We all know that we should not get angry with the child or say hurtful words or scold them or beat them. But there will be times when things go out of control and we end up hurting our child and later feel guilty that we should not have hurt the child. Param Pujya Dadashri has shown us the ultimate way to wash our past misdeeds by recognizing the power of prayer for children.
By Pratikraman (apology coupled with remorse for any wrongdoing), we wash out our negative feelings from our heart. It changes our negative belief about the other person we become angry with. So, the negative vibration stops from our side and eventually, the other person will not have complaints about us. This is the most powerful prayer for forgiveness that works for all parents.
How to do Pratikraman
If you become very angry with your child, then ask ‘Chandulal (the reader is to substitute his or her name here),’ ‘Why are you becoming so impatient with your child? How bad would she feel? Ask for forgiveness from her from within. This is a silent prayer for kids that works regardless of time and place. You do not have to ask her in person, but ask for forgiveness from within and say that you will not do it again.’ Otherwise, if you don’t hurt her, then you don’t have to ask for forgiveness. There is soul within all of us and vibration reaches the soul within.
If you start thinking negatively about them, you must immediately do pratikraman.
Whenever you feel very deeply that you are saying things for your child’s benefit but she is not listening to you and on top of it ask you to stop lecturing. At such times when spoken words are not working and you want your child to improve - prayer is the ultimate tool. Empower yourself with prayers. Prayers are more fruitful than mere words. If words are worth twelve cents, then prayer is worth a dollar. Such is the power of prayer for children.
Things keep recurring because we have not done prayers for them in the past. Now through prayer and pratikraman they will gradually vanish. You can ask for strength from your God, Guru or Dada and tell Him that you are placing your child in His hands. Ask for his salvation and your child will be cared for. Ask for strength for yourself to guide him in the right direction with love and understanding. Just do a ten minutes prayer daily for a month and gradually you will see the change. Like we brush our teeth daily, some good things like prayer and pratikraman are to be done daily to wash the negativity.
See it as Separate and Wash it With Pratikraman Prayer
Questioner: The children roam around outside all day long. Should they not help if there is some work at home or some important errand to run? They do not do anything even when we scold them. Then I cannot remain silent and I end up hitting them.
Dadashri: No, you will not become silent like that. Does the awareness (laksha) of pure Soul (Shuddhatma) remain for You or not?
Questioner: It remains!
Dadashri: Then what is the problem? In actuality, what ‘our’ science says is that at the time of hitting the child, you should see the one who is doing it. If Chandubhai (the reader is to substitute his or her name here) is hitting the child, then at that time you should continue to see what Chandubhai is doing. You just have to keep seeing everything that Chandubhai is doing. And then tell Chandubhai, ‘You committed this aggression (atikraman). Why did you hit the poor child? Can you scold like this? Why did you scold (him)? Therefore, do pratikraman for all this aggression.’ So, when Chandubhai is hitting the child, you only have to know it and simultaneously have him to do pratikraman (apology coupled with repentance and affirmation never to repeat the mistake) again and again. Are you okay with this?
Questioner: Yes, Dada.
Deep Inner Intent Is the Final Key
Questioner: What should we do when our children get on the wrong path?
Dadashri: When they get on the wrong path, you have to remain as an observer and a knower. Keep a prayerful attitude for their welfare. Pray to God to grace them. You have to understand and accept whatever happens is correct. The fault decidedly is of the sufferer.
The Lord has said, “If you improve, then everything else will improve in your presence.”
You should explain to your young children that every morning after their bath, they should worship the Sun Lord, and ask and pray for right intellect for themselves and the world and for the salvation of the world. If they do this much, they will be instilled with right values. This way the parents become free from their karmic bondage with them.
Everything in life is mandatory. You have no choice in the matter. Even if you borrow money for your son’s education, if he behaves insolently towards you, you cannot remind him of the sacrifices you have made for him, because you are duty-bound and obliged to do so. You did what was mandatory. You should carry out all your duties.
When the child does not change even after trying repeatedly, Pratikraman is the key!
You should express your disapproval on the outside, but from within, you should have sambhaav (equanimity or to remain undisturbed). So, the children will realize that ‘there is no abhorrence from my father towards me.’ he screams externally, but from within there is no abhorrence from the father. Then tell him that we are well-respected family, etc. so then he will change his bhaav (inner intent), that it is indeed not worth doing this. What does he decide? He will decide that this poison is not worth drinking.
He would decide that this is not worth doing anymore. He will do such bhaav in his mind. At first, he will not tell his father. Then he will tell him that it happens even it is not his wish to do so. At first, we have to ask if he is doing it deliberately, or it happens? So then, he will say, ‘I do not want to do it.’ There were two or three times when I did not want to go and I still ended up going in. So, even children know that they do not want to do it and yet it happens. Therefore, there is a third thing (that makes them do it), a ‘ghost’. It is the ‘ghost’ of unfolding karma. Therefore, when he says that it happens even when he does not want to, we should realize that he has turned around, his understanding has changed. So, then you should tell him to do pratikraman now. Whenever it happens, say, ‘Dear Lord! I did that today, for which I ask for forgiveness, and I will not do it again.’ Teach him such pratikraman; that is all.
You should tell your child to do pratikraman. He must be taught to apologize and repent for his actions and he must tell you how many pratikramans he does. This is the only way he is likely to improve.