sorts of interference devices, our ultrasound, attempts to, actually they’re now you know taking infants out of the womb and making operations and putting them back in. Now they’re doing this on experimental levels and so on, in the attempt to predict and control every tiny facet of the birth process. Women are being interfered with by being frightened and terrified by a whole raft of supposed disasters which can befall them unless they go through all these medical processes, unless they got all these prenatal testing they might come up with a child who is this or that or the other and in the process of this, of course, you set up a whole raft of interventions. These are interventions in the natural system. Now people don’t realize the overall effect of this.

M:        What does it do to the, I’m going to say her confidence, her innate feeling of being able to be in love? How does this interfere with her own self-perception impact her ability to be a mother?

J:          Of course she begins to feel that only the professional here is capable of handling this infant.  It’s obviously complete and out of her hands. But far more is playing on this fear of abnormality or an irregularity, there’s something going wrong with the birth process and so on and leading to 30% cesarean sections and so on.

First of all the irony of it is that we’re ending up with more and more dysfunctional children, higher and higher mortality rates. Twenty other nations are way ahead of us in actual death of mothers and infants and the 600 percent higher rate of hospital deaths than in natural home births and so on. So it’s extremely ironic and paradoxical that the more we attempt to predict and control, the greater the casualty rate. And no one will pay any attention to that because by now the woman is terrified of all the consequences that can happen outside the medical umbrella. So I’m saying, in the very uterine stage of the game, the interventions, whether they be conceptual, actual physical interventions, or what they might be, are already playing a deadly role. And then of course, that all leads up to the woman’s willingness to subject herself to the monstrous mutilations that have gone on in hospitals for fifty years at the birth practice itself. 

M:        Monstrous mutilations, can you help me justify that?

J:          Well there again you’re talking about a massive amount of research that’s been done over a long period of time. Again the interventions, the use of all sorts of monitoring devices, the use of obstetrical drugs, the fact that the majority of women are induced into labor, and it’s looked upon by the whole medical profession as a magnificent and great achievement. The induction of labor which of course will stop any time there’s an intervention. Nature’s natural rhythm is to stop all labor process, stop the whole birth process, if there’s any intervention because that’s threatening to the ancient structures that handle all this.  And so with all these interventions then the whole character and nature of birth is dramatically changed and require then further intervention. The first intervention requires more intervention. The solution that we achieve creating far more problems in each case and it cascades into a proliferation of intervention processes. So the finally, every natural bonding structure between the mother and infant is broken. There are specific mutilations that go on, that have gone on for a long time and only by people like me and a lot of others hollering have there been some minor changes in the past few years, causing the medical establishment to slightly alter its approach to protect it financial investment. They are making some concessions but not many.

M.        There seems to be a general impression that the system is responding, the new birthing rooms and centers.

J.          The disasters of this have been remarkable. Here we have these children who have been engineered and the whole birth process is organized around the convenience of the doctor and the hospital staff, and so on. But then, they whisk that little infant out, they will chop the umbilical cord. They put it on the mothers belly for a minute, then up to the mother for a few moments of hugging, everyone was bonded, the father was there, then they wisk it off. This is the equivalent of agreeing quickly with your advisory on the part of the medical profession. So there is this token gestor and everyone is relieved, bonding has taken place. Of course this is a travesty of major proportions. No bonding has taken place.

Male Vulnerability and Violence

Male Vulnerability and Violence
Joseph Chilton Pearce

Males are aborted much or frequently than females. They suffer more birth defects and psychological challenges. In non-industrialized societies the relationship between the lack of early nurturing of male children and later adult male violence is recognized. Joe describes why males are more vulnerable and how this leads to violence.

Comming

Beyound Adolescence

Biological damage - not moral–ethical
Joseph Chilton Pearce

But, you keep talking about the mother, what about the father?  You ignore the father. I'm not purposely ignoring the father. I'm concentrating on the mother because that's the most critical issue. The mother is primary the primal matrix. The word matrix and mother are of the same root as you know.  Matrix means the source of the material from which life springs, that's the mother. Fathers are by and large secondary.  At best they are poor substitutes for the primary.  They can be in emergency but it's a poor substitute, it's compensation.  Our problem today is the loss of the mother.  The species is losing the mother.

