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 Yoga and Relationships
 forcing kids into yoga?
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2378 Posts

Posted - Dec 30 2014 :  03:15:13 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Message
i have some friends on fb that teach or practice yoga and have kids.I noticed that they pick sanskrit spiritual names for their kids, put them on a yoga mat, put a japa mala around their neck, tell them that the best thing is to be a yogi and a yoga teacher, giving them only vegeterian food etc....
all of this makes me wonder how much parents are allowed to "brain wash " their kids, why parents want to impose their lifestyle on their kids? where is the borderline between gently inspiring kids to walk their own spiritual path (which will be different than their parents spirtitual path)and imposing yoga on them.
personally i chose yoga, my parents did not impose on me anything in my life...and this what i would to give to my kids if i end up having kids... kids should have a choice
and frankly if i have kids, i will not give them only vegetarian food

Edited by - maheswari on Dec 30 2014 03:17:37 AM


479 Posts

Posted - Dec 30 2014 :  05:48:01 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Hi Maheswari,

In my opinion, the most important and maybe even the only thing parents should give to their children is LOVE.

All the rest (lifestyle, money, career, and so on) is not very important, since children will chose their own life path anyway.

Now, speaking about yoga, I did not impose my practice to anybody in my family. However, my wife asked me to show her some basic restorative asanas (stress relief) and is happy with them, and sometimes my son also performs some asanas just for fun.

Actually, it is more them supporting me in my own practice than me trying to impose them to follow the path of yoga, so I think I am a lucky guy!
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1730 Posts

Posted - Dec 30 2014 :  08:19:17 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
My two sisters and I were raised Catholic, church every Sunday, CCD classes, meatless Fridays, etc. We were required to participate until Confirmation (16 years old at the time). Ultimately only my older sister remains a practicing Catholic. Was this brainwashing? I don't believe so. They exposed us to values important to them and how they were raised. For me the mysteries of bread as body and wine as blood, the miracles of healing the sick, feeding the multitudes, of resurrection, stayed with me and spurred spiritual growth in another direction.

Parents make decisions for their children all the time and ultimately have to step aside as the children mature and decide for themselves. Problems arise of course if parents cannot step aside or ransom their love to get their way, or if they are coercing their children in criminal activity or unhealthy lifestyles, which is not happening with your FB friends.
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kumar ul islam

United Kingdom
722 Posts

Posted - Dec 30 2014 :  6:03:26 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
All life from a human perspective is an imposition ,language ,culture ,black white ,up down ,poles of opposites to transcend ,i,me you ,them ,us ,desire for a state of being ,house car children ,you can go on ,real freedom lies in dissolving the desire, from unfulfilled desire comes anger the seat of our separation from all that is around us, we impose because we are attached to a reality that creates an ego entity rightly or wrongly its how we funtion a conditioning from adam and eve until now ,the sins of the fathers wil be passed to the sons ect,really it does not matter what anybody else does, whether they eat meat teach there children yoga or whateve,r the truth lies in your acceptance of all the delusion in them and yourself and to love it, being not attached to the scenery being shown to the senses and how the mind and ego react to these narratives knowing that the real and only permenant truth is the ultimate reality forever changing and yet recognisable through ourselves our spirit ,soul conciosness,from the gita, some look on the self as wonder ,some hear of it as wonder,all others though hearing ,do not understand it at all,i suppose what i am really trying to say is that from my own realization the more i practice, believe ,learn the less i really care about the world but the paradox is the more i love and accept it for what it is ,the mundane becomes more mundane but the glimpses of extra ordinary become more profound .i started practicing yoga for my benefit but now it seems i am more prepared to give to others my wife my children the community around not in large way but by small tokens gestures subtleties ,believe in love ask for forgiveness ,please forgive my ramblings but you caught me with plenty to say .peace and love .
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2378 Posts

Posted - Dec 31 2014 :  02:27:01 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
thank you for your replies...yes it is all about understanding that parents are doing their best according to their ability...
since it IS happening then why argue about it?
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United Kingdom
1570 Posts

Posted - Dec 31 2014 :  08:49:06 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
It seems to me everything that has been said here is valid. Parents do try to bring up their children in the ideology they cherish. It's also true that the best intentions in the world don't necessarily prevent them from being wrong or even doing harm.

I don't grudge my parents bringing me up in their belief system, but I wouldn't envy anyone who may be standing between me and my meat when I’m in a hungry phase!
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229 Posts

Posted - Dec 31 2014 :  09:57:30 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
If you believe in karma, brainwashing or not doesn't really matter that much. The kid may find a spiritual path with you doing nothing and just because of his/her life's circumstances, stage of spiritual evolution, and karma. On the other hand, forcing yogic teachings since a young age may lead to that kid performing those teachings out of habit/sense of duty, but the teachings never reach the heart. Or they may even create revulsion.
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484 Posts

Posted - Dec 31 2014 :  11:20:33 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Namaste, and please forgive the long post.

Well, not having children myself, but only by proxy (as an uncle of eleven!), I have to admit some ignorance on what is best in raising kids. But still, I can think of worse things than what you describe, maheshwari. Unhealthy coercion is what I’m questioning here. Actually, it’s more of an observation with some wide-ranging implications.

