Vol. 16 No. 1 (2012): Revista Científica Pensar Enfermagem
Original Articles

Parse’s Humanbecoming school of thought

Rosemarie Rizzo Parse

Published 2012-06-30


  • Parse’s school of thought,
  • humanbecoming,
  • humanuniverse,
  • nursing theory,
  • nursing research

How to Cite

Rizzo Parse, R. (2012). Parse’s Humanbecoming school of thought. Pensar Enfermagem, 16(1), 80–94. https://doi.org/10.56732/pensarenf.v16i1.64


The antecedents of the humanbecoming school of thought are from existential phenomenological thought and the science of unitary human beings (See Parse 1981). Parse’s (1981) original work was named Man-Living-Health: A Theory of Nursing. When the term mankind was replaced with male gender in the dictionary definition of man, the name of the theory was changed to human becoming (Parse, 1992). No aspect of the principles changed at that time. With the 1998a publication of The Human Becoming School of Thought, Parse expanded the original work to include descriptions of three research methodologies and more specifics related to the practice methodology (Parse, 1987), thus classifying the science of humanbecoming as a school of thought (Parse, 1997b). The fundamental idea of humanbecoming that humans are indivisible, unpredictable, everchanging, as specified in the ontology, precludes any use of terms, such as physiological, biological, psychological, or spiritual to describe the human. These terms are particulate, thus inconsistent with the ontology. Other terms inconsistent with humanbecoming include words often used to describe people, such as, noncompliant, dysfunctional, manipulative, and others.

In 2007b, Parse set forth a clarification of the ontology of the school of thought. She specified humanbecoming as one word and humanuniverse as one word (Parse, 2007b). Joining the words creates one concept and further confirms the idea of indivisibility.
She also described postulates to further clarify the ontology (Parse, 2007b). The ontology - that is, the assumptions, postulates, and principles - sets forth beliefs that are clearly different from other nursing frameworks and theories. Discipline-specific knowledge is articulated in unique language specifying a position on the phenomenon of concern for each discipline. The humanbecoming language enhanced by the new becoming visible-invisible becoming of the emerging now conceptualization is unique to nursing, thus creating the new humanbecoming paradigm (Parse, 2012). The three humanbecoming principles contain nine concepts written in verbal form with ing endings to make clear the importance of the ongoing process of change as basic to humanuniverse emergence. Also each concept is explicated with paradoxes as apparent opposites, further specifying the uniqueness of the humanbecoming language.


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