Wellness-Informed Practice, the Evolved Nest, and Human and Planetary Thriving
Living Journal (mindGAINS) live webinar welcomes Dr. Darcia Narvaez, Professor Emerita of Psychology, University of Notre Dame. Dr. Narvaez’ interdisciplinary research in moral development and human flourishing brings a unique and timely invitation to return to our pro-wellness and pro-earth ways of being.
Wellness-informed practice requires understanding humanity’s basic needs and how our sustainable ancestors fulfilled those needs to foster the heartmind and wise living on the earth. Although we cannot return to the full lifestyle of our ancestors (nomadic foraging), contemporary nomadic foragers give us insight into what our basic needs are, how to meet them and what thriving human beings are like. Our species’ Evolved Nest is a key provision for developing our human nature. Although it is particularly critical in early childhood, many components of the Evolved Nest extend throughout life, in part through responsive relationships. Many of our contemporary crises result from forgetting what kept our ancestors living sustainably, happily and well, for hundreds of thousands of years. Nested living, as found in traditional First Nation communities (who hold a quarter of the land on the earth but support 80% of its biodiversity), involves respectful treatment of the earth community and attending to the wellbeing of the natural world. There is stark contrast between the longstanding sustainable Indigenous worldview that emphasizes connection and partnership and the dominant worldview, which emphasizes disconnection and dominance. It is time to break the destructive cycle we are on and return to our pro-wellness and pro-earth ways of being.