a joyful family sitting together outside in an meadow
Image by Charles McArthur

Kindness, compassion, decency, dignity, selflessness, and the ways of love and holiness are taught and learned attitudes and behaviors. Sadly, so are nationalism, racism, misogyny, homophobia, prejudice, discrimination, bigotry, and hatred.

We, the parents—the Earthly stewards of these precious souls—are the ones who take a totally helpless little baby, completely dependent on us for survival, and oversee this child’s physical development and social formation. We are the ones who make the choices and convey the lessons—by word and deed, wittingly and unwittingly—that shape a young person’s ethics and values, point of view, and priorities.

A young sister and brother were following their father on a hike up a steep and curvy mountain. As the trek became more dangerous, their mother, who was at the back of the procession, called out to her husband, “Be careful. Our children are walking in your footsteps.”

The stark truth: All it takes is a few minutes of passion to become a parent. It takes a lifetime to be a parent. And it is not easy being a parent these days.

It's Not Easy Being a Child These Days

As soon as they are old enough to comprehend the daily news, our children hear about violence and warfare and untold human suffering in the four corners of the Earth. They learn about rape and murder and all manner of mayhem just around the corner from home.

innerself subscribe graphic

As they grow older, they are tempted by alcohol and drugs; their lives are threatened by sexually transmitted disease. The pressures to succeed at school and at play are fierce; they worry that at any moment their classroom or playground might be riddled with bullets.

They see a culture increasingly marked by selfishness and self-interest, personal pleasure and instant gratification. They see a world that all too often has a hard time discerning the difference between right and wrong.

They are confused and bewildered. And they are afraid. It is not easy being a child these days.

What Children Need

So our children desperately need wise guidance and clear direction, unequivocal ethical values and boundless love. Our children need us, their parents who gave them life, to teach them how to live.

It is parents who teach children how to be a man, how to be a woman, how to be a decent human being.

It is parents who teach our children core values—personal responsibility, striving for the common good, hard work, strong ethical principles, and high moral character.

It is parents who teach our children goodness and right, kindness and compassion, faith, holiness, and love.

It is parents who guide our children toward the transcendent world of Spirit.

How Can We Be the Best Parents We Can Possibly Be?

The key to good parenting is conscious parenting:

being fully aware—making sure that what we do with our children is well-conceived, well-planned, well-executed;

being mindful—carefully thinking about the choices we make, the words we speak, the actions we take;

being loving—respecting our children as human beings, considering their feelings, responding to their needs;

being purposeful—being in touch with our children’s inner spirit and cognizant of their place in the universe.

With gender appropriateness, “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old, he will not depart from it” (Prov. 22:6).

Teaching Our Children Well

Here are just a few ways that we can best parent our children toward a life of love and holiness:

1. Sing, read, and cultivate culture.

In the womb and from their first breaths on Earth, we can expose our children to the melodies, harmonies, rhythms, and words of life. We can give them the great music, literature, art, drama, dance, and museums of human civilization. We can help them be culturally literate. We can show them the great value of Earth’s beauty and the natural wonders of our universe.

2. Eat with them.

We can nourish not only our children’s bodies but also their souls with our presence and conversation at mealtime. We can give them our undivided attention. We can listen to them; talk to them; share our history, wisdom, and guidance.

3. Visit with them.

We can expand our children’s universe by taking them to visit grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins to know family legend and lore. And we can make playdates for them to be with friends to learn socialization and grace. We can introduce them to our friends so that they learn respect and good manners.

4. Take them to school and monitor their homework and grades.

We can let the teacher know that we are partners in our children’s education, and we can supervise their learning. The old Welsh poet George Herbert left us with this truth: “One parent is more than one hundred schoolmasters.”

5. Turn on the television and computer/turn off the television and computer; provide cell phone/take away cell phone.

Modern technology puts the world right before our children’s eyes and ears. They can see and virtually experience both the greatest of human civilization, and humanity at its most debased. They can be connected for their safety, mind-expansion, and enjoyment—or they can become dependent upon a machine to do their thinking, imagining, and creating. Parents hold the power of technology in the finger that turns the devices on or off. We can use that power wisely.

6. Create a safe space.

In this uncertain and sometimes frightening world, we can make our homes safe and secure havens for our children. We can give them one little corner of the world where there is trust, well-being, and serenity—a place that is comfortable and comforting.

7. Do not —

     —scream or yell at our children. It frightens them.
     —bully them with our strength or power. It intimidates them.
     —physically abuse them. It traumatizes them.
     —sexually abuse them. It wounds them.
     —lie or violate their trust. It scares them. 
     —smoke, drink, or do drugs. It damages them.

If we err and somehow emotionally hurt our children, we can first recognize our mistake, admit our failing, ask forgiveness, and let our love overcome. And if necessary, we can get them the outside professional help that they need to heal. We and our children can grow together. As the late First Lady of the United States, Barbara Bush once said, “You have to love your children unselfishly. That’s hard. But it’s the only way.”

8. Pray, meditate, or be quiet together.

In the chaos of the everyday, we can take a few moments with our children to seek a deep connection beyond this Earth-world. In humility, awe, gratitude, and joy we can sense the wonder of being alive and the Oneness of everything and everyone. We and our children can touch the absolute core of our beings, meet ourselves in ourselves, and shape the unlimited possibility and unbounded potential that is in us.

