Participation in Family Work

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Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam

The whole world is but the Lord’s family, that is what our scriptures teach us; scriptures of all other religions of the world too teach us the same truth-the truth of the Fatherhood of God and brotherhood of man. The Bible also tells of one, common ancestor for all humanity, viz., Adam, which in the Hebrew language means “Man”, or “admi”. In the Hindu concept, the first man is believed to be Manu and all humanity are said to be his descendants only. Distinction of caste and class, differentiation by blood or descent, do not supersede the primary fact of human equality. “Why was man created one?” ask the Jewish Rabbis and answer. “In order that no man should say to another, “My father was greater than thine.” The Bible further teaches, “Love thy neighbour thyself.”

Apart from the scriptural teachings which we “the moderns” are prone to brush aside as a fond dream or wishful thinking of the prophets, nevertheless, it is a fact that, with the phenomenal advance of communications and technology, the world today has now got a physical basis for a unified world community; barriers of distance between the nations have shrunk, aeroplanes girdle the earth, satellites spin round the globe, and we can speak across continents and oceans. Under these circumstances, it is an imperative, indispensable and practical necessity for all the nations to try to live together as sister-nations and for all people to try to live as one common brotherhood. But, unless the geographical proximity and togetherness grow into psychological unity, unity of hearts bound by mutual understanding, love and respect, the unity will not endure and last. The psychological unity will not take deep routes and gain a firm ground unless the spiritual truths like the unity of all life and existence, one’s oneness with the whole creation, the apprehension and awareness of the Atma, etc., which truths in our scriptures such as the Bhagavad Gita are understood, imbibed and allowed to crystallize into conviction in the hearts of all. The heart has to be cultivated, cultured and made expansive, the mind educated to perceive the unity, the vision broadened to see the homogeneity, harmony and oneness in all the creation. This sublime awareness and feeling resulting from the awakening of the consciousness of divinity in all, should be made to manifest in one’s thought, word and deed and in all the activities in one’s life. The only we will be able to fulfill the purpose of all the scriptures. Only then peace and joy can reign in the world and humanity can live in the spirit of true brotherhood, like one single-family, truly like the Family of Vasudeva.

Home is the starting point for one’s march towards world-citizenship

The goal as said able is for one to live as a true world citizen. For this purpose, one has to grow and evolve himself. The starting point for this is one’s home only. First one begins as an individual; then he has to learn to knit himself in the home, understanding and conducting himself as a useful member of the family; then he has to grow and become a useful member of the community, of the nation, then of the world… It is indeed a process of evolution, graded progress unfolding the flower of the heart, intellectual illumination and dawning of wisdom. Thus, the home naturally is the starting ground for one and all, in this process of advancement.

Truly, it has been said that family is the oldest of all social institutions.

“Home ! Sweet Home! There is no place like home…”

“Society, friendship and love divinely bestowed upon man…”

Thus sang one poet.

While we humans are so much attached to our family, in the case of birds and beasts, their infancy and childhood last only for a short period. They break off their connections with their parents the moment they are able to manage by themselves. But, in the case of us, the human beings, our infancy and childhood last for a longer period. We require the help of our dear parents till we grow up into adulthood and even after then. The bringing up of children requires great patience and tenderness and great sacrifice on the part of the parents. That is why, we will have to remember that it is in the family, that our character is built. It is in family we gather and imbibe our early impressions which are particularly strong and lasting. It is in the family that we learn, imbibe and absorb values of life and all cardinal virtues such as obedience, discipline, honesty, the spirit of “give and take”, and above all, the spirit of sacrifice. So, it is said that the home, or the family, is the nursery of civic virtues and that adult personality has its roots in childhood. That is why first the family has to progress if the nation is to progress.

As Sri Sathya Sai Baba has once said:

“If there is righteousness in the heart,

There will be beauty in character;

If there is beauty in character,

There will be harmony in the home;

If there is harmony in the home,

There will be order in the nation;

If there is order in the nation,

There will be peace in the word”

With some effort and practice of disciplines on the part of the child, and more than that, by the personal example of the parents and elders, the children will certainly ingrain in themselves the values of life, which will shape them into ideal citizens as they grow up.

Overview

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  • Language: English
  • Duration: 10 weeks
  • Skill level: Any level
  • Lectures: 6
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