“Education for Your Child’s Soul: A Yogic Perspective.” Swami Jyotirmayananda. Light of Consciousness Journal of Spiritual Awakening. Vol. 20. No. 4. Winter 2008. With Special thanks to Doris L. for sharing with us… == The subject of educating children is very vital because the future of mankind-culture, tradition, religion, all that is good and sublime-depends upon the way children are educated. Children grow up into adults and adults again become children in the process of karmic movement and its continuous cycles of birth and death. Further, the test of a great culture is the art with which children are educated. If children stay frustrated in a society, if they undergo mental torture, if they are not given normal circumstances for higher development and for understanding what is good and evil, then such a society is in a state of degradation. It is important therefore, to understand what type of attitudes parents must evolve toward their children, towards themselves, and towards their mutual education. A KARMIC RELATIONSHIP Firstly one must have the philosophical understanding that children are spirits in the process of repeated embodiment and it is on the basis of the Law of Karma that parents draw certain souls within their family. So, a child’s coming to a home is not an accidental development. It is backed up by a law. The spirit of the child needs an environment that will fulfill the demands of its karma. Accordingly, the parents have been arranged by nature’s laws. So in a way the child is the (parent of the adult). It is (s)he who selected the parents through whom (s)he is born. According to Yogic thought, a child is learning even when (s)he is within the mother’s womb. Even then the child is receiving impressions. So in Yogic culture a mother with child is given an abundance of good association, satsanga. She is careful about where she goes, the thoughts she entertains in her mind, even the pictures she sees. Parents can mold their children through the environment of impressions. On the other hand, you must realize you are not creating the child. The child has been drawn to you on the basis of karma. Whatever you do is in the fitness of the karmic law. At the same time this does not imply that you simply relax and follow your whims in the name of the Law of Karma. A CHILD IS A REFLECTION OF THE SELF Why is a child so lovable to the parent? How can a tiny creature weighing just a few pounds capture their hearts, entrance their minds, involve all their energy? Why is it that the moment you see a little cub of a tiger or a lion, or any child of any species, the human mind develops such a sense of tenderness? What is the psychology behind it? The answer, in brief, is that every human being wants to capture in his consciousness absolute tenderness, absolute beauty and harmony. That, of course, is God, the Divine Self. coque iphone x But since the urge for realizing the Self is very abstract, the complex mind is unable to understand that urge and nature must present various experiences in human life to promote its development. coque iphone So, when parents love their child, in that love they are trying to capture the love of God. Your child reflects that God, That Divinity in it’s simplicity and innocence. When you understand how your child reflects your aspiration for becoming simple, symbolizing the goal you want to reach in life, you can develop an attitude of adoring the Divine Self in the child. This attitude however, should not interfere with your practical dealings with a child. You must be able to separate your instinctive love from the objective needs of a child’s growth. You should not make the child a tool of your love, nor become attached to and dependent on the form of the child to be happy. If you do so you will stunt their development and not let them grow up as they should. Rather understand that a child exists as an independent personality and one day will walk out of your life as a bird that has wings will fly out of the nest. UNIQUE SENSITIVITY OF A CHILD’S MIND A child, according to Yoga, has their kleshas, their afflictions, in a dormant state. Because the ego and it’s selfishness have not yet developed, there is a unique form of sensitivity that nature has given to a child. In practical dealings with children, parent must understand the sensitivity of the child’s mind and realize how deeply every experience penetrates that mind. You remember clearly many things from your childhood days while things that happened a few years ago, or only a few days ago are forgotten. coque iphone 8 The mind of a child is extraordinarily sensitive. Its sensitivity is mystic. Sometimes the child is reflecting even the things that you feel and think. You may be able to conceal many things from other grownup human beings. You can come from your office tense, tired, and filled with explosions within your mind. You can conceal all that when dealing with grownup people, but when you are sitting before children you are sitting before tiny sages. They perceive your inner state though you have not uttered a word. There is a radiation from you and children are more sensitive to that and they imbibe it. So, it is important that adults consider carefully the sensitivity of the mind of a child. SEE THROUGH YOUR CHILDS EYES Parents must also understand how the values of children are different from the values of grownup people. It becomes important for parents to develop sensitivity into children’s psychology. Not through academic learning, but on the basis of spontaneous love and affection, you must become able to commune with your children and understand them. You must try to see how the children think and how they ae looking at things. You should not impose your realities in a very harsh manner. The Law of Karma can cause great differences among children in the same family. Children born of the same parents may be in totally different levels of evolution. Some children have the potentiality of becoming very great in a particular field while others do not. Parents with insight will be able to guide their children according to their potential and their state of evolution, encouraging them to unfold all their inner talents and resources. Parents