Om Namo Bhagavade Sivanandaya

Established in 1949 by Sri Swami Sivananda

The Role of Parents

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1. Parents must set a good example to their Spiritual Darlings by being exemplary role models. Children are very good imitators. Modern children especially are observant, sharp and critical. They easily detect the flaws in their parents, and their trust in them then begins to wane.

2. Parents should be well disciplined, and practise living by strict moral and ethical codes. Ethics and morals are the basis of life. These values need to be emulated by Spiritual Darlings. Parents should teach by example that there should be no compromise of principles and values. In their daily life, be it at work, within the home or socially, they should exercise their minds and will through deliberate acts of self-denial and self-sacrifice.

3. Parents should carry out their daily spiritual practices regularly, and bring home to their Spiritual Darlings the importance of prayer and the power of the Divine Name. This will show the Spiritual Darlings that with faith and devotion to God no problem will be too difficult to overcome. During difficult times, prayer and repetition of the Divine Name should be intensified.

4. Parents should inculcate in their Spiritual Darlings values such as honesty, truthfulness, loyalty, kindness, love, compassion, respectability, forgiveness, obedience, humility, courtesy, courage, tolerance and discrimination. Spiritual Darlings will imbibe these virtues readily and easily only if parents practise them.

5. Virtues can be taught to Spiritual Darlings through the medium of stories from the writings of our Divine Master, Sri Swami Sivananda, and scriptures like the Mahabharata, Ramayana and Bhagavata. Hero-worship is not difficult to awaken in young minds.

6. Spiritual Darlings must be taught the basic principles of Hinduism, such as Ahimsa (non-injury), Karma (the law of cause and effect), reincarnation, etc.

7. Parents should be mindful that their Spiritual Darlings live in a culture of violence. This is seen everywhere—on TV, in the media, at school, in the neighbourhood, in the country, and in the whole world at large. This is the age of hatred, intolerance, violence and indiscipline. This social disturbance and psychological imbalance, together with a decline in the practice of positive values and rise in crime, is very destructive to the developing psyche of Spiritual Darlings. That is why they have weak nerves and a different mental make-up. Unhealthy mental impressions developed during childhood leave scars that will be carried over to the next birth.

8. Working parents must be careful not to bring home their work-related problems. Leave work concerns behind and organise quality time at home for the family.

9. Parents need to spend quality time at home with their Spiritual Darlings. This quality time should involve positive, free and sincere interaction with all members of the family.

10. Responsible shared parenting is necessary at home, especially where both parents work. The father, too, must take responsibility for the growth and development of his Spiritual Darlings, helping them in their education, discipline and spiritual growth. Self-confidence and self-reliance must be encouraged.

11. Parents must ensure that the diet of their Spiritual Darlings is free from too much sugar and spices, as these make the mind restless and increase tension. They should adopt a Sattwic diet. Many illnesses are probably related to meat-eating, due to the presence of chemicals present in it.

Last modified on Friday, 08 May 2015 12:14
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Sri Swami Sivananda

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