Now these are to me very practical things, this applies to me and my attitude toward my neighbor which is all it is, my attitude toward the world is my attitude toward the neighbor and we've got to watch this, that the first thing we'll do when we say we must change the world, generally interprets as I must change my neighbors behavior.  Think about it.  In all of your passion to change the world it means changing somebody's behavior out there.  Think about it.  It does.  Whereas if we're only responsible to the world there can only be one source of behavioral change available to us and that's always our self.  In this, to me an important aspect is never resort to moral ethical levels. 

Now that sounds strange.  We have a whole group of young people who are damaged.  Our government and our people in authority tend to revert continually to moral ethic rhetoric concerning it rather than trying to say, what a minute we're dealing with biological damage, where does the damage come from?  How can we address the damage itself before it happens?  That's the whole issue.  If we say, oh these young people are simply unethical, they kill each other, they do all this, that and the other, they're immoral, whatever that might be, we have lost the game right there.  It isn't to set judgment on them, it's to look for the trace of the damage, where does it happen?  There is a certain norm of the human being which has sustained the species from the beginning you see and deviations from that, we have to look and say wait a minute, why?  The great question why?  The great scientific inquiry should be addressed always to where is the damage coming from and that's what we can do, and that's what really I've tried to do today.  It wasn't just to set up this scenario of all these awful things happening.  But the fact that if we look at them we'll find at their roots some very clear, very clear errors and it generally can be boiled down to what we can call biological.

Now let's get into some really tricky areas.  I had a lot of letters, both in response to "Magical Child Matures", and I'm already getting it from "Evolutions End" from irate readers who say but, but, but, you keep talking about the mother, what about the father?  You ignore the father.  Well I'm not purposely ignoring the father.  I'm concentrating on the mother because that's the most critical issue.  At the risk of really offending every woman here I think the mother is primary.  This is the primal matrix.  The word matrix and mother are of the same root as you know.  Matrix means the source of the material from which life springs, that's the mother.  And, the mother's primary, fathers are by and large secondary.  At best they are poor substitutes for the primary.  They can be in emergency but it's a poor substitute, it's compensation.  Our problem today is the loss of the mother.  The species is losing the mother.  Now this is no joke.  This is what PP, NN, AA and Manat and all the rest of them are about, to recapture motherhood before it leaves.  What do we mean by this?

I think of what Plato said and this again would be a great insult to women, and I've been almost lynched from this at times, Plato said, "give me a new set of mothers and I will give you a new world".  The power of the mother is that great.  The power of the father is not that great.  Why?  Because it's not primary, it's secondary.

The role the father plays is different.  The role he plays in evolution is different.  It's for very great things but without the mother the male really can't play that role.  You see that's the big thing about it.  Lose the mother and that whole male aspect is lost along with it.  Whereas the save the male aspect of it does not necessarily work the other way.  So we're dealing with the loss of nurturing and the loss of the capacity to nurture.  America's children by and large suffer enormously from the lack of nurturing, not from you enlightened parents who already know about this and come here to hear this, but we're talking about 70% of them out there in American society.  There is a serious breakdown in the emotional nurturing of a child and that's what all this so called bonding is about.  Myth or not, the emotional nurturing of the child is the critical issue. 

When I think of how, to my way of thinking, women have bought into the male folly.  They've kind of bought into the male cul-de-sac in a certain sense and nurturing is what is being lost.  What I find happening, and this again, these are dangerous and certainly not very politically correct statements, but what I find happening is women aping the graces of the very male intellect which is robbing them of their power.  Maybe it's a defensive process, but it is though threatened and backed into a corner and being stripped of their power they think well I'll adopt to the tactics of that force robbing me of my power, I'll adopt those tactics and maybe I can regain some power.  But they've regained the power of the male intellect which they have anyway, at the cost of the female nurturing intelligence and that is serious to our whole race, our whole species.  Rejecting their own strengths as they adopt the strengths of male intellect.  Does that make any sense? 

