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I Invite You to Listen:

Comments on Prenatal Learning

by Paula Underwood

There are many paths a parent might choose, down any one of which we might find the central being of our child. Where the center is, there is the Spirit also tied. Whether we seek, then, only to enable prenatal learning in terms of Westem structures, or whether we are wondering what kind of person comes--we begin to seek ways of speaking with that child before the face and feet come along to guide us.

Speaking with . . .
Speaking with . . .
Speaking with . . .

If your only purpose is that prenatal learning--an early affinity for Bach--then you can stop now and save this time for some other purpose. If--on the other hand--knowing that individual, enabling Spirit to talk to Spirit, is the song you seek to learn . . come with me.

I invite you to listen, my Father said. I know you are busy growing in there. Gonna do a lot of that for much time to come. But I invite you to listen, just now, just now, to what I have to say.

I welcome you, Child of my Heart. Whatever your fare, whatever mine, I take joy in this moment when my heart speaks to yours . . and waits for an answer. Should I never at all see your face, still I am glad of this moment. And I welcome you.

As you grow, you might try to listen to me, if you like. Sure like to spend time talkin' to you! And if you listen, that's even better. But this I promise, now . . and later . . and later yet again. After I talk, I listen.

That's the way of the world out here, my Father said, the way of us Two Leggeds. We love to talk and--if we are wise--we love to listen, too!

So I've said my piece, Child of my Heart, and now I'm listening...

I hear those echoes even now. That resonance I came to recognize as Father long before there was any light for me beyond the dancing of my thoughts. Someone out there was waiting. Someone out there was welcoming. Someone out there knew I was here . . and was pleased with that knowledge.

I never forgot that. Learned to listen for that resonance long before an upside down world whacked me on the bottom. Even then I was listening for that resonance and recognized all the noise and inconvenience as only temporary . . something between the resonance.

"1 invite you to listen," my Father said. "Invite." Even then my every action was mine to choose. Mine the responsibility of recognizing my own limits, my own focus. Mine the action which caused listening.

When I was older, stumbling around on those two new legs and stumbling through a different language structure, a different resonance, Why did you mvite me to listen, Daddy?" I asked in absolute puzzlement. Invitations were nothing at all the broader world seemed to understand.

"Why, Honeygirl, how would I know what you're doin' in there? Lot a' things goin' on, seems to me. Guess you weren't goin' much of anywhere without your Mom, but look at all the growin' goin' on! And if people tell you you don't start learnin' 'til long after you see the light o' day . . . well . . don't you believe 'em! I heard you in there, after awhile. I heard you. You had things to learn an' things to do an' so . . I'd listen for awhile and then I'd invite you to listen to me. That way I could be sure I wouldn't interrupt!"

Interrupt the learning. Interrupt the growing. My father never wanted to do that. And so we took turns, he and I. Even when I could reach out hands in any direction and touch the limits of the space in which I lived, we took turns.

Nothing asked.
Nothing demanded.

I invite you to listen, Child of my Heart. And then I'll listen to you . . .

Kind thoughts come.

This article grows out of an ancient Native American Learning Way which is the foundation of the Past Is Prologue Educational Program (PIP), used from kindergarten through college and by corporations. Information on PIP and on related publications is available from A Tribe of Two Press, P.O. Box 913, Georgetown, TX 78626; phone/fax (512) 930-5576.

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