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Title: Spirituality in Education and the Twofold Schooling of the Teacher
Subtitle: An Exploration Based on the Study 'Spirituality' by Kees Waaijman
Author(s): VAN AALSUM, Lia
Journal: Studies in Spirituality
Volume: 23    Date: 2013   
Pages: 251-276
DOI: 10.2143/SIS.23.0.3007320

Abstract :
Anglo-Saxon theorists and practitioners in education do acknowledge the value of spirituality for children, students and young adults. However, a global scan of some publications since the start of 2000 shows a broad variety of topics and approaches towards the phenomenon of spirituality. In order to enhance the value of spirituality for education, the following procedure is presented. Part 1 introduces the comprehensive textbook on spirituality by Kees Waaijman. After an explanation of his phenomenological-dialogical approach a description is given of the three main forms of spirituality: ‘schools’ of spirituality; lay spirituality or primordial spirituality; countermovements. It becomes clear that ‘the area of reality studied by the science of spirituality is the divine-human relational process (material object) which is viewed as a layered process of transformation (formal object)’. In Part 2 the relevance of this study is elaborated with regard to theorists and practitioners in education (concerning school, college and university). Firstly, the author pleas for a much stronger concentration on the divine-human process of transformation as the core business of spirituality, and also for a better understanding of the relevance and irrelevance of a supporting structure or pattern. Secondly, three conclusions are presented: (1) the difference between the study of spirituality and the lived spirituality should be taken into account; (2) solid spirituality stimulates a more profound formation of the (moral) identity; (3) priority should be given to the spiritual schooling of the teacher, i.e. a twofold trajectory that nourishes both the intellectual capacities and the several sensibilities towards the reality of spiritual life.

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