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Keepers of the Children by Laura Ramirez
Keepers of the Children
Native American Wisdom and Parenting

Laura Ramirez

Excerpt from a review written by Bob Collier of Parental Intelligence:

In her book Keepers of the Children, Laura Ramirez has combined her expertise in child development with her understanding of Native
American perceptions and the customs and rituals that have grown 
from them to produce and analysis of the art and science of successful
parenting that's both comprehensive and highly original. 

This is much more than a 'training manual' for the aspiring parent. It's
a deeply spiritual book that explores important issues of human nature 
and development that transcend both Native American and 'western'
cultures. It will appeal to parents of all races and creeds who desire
to expand their abilities beyond the mere mechanics of 'child management' to the attainment of true parenting success.

This book once read, can be referred to again and again for good ideas,
for comfort and support, for hope and inspiration. Virtually every page is a reminder of something we can do as parents to make the world a better place for our children and for ourselves and others.

Here's an excerpt from a review by Marilee Niehoff, Ph.D. published in the July 2005 edition of AHP Perspectives. It was written from the perspective of a mother of five and practicing psychologist of thirty years.

Keepers of the Children emphasizes the mutuality the author
identifies in parent-child relationships. While other parenting
books may be overly child-centered or focused on the parents'
actions, this book builds a conceptualization of childrearing that
asks the parents to engage in a process of self-analyzing where
they are in their own spiritual journey. Critical to this process is the
entering into awareness of how childrearing can be a vital aspect
of personal growth and maturation for both parents and children.

She begins with a story and then urges her reader to reflect on what 
kind of story they have been creating for their child. In doing this, she
seeks to draw the parent into a mode that operates from vision, rather
than from fear. Throughout the book, she guides parents toward an
appreciation and acknowledgement for their child's uniqueness. Giving
their child a secondary, spiritual name can be an important symbol of

Establishing healthy rhythms within family life also plays and essential
part in creating an environment for this relationship to flourish. Ramirez looks at the way discipline, the establishment of family codes, ritual dialogue building and conscious commitment all form an important process whereby "your child becomes the muse to the sage in you and you become the leaping-off point for your child."

As a mother of five children, four girls and a boy, I think this book is
excellent for the fact that it sees parenting as an organic process, a 
relationship that must be constantly assessed and tended to as a living
thing. This is not a book with stock answers about every child: rather, it formulates the beginning of a process that will have unique meanings and outcomes for each individual.

Developmental psychology has much to learn from Native American
philosophy as this book seamlessly illustrates. The richness of the culture lends itself to key insights which add depth and meaning to the dialogue on parenting. 

I have worked in developmental psychology my entire life and early on became sensitized to American indigenous culture as a deeply informing social, cultural, and spiritual resource. This book is an excellent starting place for people of all races, creeds and backgrounds to formulate questions that look on their own unique identity and tradition as an important resource for their growth and parenting process. 

As [the author] herself urges, "the time is ripe. The children await you."







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