Whilst playing/philosophising with (Norwegian: hos/ German: bei) children as guests invited into those fleeting micro-worlds which arise and pass away in the rigid macro-worlds of adulthood - the adult may experience various forms of discomfort owing to their own embodied rigidity. To extend Eriksen’s anthropological metaphor of clashing scales (Eriksen 2016), the scales that clash here are philosophical, primarily because what the adult is being invited to do by their child counterpart may at first not make sense in the horizons of their immediately perceived, taken-for-granted lifeworld. To avoid this discomfort - phenomenological bracketing performed with breathing as the point of departure and return, coupled with Jaina pluralism as an analytical fall back, can help.
Conventional scholarly and social focus tends to ask - what is it that children do? In this case though, the answer is: it is not important what they do. Rather, one is invited to broaden the horizons of one’s consciousness to accommodate the pluralistic ontological experiences by focusing awareness on what happens in one’s conscious lived-experience when one plays along on their terms. As Merleau-Ponty writes, “In the home into which a child is born, all objects change their significance; they begin to await some as yet indeterminate treatment at his hands; another and different person is there, a new personal history, short or long, has just been initiated, another account has been opened.” (Merleau-Ponty in Welsh 2013; 21).
Biswas, Tanu (2020): Little Things Matter Much - Childist Ideas for the Pedagogy of Philosophy in an Overheated World. Büro Himmelgrün: Munich. p.197