13. A Child’s Up-bringing

While growing up, a child is naturally seeking answers to everything that surrounds him and that he sees. Therefore one of the most significant parts in the raising of the child by the parents is their explanation of the whole ambience to their child with much love and patience. And that means the parents themselves must also be well-educated people. They must know how to explain all these things to their children in simple and easy-to-understand words. But it is not enough to explain it. It is necessary to let the children experience it, to experience many of the things that might be experienced at their own age.

Meanwhile, now, many of the contemporary families have distanced themselves from their children so much that the responsibility for the broken off relationships of love and respect among generations throughout the planet exclusively lies on them. The rhythm of man’s life is very fast, his material way of thinking has completely obscured his spiritual bond among generations as well as that of individuals one with another. It is due to these broken off bonds that all conflicts and tension arise.

I was a happy child since in our large family of nine children, all of us were always shown by our parents a wonderful feeling of love. Therefore we could ourselves also experience what it meant to love. I was extremely happy when my father started to take me to his carpenter’s workshop where I saw with my own eyes how he was working, how he was creating a piece of furniture. Therefore I myself desired to be like him. And I was even happier when he was patiently teaching me how to handle the tools, how to create something by myself.

My father could not explain to me many things that I showed interest in but he always did confess to me that he did not know it. And his confession did not in the least reduce my love for him. It seemed to me, still as a little child, that he had to know everything, and about everything, for who else could know more than he. And his first answer about thunder and lightening, “I don’t know,” upset me that he was not the one to know all things. But because of this answer, my love for him did not change.

Therefore, parents must always remain sincere so that their child would feel the same vibrations being channeled through their sincere confession that they might not know something. But at the same time they must also know more not to let down their little ones the least, because the environment around them is so diverse and their searches are so penetrating and pure, and they desire to experience everything so much. These desires are natural; every baby is born with such desires. And the parents can efficiently handle all their sincere questions and satisfy their inquisitiveness only if they were striving for a deeper knowledge and perception of the ambience themselves.

Parents, by their attitudes, lay the foundation for their own future through their children; and not merely for their own personal future but also for that of the whole society; of all humanity.

While I was growing up, my conversations with the heavenly Father became more frequent and deeper.

I enjoyed climbing together with my father up a big hill on the outskirts of Nazareth and looking around the vicinity stretching out far before us. On a sunny day I would even see a dim view of the sea at a great distance. And such outings were among my most pleasant experiences. During these trips my father would show me where there were Greek-gentile cities; he would point out the direction of the Jewish holy center of Jerusalem with its grand synagogues and many magnificent Jewish festivals. I could grasp quite well from these stories how unhappy the Jewish people were. My father would sigh in sadness because they had to serve the gentiles rather than the Jews since they were under the gentile oppression.

But most deeply, I was moved by my father’s sincere desire to enlighten me, to teach me, and to allow me to experience everything that would be fitting to experience for a child of my age. He would never forbid me to work together with him, and would never turn me down even while being very occupied. And such a relationship is especially necessary for a child, because it is only by this bond that the child is developing within himself his respect and love for the person he is in contact with; and not necessarily with his father or mother; but with every person playing and growing with him that sincerely.

This attitude is missing within the present-day families because they devote their greatest energy and effort only to ensuring the material well being of their children while altogether neglecting their patient and fully loving upbringing by associating and growing together with them. The raising of a child is a sincere and fully loving association with him aside from the material environment. While the father or the mother is associating with the child, there must exist at that moment this relationship only. It is of no importance whether the father is engaged in some activity, busy with his car, writing the most sophisticated thesis, getting ready for the next day‘s work, washing dishes, cleaning up his clothes, or polishing his shoes; whether the mother is taking care of the family work for the next day, preparing dinner, or talking with her friend who is visiting their family, the child must always be included in this activity and in this process, as an equal member of the family. The child must participate in all this as a partner and not as the little one.

And you, dear parents, must sincerely explain to the child in simple words, so that he would understand what you are busy with at this moment. And you must also allow the child to participate in this process. It is not important that the child will fail to perform some function the way you want it. This is the purpose of your fatherly-motherly love; that with divine patience, you would teach him all these things that are up to his shoulders, so that while associating, even with your friends, you would not turn him down but also show him your attention. This attention and sincerity make up that living bond that love is based on.