That is, the strength of the woman lies in her being the mother of the species and excepting that role and not rejecting that role and that means the nurturer.  The source from which nurturing comes, the reason for the enormous male rage which faces America where you have males beating up their females at an all-time high.  We've never had anything quite like this in history, particularly in the black society of America, males assaulting females and battering them beyond all levels of reason.  Why?  Because the male is radically un-nurtured and he can't survive without it.

Essential Joseph Chilton Pearce 01

Bonding and Survival
Joseph Chilton Pearce

Bonding is nature’s survival system that insures species continuity and continued development of capacity. The nature and quality of the bond impacts every age and stage of development. Joe begins by placing Bonding at the very center of species survival. The entire developmental sequence and unfolding of capacity depends on the interaction of innate potential with the model environment. Bonding is the bridge between these two forces. Consider the adult-child bond as a channel of communication, one that filters and shapes the meaning of information and experience. The stronger the bond the more clear and direct the flow of experience and meaning. Break the bond and this flow is curtailed, damaged, diffused and distorted.

I noticed the primary biological survival system in human beings.  The bonding we speak of between the infant and the mother is critically necessary for the establishment of all sorts of physical processes in the infant.  We think of DNA being a program that just unfolds into all these marvelous growth periods in our life and so on, but DNA is environmental sensitive.  It’s experience sensitive.  The DNA unfolds according to the nature of the environment in which we find ourselves.  That’s what gives us our great adaptability.  And the so called bonding of the infant and mother at birth and subsequent bonding periods thereafter are simply the ways by which the DNA is responding according to the environment around it.  If the infant and the mother are in close report, the heart has a completely different field of activity in which it functions and matures, visual system does.  The whole brain system does.  It all unfolds according to that environment of the mother which we would call the nurturing environment.  And if that’s not provided then the DNA must build a system to deal with an environment in which it’s not nurturing.  It’s just that simple. 

If the environment nurtures and the only nurturer is the mother or a permanent caretaker, then the DNA responds and adapts to that kind of environment which is a very sophisticated, intellectual, intelligent system that grows.  But if that nurturing environment is not there then the DNA must adapt to the environment and will do so with a completely brilliant different set of neural structures in the brain, a different heart function and so on and so forth.  The mother is the actual and only environment for the growing fetus and infant.  To refer to that as a bond might strike her as strange but that’s what it is.  It’s a bond between the new life and the environment which gives rise to it and that’s the mother. 

Now the idea that at birth we suddenly terminate that and throw in a radically different environment and the system will respond, well it responds but in a completely different way than nature intends.  Nature intends that the nurturing environment of the womb be extended for at least the first 9 to 12 months outside the womb simply because the system isn’t complete until then.  I mean not even the very first parts are complete and so if that nurturing environment is suddenly truncated, just cut right off, you’re going to have a completely different response by the DNA and a completely different brain structure and a different heart-brain interaction and the whole organism will be surprisingly different.  If that second stages of bonding after birth is removed, then this doesn’t have anything to do with the willful activity of the mother or the infant or anything else.  It’s not even a conscious process. 

If natures directive is followed, if the mother gives birth to the infant in the way that she can, has unbroken contact, what Marshall Klaus calls “skin-to-skin contact,” then the bond is automatically there.  You might say the bond is unbroken between utero and extra-uterine the bonds are the same.  And growth then is according to you might say natures agenda.  But that means adapting to the environment.  What kind of environment is too young for him to adapt to?  Either a nurturing environment, brotherly; feel loved, protected, wanted or cared for or a hostile environment where they’re not loved and protected or they feel abandoned.  So you have a completely different biological response and a biological growth and you have a different biological organism if the nurturing environment is not provided in the period of the first year after birth.