About Love and Ethos


I love the love question from the video in my previous post. “Why do these kids LOVE school?” There is a force to this word, it is unlimited, it is boundless, it requires self awareness and to allow yourself to be vulnerable. It is also not a mediocre “like” or “thumbs up” thing. For me as well, the question is not “how will I make pupils and students like School/University” but “how will we make them LOVE it?”. Can it be achieved? Is love achievable? I would say so…:-)

Some key points from the video I posted below, which I think are again international, relevant and tangible;

– Innovative curriculum in terms of content and delivery

– Involvement of parents and students in the co-creation of the content and the learning environment

– Shared responsibility, freedom, collaboration and open discussions

– Acknowledge of the different characters, learning types and psychologies in the class

At this point, some of us that have business experience, training/facilitating roles etc go “yeah, what’s new?”. Exactly, nothing of that is new. The problem is that there is a gap 1. between theory and practice and 2. between business practices and practices in education, as almost everything that is coming from the business is “blocked” and seen as evil and opposite to “education’s social objectives”. Unfortunately, this attitude of being closed to others has made Education practices irrelevant, slow and therefore unappealing to the students.


I am passionate about etymology, i.e. the components of the words, what they mean, where they come from. Ethos (the root of word “ethics”) pronounced “ithos” in greek, was the primary goal of education in ancient Greece. It stood for people that are good citizens, educated with the basic skills of the time, respect the gods and the humans around them and have a set of values which they follow. Surprisingly, the word “customs” (eg customs and traditions) in greek is the same word: “ithi” in plural. I am sure this is no coincidence. For the greeks, a culture was defined by its “ithi”, “ethima”(=practices), belief (usually related to religion) and of course language. So, acknowledging that there can be different “ethics” in each culture, the old cultures acknowledged at the same time that a. ethos development was the cornerstone of education’s purpose and b. that the “ethos/ithi” is directly linked with “ethima”, i.e. the practices. Meaning, that any learning of ethics should be accompanied by aligned practical behavior, that “ethos’” value is shown when it is applied.

Bringing it together. Love and Ethos.

Can one exist without the other? No.

Are we able to apply love (for humans, environment, self) in our lives and live according to that? Not so easily, but yes, we can.

Are we able to teach love? With current, stereotypical practices No. We can show, live, become examples of, discuss about them, make them a priority…all these are a form of learning (and therefore teaching in some way)

Does TRUE love have an international, timeless, cross-cultural definition with same characteristics and effect on people? Yes.

Can love have a transformative effect on people’s lives? Yes.

Then, why not ethics, too…

What do you think?

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