Continuum Concept.org The Liedloff Continuum Network

The Continuum List...
User Guide

Updated June, 2018  (minor changes to 2006 version)



You have been added to the CONTINUUM mailing list.

The CONTINUUM list is a forum for the discussion of topics related to Jean Liedloff's acclaimed 1975 book, "The Continuum Concept", which compares the culture and child-rearing practices of modern "civilized" peoples to those of the so-called "primitive" Yequana Indians of the South American jungle.

The continuum concept itself, as described by Liedloff, is the idea that humans, and particularly infants — in order to achieve optimal physical, mental, and emotional development — require the full range of experience to which our species adapted during the long process of our evolution.

Further information about "The Continuum Concept" can be found at the Liedloff Continuum Network web site, located at


The primary purpose of the list is one of mutual support. If you choose to post messages to the list, it will be assumed that you have read the book and are trying to apply its principles to your life — unless you state otherwise. Though all Continuum Concept supporters are welcome, most of the subscribers are parents (or plan to be parents) and are seeking or sharing suggestions for continuum-style parenting in our modern cultural context.

Not everyone interprets and applies The Continuum Concept identically. The expression and co-existence of diverse viewpoints is encouraged, and tolerance and civility are expected on this list. Posts which are primarily argumentative or defensive — or otherwise focused on proving one perspective "right" or proving another "wrong" — undermine the supportive quality of the list. Please keep an open mind; take what you like, and leave the rest.

This is an international forum, so please keep in mind that regional, language, and cultural differences may occasionally result in a misunderstanding or "faux pas".

A GLOSSARY OF ABBREVIATIONS commonly used in the discussions is at continuumconcept.org/forum/lingo

IMPORTANT:   In the spirit of information sharing and open exchange, this list is unmoderated and any subscriber can post to it. Therefore you should realize that information obtained from this list might not be accurate or appropriate for everyone. You are responsible for your own conclusions about how to use any information obtained from this list, especially when making decisions that could seriously affect the health or safety of you or any child in your care.


The list is limited to 50 posts per day to keep the amount of email manageable. Subscribers who still find this volume to be overwhelming are encouraged to subscribe in Digest mode. Another option is to set your subscription to "no mail" and read the posts through the archive web interface. (See Digest and archive information below.)

If the 50-post limit is reached, the list goes on "hold" automatically. All posts are held until the list is "freed" the next day and the held posts are distributed automatically.

With over 1000 subscribers, obviously more people are reading than writing. Please send your replies privately if they are not likely be of general interest to the majority of the list's suscribers. Messages that should be sent privately include, but are not limited to, one-line posts that say only "I agree," "Thank you," "Welcome to the list," or "Me, too." The list is programmed to allow a maximum of 3 posts per person, per day. Please use your posting privileges thoughtfully.


The following rules and suggestions are intended to help keep the list "user friendly". If you receive a notice from the listowner about a usage problem, it is not a reprimand, just a friendly reminder. :-) The listowner is a participant in the list and makes mistakes, too!

  1. Subscription to this list is at the sole discretion of the listowner.
  2. When you subscribe, you are encouraged to post a message introducing yourself to the rest of the list. (Put "Intro", "New member", etc. in the Subject of the post.) You may want to include the URL (Web address) of your website, if you have one. If you want to bring up a new topic or ask a question, please do so in a separate post with the appropriate topic in the Subject line.
  3. CONTENT of messages posted to the list:
    1. Posts should be relevant to "The Continuum Concept" in general. Use private email for topics that are not likely to be of interest to the majority of the list's subscribers. You may post a request for off-topic info from others IF you ask them to reply directly to you and you include your email address in the body of the message.
    2. Posts should be written by the poster. This list is for sharing the perspectives and experience of the subscribers. It is usually inappropriate (and in many cases, illegal) to post articles and emails written by others, even if you have their permission. However, you may legally quote *brief* excerpts of copyrighted works for review and comment, and you may quote *brief* portions of previous Continuum posts for context. You may also include the URLs of articles found on the Internet. Do not forward to the list emails which were sent privately to you. NEVER forward chain letters, virus warnings, petitions, jokes, etc., to the list. The rule of thumb is "If you didn't write it, don't post it."
    3. When writing about your child, be sure you indicate your child's age, every time, so that those reading or responding can take into account your child's developmental stage.
    4. The special subject prefix, "ADMIN" is for off-topic posts relating to the administration and usage of this list. Messages with "ADMIN" in the subject heading may only be posted by the listowner and should be read by all subscribers.
  4. FORMATTING. Send posts in plain text only. Do not send emails with styled text, attached files, embedded graphics or HTML code. Posts are limited in length to 150 lines (equivalent to 2 or 3 printed pages). After you send your first post, check the copy of it which you will receive from the list server. If it contains strange-looking codes such as an equal sign ( = ) at the end of each line, change your email settings to plain text without "quoted-printable encoding" or ask for assistance from the listowner. (See below.)
  5. QUOTING. When you reply to a previously posted message, do not quote the entire message. (Your email program may do this automatically.) Use your computer's editing capabilities to delete all but the most relevant portions of the quoted message — the minimum needed to give context to your reply. Always include the name of the subscriber you are quoting. Make sure it is clear which text is quoted and which is your reply. Keep recently posted messages so you may refer to quoted messages in their entirety.
  6. SUBJECTS. Before sending a reply, check the Subject and make sure it accurately reflects the topic of your message, especially if you subscribe in "digest" mode. One topic per post, please; however, multiple replies on the same topic may be combined into one post. For detailed info on Subjects, see continuum-concept.org/forum/subject.txt
  7. SPAM. Commercial advertising, promotion, and "spamming" is not allowed. This include signature lines with links to your own commerical web site. You may, however, mention your occupation and/or business Web site in your introductory message. (See #2 above.)
  8. FEEDBACK. If you have any comments, suggestions or complaints related to this list, please do not send them to the list address (and thus to everyone on the list), but instead contact the listowner.
  9. Do not contact our list hosting service (ICORS) with problems or questions about our list. ICORS has delegated complete authority over this list to its listowner(s).
  10. If you decide to remain subscribed to this mailing list, your doing so indicates agreement by you to the all the policies outlined in this message, including the terms and conditions to be found in the following two paragraphs. You MUST unsubscribe from this list if you do not agree.
  11. Neither the CONTINUUM List forum leaders/owners, nor any subscribers or other contributors can be held liable in any way for any information and/or data obtained in any way from this list; nor shall there be any liability for any information construed as missing from anything obtained from this list.
  12. By your use of this mailing list, you agree to hold harmless the CONTINUUM List forum leaders/owners, the list's subscribers, ICORS.org, the publisher of ContinuumConcept.org, and all other contributors against ANY AND ALL CLAIMS arising out of such use, regardless of the cause, effects, or fault.

