Big and old sounding word isn’t it? It is….and I intend for it to come back into fashion. The practice of edification, not just the word.
Edification is a noun that means, “the moral or intellectual instruction or improvement of someone.”
In layman’s language it means to talk good about someone else to help other people learn how to talk and do good.
Songs and poems do that. They teach things and they make people feel good or happy. They edify lovers, or children, places or memories. They speak highly of situations and make us feel great in the hearing (and, confession…..singing along).
Books do it too. Books teach people. Even novels instruct us on how to navigate the tricky situations faced by characters. We learn when art imitates life.
But, do you realise what a great teacher YOU already are.
You are powerful – you have magic like never seen – you are a sower of good words and an instructor of hope.
YOU can edify (instruct and improve someone) by saying nice things to and about someone and not growl them about all the wrong things they do.
Dale Carnegie in How to Win Friends and Influence people describes the “how to” of edification perfectly. His little book (an oldie but a goodie) is a power source of social skills and etiquette – a power source that you really need to plug into if you are prepared to change your life by edifying others. An old family therapy and systems theory approach maintains that a change in any part WILL force about a change in another part. So, go change the world through edification of others……while they are still alive
Unfortunately funeral Eulogies are often the first edification others hear of their loved one. We need to change that.
On the flip side, eulogies are also rich data sources of learning about edification. Learn edification from The First Lady, Michelle Obama. She doesn’t edify herself or her position, she edifies Maya Angelou and in doing so increases the moral and intellectual instruction and improvement of women the world over.