9. Hug them, kiss them, tell them, “I love you.”

In this uncertain world, our children must be absolutely certain of one thing—that we love them unconditionally with all our hearts and souls. We can assure them over and over again with words and with displays of affection. Love. Love. Love.

10. Teach them to swim.

What a strange ancient injunction for modern parents from The Talmud (BT Kiddushin 29a). But it makes perfect sense. When we teach our children to swim, we teach them how to survive and thrive in a foreign environment. And as parents, we learn how long to hold on and when to let go.

Even as we parents embrace the difficult but profound task of slowly letting go of our children as they grow, we need to remember that as we are, so they will be. It is told that:

A woman brought her son to the great sage Mahatma Gandhi and said, “Please Master. Please tell my son to stop eating sugar.”

Gandhi looked deeply into the boy’s eyes, and replied, “Madam, please bring your son back to me in two weeks.”

The woman said, “Please Master. Please. Cannot you tell him now? Why must we wait for two weeks? And besides, we have come a long way by train. We will have to go home now and come back again. It is a long and expensive trip. Please, Master. Please tell my son right now to stop eating sugar.”

Again, Gandhi looked deeply into the boy’s eyes, and said, Madam, please bring your son back to me in two weeks.”

The woman had no choice. She and her son returned home, and two weeks later traveled again to see the Master.

In his holy presence, she once again implored, “Please Master. Please tell my son to stop eating sugar.”

Gandhi looked deeply into the boy’s eyes, and said, “Stop eating sugar.”

Oh, thank you, Master. Thank you so very much. I am sure that my son will follow your words and stop eating sugar. But, please tell me. When we first came to you, why did you send us away and tell us to come back in two weeks?”

Gandhi looked at the woman and her son and said, “You see, Madam, it is very simple. Two weeks ago, I was eating sugar.”

Children's Sense of Purpose and Destiny

Children being born right now are coming into being in order to transform our Earth. They are extremely intelligent, highly gifted, exceptionally talented, deeply intuitive, incredibly creative, full of energy, self-reliant and self-sufficient, and happily precocious. They are wise “old souls” who have a keen sense of purpose and destiny. They have come here to shift the paradigms of the old structures, rules, and authorities in order to build a new world of compassion, holiness, and love.

For some, the wild imperfection of this world sears their souls, and in their emotional and spiritual pain they act out, don’t go along, and don’t get along. Sometimes they are in high stress and play out their pain through aggressive behavior.

Yet they are not to be judged negatively, treated harshly, diagnosed flippantly, or medicated blithely. For, in reality these magnificent children carrying their vison of perfection for our world are our pathfinders who react painfully when they see a world that is far less than they know it must be.

Our precious children are pure channels of God who know and remember the Divine blueprint for the universe. They are at a higher soul, or “vibrational” level, than any human beings who have ever before come to Earth.

This is why being a parent these days is more important than ever. We are the ones who must make sure that our children’s holy light is not stifled or extinguished. We are the ones who will encourage and support them as they envision and enact the evolution and transformation of our Earth.

Our children need us.
Our children are counting on us.
We can teach our children well.
We can be their champion.
We can be their hero.

Copyright 2021. All Rights Reserved.
Reprinted with permission of the publisher
Monkfish Book Publishing. MonkfishPublishing.com/

Article Source

Radical Loving: One God, One World, One People
by Wayne Dosick.

book cover: Radical Loving: One God, One World, One People by Wayne Dosick.For many of us, it feels as if our world is breaking apart. Long-held, comfortable beliefs are being shattered, and we face unprecedented questions and challenges. How do we heal the harsh divisions of class, race, religion, and cultures that plague us? How do we vanquish sexism, rigid fundamentalism, unabashed nationalism, senseless hatred, and violent terrorism? How do we save our precious planet from the threats to its very existence?

In this book is a bold, visionary, Spirit-filled blueprint for the redemption, transformation, and evolution of our emerging new world through radical loving and a day-to-day sense of the sacred. With age-old wisdom wrapped in contemporary garb, sweet, inspiring stories, keen insights, and gentle guidance, Radical Loving is a call to renewal and to Oneness?a promise that Earth can be Eden once again.

For more info and/or to order this book, click here. Also available as a Kindle edition.

About the Author

photo of RABBI WAYNE DOSICK, Ph.D., D.D.RABBI WAYNE DOSICK, Ph.D., D.D., is an educator, writer, and spiritual guide who teaches and counsels about faith, ethical values, life transformations, and evolving human consciousness. Well-known for his quality scholarship and sacred spirit, he is the rabbi of The Elijah Minyan, a retired visiting professor at the University of San Diego, and the host of the monthly Internet radio program, SpiritTalk Live! heard on HealthyLife.net.

He is the award-winning author of nine critically acclaimed books, including the now-classic Living JudaismGolden RulesThe Business BibleWhen Life Hurts20 Minute KabbalahSoul JudaismThe Best is Yet To BeEmpowering Your Indigo Child, and, most recently, The Real Name of God: Embracing the Full Essence of the Divine.

For more info, visit https://elijahminyan.com/rabbi-wayne

More books by this Author.