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I am a mom of three kids, ages 7 to 15. I am also a meditator and a spiritual seeker. I have tried to teach my kids about the value of being spiritually aware, with mixed results. My teenage daughters are pretty resistant at this point. My youngest, my son, is more open. I’m hesitant to impose my beliefs on my children, but I also don’t want them to miss out on the power of having a spiritual foundation. Any thoughts on this?
Isn’t being a parent fun!? Wanting the very best for our children, yet knowing that we still can’t save them from a world where there will be all kinds of experiences and emotions. Knowing that they will, no matter what we give them or teach them, experience disappointment. And still wanting to save them from this to the best of our abilities.
Well, there’s GREAT news! The very act of being who you are is doing just that! You are an example. As you live your life with conscious awareness, doing all you can to live as an example of Love and Kindness, your children are learning how to be.
We humans are trained how to be human. Every animal learns how to act by watching its parents. Don Miguel Ruiz calls this domestication. I used to think that was harsh, but it is a reality.
Your kids are watching you, and have been from the time they were born. They are watching and mimicking, learning how to be in the world.
They will find their way to being who they are as they grow into adulthood. Meanwhile, honoring their leanings and tendencies and celebrating their uniqueness is the best gift you can give them. Everything makes a difference when you’re parenting. Short explanations here and there about how they are responsible for how they view the world, and react to situations. Walking them through life’s challenges, helping them understand their own emotions and guiding them to come to their own choices…choices they’ll feel best about in the long run. This is what you do as a parent. Your own spiritual approach to life is sure to come through in the process and they will be blessed by it.
At the same time, it’s always good to remember that no matter what you do, they will have their own hard lessons. They will have heartache and challenges in life. You can continue to support them when they do, but you can’t teach them to avoid those altogether. I know this is the most painful thing as a parent. But as you lean into your own emotional experience, knowing you are safe in the midst of deep moments, they will continue to learn from you. This is the best gift you can give them.
Finally, practice the art of knowing that as you do your best in all of your parenting, your best is enough. There may be times when you are led to speak about spirituality more than other times, times when you might teach more than others. Trust your inner guidance. Speak when you are called to do so. The rest of the time, know that as you expand your own self-love, you can’t help but have that rub off on them. Your spiritual life is blessing them, whether you talk about it or not.
Enjoy all the moments and continue to love your children. It will serve them forever, whether they experience it as spirituality or not.
Blessings and Love to you in all you do!
What is your experience with raising spiritually aware children? Share your comments below!
Have a question for Meli? Interested in a private session (in person or Skype)? Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org