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Published:September 2nd, 2009 16:01 EST
When Parents Guide Children (continued): Wise Parental Instructions

When Parents Guide Children (continued): Wise Parental Instructions

By Ignatius Fernandez

Very aptly Saint Augustine wrote: "The measure of love is to love without measure". Parents do exactly that when they set the right example, give the right instructions and discipline children in the right way; all done with great love.

In the last article we saw the importance of good example. Now, we shall look at wise Parental Instructions and how inseparable they are from good example. In the next article we shall examine the impact of discipline on children.

From early childhood parents instruct children on what they believe is key to the happiness of the young ones.

1) God comes first.

2) Family is next.

3) A good name is better than riches.

4) Education matters.

5) Health is wealth.

6) First you make your habits, then your habits make you.

7) There is no substitute for courteous behaviour.

8) Win or lose, play the game right.

9) Caring for others goes beyond decency.

10) Waste in any form is bad; and so on. These and many more instructions get written on the child`s mind.

Much to the peril of children, some misguided parents programme them differently.

1) You don`t see God, but money-power is for all to see.

2) Even the family will respect you, only if you have wealth.

3) Being worldly wise is more important than formal education.

4) Possessions count; keep adding to them. Don`t you know what a Rolls Royce does to your image?

5) Play by your own rules, to win always; and so on.

Through words and actions, parents convey their own set of values to their children. The software children inherit, becomes the legacy they log on to, even years after they have left home, and on their mental monitors messages flash, `God comes first` or `Money is power`. Which path they choose to take would depend largely on the kind of programming they received at home. If parental values are warped, and the programming skewed, there is every chance that children will justify their twisted ways. By a process of osmosis, children absorb into themselves even flawed parental visions.

It is not that wise parents succeed in training their children only with positive inputs. Some negative ideas find their way into the mental make-up of their children. But with strong values already implanted, children will find a way to combat the negative ones, much to the relief of anxious parents. Need we add that good example and wise instructions are fruits from the same tree?