An Exploration of Sacred Parenting and Education

Posts Tagged ‘theme of the month’

Theme: The Dinner Table

In Food & Cooking on February 16, 2013 at 8:53 pm

SpaghettiMarinaraSomeone says, “I can’t help feeding my family.
I have to work so hard to earn a living.”
He can do without God,
but not without food;
he can do without Religion,
but not without idols.
Where is one who’ll say,“If I eat eat bread without awareness of God,
I will choke.”

[Mathnawi II, 3071-79]

I was reminded today of these beautiful lines from Mevlana while eating at the dinner table. I had lapsed into some moments of eating unconsciously and realised I had eaten without being aware that I was eating, let alone of what I was eating. It is also occurred to me how easy it is to fall into a state of unawareness, particularly at the end of the day when one is tired.

It is said in the Mevlevi tradition, that the kitchen is as sacred a place as the prayer hall. A shared meal, along with the collective prayer (salat), is a wonderful opportunity to practise prayer, intention, attention, awareness, and presence*. Maybe it can be used as a focal point in the day when Read the rest of this entry »


Theme of the Month: Time & Timelessness

In Education on December 10, 2012 at 4:41 pm

Somebody once wrote, children spell love as t-i-m-e. How do we spend quality time with our kids and as a family?  What is our relationship to time and how effectively do we use our day?  How important is routine for children and how important is it for activities to be scheduled at certain parts of the day?

Another reason to look at time is many readers of the Mayan calendar point to 21 Dec 2012 as a point at which we hit a singularity in time. Swedish scholar, Calleman, has done extensive research in the Mayan belief of nine Underworlds – each representing a different stage of consciousness. According to him, the Mayans prophesied that the Venus transit, 5-6 Jun 2012, would be the birth of a new world of consciousness, resulting in a timeless cosmic consciousness. Many other prophecies also point to this era.  Has 2012 been a strange or testing time for you? Shifts or transitions occurring?

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Theme of the Month: Story Telling

In Story telling on November 1, 2012 at 2:54 pm

Story telling is an ancient practice and an effective tool for tarbeyah. The Qur’an and sunnah are filled with stories which guide us, open our hearts and offer us wisdom which we can return to again and again. Stories are also instrumental in building character. A corpus of stories such as those found in the exploits of Mulla Nasrudin also have a teaching function in the way they use humour to bypass conditioning. Superficially, most of these stories can be told as jokes, or, like Aesop’s Fables, as moral points, but they can be understood on deeper levels, offering opportunities for the development of consciousness in the way they momentarily highlight certain states of mind, often in a startling way.  Some spiritual teachers have also used stories to introduce children to spiritual principles. Stories also contain ancient mythology and symbolism which hold lessons for our collective consciousness.

We each remember a story, either told to us or experienced by ourselves (in dreams or waking consciousness), which to this day may have influenced us. Which stories do you remember and how have they helped you? Do you use stories with your child/children? If so, what type of stories do you work with and how do they help? Please contribute your stories to