Saturday, July 22, 2017

Zero Sum Game in Children's Upbringing.

A four-year-old child on the 14th-floor of an apartment went out to the veranda, climbed over the rail and death. The family was out. The grandmother checked to see the child who was sleeping and went out to find another grandchild who was playing outside. During this short time outside, the child woke up and tragedy. Both parents were working. A university art professor recalls the incident in his column in the Catholic Peace Weekly.

The professor presents to the readers the famous painting of the Sistine Madonna by Raphael the Renaissance artist. At the bottom of the painting, we have two angels. They are waiting for Madonna's direction. If one looks closely at the background of the painting one sees hundreds of faces of babies. Each baby selects the parents they want and the person on the left and the woman on the right agree and the Blessed Mother takes the child in her arms and gives it to the angels to deliver to the parents on earth.

The interpretation according to tradition is the way parents should see their children.They have been selected in heaven and given to the parents. This is the way the professor says Catholics should look upon the children born.This makes each child all the more precious.That is why they are to be respected and not ignored.

In Germany, the Sistine Madonna painting was placed on the walls of kindergartens to show how the children should be treated. 

A zero sum game theory is common in our society. In the raising of children, this theory is central. The time spent at the workplace has to be taken away from the child. Both can not win. One has to take a loss for the benefit of the other.

This theory briefly says the time spent away from the child is a loss to the child. We don't have a win/win situation. Parents who spend less time working outside the home have more time to spend with the children, benefiting the children emotionally, intellectually and physically. Who in the family is benefiting when parents are always working? Is the extra income worth the loss to the children?

In some way this is understood by all but sadly society does not give us the environment that allows this to happen. This is probably one of the reasons we have the kind of society we have and it will take a revolutionary change in thinking to see a different future.

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