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Buddhism for the 21st Century Parent - Dhamma Wheel

Buddhism for the 21st Century Parent

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
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retrofuturist
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Buddhism for the 21st Century Parent

Postby retrofuturist » Tue Jan 06, 2009 10:58 am

"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

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sherubtse
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Re: Buddhism for the 21st Century Parent

Postby sherubtse » Wed Jan 07, 2009 1:11 am

Many thanks for the list of resources, retrofuturist. This is a subject that has been rather neglected, I think. So your suggestions come as a very welcome addition to my readings! :)

With metta,
Sherubtse

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christopher:::
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Re: Buddhism for the 21st Century Parent

Postby christopher::: » Wed Jan 07, 2009 2:02 am

"As Buddhists, we should aim to develop relationships that are not predominated by grasping and clinging. Our relationships should be characterised by the brahmaviharas of metta (loving kindness), mudita (sympathetic joy), karuna (compassion), and upekkha (equanimity)."
~post by Ben, Jul 02, 2009

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Re: Buddhism for the 21st Century Parent

Postby retrofuturist » Wed Jan 07, 2009 3:26 am

Greetings christopher:::,

I'm happy to continue a discussion on the topic.

My experience to date (I have a four year old son... turning five in April) has been similar to yours. I don't discuss Buddhism per se with him, but I do try to encourage him to act with lovingkindness and compassion.

We've also got this thing we do where we use our hands to measure things... and they always end up together, as the disollution of the given object comes into being and passes away. It could be physical pain, it could be mental pain, it could be his hat which blew off when he was walking along a pier a couple of weeks ago... either way, I'm trying to bring to him an intuitive awareness of impermanence.

I do have a little booklet at home about being a Buddhist parent. I'll aim to read it once I finish the current text I'm reading and report back the highlights.

Metta,
Retro. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

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sherubtse
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Re: Buddhism for the 21st Century Parent

Postby sherubtse » Wed Jan 07, 2009 4:11 pm

Interesting discussion so far. But I have been pondering the following questions:

In which ways (if any) does being a Buddhist parent differ from being a Buddhist in general? Would it be true to say that one acts as a Buddhist parent no differently than one acts as a Buddhist with any and all others?

I am inclining to the view that being a Buddhist parent is perhaps no different than being a Buddhist. What I say, how I act, and what I think as a parent are no different than what I say and how I act as a Buddhist living in the world.

What we learn about how to think, speak, and act in accordance with the Dhamma applies to all, children or otherwise.

Of course, I could be wrong ....

With metta,
Sherubtse

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Re: Buddhism for the 21st Century Parent

Postby retrofuturist » Wed Jan 07, 2009 11:14 pm

"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

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christopher:::
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Re: Buddhism for the 21st Century Parent

Postby christopher::: » Thu Jan 08, 2009 4:01 am

Hi sherubtse and retro,

I'd agree with that. The key thing is your responsibility, as a guide and teacher as well as father or mother. With other people in this world we are not responsible for teaching and guiding them. If your brother, co-worker or friend has bad habits, wrong values, emotional issues, etc it's really not something you are responsible for. We try to help and be a role model, but its not our responsibility to change them or teach them how to live differently, unless they ask for our help.

With children its different. We are their first Buddhist teacher in this life, imo. It's a tremendous challenge, responsibility and opportunity.
"As Buddhists, we should aim to develop relationships that are not predominated by grasping and clinging. Our relationships should be characterised by the brahmaviharas of metta (loving kindness), mudita (sympathetic joy), karuna (compassion), and upekkha (equanimity)."
~post by Ben, Jul 02, 2009

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Re: Buddhism for the 21st Century Parent

Postby retrofuturist » Thu Jan 08, 2009 4:06 am

Well said, christopher:::

Metta,
Retro. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

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sherubtse
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Re: Buddhism for the 21st Century Parent

Postby sherubtse » Fri Jan 09, 2009 6:19 pm


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bodom
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Re: Buddhism for the 21st Century Parent

Postby bodom » Fri Jan 16, 2009 1:52 pm

This would be a great sub-forum in itself. Thank you Retro for the links. I am expecting a baby of my own in about 5 months and its a really scary time in my life. Im trying to stay in the moment the best i can but i still catch my wondering mind wanting to worry and worry and worry. So what else it new! We find out what were having next wednesday so Ill be sure to let everyone know what were having.

:namaste:
To study is to know the texts,
To practice is to know your defilements,
To attain the goal is to know and let go.

- Ajahn Lee Dhammadharo


With mindfulness immersed in the body
well established, restrained
with regard to the six media of contact,
always centered, the monk
can know Unbinding for himself.

- Ud 3.5


https://www.dhammatalks.org/index.html
http://www.ajahnchah.org/

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sherubtse
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Re: Buddhism for the 21st Century Parent

Postby sherubtse » Fri Jan 16, 2009 9:21 pm


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bodom
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Re: Buddhism for the 21st Century Parent

Postby bodom » Fri Jan 16, 2009 9:35 pm

To study is to know the texts,
To practice is to know your defilements,
To attain the goal is to know and let go.

- Ajahn Lee Dhammadharo


With mindfulness immersed in the body
well established, restrained
with regard to the six media of contact,
always centered, the monk
can know Unbinding for himself.