In the US, parents tell their kids the best thing is to be normal. A lot of families drug their children, and it is a growing trend. Some parents drug their children (with physician recommendation, which has become cheap and suspect here due to the out of control medical industry) with animal hormone injections because they are too “short.” Parents are drugging their children for diagnoses like ADD, autism, and even for being psychopaths (which is being diagnosed in children as young as five years old, with compulsory and often state-funded “counseling” to follow). Concentrated levels of vitamins and minerals (like calcium added to milk, which is contributing, ironically, to osteoporosis), animal hormones, insecticides, egregious amounts of sugary corn by-product, radiation, and other toxins (such as fluoride) are allowed in and actively added to our food and drink.

In addition to the bungling of the Food and Drug Administration, the American Psychiatric Association, which collaboratively publishes and reviews the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, now lists "Internet Gaming Disorder" as a medical condition. If that doesn't suggest to us that medical instrumentality and perspective, specifically, psychiatry, is a warped and relativistic product of our plutocratic, uncritical times, I don't know what will. At the homeless shelter, I saw a number of poor, uneducated people who "chose" to line up at the government drug center ("Community Treatment Center") to get psychotropic injections every month that left them virtually lobotomized and drooling for weeks. I know people (in my family, which is largely poor and poorly educated) who only receive "treatment" or therapy in absentia on a video screen, while these "doctors," whom they've never met, proceed to change their doses and "medications." The last psychiatrist I saw decided to diagnose me with a "non-specified personality disorder" after speaking with me for 45 minutes, insisting he wasn't a drug pusher, but still asking if I would take drugs on more than one occasion. His role in the clinic was nil as a "consultant," but I saw that he works at the local hospital, probably in the psychiatric ward, dosing up kids and adults with reckless, alchemical glee. Hey, it pays for his fancy shoes!

Then there are recreational drugs, alcohol, and tobacco. If the dietary and pharmacological swindling isn’t bad enough, drugs are always abundantly available. In fact, marijuana is legal in many US states now, including my own. I can walk down the street and find a store that sells it. You need a medical reason (excuse) to buy it, but that amounts to paying some quack $75 for a “medical” card for the year. In fact, virtually anything can be construed as a medical condition, including the desire to sit next to your dog in a restaurant or on an airplane.Alcohol and tobacco use is so rampant, I can only say it’s no wonder we have some of the worst health per capita out of the “industrialized nations.”

The reasons for our medicalization of life and human experience are deeply-rooted and longstanding. The West has always been obsessed with stasis and order… and extensions of that idea include strategy, dominion, and instrumentality. The latter is the most relevantly medical concept that has become ingrained into our psyche, and it really has taken root since the industrial revolution, when material advances and scientific (empirical) knowledge burgeoned. That was a time when observation and technical acumen were assured to dominate, repair, manipulate, and cure any ailment of nature with our increasingly sophisticated instruments.

The naive assurance of technical intellect over our own frail, yet universal, nature is fading. In our information age, for example, instruments are needed just to discern what information is relevant about certain instruments. Consider the amount of knowledge required to produce an operating system on a PC. Its production and development used to be a simpler process of designing a system of managing a certain number of modules to meet a certain number of goals. Now, however, even the determination of goals, that is, which are relevant, lucrative, maintainable, popular, and executable, requires enormous management of overextended and uninspired information systems. In the medical field, there are so many diagnoses (which is a Greek word that denotes an arrival [at a prescriptive conclusion] through knowledge) that we now require diagnosis of diagnoses with AI systems like Watson, medical conferences, and continuous training of doctors and medical staff, just to be able to discern what is important in their workday. This meta-medical management, which is the result of the modern inundation of data and information of varying degrees of value, takes daily practice away from the human patient.

We are losing what we had through what we’ve gained, namely, we are losing our sense of value through overindulgence of innovation, speed, ease of contact, and ease of information (which is actually leading to the degradation of knowledge). This monumental and rapid shift in public, private, and global consciousness is affecting law, employment, socialization, diet, and our value systems, which include how we feel we should raise our children. We need to realize, globally, that self-pacing and some good, old-fashioned sense is required for our use of and reliance on information and data, especially as they affect social and personal learning and development. The second thing we need is courage and to fight for and work toward a way of life that we feel is wholesome, good, just, and sustainable.

So, with (albeit circuitous and abstract) regard to parental values and inculcating unhealthy ideas, habits, and outlooks within our families, I can point to our family in sangha and of the Earth. The issues of destructive speculation and criticism (guilty, here!), inauthenticity, self-deception, and taking the easy road abound in our own time and others. But today, it is especially important to work toward what we think is right and beneficial for ourselves, our communities, and the whole. This starts with ourselves and our families.

Edited by - Anima on Dec 31 2014 12:16:41 PM
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479 Posts

Posted - Dec 31 2014 :  11:31:35 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
I really agree with you, ak33. Forcing a kid to do/believe anything you think is important is not very effective. Kids will chose their way no matter what we parents do for (or against) them.
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5177 Posts

Posted - Dec 31 2014 :  11:58:48 AM  Show Profile  Visit yogani's Homepage  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Hi All:

The AYP approach on introducing yoga to children:

Measured exposure, no forcing. Yes, ultimately each will find their own path according to their individual nature. Upbringing can provide a good foundation for that, but should not be a rigid template. We can only share with our children what we have and what we are. The rest is up to them.

The guru is in you.

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kumar ul islam

United Kingdom
722 Posts

Posted - Dec 31 2014 :  6:08:55 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
thankyou anima your truth has set me free a little more
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