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Caring for New Life
Essays on Holistic Education

Ron Miller

Full electronic book on CD-ROM $14.95

Ron Miller's early work — the founding of Holistic Education Review (now called Encounter) in 1988 and the publication of What Are Schools For? Holistic Education in American Culture in 1990 — contributed to the emergence of the contemporary holistic education movement. He has continued to reflect on the definition and mission of holistic education, and on the challenges facing the movement, and this collection of writings and lectures contains the essence of his more recent work, from 1991 to the present. Many of these essays have not been published before, while others have appeared only in little-known publications in the alternative education community.

Miller is concerned about the standardization and narrowing of learning in this age of global corporate power. While political and economic forces have defined education as a process of fashioning consumers, workers and managers for a competitive marketplace, holistic education seeks to reclaim the fullness of our humanity — the moral, aesthetic, emotional, psychological and spiritual dimensions of human existence that make us more than mere processors of information or consumers of material goods. Miller sees human experience as an expression of the ongoing evolution of life in a meaningful cosmos, and from this perspective, education ought not be so concerned with preserving imperfect social institutions as with enabling each new generation to express the creative energies that surge from within the human spirit. The author takes a critical look at educational strategies — even more or less "holistic" approaches — that become hardened into ideologies or authoritative traditions. Holistic education is the practice of freedom; it is essentially an open-ended, open-hearted responsiveness to life situations as they arise.

Caring for New Life includes the following essays:

  • Holism and Meaning: Foundations for a Coherent Holistic Theory (1991)
  • Holistic Education in the United States (1993)
  • Spirituality in a Disenchanted Culture (1994)
  • A Holistic Philosophy of Educational Freedom (1995)
  • Partial Vision in Alternative Education (1997)
  • Education and the Evolution of the Cosmos (1998)
  • Making Connections to the World (1999) and
  • Non-Standardized Education" (2000), among others.
Miller is a provocative visionary who challenges educators to rethink common assumptions about teaching, learning, and the institution of schooling.

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