You have children, therefore it is your duty to teach them. But you cannot teach them alone with money or good clothes; you cannot teach them by giving lot of love from you. In fact the children are more conscious than we are. So it is not a matter to teach them, it is a matter how we live. What do the children want from us? They want us to be very pure in thoughts, words and actions.
When a child is born it is already in contact with the Reality (in the womb it is constantly connected with Light and Sound — Shabd, Naam or Word). And it wants to get that back (in life) in order to go home. While it was in the womb of the mother it made the promise (to the God Power) to go back. When the body is formed for the soul in the womb, the soul is tied to each and every bone. This process is very painful and agonizing, more painful than the whole fate of one life can be. That is why the soul makes the promise to live in such a way that she never again has to bear that. But when the child sees that its parents are not acting accordingly, it has the free wish to go back within 6 months. That is one gift from the God power that it may go back if it doesn't accept its parents.
Birth was only given to it to get the missing link with God again. That was their cause. So we have to help our children for the reality — we have to give them right understanding in each and every breath. That is also Mission. If our children are misguided, then we are not true to our children. We saw children with very good background, but they were spoiled by their parents. Then they have lost these virtues. So Baba Sawan Singh used to say that if we want our children to be pure and right in thoughts, then we must become the same ones — we have to start with the right living the same way. It is not only up to our children, all others who come in contact with us, all those who will listen to us, they will normally be attracted.
For children Master has told one beautiful thing: Up to the age of 5 this (inner) contact with the Master Power or God Power still remains. After five years this contact is broken from within and the child is taken directly in the hands of the parents. They have to give the right understanding. From 5 to 18 years the child must remain in the care of the parents (the parents are responsible for the child's development). If the parents teach them spiritual lessons, man-making and man-service — all what they are doing themselves — then they must copy it. There is no need to teach them, they will be taught automatically, because they would see the things in the practical shape. After eighteen years the parents can happily ask the Master — after they have done their duty — that they can hand back these children to God. Then Master Power, God Power is responsible for them. If a child, completely prepared, is given back to the Master you will not find any fault throughout his life. Such should be the condition of our household life.
With all these things you have much responsibility. It is a big thing to make the children to the Godhood-side. If you want to detach from the children, if you become careless towards the children, Master power will never give you any blessing. That is the spiritual matter — it is a law.
In five years the child is coming up and up and it is into the world. What happens with the child? If it sees that we are arrogant, it also will become arrogant. It learns only from us. In fact it is very simple to teach the child — it is the practical school in the home. We need very good schools, but the main school is the home. If they are taught in the right way (see the good example) they will be good citizens and spiritual children who lead a very normal life. We always say that we want very good schools, but when the children are spoiled in their first school (the home), they will not succeed in any other school of the world. That is the problem. Children of disciples of the Master who are digesting the theory right from the beginning and living up to the vegetarian diet right from birth, going to Satsang, where will they go? They will automatically follow their parents. I don't think that they would need any theory to digest. They will come up automatically. They are getting the higher value of life right now and will become better disciples than we are.
You know in which school Guru Gobind Singh's children read. At that time there was always war (between Hindus and Moslems) and there were many problems. They were sitting along with their parents and saw everything. Whatever their parents spoke that was reality. So they were learning something every day — because that teaching was a practical subject. (After the king of that time had arrested the children he promised to bestow many things on them, worldly goods, a part of the kingdom etc. if they only left their father, Guru Gobind Singh. But if they did not leave, the king threatened to let them be cemented alive into a wall.) And when they started to brick them together and asked them, »Give up your faith, accept another faith!«they said, »No, you cannot force us, it is a free thing that is given in us. Who is there to force us?« As they went on forcing them they again and again said no. They were so much determined in life that they said, »You can brick us more, no problem, but we'll never leave our father.« Alive they were put in the wall and cemented (to death) there, but they did not care. They had already withdrawn from body-consciousness. They were made like this (as an result of their education).
When the Masters come into the world, they withdraw their children from the attachments, they make them free of such things. When they are free they are easy to go back without problems. They say, »Do not create any attachment for your children, but create love for them.« Love means to let them know what is right and what is wrong. If we are not giving right understanding to our children we are merely creating attachments that will bother us and the children as well.
Mostly we create such environment for the child that it becomes part and parcel of the attachment. Give him a palace and all amenities, it will be a useless person in the world. Give one child right understanding — love free of attachment — if you leave such a child in the forest it will make a palace there. Master said, »Don't create any attachment it will bring you back into the world.« So this give and take will remain there.
I never say to anybody, »Forget your children, forget all these things...« No, you have created attachment, it is because of the background that they have come along with you. Now you have to make them. You have to fulfill their wish. What is their wish? They also need the contact (with the God Power). That they know from within. Once one knows about it, then one cries for it.
Love will only come if they get right understanding. If your attention is concerned only with the children, they will become no good persons. If your attention is concerned with God and spiritual matters, then the children will be attracted by you. But at present you are attracted by them. The children develop automatically by seeing us. If you spoke only soft and gentle words in all your family matters there would be peace and harmony in the family.
by Dr. Harbhajan Singh