10 Feb Hansaji on “Bringing Up Children” at the Satsang (10th Feb 2013)
The topic for the Hindi Satsang on Sunday, 10th February, 2013 was ‘Bringing Up Children.’
Following is the transcript of the speech made by Smt. Hansaji Yogendra on the topic.
Listen to the Audio:
“Childcare is a very important issue. People feel that it is a natural phenomenon, getting pregnant, having a baby, the baby grows on its own; and it is true. But when the person is pregnant her sense of self-awareness increases and management of the mind is also very important. Proper nutrition etc. is on one side, but seeing that the mind doesn’t get disturbed, because if the mother gets disturbed, the baby in the womb also gets disturbed. The education of the baby starts right from the womb. It learns and is continuously receiving. It is in a state of taking everything in and so we have to see that the mind is always level-headed. Our pregnancy camp is going very well because they are learning to be good mothers. They learn to be systematic and organized. With child, lots of duties and varieties of situations come. So here comes the entire role of yoga. We teach them to take care of their skin, muscle spasms, etc, how to breathe during labour and deliver properly. Above all how to relax.
As the baby comes, both parents are very important. But the mother’s role is very important in first 6 months to 1 year. The parents should talk something good because the baby is listening even in the womb. These days so many hours are spent travelling and at work that when the husband comes home, there is hardly one hour. And in that hour husband and wife should talk something good, instead of reporting what happened and complaining. Read some books like Amar Chitra Katha which I really recommend. The stories in this comic book are very authentic and researched. Find out some spiritual meaning out of it and such discussions would work wonders.
With a growing child, only one message is there – parents should learn to be role models. Children hardly learn from spoken words like “Don’t do this or don’t do that.” They learn from observation. So even if you are disturbed or angry, first settle down and then speak politely, do what is required at the moment, etc. The entire management of ups and downs of life, chaotic situation, etc. has to be handled in a way that it would help us to grow spiritually.
Before we got married we were happy. Now after marriage, two are moving ahead together and to be happy, instead of ‘me’ and ‘mine’ I must start thinking of my partner, start understanding and taking care of the partner. After the baby comes, husband and wife both totally have to surrender to the child and grow with it. If we take it as a spiritual growth, it is wonderful to have a baby. The first six years its life, we are not supposed to teach the child what is right and what is wrong. You do it and let the child observe and learn or if the child is doing something wrong, direct its attention somewhere else but don’t say ‘Don’t do this, or I’ll beat you,’ etc.
After 6 years till 12-13 years, we can teach them directly. Chanakya has given four ways of doing this – Sama, Dama, Danda, and Bhed. Sama is luring the child lovingly to do something. Express the love. Another is Dama – barter. ‘If you do this, I will give you that,’ etc. Bhed is scientific explanation. Telling the child not to eat chocolate will not work, rather teach them how to eat chocolate. Immediately after eating chocolate, they should eat something natural and fibrous like an apple or roasted gram (Chana) which helps clean the mouth, throat and digestive system and the child will not get cold and cough etc since it is refined product. Similarly after eating fried food or ice-cream, as a rule a glass of warm water should be drunk to wash the throat.
All can fix a day to eat these things together because the parents should also be the child’s friends. So the child doesn’t have to hide from the parents. You have to be a role model. Later on, after the child becomes a teenager, they will stop listening to the parent. So parents should start looking for the good qualities in the child and show appreciation for it and encourage it, rather than nagging on the wrong things. The child knows by that time what you like and don’t like. So you should be good friends.
The point is, fully surrender to child and become dedicated to the child and you will see how the person get moulded, it is beautiful to see. Ups and downs are part of life. but we have to give a good amount of time and energy. So we have no time to be sick or brood about things.”