Indelible Lessons: Children As Mirrors of Their Parents' Cultivation (Part 2 of 3)
(Minghui.org) (Continued from Part 1)
Master said, “I am a person who will not say what he does not want to say, but what I say must be true.” (Zhuan Falun)
Everyone seems to understand the superficial meaning of this sentence but may fail to put this principle into practice. They say things casually and make empty promises. Some even resort to lying and come up with excuses when caught with a misrepresentation.
Consequently, their children may not be truthful either, and they may not think twice about deceiving others.
Pitfalls of Indulging Children
Some practitioners say their children are here to assimilate to the Fa and therefore feel they do not need to endure hardships. They indulge the children's every whim. When such children reach adulthood, they may turn into ordinary people with poor moral character.
Many parents who are strict with their children are surprised when their child can actually accept hardship! Children can learn to treat hardship with joy and be considerate of others. At times, they are even better than adults. That is a display of their innate character, because, after all, they descended from high levels, knowing that Dafa would be spread here. They came to assimilate to the Fa.
“You didn’t discipline him strictly when he was little and you spoiled him. It was inevitable that he would become depraved when he grew up. I think it’s difficult to discipline him now.” (“Teaching the Fa at the Conference in Europe”)
In summary, parents must discipline their young practitioners. Otherwise, they could turn into adults who lack moral standards.
Being Strict Is Essential
“But among those who cultivate Dafa, often there are many families who have children, and it’s very likely that they are no ordinary children. Before reincarnating, the child knows—'This family will study Dafa in the future. I want to reincarnate into this family'—in which case it’s very likely that he might have an extraordinary background. With this type of child, before the child is of the age that he can do the exercises himself, performance of the exercises by you, the adult, will serve as doing the exercises for the child.” (“Teaching the Fa at the Fa Conference in Australia” 1999)
Some practitioners also misinterpret what Master said. They understand that they are doing the exercises for the child and thus neglect to encourage their children to do the exercises.
I have observed that children below the age of five who do the exercises alongside the adults will enjoy doing the exercises when they grow up.
Children who do the exercises on-and-off will slack off and become attached to having fun when they grow up. They will have problems in their studies because the child's wisdom was not unlocked.
If children do not get into the habit of doing the exercises when they are young, they may not be interested in doing them in adulthood.
Taking it a step further, if a child is not diligent in studying the Fa, he or she may fall in cultivation level and become an everyday person.
Parents' Failure to Cooperate Well Creates Loopholes
There is a Chinese saying that if the father is a stern parent, the mother will be just the opposite. In modern times, people misconstrue this saying and think that while the father should be strict, the mother should spoil the child.
Consequently, some children behave differently around each parent. He or she is used to getting their way when the mother is around and ends up being spoiled and seeking comfort. The child may then not be able to endure hardship.
Around the father, the child pretends to be obedient, which may have adverse effects in practicing cultivation.
For parents who are practitioners, this is an issue of not cooperating well. Even if one parent is a non-practitioner, they can still cooperate, reach a consensus, and be strict with their children.
A child may not continue to cultivate as an adult if his or her parents cannot cooperate and act as one in the child's upbringing.
Don't Keep Making Mistakes
It is very difficult for an adult to return to practicing Dafa if he or she gave it up after being spoiled as a child. This is very serious. It may even be more damaging than for a child whose family was forced to renounce the practice because of the persecution.
“Let me tell you, I see that among the kids who practice, many have a significant background. Don’t ruin them. If you can’t improve through cultivation and in the meantime ruin them as well, the sin is tremendous.” (“Teaching the Fa and Answering Questions in Jinan” in Zhuan Falun Fajie-The Law of Zhuan Falun Explained)
If children did not experience the joy of Fa-study, practicing the exercises, and true cultivation when growing up, they may be interested only in worldly pleasures later in life.
They may be pushed further away from the cultivation path by everyday people and become quite distant from their predestined relationship with Dafa. I have seen many young practitioners grow up and quit cultivation.
Some practitioners think, “When I have grandchildren, I must be stricter with them and turn them into diligent young practitioners. I must make up for the mistakes I made when bringing up my child.”
If these practitioners do not dig deep into their attachments and realize that they are the cause of the problem, they may make the same mistakes with the next generation.
(To be continued)