Bringing us up to date, we need to consider what is the prevailing attitude of our culture in the early 21st century? As we decode this philosophy, we can ascertain the way in which a majority of parents are raising their children. This is not easily communicated, as we can identify a sundry of perspectives trumpeted throughout this administrative milieu. I believe what exists is a sort of secular humanism, using reason, ethics, and justice for human, and subsequently economic achievement. This common thread of thinking either cultivates a well-intentioned subculture of positivity (either genuine or not), or it promotes a disillusioned outlook on reality.
Having seen my share of children in the short time I have been a professional, I can attest that there is little symmetry between the views of the parents I have spoken with in my career. However, I believe that there is a broadening perspective by child development experts and some of the highly effective parents I have met, that entails fostering the use of human reason, ethics, and justice, in raising children. Though my worldview does not align with the basic tenets of humanism, in its purest form, I believe this can be a highly constructive ethos to employ in parenting.
One particular reason why the use of reason and ethics can be beneficial in parenting, is that it refines distorted thinking. We are seeing the negative results of greed in the business world, and it certainly is not stopping. The housing market will be working to stabilize for years to come, formerly comfortable employees are stretched on their budgets, and need I mention gas prices? Yet, there are a growing number of people, many that only in the last ten years have left childhood, who are using their ingenuity to find niches in a receptive market. I think of the many young adults who are reusing materials to manufacture and sell the same commodities that were formerly monopolized by enormous companies. I also, recently read an article about a subculture of people who are operating their own free-range chicken farms in suburban and city neighborhoods to generate extra revenue by selling eggs, and indulging in the benefits of having their own yield. These are just two of many innovative enterprises redirecting our attention away from the ravenous ways of numerous big-businesses.
This is the kind of creativity that is burgeoning, as we retain an adequate outlook on human nature and our propensity to discover originality. As our attitude toward rediscovering the purpose of humanity plays out in the 21st century, we are bound to see children growing up with a sense of identity, meaning, and a longing for fulfilling professions. There are many players in our current administration that want to distract our children from what is important. But, like the few that are using our current crisis as a prescription for creative possibilities, there is an opportunity to watch children flourish with their ideas of how to combat destructive cultural philosophies.
Jay Richards, author of "Money, Greed, and God: Why Capitalism is the Solution and Not the Problem," says of the entrepreneur:
"Unlike the self-absorbed, they anticipate the needs of others, even needs that no one else may have imagined. Unlike the impetuous, they make disciplined choices. Unlike the automaton, they freely discover new ways of creating and combining resources to meet the needs of others. This cluster of virtues, not the vice of greed, is the essence of what the Reverend Robert Sirico calls the ‘entrepreneurial vocation."
To retain this attitude for our culture, to blanket our children with this vision, is to empower them with a desire to fulfill their God-given purpose no matter what fiscal imperfections our society throws at them.