What is it that helps our children develop a heartfelt connection to nature, themselves and others?
Chris Holland, UK Firekeeper, author and playful nature-based educator has a few ideas:
“I think it has to do with a combination of many things including playing out from the earliest age in natural spaces, sharing moments of wonder and mystery, foraging, stories, gratitude and mentoring. Relationship to fire is central too, providing hearth for sharing food, drinks, storytelling and celebration.”
Some Sacred Fire Community members in the UK have been wondering what it would be like for the children at Grandfather Fire events to have time together, in a multi-age-range group, playing and snacking in nature and guided by some playful teens and adults, while the adults get to spend time reconnecting through chatting and eating. The two groups can then join together at the end of the day by sharing stories of their day around the sacred fire, while waiting for Grandfather to show up. Two birds with one stone, right?
What do you think? We’d love to hear from you. If you are interested in working with us on this, please contact Sherry Boatright, who will send all comments to the “Kindling Children” Lifeways program members.
Discover how the Sacred Fire Community honors the cycles of life with Lifeways.
Do you stand for the sacredness of life? Take our Stand for Sacredness.
I prefer the expression “feeding two birds with one hand.” I will forward this article on to a member of our One World Spiritual Community who is in charge of the children’s program.
Thank you for this little spark. I appreciate that we, as a community, are remembering our children. I too like a gentler metaphor like “kindling two coals with one fire stick”…..!!!
My first response is that our attention needs to go to looking at our deeply held beliefs about children and current prevalent conditions in our failing culture.
Right away, I feel compelled to suggest that we imagine our children being with us…and not parsed out with a few adults/teens. I have to hear more about this, but as a parent of unschooled children who live life along side us in our tribe, I can speak to the benefit and gift of fully integrating children in all we do, barring of course the rituals and ceremonies and meetings/discussions inappropriate for young ones.
Children add color and dimension, magic and dream energy to the world, and deep teachings. They begin life first surrounded in our wombs, then in our arms, then in the circle of tribe as they learn from us. They absorb warmth and love as we feel into our connections with each other, go about daily life, and embrace sacred fire…they learn connection in the center, from the center where the heart beats!
I’m so grateful for our community; that I feel the growing fire and can add my initial feelings as fuel for thought.
Love to All and Thank you LIFEWAYS!
Thanks Melody for forwarding and for your interest in our program! We would love to find out more about your community, as well. Please feel free to post information or a link.
Sacred Fire Community Speaking and Communications Team
Yes Kristie!!!! I too, hold the vision of the children of this community woven in beautifully to fires and gatherings. Held by the circles, and the greater circle. Valued and heard. Seen and cherished.
Just as I hope we treat everyone who comes this way! One thing that has been in my heart is the idea of simply holding it in our awareness at fires and gatherings to welcome the children, the parents, and make sure their needs are met. As each hamlet is different, each way of holding with care will be different… But simply holding that awareness can make a big difference.
I hope you will continue to share your ideas and sparks with us as we grow as a Lifeways program. It is clear that you have a lot of wisdom and heart to offer!
We had a lovely discussion about all this at our women’s fire last night in Asheville, NC, which was attended by a young mom and her 15-month-old. We’re all so inspired by this discussion, and continue our diligent work making purposeful space for children at our fires here locally. It’s great to have Firekeepers who are so interested in the conversation and working toward solutions.