A fresh approach to learning and living
Given the unprecedented global shifts that are taking place, it becomes obvious that education needs a radically new approach.
Creativity is not only killed in the classrooms of today, but also by the parents at home, who no longer have time to spend time with their children, and are glad to keep them still with an electronic device. We see more and more youngster zombies being created, who no longer are able to imagine or create things on their own, but are only able to imitate what influencers on youtube, instagram, tiktok or twitch are sharing. There is no more depth, no more inspiration, and the connection to life/nature itself has been cut off. This does not mean that technology is inherently bad. Au contraire – technology can contribute immensely to education. But technology without the depth of unconditional love is not in balance and leads to the scenario described above.
The following proposal of approaching education is based on unconditional principles, and aligned with the New Source Code.
The Key Features
- Learning, play and creativity oriented
- Children viewed as capable and self-motivated learners, creators, innovators, collaborators and leaders
- Personal interest driven
- Synarchic (i.e. horizontalized and level playing field; collective leadership)
- Self-directed and trust based
- Heart-centered and intuitive
- Community spirited
- Fully customizable (to individual, to community)
- Fluid and dynamic
We are born hard-wired for an inside-out way of life. We teach ourselves to walk and talk – as babies – without coercion or formal instruction. The desire and motivation to imitate and master the behavior of our grown up role models comes from inside of us, as does our determination to persist in the face of setbacks. In other words, inside-out learning and living comes naturally to human beings. There is no reason why we can not allow a child’s education to continue to unfold in an equally natural and organic manner.
A society is defined by its approach to education. Its approach to education is determined by how it views its young. An inside-out society requires an inside-out model of education that views children from an inside-out perspective. This model has been formulated with great dedication and care during the past ten years. It is absolutely clear that it can not be implemented in the context of the prevailing society. It is incompatible with a hierarchic and consumerist social and economic order (and a school system that views children as consumers of knowledge, to be compared and ranked).
This inside-out approach has been formulated to sit at the heart of an emerging counterculture that values self-connection and interdependence as the true source of all abundance, meaning and fulfillment. It has been designed to operate above and beyond the survival game of money and the culture of codependency and victimhood that results from abdication of personal responsibility to governments. It returns to innocence and playfulness, celebrating and fostering the uniqueness of each individual.
We have been ‘schooled’ to view learning as a linear, sequential process controlled by a teacher. The belief that learning is a product of teaching is so indelibly entrenched in the minds of the majority that, even now, with knowledge freely available on every internet-connected device, we are still unable to relinquish our steadfast attachment to curricula teaching and testing. Instead, we keep the loop of an outdated yet controllable comfort zone of education alive.
The New Paradigm (Absolutia) recognizes that true learning is a personal activity, not a commodity. Learning is a function of personal interest, not the dictates of teachers. It happens anywhere, at any time, with anyone. It is often incidental, invisible and unconscious. In truth, every moment of our existence presents us with an opportunity to learn.
A worldview wherein a person seeks their answers internally and experiences their perception of the outside world as a projection of their inner world.
A society that supports each person in drawing forth from within their latent passion, power and potential; a society wherein people are trusted to rely on their inner guidance over external sources of authority. A society that lives an unconditional lifestyle.
An approach to education that inspires people to go within, discover their essence and create their lives, blossoming from the inside out. (Florescence: The process of flowering)
An inside-out model of education designed to operate within the context of an inside-out society; a lightest possible framework of facilitation – Facilitating education, from the inside out.
something that is tacitly assumed to be true prior to pursuing a line of enquiry or course of action.
The Presuppositions of Floressence:
- Every child is unique.
- Every child is a natural-born creator and artist.
- The simplicity, innocence and wonder of childhood is real life.
- Learning is as natural as breathing.
- Nature is our greatest ‘external’ teacher and reminder of Truth.
- Every child has an ‘inner’ teacher.
- We are all teachers and learners, regardless of age.
- Education is the pursuit of passion through play.
- The purpose of education (and life) is to be yourself.
- Change is the only constant.
- Failure is feedback; mistakes are opportunities to learn.
- Education is a collective responsibility of the whole community.
Given the inside-out nature of Floressentia, its implementation is very much the responsibility of individual communities and learners to determine. We see this flowing naturally out of embodiment of the twelve presuppositions outlined above. We present these core messages as presuppositions by way of acknowledging that they will not be self-evident truths to those who have not looked within and uncovered the truth for themselves. They cannot be forced upon or taught to the individual by the outside world; they are arrived at through introspection and self-inquiry. In that sense, Floressentia is an invitation to go within.
A multitude of ‘Creative Learning Spaces’ appearing throughout the world. Operating at a local community level, these are physical spaces and energetic frameworks of facilitation in which young people of all ages play and collaborate on real-life projects of their own choosing, supported by adult facilitators who trust and follow their lead.
Not tied to one physical location, project teams are free to move as needed, making use of all of the community’s resources. The goal could be to organize a concert, create a play, shoot a documentary, build a den, plant a vegetable garden or design an outdoor theatre. The possibilities are endless and naturally emerge out of the collective interests and needs of the individual community.
This is education through living; through meaningful participation and immersion in the local community.
There are plenty of child-led and creativity-aligned models of education in operation to which to turn for inspiration and reassurance, one particularly successful example being ‘Room 13 International’. Since its original art studio was set up in a primary school in Scotland in 1994, Room 13 has grown to establish an international network of student-led arts studios, each one operating as a business and facilitating the work of young artists alongside a professional adult artist in residence.
For a shining example of what is possible when curricula teaching and testing are jettisoned in favor of entrusting children with responsibility for their own education, look no further than Sudbury Valley School in Framingham, Massachusetts. Opened in 1968, SVS is a natural learning environment in which children aged 4 through 19 are free to pursue their own interests and passions within the framework of a fully participatory democratic community.
Unfettered age mixing has proven to be one of its biggest strengths. SVS has inspired the creation of another 60 such schools throughout the world, including in France, Germany, the Netherlands, Israel and Japan. The first Sudbury school in the UK – East Kent Sudbury School – opened its doors in January 2019.
A Gift to Humanity
Floressentia has been formulated with the intention of freeing present and future generations of children from the chains of external conditioning, and unleashing their innate curiosity, passion, imagination and creativity for the benefit of all. The words used to describe it are not as important as the state of being from which those words have sprung. Note that universal acceptance and application of the first presupposition alone would bring an immediate end to the wholly destructive myth of “normality” that pervades the existing society.
Nevertheless, the inside-out revolution is here. There is a world of infinite possibility waiting to be explored and energized beyond the limiting confines of the box of fear in which school continues to monopolize the distribution of opportunity.
Floressentia will speak to those whose minds are sufficiently quietened, whose hearts are sufficiently opened, and whose intuitive senses are sufficiently awakened. It will speak to those who are ready to contribute to a conscious, caring, compassionate, creativity-oriented and community-spirited world.
Children are riding the crest of the wave of an unprecedented shift in human consciousness. They are the teachers now. Our job as adults is to listen to them, honor them, trust them and – most important of all – follow their lead. Through their inside-out example, they are pointing us to the promised land. A New Earth is within our reach. Absolutia is born through the hearts of our children.
Contribution written by David Mills. During the past 25 years, David has gathered experience and wisdom in the field of education as a teacher, coach, mentor, facilitator and uncle. He has interacted with children of all ages in a variety of different contexts and environments. He combined his experience with his intuition to bring the approach of Floressentia through. He lives his life according to these principles. He does not claim ownership of it, and sees himself as a messenger rather than the architect of Floressentia.
*Absolicious Header Art by Prawny