If you do not agree to the provisions of the two paragraphs immediately above, or with any other policy included in this message, please unsubscribe (signoff) from the CONTINUUM list immediately. (See SIGNOFF below.)


The following addresses are used in relation with this list:

  1. The list address:


    Messages sent to this address go to all list subscribers. This is called "posting" to the list. The list address should never be used for administrative requests regarding your subscription or questions about the list server as this would unnecessarily annoy other list subscribers.

    You can only post to the list from the account (email address) under which you are subscribed. If your post is rejected for no apparent reason, contact the listowner. (See below.)

  2. The list server address:


    This is the address to which you sent your subscription request, and it should be used for all requests ("commands") that can be handled automatically by the LISTSERV program. This includes unsubscribing; changing your name, email address, or subscription options; retrieving files from the file server; etc. You will find a list of the most commonly used LISTSERV commands in the next section.

  3. The listowner's contact info is posted at...


    This is the person in charge of keeping the list running. If you have any technical or administrative problem that you cannot solve with LISTSERV commands, contact the listowner.

  4. The webpage for the Continuum list:


    Refer to this page for the most complete and up-to-date information about the list, including links to technical help, tips, a glossary of abbreviations commonly used in posts, and the most recent version of this User's Guide.


Here are some of the common commands that you may need to send to LISTSERV. You can generally send any number of commands in a single message, as long as each is on a separate line.

Remember to send commands to...


Don't send commands to continuum@listserv.icors.org, which is the address where you post messages for everyone else to read.


This is the command you used to subscribe to the CONTINUUM list. Your subscription address is automatically detected, so you do not need to enter it. You will only be allowed to post from that address. If you want to post from more than one account, you can subscribe from several addresses and set all but one to "NOMAIL", as explained below.


This command removes (unsubscribes) you from the CONTINUUM list. If you are forced to change Internet providers and cannot unsubscribe from your old email address, please send an email note to the listowner who will remove your old email address from the list.


Sets your subscription option so that you will receive no mail from the list. You are still able to post messages to the list. This is useful if you have more than one account, or if you want to leave the list temporarily (e.g. when going on vacation). Use "SET CONTINUUM MAIL" or "SET CONTINUUM DIGEST" to go back to your normal setting.


Sets your subscription option so that you receive each message as it is posted. This is the default setting when your subscription begins.


Sets your subscription option to digest. Instead of receiving each message as it is posted, you will receive daily digests containing all the posts for that day. Please note that the digests have a size limit, and because of this, two or three digests per day are often needed to deliver all of the day's posts.


Sets your subscription option to individual messages instead of receiving a daily digest. You will receive each message as it is posted.


Subject Headers. With this option, you will receive posts with a [CONTINUUM] tag prefixed to the Subject line.


Short Headers (default setting when you subscribe). You will receive posts with minimum header data: Date, Subject, To, From, and Reply-To. With this setting, the Subject line has no added tag.


Sending "THANK YOU" is a simple way to find out if LISTSERV is functioning. If it is, you will receive a very polite reply. :-)


This returns a summary of your current subscription options. If it appears that the CONTINUUM list is no longer sending you messages, you should issue the "QUERY CONTINUUM" command to determine your status:

  1. If the returned information shows NOMAIL and NOPOST this change was probably due to error notices caused by your email address. You can return to receiving normal mail with the "SET CONTINUUM MAIL" command. (See the description above.)

  2. There are many reasons why your email address may be causing error notices, including a full mailbox or transmission problems along the pathway. The high volume of error notices we get makes it impossible for us to research every notice. We do try to warn you of the problem, but usually you will not receive our warning for the same reason that the error notice is being generated. If the bounced message appears to be temporary, the subscription may be set to digest mode.


Gets you a copy of the file you are now reading. It is also available online at continuumconcept.org/forum/guide


The archives of this list are available to subscribers only. To search or browse the CONTINUUM archives...

  1. After reading these instructions, go to


and follow the instructions there. Be sure to add the archive page to your Bookmarks.

  1. At some point during your first use, you will be asked to create a password. A confirmation will be emailed to you, and you will have to follow the instructions on that message to complete your password creation.


When you read old posts out of order and out of context, you do not have the benefit of having "met" the writer and the familiarity with his or her circumstances and viewpoints which comes from daily interaction. Therefore, it is doubly importantant to read such posts "with a grain of salt".

Technical Note: We moved to a new list server ("listserv.icors.org") in 2006 and transferred all of our 1998-2005 archives from the old list server ("maelstrom.stjohns.edu"). Archive links with the old server's URL will not work.

We hope you find your participation in the CONTINUUM list to be an enriching experience.