The values of life and living

Loynes, Christopher (2000) The values of life and living. In: Barnes, Peter, (ed.) Values and outdoor learning: a collection of papers reflecting some contemporary thinking. Association for Outdoor Learning, Penrith, UK.

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Abstract

The chapter explores the concept of 'aliveness' and the part human nature relations plays in experiences of value and spirituality.

Some things are of value whether we know it or not. Try holding your breath for a while. We take the air we breathe for granted much of the time but we can’t do without it for long. It is of intrinsic value to us. When we consciously give it value it is often through the rational process of science assuming it’s role of explaining our biochemistry. Experiential learning gathered through the senses and often non conscious taught us a long time ago the value of the air we breathe. This understanding is so ingrained in us it is often left unarticulated only to appear in an emotional and aesthetic response to the feel of the wind on our skin, movement in the trees, the sight of scudding clouds, the scent of ozone - fresh air. Yet we draw on this knowledge all the time. It influences the very sounds and rhythms of our words, it provides a rich source of metaphor for our language, our rituals and our myths. If you find those sentences a little poetic it’s not surprising. When we have something of intrinsic value to explain and we are in touch with our experiential selves it is hard to use words in a logical form. Instead we choose to use words loosely and to suggest more than the words by their rhythm and sound. The listener, if listening well, will also respond differently, at a deeper level, intuitively some might say, perhaps from a subtly altered state of consciousness created by the form of communication.

Item Type: Book Section
Publisher: Association for Outdoor Learning
ISBN: 9781898555049
Departments: Outdoor Studies
Depositing User: Christopher Loynes
Date Deposited: 07 Jun 2019 10:40
Last Modified: 07 Jun 2019 10:50
URI: http://insight.cumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/4817

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