Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Crawling meditation

I made it to the beautiful Providence Shambhala Center to meditate this weekend, and it felt like a vacation. I find meditation difficult, and I am usually unsuccessful, but being able to sit without interruption for 20 minutes at a time felt extremely luxurious.

My sister sent me a link to this wonderful story about the nature of mind, told by a Los Angeles actor who ended up on a road trip with a Tibetan monk (sounds very 60s, doesn't it?), and now I have gone into online dharma mode. I started listening to teachers on youtube. Thich Nhat Hanh has a very entertaining metaphor for interdependence and ego.

And now I am researching whether crawling is really a necessary milestone for babies. Émile will resort to an army crawl, but really prefers walking to any other mode of transportation. We have been told that crawling is necessary for the motor development of the child, and that a child who never crawls is in for difficulty later. In general, the articles (one, two, versus three, four) are split over this. A lot of the gainsayers are basing their objections on a group of children in Papua, New Guinea. Physical differences exist between peoples, though, so I am not sure that one group proves that crawling is not necessary for the rest of humanity (which is also an argument against the absolute necessity of crawling.) The assertion, however, is that babies in the past were not put down, to avoid being burnt or eaten.
On the other hand are the pro-crawlers, basing their argument on anecdotal evidence, and I didn't see any thorough study on crawling's effect on speech and coordination. Let me know if you have better evidence!


  1. I wouldn't worry about his crawl. Every baby crawls differently, and in their own time. More children skip crawling altogether nowadays, apparently due to the back sleeping campaign. Jasper was a reluctant crawler, crawled like a crab mostly when he had to move, and only really did it briefly before walking outright - he wanted to keep up with his older brother. I think if he is hitting his milestones and so on, no need to be anxious.

  2. If this milestone is historical and social in origin, it makes me wonder how many others are, as well. Talking by two? Reading by seven?