Children are unique. They want to be perceived and treated as a person. The questions are: “How can we accompany children in order to lead a good life from their own perspective? What does the child need in order to live with inner harmony, with decisiveness, with inner consent?”
This is the goal pursued by Existential Education. This goal is reached through strengthening the spirituality of the person, by enabling the child to take her/his life in his own hands. It would be mistaken to assume that an education focused on the child would invariably centre its attention on the child.
Existential Education aims …
… to place the spirituality of the child at the centre of the educational process and
… for the child to become more and more like oneself within and through the world.
The object of Existential Education is to accompany the child, to put him/her in relation to the world around it, to enable he/she to experience what is important in his/her life and to ask existential questions. Such education desires to help the child lead a fulfilled life. This is achieved not through templates for behaviour, but rather through impulses tailored to the personality of the child. The central question is: “What does this particular child need at the present time from me?”
Romano Guardini expresses education as “to encourage this person to be himself. So that his task may be shown to him, his path revealed, not mine.”
Just like Logotherapy was created in order to fill the "psychological" gap in the psychotherapeutic treatment of human beings, Existential Education seeks to consistently question the child as a person and thereby help the child lead a fulfilled existence. This approach requires educators who accompany the child in search of his/her orientation in life. What is needed, in order to live in balance, with decisiveness?