Friday, 20 January 2012

Start 'em Young Raise 'em Right

I am a big fan of the quote that's the title. Many times I wonder how I can drive in the principles taught in our scriptures to my kid, a pre-schooler. How do I make it simple and relevant to her age? Reading out fables and anecdotes from scriptures is definitely one way. But if I want her to start putting it into practice, how do I get her initiated?
 I started out by looking at some of the common problems that she has , and realized that it is not very different from what we face as adults ! One of the biggest problems that kids her age seem to be facing, is that changing loyalties among friends, peer pressure and factions. On deeper probing, I find that it is the same "attachment to ego" that we face as adults. We want our ego to massaged by external approval, appreciation, adulation and even sub-ordination. When our ego is not boosted, we submit ourselves to primal instincts like anger, hatred, jealousy. Sensing that this is a canker that must be nipped in the bud, I set out to create stories around the problem of being attached to ego. But for a preschooler ! How could I pull that? This has been an experimental learning for me. I create stories around how other friends would not want to play with her, if she always wants to get it her way, how she needs to be sensitive to the interests of other kids', and the joy that she would get out of playing and being together with other kids, just by letting go her self indulgence. Going by the recent anointment as a "helpful and friendly child" by her teacher, I am presuming this has worked.
 Though in times of fight or flight, I wonder whether it will be the primal instincts that will take over.

 Any thoughts or experiments with teaching Spiritual principles to the young?

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