should not become upset if the children do not function or develop the way they had excepted, because children have their own right to live and express themselves. They cannot be molded exactly according to the expectations of parents. The parents attitude towards the children should be to present a healthy environment for growth, just as the sun and the rain provide a proper environment for seeds to grow. If proper circumstance are given in a society where various personalities are needed, everyone will fit in to perform a correct and right function. From Divine point of view no one is smaller, no one is greater. Therefore, parents should not imbalance their affection and lean more towards children who are brighter or more like themselves, and begin to ignore those that are not so bright or express themselves differently than parents had expected. THE SPIRIT OF DISCIPLINE Practical insight into how to train children must be gradually developed by the parents through experience. There cannot be set laws. Those people who read set laws from research books become like tinny computers, constantly looking into the books to find out exactly how they are going to react to a problem. Parents must build up an atmosphere of warmth and love and within that atmosphere firmness. Allow the children to taste the joy of your satisfaction when they have done well in meeting your healthy expectations. However, when they have not done something well they must also taste the bitterness of having made you dissatisfied. They long to please you and learn to enjoy promoting your satisfaction. That sensitive way in which children must be handled is the subject of profound understanding and the art of being firm in a healthy manner requires a special intelligence. You should not allow the child to have their way all of the time. You must train and discipline the child and your love for the child should not come in the way of that training. If a child gets into some wrong habits you must discipline them firmly, strongly. Even threats and little pats will do no harm. The children will appreciate your actions in the course of time. coque iphone Parents who are afraid that their children will leave them as they grow if they are firmly treated, have not developed deeper love for the children. If you are in a healthy relationship with your children, you will impress upon them the sincerity of your intentions to such an extent that even though you might have been very harsh at times, they will love you immensely. TRUE SPIRITUAL EDUCATION Spiritual Ideals should be given to children, but since people do not have a healthy understanding of the true meaning of spirituality, they often separate the spiritual from the material. Therefore, you hear so much about the cruelty that occurs when children are trained to become everything that the parents are not. Parents, finding in themselves many weaknesses that they cannot remove, want the child to be perfect, free from all those weaknesses. This type of attempt to build perfection in others without bringing perfection within oneself is an erroneous movement. Children are put into great trouble in the name of making them ethically perfect, training them to be pious, religious. Religion is life lived in a healthy plane. Religion is sincerity. Religion is communion with love. It is important not to adopt extreme measures in any direction and to provide conditions so that the children draw from themselves the inherent power with which they are born. That is exactly the meaning of education. Education is to draw out from yourself what you have. For encouraging aspiration for greater things, all you need to do is awaken an interest in the child. The moment a true interest is awakened, the child will follow that pursuit with intense concentration. If a child develops an interest in Self-realization as the goal, he will start to read books that will help him reach that goal. Therefore, the art for parents is to plant in the child a profound interest then leave the child to peruse it. Just guide here and there. Do not go after every detail. For parents to present higher thought patterns in the environment of their children, certain conditions must be present. Firstly, the parents must have higher understanding themselves and be sincerely working towards their own evolution and personality integration. Secondly, there must not be disharmony between the parents. Thirdly, the parents must not seek too many amusements outside. They must consider that the children provide for them an excellent panorama of experience and they in turn provide an interesting environment for the children. Therefore, do not allow the children to just watch TV day and night. It is a terrible defect in the present civilization that parents leave the children completely at the mercy of mechanized entertainment, and that children grow up cold, calculated and insensitive. Therefore, they bring pain to their parents and pain to the society. Rather, come in contact with the children by telling them stories and parables. participate in their lives and come closer to their world. Education is not limited to just training children how to write and read. Education is sharing your life, allowing a child to imbibe vibrations which are necessary for his growth. Bringing forth children, according to the Hindu tradition, is a powerful responsibility, a powerful Yoga. If that responsibility is not understood, a person should not be a grihasta, a householder, and bring forth children he is not prepared to deal with. coque iphone 2019 On the other hand, if you know the art, you are promoting a Yoga. Your doing good to the child enables you, in turn, to evolve faster. You are not educating the child for the child’s sake alone, but for your sake as well. It is within the perspective of educating yourself that nature has provided a conjunction of a soul – the child – with you. You must help the child unfold under your protection and guidance. When children bloom into wonderful personalities, when they turn towards a life which in universal and truly healthy, and when they become enlightened sages, they benefit themselves, the parents, the forefathers, and the entire world.