Sunday 11-10-13 Growing up

“Parents can only give good advice or put them on the right paths, but the final forming of a person’s character lies in their own hands.” ~ Anne Frank

Happy Sunday!

My son is in a period of struggle in his life. He is transitioning from child to adult so we both have new roles and responsibilities to figure out.
I pray for my children all of the time, for God to ease their struggles and to let them to live in awareness sooner than I did. Perhaps what I request is not possible, that the two things I want for my kids cannot be separated, that one is necessary to achieve the other. I sometimes wonder if by my prayers for them to become aware of their true selves, live from their hearts, and not attach themselves to this materialistic world, that I am asking for struggle to be part of their lives.
Many spiritual teachers seem to say that it is in our struggles that we learn. There are so many stories of people who had to be down in the gutter to have that break through of awareness – to realize that they put importance on the meaningless fleeting items or events of this short life. I don’t think that struggle is the way to awareness; it is just one method to get you on the path.
It is so hard as a Mom to let my kids make their own lives in their own way. I wish I could let them know what I know as I think it would make life happier for them.
Happiness comes from within, it is a choice and a practice.
Another difficult thing I find is my own conflict related to my own behavior; I do not want to not fall back into the parenting methods of my parents based on fear, critique, and criticism. Also, my prior values were about the importance of meeting the expectations of society, so I find myself biting my tongue not to use comparison to norms to influence my kids’ behavior. I know society is flawed but I still find that it is seeing anti-social behavior in my son that disturbs me the most, his not looking or acting the way I perceive society wants him to be. I am not always sure if it is my ego feeling upset that he maybe reflecting poorly on me or, if my intuition and emotions are sending me guidance to help him. I don’t like it when I say nothing and I don’t like when I do speak my feelings because usually the issues seem unimportant in the big scheme of things. I know my kids are good kids and are just trying to find their way.
The message that came to my mind this morning in dealing with the current problem is to remember that he is growing. For me this thought means that he is just starting out as an adult and he needs to learn on his own. I hurt for him. I am realizing I cannot do everything for him as I did when he was my child. I can just still guide and support him.
How can I ease his struggles?
By being an example of acceptance of myself and of others is a way I can assist my son. I would like my kids to learn from me that everyone makes mistakes based on their current understanding, and that people are inherently good, they may just behave badly based on misunderstanding and past experience. Perhaps with this understanding my sons will grow up knowing themselves as good, worthy men without shame and guilt. This would be a great asset for them as adults.
I said above that struggle is not the way to awareness. The way to awareness is self reflection which leads to self understanding and acceptance. This means to evaluate the experiences and pain of your life, to consider your own understanding and perspective at the time, and to forgive yourself.
A Course in Miracles (ACIM) is just one example I have come across of methods to release all the judgement and pain we put upon ourselves. Our own perception of ourselves brings about our suffering and struggles.
This is an excerpt I read this morning:
“The little problems that you keep and hide become your secret sins, because you did not choose to let them be removed for you. And so they gather dust and grow, until they cover everything that you perceive and leave you fair to no one. Not one right do you believe you have. And bitterness, with vengeance justified and mercy lost, condemns you as unworthy of forgiveness. The unforgiven have no mercy to bestow upon another. That is why your sole responsibility must be to take forgiveness for yourself.” CH25:IX:10
This quote describes the process of how self judgement and blame is the cause of judgement and blame against our brothers. This is what is meant by relationships being a mirror – what you feel against another is the work you need to do within yourself.
Perhaps my prayers for my sons can come to pass if I can be a guide for them against the tendency of our society to judge ourselves as bad, broken, lost, wrong, and unworthy. As God Loves me unconditionally, I can Love my son unconditionally, he can Love himself unconditionally and then go out into the world Loving so.
Jesus said, “My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.” (John 15:12)

One thought on “Sunday 11-10-13 Growing up

  1. Ultimately we know, it is not our job to fix our children, The challenging part of being a parent is separating our own interests from our children’s interests. Most people look at their children as an extension of themselves, but in reality, our children are having their own experience and are here for their own lessons. Just love him, he will let you know when he needs your help! Namaste!

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