Stories that Summon Our Moral Selves

Foundation Updates, Global Oneness Project
by Kalliopeia Foundation
Illustration by Cariné Müller

Dear Friends,

The stories we impart to children are at the heart of their education. But in this difficult moment when narratives of care and compassion are often drowned out by fear and divisiveness, how can we bring young people into explorations about the deeper issues facing humanity while fostering inquiry, empathy, and resilience?

In a new series of essays that weave an ethic of education with an exploration of story, Cleary Vaughan-Lee, executive director of the Global Oneness Project, reflects on her experiences in and out of the classroom with learners of all ages, asking how and why stories change us.

This question has been at the heart of the work of the Global Oneness Project for more than fifteen years. Through ever-changing political, religious, and cultural landscapes, Global Oneness Project has brought diverse curricula grounded in storytelling into classrooms around the world, seeking to broaden perspectives and instill an ethic of sacred relationship to our planet. Drawing upon this work, Cleary’s essays consider how stories challenge, inspire, and summon our moral selves, as she revisits conversations with authors, educators, parents, poets, social scientists, and students, among others. The first essay, “Doorways to Our Childhood Selves,” explores the inner workings of our imagination during childhood. The second essay, “Stories of Our Moral Deformation,” considers what engages us as human beings and as learners, as well as what disengages us.

As we move through these turbulent times, we invite you to consider: What are the stories that can draw us closer to each other and to ourselves?

With gratitude,
The Kalliopeia Team