In the previous post “The phase of Adulthood” I mentioned, I’m going to talk about parenthood.
How do you choose to have children? Did you feel the unstoppable urge to have children, maybe you had a kind of knowing that children are the most important thing in your life? Did you feel like you didn’t know what to do with your life if you didn’t have children? The idea that children would make your life complete? Was that instilled by your parents or by fairy tales and other stories from your childhood or is it the media that spotlights this as a perfect life? Or is it just nature and can we think of it whatever we want, it is and remains no more and no less than nature?
If you ask me I am of the opinion that this is how it works in nature. The people who do choose it can think of all the reasons why it is a good choice and those who do not choose it do exactly the same, they can think of all the reasons why it is a good choice. The fact is that babies are born.
With the birth of a baby, at least the first one in the family, not only is there a new person being born, but the wife and the husband also take on a totally different role, namely mother and father, and the relationship becomes a family. A new participant and the existing participants, the parents, are given different roles. In the upbringing we receive and in the training we may receive, it is generally given extremely little attention. Ultimately, as parents, we are thrust into the lion’s den fairly unprepared.
We probably feel very confident that we know how we are going to handle it, we are confident, we have chosen to do it, and so on and so forth, we are going to handle it. But what do we actually know?
And the baby itself is the avatar of a new participant in the learning environment, the virtual reality Earth. The baby is the expression of an individual consciousness that has come to have a life experience.
As a beginning parent, you will first have to deal with a baby, which you yourself have been but probably remember little about.
As parents, do we understand our behavior, our attention span, our energy radiance, our calmness or restlessness, our unprocessed childhood, our unprocessed traumas, our trigger receptors or in other words short fuses, our manners, our opinions and beliefs about how relationships should be, about how children should be, about how parents should be, and even more, how all of that will affect the rest of the baby’s life? Because that is what it will be shaped by. Does every parent realize that? The baby will later become an adult, who will pass that on to her or his children. How does that affect humanity?
Actually I want to say that every parent has a huge influence on the happiness of their children in their further lives and therefore also on the environment and even humanity. Because children cannot help but copy your behavior that you show in the first 7 years of their lives. There the basis is formed of how their further life will go.
As a parent, what do you want to offer your children? Is that everything you did not get and would have liked to have, and, is that good for your child? Or do you want them to avoid those things because you had a bad experience with them, and, is that good for your child? Maybe you are doing the exact same thing or the opposite of what your parents did and is that good for your child?
Or have you taken the time to form a vision of what good parenting is?
As a parent, what do you think your child should do for you? Should it be able to spare you when you don’t feel like it? Should it deal with you in such a way that you never get angry or have to make extra efforts? Is it ok to punish the child when you are triggered?
Or do you know that you and you alone are the example of how the child will learn to behave?
All questions and no answers. And that makes sense, because no one can or should tell you how you should raise your own children. That is your self-made choice, children, and your responsibility that you may take on in your own way.
My cautious advice would be; learn how to solve your own issues and spend time on it. Realize that children can’t do anything else but see what they experience as normal, no matter how crooked it is. If you, as a parent, do not pass on issues to the children because they have disappeared, they do not need to encounter and resolve them as adults. Suppressing or ignoring issues doesn’t work either, because then the children end up learning to ignore and suppress and not to solve things. And that makes solving things even harder, if you habitually ignore things.
And a woman who held a babe against her bosom said,
Speak to us of Children.
And he said:
Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.
You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
Which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.
You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.“On Children” from the book “The Prophet” by Kahlil Gibran
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,
and He bends you with His might that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies, so He loves also the bow that is stable.
Being a parent can be the most beautiful and intense learning experience of a lifetime and in addition it has the greatest possible impact on the future of children and therefore humanity.
In this experiment, I suggest how you can try to make contact with the baby, even if it is still in the womb. I suggest that you do this with the approval of the mother and the new human being.
The steps of the experiment.
Start the meditation and come back to the place where you are no longer aware of your body, of the space where you are, of the sounds that are there, the smells that are there, even that you no longer realize that you are sitting on the floor or on a chair, "point consciousness". Ask your consciousness if it is safe and appropriate to make contact. If the response is dismissive, stop. Ask the mother's consciousness if it is safe and appropriate to make contact. If the response is dismissive, stop. Ask the child's consciousness if it is safe and appropriate to make contact. If the response is dismissive, stop. If the responses are all approving, imagine yourself going to the womb the child is in. Let the child know that you want to get to know it, that you are glad it is there. See what happens, you just have to observe. Have no expectations, think nothing of it, declare nothing, everything is ok. Come back to the now and slowly open your eyes.
Lots of fun again with this experiment!
Next week I am going to write something about freedom and responsibility and how they, in my opinion, are related.
Wisdom and Love to everyone.
Marc Sijm, author of IVDAVRA