Awakening a Keen Observer

Friday, November 25, 2005

Oh my

At the mall today a small child was on the second floor leaing through the banister and hollering...Oh Santa, hello Santa. In a kind but persistent voice. I don't know if her parents were going to let her go down and see Santa or if that was a close as she was going to get. I don't know if he acknowledged her.
We all call out like that now and then--call out to be recognized--- to be seen--to have someone we care about recognize us--to say Yes, I see you! We do thls work and action --- because we are human.
Like other animals humans have always found ways to stand out in the crowd. We do it with coloring of faces or hair, with wearing something that stands out in a crowd, with behavior that is more or less appropriate, these and other ways are things we do to be noticed. Children of all ages are great at reading reactions of adults around them and accept attention as reward for behavior without discernment of it being good or bad.
"So do you see me Santa?" I don't know what she might have done had Santa called her name! Once the Santa in a Christmas parade in Columbus called out my name--he was someone who worked for my father and knew me...but all I knew was Santa knew my name.

How to we teach our children and one another that they are seen and recognized without them having to 'act out' in ways that shake us and scare us? How do we teach smaller groups than the majority that we recognize them and acknowledge their right to be individuals?
Apparently we are not so good at this or gangs wouldn't be big, bullies would not exist and the world or in schools or in families and all would be a lot happier from the smallest groups to the larger ones because we would respect one another.
Let's see what we can do with recognizing one another this holiday/holly/holy season!

God abides in the midst of it all!
Bobbie Giltz McGarey


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