Some Understandings about Educating Children According to the Fa

I. The Current State of Practitioners’ Educating Their Children in Dafa

It seems that when Dafa practitioners’ children were little, they could keep up with Fa study; it was just that the children were not required to practice the exercises. Then as they grew up, they started to have more contact with society. These little Dafa disciples started to show some slacking off or even walked away from Dafa. How to guide these little disciples has become an issue that exists widely and needs to be addressed. Master said,

“Yes, when the children were of an age such that the Dafa disciples could personally take care of them, things were great. You taught the children to memorize the Fa and do the exercises every day. As soon as the children started school, though, things changed. The impact that society has on children is truly large. It has to do with the morality of all of society sliding downwards. Children have no way to resist it. As soon as they enter society, they enter a big dye vat. If you are able to urge your children to study the Fa and do the exercises as you did before, it will be harder for them to slide downwards along with society. Many young Dafa disciples have gone in the other direction and become quite bad as they grew up, and that is the reason.” (“Fa Teaching at the 2007 New York Fa Conference”)

In response to a practitioner’s question, Master said,

“Disciple: At present, the children of many Dafa disciples are caught up in ordinary things. What are we to do?
Master: Indeed, human society is one big dye vat. Society is contesting with Dafa disciples for people. And this even applies to Dafa disciples’ kids, who live in this setting too: bad things are trying to drag them down. If the child does not cultivate, or doesn’t have a good environment, then he really won’t be able to ward those things off. Yet a Dafa disciple’s responsibilities are enormous, and so we must not only save the world’s people but also those close to us.” (“Fa Teaching Given at the 2010 New York Fa Conference”)

II. Correctly Understanding the Issue from the Fa

1. Positioning the Fundamental Relationships

(1) The child came to a practitioner’s family to become a Dafa practitioner. To have a blood relationship with the practitioner is a secondary reason.

(2) What is the right relationship between parent and child? There are many facets of this. For example, in traditional Chinese culture, the parent's main role is not to amuse the child, but to teach. From the ancient text “Three Character Classic”, it is said that “To feed without teaching
is the father's fault.”

(3) Educating one's children well is part of a Dafa practitioner's cultivation, and we must do it well. For the child, it is true salvation that's at stake. Dafa practitioners’ educating their children well is also validating the Fa, and it is their responsibility.

2. Several Major Warped Notions Have Developed, Which Have Mainly Resulted from the Lack of Family Education and the Inversion of the Parent-Child Relationship

Today it is emphasized that parents should have an “equal exchange” of views with the child and let them go their own way. In traditional Chinese culture, discipline was one aspect of a formal education for a child. There were “family rules” in ancient times. Now it is overly stressed to let a child go forward based on his/her interests. It overly emphasizes the interests of the child, which causes the child to focus on himself more and more as the center of the world. It is common that parents do not let their children endure hardships or that parents don't discipline them strictly.

The Queen of Xiaozhuang taught the young Emperor of Kangxi very strictly. When Kangxi was four years old, he was required to be on point duty for two hours like a soldier, and recite the ancient classic articles everyday.

III. Some Examples to Illustrate Key Points, Which Is for Reference Only

Here we want to share with fellow practitioners some examples in which the parents, who are Dafa practitioners, used the Fa to guide the education of their children.

1. Correctly Positioning the Relationship Between the Children's Schoolwork and Cultivation

As one example, parents told their children that part of their parental duty is to lead them in cultivation in Falun Gong, and they told the children that they should not take having too much homework as an excuse to not study the Fa or practice the exercises. The parents told the children that cultivation is most important because their lives are for cultivation in Dafa. Master has explained several times in his Fa lectures,

“Let me tell you, I see that among the kids who practice, many have a significant background. Don’t ruin them. If you can’t improve through cultivation and in the meantime ruin them as well, the sin is tremendous.” (“Teaching the Fa and Answering Questions in Jinan” in Zhuan Falun Fajie - The Law of Zhuan Falun Explained)

So we must put effort into leading well our little fellow practitioners. We should help the children feel the greatness of Dafa. We should create strict requirements for their Fa study and practicing the exercises. Master said,

“Actually, I've already discussed this very clearly in Zhuan Falun. Studying the Fa well definitely won't affect anything of yours in your cultivation, and on the contrary, it will help you get twice the results at your job or with your schoolwork with half the effort.” (“Explaining the Fa During the 2003 Lantern Festival at the U.S. West Fa Conference”)

One practitioner’s daughter, who is in high school, recites the Fa for half an hour and practices two of the first four sets of exercises every day before she starts to do her homework. This practitioner’s son, an elementary school student, recites the Fa for half an hour and practices the five sets of exercises every day; later he can finish his homework in one-and-a-half hours. Every weekend, they recite the Fa and practice all five sets of exercises. Furthermore, their meditation exercise lasts two or three hours. The practitioner requires the children to recite Hong Yin, Hong Yin II, and Essentials for Further Advancement books every day. The practitioner also asks their children to practice the exercises every day. In their daily life, this practitioner uses the Fa to guide and educate the children.

2. Correctly Positioning the Relationship Between the Parents and the Children, and Eliminating the Warped Notions Regarding Children’s Education

Being parents, practitioners have the responsibility to educate their children well, and the children have to obey their parents. Always indulging or even spoiling children would ruin them. Parents should ask their children to follow their requirements.

