Rosicrucian Writings Online
Your Sons and DaughtersBy Dr. H. Spencer Lewis, F.R.C.
[From The Rosicrucian Digest July 1957]
A GREAT many of us overlook the fact that children have ambitions. Of course, we think that it is futile to talk to children of six, seven, or eight years of age, or even when they are twelve or fourteen years of age, and ask them in a serious way as to their ambitions for the future. It is thought that the child mind is not capable of judging accurately in this regard, but I have found that the average child between the ages of eight and fourteen is always interested in discussing its possible future in terms of greatness, goodness, outstanding success, and personal power. Even the average boy or girl who is not ready or is unqualified to say what line of vocation or avocation may appeal to him in the future is nevertheless ready to assert that he wants to be an outstanding character--one who will be admired and respected by others.
Here is where parents can make a strong appeal to the imagination and inner ambitions of their child. To explain to a child that by following certain lines of study or thinking it can assure itself of better health, of mastership in its studies without great effort, and also bring into its future life the love, admiration, and respect of adults, always makes an appeal to the child mind. When in addition to this sort of argument, the child is told how special studies will enable him to be an outstanding character among other children and will make the teachers at school and the pupils around him respect and admire him, the child mind instantly builds up an ideal of personal power that appeals to the imagination and to his unborn capabilities.
It is possible to begin with children even as young as one year of age. We should keep in mind, first of all, that the psychic faculties of a child are highly developed, and, second, that in the earliest years of child life the materialistic viewpoint of life has not accomplished its damaging work. In fact, the child mind is naturally impressed by psychic influences, and it is safe to say that between the ages of one and five the average boy or girl sees more and hears more of an interesting and fascinating nature through its psychic faculties than it sees or hears through its material, objective faculties. To the young child, the world is at least half-psychic and half-material, and to these young minds, the psychic world is just as real and just as natural and normal as the objective world is to most adults.
This is why young children are easily interested in fairy stories and in stories that contain what some adults call the wildest dreams of fancy. It is not difficult to tell a story of faintly visible fairies and slightly transparent persons moving about in space, or of fantastic or beautiful worlds and lands, for the child often sees such slightly visible or transparent characters floating about in space, and has beautiful visions of fairylands of which we, in our older years, know nothing unless we, too, have redeveloped and reawakened our psychic faculties.
Many children who seem to be lost in silence and deep reverie while at play are really in attunement with some psychic conditions, which they are observing and studying, and possibly analyzing. The first great shock that comes to these children is a gradual realization that the adults around them, and especially their parents, do not see or hear the same things that they see and hear. The next shock is when the children begin to speak of the strange and beautiful things they hear and see, and their parents or other adults tell them that they are mistaken and that such things do not exist, and that it is only the imagination at work.
Here, the child is confronted with believing what the parents say, and thereby becomes convinced that for some reason or other its own little mind has been creating false and non-existing things, or the child must believe that the parents are greatly mistaken, and that his own little mind is correct.
Denying the Fourth Dimension
Now we know enough of child psychology to realize that the average child develops an amazing and wonderful faith in the integrity, learning, and unusual abilities of its parents. For a long period of child life, the average child looks upon its parents as though they were gods of wisdom and power. It is shocking to such a child to ever find its parents deceiving him, wilfully lying to him, or doing anything that is mean or sordid, or anything that borders upon deception. It is only natural then that when the parents tell their children that the fairies and invisible or ethereal things they have seen do not exist, the child mind will accept the word of the parents as law and will begin to doubt its own impressions.
As I have said, this is a great shock to the child mind, which has been gradually building up a faith in the ethereal things it has been seeing and hearing. Now it is confronted with the enormous task of shattering the world of psychic things to pieces, negating it, destroying it, and wiping it out of the consciousness. It is just as though we, as adults, were called upon to destroy or to deny and wipe out of our consciousness half of the material world in which we have placed so much faith. When we, as adults, come to study the psychic laws and learn the real laws of nature, we do not have to eliminate from our consciousness many of the material things in which we have placed our faith, but generally we merely have to translate them into their proper terms without actually destroying them altogether. The child mind, on the other hand, has to completely eliminate and thereby destroy the psychic world, which has become so real to it.
When the child is old enough to play with many other children in the streets or in the parks, he also receives many jolts through hearing other children deny the existence of things in which he has placed his faith. And when it comes time for him to go to school, he is again surrounded on all sides by the acceptance of the materialistic world and the denial of the psychic.
We know from our own experiences that as we deny the existence of psychic impressions, and gradually discontinue our attunement with psychic impressions, we lose the keen functioning of our psychic faculties; they gradually become dormant until they cease to function altogether. This is why we, as adults, have such a difficulty later in life in reawakening these faculties and in developing a psychic attunement that is equal to what we had as children.
Therefore, parents should begin with their young children to encourage them in the seeing and hearing of psychic impressions. I know of children who were placed in their little beds in a darkened room early in their lives with the statement that they should have no fear of darkness or of the nighttime, because there were not only guardian angels who protected little children, but also other angels and other Cosmic beings who would be visible to them at night as in the daytime. This was said to some children after they had begun to express visions of some of these psychic personalities.
I found that these children enjoyed lying in the dark for a while just before going to sleep and allowing the Cosmic to fill the bedroom with colored lights and beautiful visions. One of these children told me often how a little fairy came and danced on the floor of her bedroom at night and taught her how to dance; and, after a year of this, the little girl used to rise from the bed at times, and imitate some of the dancing steps which the little fairy demonstrated.
I found afterwards that these children developed unusual psychic faculties. On one occasion when one of them had disobeyed the parents and was about to approach an open fireplace alone and at a risk of setting fire to his night clothes, a large strong arm reached out from space and pushed him gently away from the fireplace. The child realized that it had been in danger and accepted this incident as a serious warning.
The child has now grown to young manhood and has not forgotten that incident. It is interesting to hear this young man speak of his psychic experiences as a child and as a youth with the same faith in their reality as he speaks of his experiences with the material world. Naturally, he has other characteristics manifesting in a personal power and magnetism, and an ability to master his studies and his schoolwork that make an impression upon all who come in contact with him, even when they know nothing of his psychic experience. The same is true of the young woman who was at one time the little girl taking dancing lessons from a so-called fairy.
When a child grows up to look upon these things in a natural way, it does not become fanatical about them, as would be the case if an attempt were made to impress these things upon the mind of a young man or a young woman late in his or her teens. They do not talk about these things with others unless others show by their conversation that they, too, are sincerely interested and have the same firm convictions. Such psychic attunement unquestionably assures better health for the child, develops his intuitive faculties to a high degree, makes it easier for him to study his lessons, and to foresee events and conditions around his own life, as well as to interpret rapidly the nature of the problems with which he comes in contact.
Many religious principles are easily taught to children. Then when they are old enough to be more interested in religion, they are not easily led into beliefs that are fictitious and purely arbitrary from an orthodox point of view. The laws of Karma, justice, compassion, truth, love, universal tolerance, universal peace, and health are simple things to teach to the child mind. They will bring to the child mind a picture of a loving God, kind and merciful, instead of a God that is jealous or at times angry and revengeful. The child mind can easily conceive of a simple explanation of the laws of Karma and justice. It accepts these explanations as being far more logical and reasonable than the explanations of hell, fire, and damnation.
Here is a great work for parents, and in this work unquestionably lies the salvation of the future generations and the building of a better and greater nation of people in every land.
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What is commonly known as moral behavior is the human attempt to pursue such a course of mental and physical conduct as will induce or arouse feeling sympathetic to the realization had of the inner Self.
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