- Ud 3.5


https://www.dhammatalks.org/index.html
http://www.ajahnchah.org/

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GrahamR
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Re: Buddhism for the 21st Century Parent

Postby GrahamR » Sat Jan 17, 2009 6:32 pm

With metta :bow:
Graham

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Butrfly_Nirvana
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Disciplining children?

Postby Butrfly_Nirvana » Tue Jan 19, 2010 5:25 pm

I have a 7yo son (who lives out of state during the school year with his dad), a 3yo son and a 1.5yo daughter. My 3yo son can be tough to manage at times, as I suppose many toddlers/preschoolers can be! My question is how would you say is the best approach when disciplining him/them? We've done "time outs" but to my thinking if they keep repeating the same offense then really, how effective was it? We've taken toys away (if they are relative to the incident, such as throwing a car, he'll lose the car for a period of time). I don't like yelling, threatening, or spanking, so what else can I try? We have taught them manners and while they are very well behaved children MOST of the time, I seem at a lost for those times when action does need to be taken. I guess what my question should be is "How would Buddha discipline my preschooler!?". I know that patience is key, but I feel like maybe I am missing something in my raising them. He is a very intelligent child and you can talk to him like you would a grade school aged child. I think that maybe to better assist in finding a solution I should mention that most of his offenses are involving his anger or attitude. For example, when he does get into trouble it is for fighting/arguing with his sister (speaking with anger or shaking his fist at her...rarely, but he has hit her), or not listening to what I am asking (such as "it's time to clean up your toys"....). Now don't get me wrong, there are times when he is SO helpful and can clean up the entire playroom and even vacuum it! But there are those days when I could just swear he put my voice on mute because he acts like he can't hear a thing I am saying! LOL

Anyone have any suggestions?

:shrug:
Namaste,
*~Nichole~*


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Kim OHara
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Re: Buddhism for the 21st Century Parent

Postby Kim OHara » Tue Jan 19, 2010 11:19 pm

Hi,
You seem to be doing and saying all the right things so there's really not much I can suggest except (even more) patience and consistency.
If 'time out' isn't working very well, perhaps changing the conditions might make it more effective, e.g. 'Go to you room' where there are lots of toys to play with, might not work as well as 'Go and sit on the back step' where there aren't. 'No dessert at dinner tonight' always got the attention of my son at that age, too. :tongue:
But it's better not to need such measures.
On the positive side, engage him and stretch him intellectually. Does he read yet? Write? Use a digital camera? Grow a veggie garden? Do gymnastics? Most kids are really easy to get on with unless they are physically uncomfortable (tired/hungry/hot), deprived of attention, or bored.

Hope this helps,

Kim

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Re: Buddhism for the 21st Century Parent

Postby meindzai » Tue Jan 19, 2010 11:30 pm


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Butrfly_Nirvana
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Re: Buddhism for the 21st Century Parent

Postby Butrfly_Nirvana » Wed Jan 20, 2010 2:37 am

That is very good advice. This afternoon/evening I tried to 'level' with him--got down to his eye level and we talked about why the toys needed to be picked up. We discussed all the things that could happen if the toys are left out (him or someone else getting hurt, toys getting stepped on and broken, losing his favorite cars, etc.). I kept my tone level, but definitive as to not letting him think there was an alternative to doing what I asked...he was still a bit grumpy with his responses, but overall there was no yelling or arguing, and it's now 8:30pm and the toys have since been picked! I think one of the best things I replayed in my mind was about treating him as I would someone else, with a Buddhist mindset. While I will say that it definitely took some focus and a little extra time to talk to him like that, in the end I spent LESS time fighting with him and scolding him into behaving. We even talked about why we shouldn't hit people, and why it's important to speak nicely to everyone-even if they are doing something we don't like.

I'm glad I found this thread and continued to research it. I did find an article online that said the reason there isn't a "Buddhist Parenting Code" or whatever, is because what is right for one child, even in the same family, may not be right for the other child. But that in just making sure that while you are deterring the bad behavior and encouraging good behavior, you keep in mind the Four Truths, The Eightfold Path, and so on. I'm looking forward to less stressful days at home with the kids, and I plan on applying what I've learned daily!

Thank you again!

:namaste:
Namaste,
*~Nichole~*


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Re: Buddhism for the 21st Century Parent

Postby notself » Wed Jan 20, 2010 2:54 am

Though one may conquer a thousand times a thousand men in battle, yet he is indeed the noblest victor who conquers himself. ---Dhp 103

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Re: Buddhism for the 21st Century Parent

Postby Butrfly_Nirvana » Wed Jan 20, 2010 4:39 pm

Namaste,
*~Nichole~*


PeterB
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Re: Buddhism for the 21st Century Parent

Postby PeterB » Wed Jan 20, 2010 5:26 pm

Just a slight note of caution. There are no " born Buddhists". Just people born into Buddhist families. So be good responsible parents. But dont except by example set out to make little Buddhists. Otherwise it will likely end in tears. The " turning about in the seat of consciousness " has to happen if it happens at all, for each person as an individual. All we can do as parents and grandparents is contribute to a favourable atmosphere. And thats a challenge.


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