These principles are the result of a collaborative effort by members of the Network.  To see the latest version, click on the link above.

Deeptime Learning (DTL) connects us to our primal desire to answer fundamental questions: “Where did we come from?” “What are we part of?” “Where are we going?” “What is our role?” “How do we belong?” DTL connects our personal and communal lives to the larger arc of cosmic evolution.

DTL embraces the discovery of an evolving Universe as a stunning development that changes our understanding of the Universe and who/what we are as humans. The mission of education, in DTE, is to reveal the foundational significance of this discovery for our Earth community, humans, and our personal roles inside the larger context of evolution.

DTL recognizes that when a grand narrative of the Universe is infused with the humanities, it becomes a cosmology—an origin story and unifying worldview—for our time, fulfilling the function that creation stories have served for cultures in the past, that of unifying the person with the Cosmos and Earth.

DTL recognizes that a huge and tumultuous shift in perspective for humanity is underway: 1) from seeing the Cosmos as fixed to understanding the Cosmos as evolving, 2) from seeing ourselves as separate from the Universe to understanding and experiencing ourselves as beings of the Universe (the Universe in human form).

DTL embraces the idea that education is less about the accumulation of information — though high quality information is important—and more about exploring a worldview that will aid us in realizing our personal and planetary potential while intentionally engage in evolution to create a vibrant world.

DTL orients us to our largest context, a vast evolving Universe; connects us to our matrix, the Earth; transforms us into our larger identities; and guides our actions.

DTL recognizes the importance—and urgency—of a deep time understanding as the basis for action. A flourishing future for our planet will be more likely if our actions are informed by an understanding of our context, matrix, inner transformation, and a continuum of Deep Time learning over our lifetimes.

DTL is not new. It has been practiced for decades in many settings at different levels and by different names — Montessori Cosmic Education, Universe Story, Journey of the 2 Universe, Environmental Evolution, Big History, Deep History, Ignatian Pedagogy and others. (Please see a list of books below for references used in the development of these principles.) Our goals on the DTNetwork are to explore what is already being done in so many remarkable ways, connect different efforts in a continuum across all age levels, and evolve a comprehensive approach. What follows are principles, some or all of which are shared by those engaged in this approach to education.

Five principles in DTL are discussed below. In summary, they are:

  1. CONTEXT Orient to a vast evolving Universe.
  2. MATRIX Understand our embeddedness in the Earth.
  3. TRANSFORMATION Experience inner growth and engagement…
  4. ACTION Participate in evolution to create a vibrant world.
  5. CONTINUUM Link deep time learning across all stages of life.

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