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What is Scout Spirit?

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  • #16
    To me, Scout Spirit is basically an adopted way of life. Kind of like a filter I pass everything through to make life's decisions. To a certain extent the Oath and Law design the filter in a certain way. Am I being kind to others? Is this an opportunity for me to be courteous to someone? Someone's in need of some help, am I capable of providing that? Does what I do make a difference in other people's lives or only my own?

    A boy who's reflective filter allows room for issues other than one's own, might be on the right track for Scout Spirit. If the whole world revolves just around oneself, I'm thinking they haven't yet understood what Scout Spirit is all about.

    If servant leadership is defined as taking care of someone other than just oneself, then Scout Spirit is measured in how much leadership is one demonstrating to the world around them.



    • #17
      Originally posted by fred johnson View Post
      qwazse ... You need to know the checklist mentality as the starting point. Just as with driving, you need to start with a checklist mentality. As you get comfortable with scouting, then you can go further. But the checklist is still the starting point and the guide to the right method.
      Some things are amenable to checklists. Others aren't. BSA's management experts over the years have dissected the "checkable" parts of scout spirit by requiring:

      1. service hours / eagle projects,
      2. camping nights to be under BSA auspices,
      3. one attempt at recruiting a friend,
      4. learning one teaching method,
      5. teaching a skill once, and
      6. (coming soon) prattling on about your religious life.

      It's a like the couple who starts out with one simple rule (well, two, if you count "be fruitful ...") then someone prefers serpent-talk to gardening, then they mock each other, then fig-leaves don't make the cut, then they require sacrifices to support a fashion industry, then 10 commandments, then 603 ....

      Originally posted by fred johnson View Post
      ... Plus the checklist mentality exists because of too many leaders that want the discretion so that they can do their own thing, take things a different direction and establish rank requirements not reflected by the BSA program.
      Insert rant about rank requirements no longer being simply about a boy qualifying to take his patrol hiking and camping ...

      Originally posted by fred johnson View Post
      The way the best SM coaches his SPL and scouts is with open ended questions. But you need deeper understanding so that when issues arise, you know your latitude of options.
      Look up Gnosticism.

      There is nothing more to scout spirit than acting out 12 points of a law and 40 words of an oath. Either a boy has lived up to them, or he hasn't. Like Stosh said, you either see yourself in that oath, or you wish you did, or you think the whole thing is child's play and approach advancement with a once-and-done attitude. An SM could have a checklist a mile long, and that last kind of kid would skate by.

      Originally posted by fred johnson View Post
      Only correction ... It's not always a seven year discussion. Hopefully, it is at least a six rank discussion.
      Oh, my youth get 7+ years even if they leave the troop/crew! Some of the better discussions are after the Eagle+Palms are earned, but some are with drop-outs who think they can get by just thuggin' it.


      • #18
        Scout Spirit is a scout "doing his or her best" to live by the tenements of scouting: Oath, Law, Slogan, Motto, Outdoor Code, Pledge of Allegiance, the Requirement's of his or her Faith, and should the scout be an Arrowman, whatever obligations he, or she has taken. For Cubs, Varsity, Venture, Sea Scout, and Explorer, adjust accordingly - for now.


        • #19
          Thanks so much for all your feedback and support. Your comments have shed a lot of light on the matter. Fred Johnson's comment was especially helpful. I think I have a better picture of it now. I think the issue in our troop was more that there was nothing reflective in the whole process (the Scout was not asked for his view of his behaviour and if it was in line with the principles of the law and promise); rather the Scoutmaster was the judge of Scout Spirit, as in "I'm not going to have a SM conference with you as I don't like your Scout Spirit" so it was never clear to me what it was. My son could also rarely get concrete feedback from the SM since, of course, he did not have a SM conference or a Board of Review.