Holistic education as a condition of sustainable social development

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N. N. Peretyagina
Sustainable social development is possible under the condition of sustainable (constant, evolutionary, & quot-green"-) development of a person tasked with providing continuous education. The purpose of this article is to present complete education as a condition of sustainable development of society. The article is intended for a broad range of experts, as well as for those interested in matters of self-development and social development.
Key words: sustainable development hallmarks, holistic education.
Sustainable Development Hallmarks. It is known that development that satisfies the present-time needs but does not jeopardize the future generations'- ability to satisfy their own needs is termed as a & quot-sustainable"- one. The range of problems of sustainable development of human civilization is designated in the regulatory documents of the Russian Federation by such concepts as & quot-environmental degradation& quot-, & quot-biosphere destabilization& quot-, & quot-disintegration of the biosphere and the loss of its ability to sustain the qualities of the environment that are necessary for life& quot- [5]. It is planned to overcome the crisis & quot-on the basis of shaping a new type of relationships between humans and nature that would exclude the possibility of destruction and degradation of the natural environment& quot- [5]. Therefore, a new type of relations between humans and nature is designated as one of the hallmarks of sustainable social development. A specific feature of such relations is the exclusion of the possibility of destruction and degradation of the natural environment. To stop destroying the natural environment, humans must, first and foremost, stop destroying themselves and other humans as parts of the natural environment. The behavior model of a & quot-conqueror"- must be replaced by that of a & quot-creator"-, since the & quot-conqueror"- model leads humans to degradation.
Sustainable development means a kind of development when & quot-needs are satisfied without injury for future generations& quot- [4]. Therefore, the next hallmark of sustainable development is the satisfaction of needs, in our context, educational needs. Whereupon environmental dictionaries stress the fact that in English-language literature, the world sustainable is understood as a & quot-very soft sustaining control& quot-, presuming & quot-the development of a region through self-organization at framework external support preventing the possibility of its transition to a state of irreversible environmental degradation& quot- [4]. Since the system theory permits us to consider a human as a part of a biosystem, the & quot-development through selforganization& quot- hallmark applies fully to human beings as well.
Thus, analysis of the definitions of the & quot-sustainable development& quot- concept permits one to elicit three of its hallmarks: a new type of relations between human and nature, meeting personal needs, and development through self-organization. How should education implementing the three above hallmarks look?
A new type of relations between humans and nature. A person encounters contradictions and problems in his or her everyday life. In compliance with the principle of social ecology, the person learns to think globally and to act
locally. Whereupon we should state that only a holistic person can ensure the integrity of his or her own existence and the existence of his or her living space. The development of a holistic personality takes place during the period of formation of the information society. Its nature is non-linear, it is conditioned by the uniqueness of the country and the ethnos to which people belong, as well as by the level of their development. The situation is aggravated by information redundancy, the individual'-s inability or poor ability to pick necessary information from the information flow, and by various deformations of his or her personal structures. All the above factors impede a person’s socialization in the context of formation of the information society. How should a new type of relations between humans and nature be formed under those conditions?
Under the above conditions, every individual as a social subject may need a mediator, or he or she must become a mediator him- or herself. The latter option of a social situation seems more preferable. How should a social subject become (and act as) a mediator in relations between a human being and nature? An individual task is to become more mature from the social and spiritual points of view in the process of resolving conflicts of a specific social situation. To that end, one must be able to see the conflicts of his or her development and social development and to resolve them. Therefore, a social subject in information society is to play the roles of his or her own mediator in the process of socialization and a mediator in a multicultural social space.
We understand mediation as & quot-a process in the course of which individuals think over the conditions of their existence so that those conditions eventually change, shaping a somewhat different nature of being& quot- (2, p. 149). The content analysis of the concept of mediation permits us to conclude that mediation as a process performs four functions: (1) a descriptive one (the model of the present state) — (2) a forecasting one (the model of the desired state) — (3) a projective one (determining the mechanisms ensuring transition from the present state to the desired one) — (4) an educational one (the transformation of a social situation into an educational one, making sense, getting education from life). The socio-pedagogical & quot-keys"- of mediation are as follows: & quot-life as an object of study& quot-, & quot-selfconsciousness"-, & quot-socio-cultural environment& quot-, & quot-a situation as development& quot-, & quot-a holistic personality& quot-, & quot-harmonization of relationships& quot-. An education fulfilling the role of mediation is a holistic education that ensures the integrity of an individual and his or her being, an education that determines the way of life of an individual.
