Conscious Parenting

An Ideal Child-Is Good-Tempered

“He does not become angry when things seem to go against him or decisions are not in his favour.” –The Mother

A parent may be concerned with any of the following?

If the infant is – 0-2 yrs
• Cries too much without any apparent reason.
• Doesn’t sleep peacefully.
• As a parent you feel overly stressed and extremely exhausted most of the time.

If the child is -2-5yrs

• Your toddler is always demanding and stubborn.
• It’s difficult to say ‘NO’ to your child.
• Throws tantrums very often.
• Is unable to play on his/her own.
• Needs constant attention and company and comfort.
• Is hyper active.
• Doesn’t sleep peacefully.
• Is a fussy eater.

Parents with children above five may also deal with a child who is unable to deal with her emotions, especially frustration and anger. Older children may show:

• Verbal expression- frequent shouting and screaming; rude and disrespectful language.
• Physical expression- excessive/hyper activity; often getting into physical fights with peer; cranky and fussy eating, destructive attitude toward toys and things in general and other.
• Emotional expression- long sulking mood; unreasonable crying spells, agitated and frowning facial expression; overall a grumpy, irritable, complaining demeanor and other.

As the first step, it’s advisable to contemplate on these words of The Mother –

  “Example is the most powerful instructor. Never demand from a child an effort of discipline that you do not make yourself.”

CWM, Vol.12- On Education, pg 193.

Thus parenting begins with self-growth. Parents must start looking within and start working on being ‘Good-Tempered’ first. By taking this first step, the child will learn from the parent without any direct effort to teach or preach.

Parents must begin with: Self – Observation

• Observing what makes them frustrated and angry.
• Observing how they express their frustration and anger.
• Observing how they deal with their feelings of frustration and anger after the event is passed.
• Observing how the emotion of anger affects their body, their thoughts and overall sense of being.
• And most important to be non-judgmental. Only observing and not judging themselves.
(It will be helpful to keep a note of these observations in a journal over 10-15 days.)

The following words of Sri Aurobindo and The Mother offer further guidance:

  “What the Mother spoke of was not analysis, but a seeing of oneself and of all the living movements of the being and the nature, a vivid observation of the personalities and forces that move on the stage of our being, their motives, their impulses, their potentialities—an observation quite as interesting as the seeing and understanding of a drama or a novel—a living vision and perception of how things are done in us which brings also a living mastery over this inner universe.”

CWSA, Vol.31 –Letter on Yoga –IV, pg 26

“It is only by observing these movements (of our being) with great care, by bringing them, as it were, before the tribunal of our highest ideal, with a sincere will to submit to its judgment, that we can hope to educate in us a discernment which does not err.”

The Science of Living, On Education

“If you observe yourself, you will see that as soon as you do something which disturbs you a little, the mind immediately gives you a favourable reason to justify yourself—this mind is capable of gilding everything. In these conditions it is difficult to know oneself. One must be absolutely sincere to be able to do it and to see clearly into all the little falsehoods of the mental being.”

CWM, Vol.4- Questions and Answers 1950-1951, pg 38

“But whatever your ideal, it cannot be perfectly realised unless you have realised perfection in yourself. “To work for your perfection, the first step is to become conscious of yourself, of the different parts of your being and their respective activities. You must learn to distinguish these different parts one from another, so that you may become clearly aware of the origin of the movements that occur in you, the many impulses, reactions and conflicting wills that drive you to action. It is an assiduous study which demands much perseverance and sincerity.”

CWM, Vol.12- On Education, pg 3.