caring, caring science, consciousness, healing, nursing discipline, nursing knowledge, unitary science, wholeness



  1. Cowling, W. Richard III PhD, RN, APRN-BC, AHN-BC
  2. Smith, Marlaine C. PhD, RN, AHN-BC, FAAN
  3. Watson, Jean PhD, RN, AHN-BC, FAAN


Wholeness, consciousness, and caring are 3 critical concepts singled out and positioned in the disciplinary discourse of nursing to distinguish it from other disciplines. This article is an outgrowth of a dialogue among 4 scholars, 3 who have participated extensively in work aimed at synthesizing converging points in nursing theory development. It proposes a unified vision of nursing knowledge that builds on their work as a reference point for extending reflection and dialogue about the discipline of nursing. We seek for an awakening of a higher/deeper place of wholeness, consciousness, and caring that will synthesize new ethical and intellectual forms and norms of "ontological caring literacy" to arrive at a unitary caring science praxis. We encourage the evolution of a mature caring-healing-health discipline and profession, helping affirm and sustain humanity, caring, and wholeness in our daily work and in the world.