Holistic education pursues the objective of creating a holistic (selfconscious) personality in the process of his or her socialization and acts as a principle and method of mediations on the following grounds: (a) it discharges the above mediation functions- (b) it manifests self-consciousness — the mechanism of thinking over life (the mechanism of mediation) — © life is a subject of learning (a subject of mediation) — (d) transformation of living conditions (the role of mediation) — (e) projecting the desired state of some system on the basis of its present state (the principal method of mediation) — (f) harmonization of the relations of a social subject with him- or herself and the world (the purpose of mediation) — (g) the formation of a new social situation, new qualities of a social subject, and the integrity of his or her being (the result of mediation).
Educational practice demonstrates that holistic education discharges its mediative function because its purpose is to harmonize an education subject'-s relations with him- or herself and with the world. Thus, in order to shape a new type of relations between humans and nature, and thereby act as a condition of sustainable social development, education must be holistic (mediative): it must ensure resolution of conflicts of personal and social development.
Satisfaction of Educational Needs. A person'-s educational needs must be known to the person (the education subject) him- or herself and to those who ensure those needs with him- or herself, so that those needs might be satisfied. As a rule, formal implementation of standards without regard for the needs, abilities and potential of an educatee is inherent in the educational practice of the mass school (in the general sense of that word). In this case, teachers act as & quot-false gurus& quot- who & quot-pile"- all the volume of the material under study on the disciple without reacting to his or her needs. How can one become a & quot-true guru& quot- who meets the disciple'-s needs and gives him or her as much as needed (necessary and sufficient)?
The satisfaction of educational needs in holistic education is ensured by a number of its components. First and foremost, this is the individual education route of the education subject in question: a unique self-development path inherent only to the person in question in the educational space, implemented on the basis of conscious choice by the subject of the principal components of his or her education. An individual educational route consists of acts of an individual'-s selfpropulsion in the educational space. Secondly, self-projecting: the subject of education determines him- or herself what kind of person he or she wants to be and what he or she must do for that. Thirdly, the content of education: the issues of life in the actual social being of the education subject. Fourthly, universal holistic activity understood as the activity of an education subject carried out directly in the situation of education, based on the principles of necessity and sufficiency and comprising the following components: humanistic, co-creative, aesthetic, ethic, philosophic, psychological. Fifthly, the result of education: the educational product comprising increased competences, transformed personal qualities and products of creativity. Thus, a person with different qualities becomes the result of education. Sixthly, values act as the focus of holistic education. In the process of self-creation, proceeding from a personal system of values, an education subject masters cultural values, corrects and enriches his or her personal system of values, and retains and improves his or her physical, psycho-emotional, social and spiritual health.
Thereby, holistic education takes account of the potential and abilities of a subject of the educational process, as well as the place, time and circumstances in which he or she acts, thus creating conditions for the satisfaction of a person'-s educational needs. A subject takes what is necessary and sufficient- this is a hallmark of sustainable social development. Finally, a person'-s educational needs are satisfied in the process of his or her self-development and self- organization.
Development through self-organization. According to control theory, selforganization is the highest level of organization. Acmeology considers this to be a mark of personal maturity. From the acmeological point of view, self-organization is & quot-coordination, harmonization and creation of an individually optimal personal and
psychic system& quot- [3]. Self-organization is ensured by the development of personal self-consciousness comprising self-cognition (what kind of person am I?), selfidentification (who am I in this situation of interaction?), self-determination (where am I? why does this situation need me and why do I need it?) The strategy of holistic education, an education subject'-s ascent through the levels of integrity in the process of evolutionary self-development, is implemented through enrichment of a person'-s experience by his or her making sense of everyday situations in a socio-cultural educational environment. The hallmark of a high-self-organization is & quot-active self-creation as a personality, personal growth and development& quot- [3], since the mechanism of holistic education is self-projection as creation of a different image of oneself including understanding of the actual state and current conflicts, the accumulation of methods of changing the state, resolving conflicts, modeling a desired image of oneself, and implementation.
The understanding of contradictions of one'-s own development and social development is ensured by the second group of tasks: organization of the educational process on the basis of principles of personalization, dialogization, problemization and variability, assistance in the development of such personal qualities as communicative competence, rapport, empathy, sympathy, solidarity and cooperation. Thereby, as one goes along the road of evolutionary development, one acts according to the & quot-do no harm& quot- principle, ensuring one'-s own sustainable development and that of the society.
Thereby, an education that is holistic and therefore mediative, healthpreserving, based on self-consciousness and the self-creation of an individual, implements the three above guidelines and therefore serves as a condition of sustainable social development.
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Translated from Russian by Znanije Central Translastions Bureas

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