It requires persistence and patience for good parenting and parent-child relationship to develop. Parents should not be misled by sentimentality and make a compromise with children. There was a little girl, four to five years old, who cried and yelled to make her parent, who is a Dafa practitioner, buy something for her. Many people came to watch her and the parent felt very embarrassed. However, this practitioner insisted on not indulging the girl’s stubbornness. Ever since then, the girl no longer had that bad habit.

A boy, who just started to go to school, was ordered by his teacher to stand for some time as a punishment. He did not agree with the teacher, and he put mud on the teacher’s chair. The parent took the child home and spanked him on his buttocks. The parent also helped the child think through why he had been spanked.

3. Providing Children with a Good and Pure Environment, and Eliminating the Interfering and Polluting Factors

The parents need to arrange the children’s time well. They should ask the children to spend sufficient time in Fa study, practicing the exercises, and doing the Fa-validation. We should limit their contact with those messy and bad things in society, such as TV shows, periodicals, games, and other things with bad content.

During school breaks in the winter or summer, parents should try their best to have the children learn the Fa. They can lead the children to recite Hong Yin, Lunyu, and Master’s scriptures. With the children’s minds full of the Fa, they will naturally have good health and minds.

4. Paying Attention to the Children’s Practicing the Exercises and Have Them Practice the Exercises Everyday

Master said,

“It’s very good if a child can perform the exercises” (“Lecture at the First Conference in North America,” 1998)

My understanding is that the effect will be best and most obvious if the children can practice the exercises. With the children’s practicing the exercises, their third eyes open easily. With their meditating, the bad substances are eliminated, and the children become peaceful and no longer get agitated.

One parent realized that “enduring suffering and hardships” is a part of cultivation. So this parent made a strict requirement for the children’s leg postures when they practiced the meditation exercise. When the children could not cross their legs in the standard way or when they became lazy, the parent would ask them to increase their meditation time by ten minutes, so as to let the children practice endurance.

The practitioner's son started to practice the exercises when he was five years old. The practitioner’s daughter can become tranquil during her meditation. Another couple, who are Dafa practitioners, have two children, one is seven years old and another eight years old, who had never practiced the exercises. They sent their two children to the home of the practitioner mentioned above. During the first time of meditating, the two children could meditate in the lotus position for one hour. On the third day, they could meditate for two hours. In six days, they recited Lunyu and thirty poems from Hong Yin. The two children stayed in the practitioner’s home for only one week. After they went back home, they studied the Fa and practiced the exercises every evening. The two children used to rank about 30th in their school studies. After one month, they both scored 100 0n their monthly examinations and both were ranked first in their respective classes.

One eight-year-old child practiced the second set of exercises, holding the law wheel, and his third eye was opened. He saw that Master was correcting his postures of holding the law wheel. He also saw that when they practiced the meditation exercise, Master’s law bodies sat in a circle; there was a big Falun on the top, and the practice site was enveloped in red light.

During the winter break, four children, two eight-year-olds, one 11-year-old, and one 16-year-old, could usually meditate in the lotus position for over two hours. The children knew that it was for their own benefit, so they competed with each other to see who could meditate longer. They could see Master was beside them, and they were all willing to meditate a little longer. They also expressed their gratitude to that practitioner who guided them.

5. Leading the Children to Do Fa-validation Work Together

One practitioner often takes her children out to do Fa-rectification work. She told the children that there is nothing more important than offering sentient beings salvation. The children donated the money that they got from the spring festival holiday to the truth-clarification materials production site. The children also helped to write truth-clarification words on the Chinese currency bills, Dafa banners, and so on.

One practitioner’s daughter is 16 years old now. One or two months after she strictly required the girl to study the Fa and practice the exercises, the girl’s grades in school improved noticeably. In the second half of her second year in middle school, her grades climbed from being ranked 258th to the fifth among more than 2,000 students. In the third year of middle school, she was very busy with schoolwork, but she still persisted in reciting the Fa for half-an-hour and practicing two of the first four sets of excises. She easily passed the exams and got into a well-regarded high school.

One practitioner’s boy is in elementary school. There are a total of over 100 students in the two classes. His rank used to be seventh from the bottom. In one year, his rank has climbed to fourth place. He received a bronze prize for his painting at an international competition. He was in third place at a district chess competition.

6. Hold a Minghui Class

The Minghui class took nine days. The children started each day by reciting Lunyu, Hong Yin, or Hong Yin Volume II. After all the children arrived, they watched one video lecture of Zhuan Falun. The children then learned to practice the exercises. The children were also told stories related to traditional Chinese culture.

Later, after the children mastered the exercises, they started to practice the four standing exercises and the meditation exercise, each for half an hour. At home some little practitioners could not meditate in the lotus position. But at the class, they could finish the half-hour meditation.

Through the nine-day class, the parents also gained the opportunity to share understandings. They realized that leading the little practitioners well is important, which is their responsibility. Through looking inward, they have found some degenerated notions and strengthened their righteous thought of leading the little fellow practitioners well. They also realized that what is important is persistence in their daily lives. These children have obtained the opportunity to temper themselves. With the parents’ agreement, every week or every other week, they organize the children to study the Fa and practice the exercises.

Posting date: 3/31/2011
Category: Practitioners' Insights
Chinese version available at http://minghui.ca/mh/articles/2011/2/24/从法中形成对家庭教育的正念认识-236740.html