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Inter Religious Family

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  • Jim
    Dear Venerables, I have a question that I do not believe has been raised before. I am student of The Dhamma and a Buddhist, I am married to a non- Buddhist and
    Message 1 of 2 , Dec 2, 2007
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      Dear Venerables,

      I have a question that I do not believe has been raised before.

      I am student of The Dhamma and a Buddhist, I am married to a non-
      Buddhist and have 2 children. My wife does not attend any church and
      is resistant to me exposing the kids to The Dhamma. My kids are 9 and
      4 and they understand that I meditate and offer respect to The
      Buddha.

      Should I be assertive with my wife about exposing the kids to The
      Dhamma? Or should I suggest that she take them to a church she is
      comfortable with?

      I want my children to be exposed to a spiritual foundation whether it
      be Buddhist, Christian or other.

      I understand my over- all duties as a householder, but I would be
      very thankful for any Sutta reference or other assistance.

      Thank you.

      With Metta and Respect,
      Jim Arizona. USA
    • Bhikkhu Pesala
      My advice to parents is always, Kids will do as you do, they will not do what you tell them to do. Teach by example. If you go to a Buddhist temple, why not
      Message 2 of 2 , Dec 13, 2007
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        My advice to parents is always, "Kids will do as you do, they will not do
        what you tell them to do." Teach by example. If you go to a Buddhist
        temple, why not take them along with you? If they hate it, then don't force
        them to go. If they like it, they will nag you to take them. The most
        important thing is to teach kids basic morality. At six and nine they cannot
        easily understand Dependent Origination, but they can understand "What
        goes around, comes around." Whether or not your wife and children gain
        faith in Buddhism depends on their potential. Don't fret about it. Just take
        care of your own spiritual life, and let them take care of theirs.

        Remember the simile of the Acrobat and his assistant:

        While performing acrobatics on top of a bamboo pole, the assistant said,
        "Master, I will take care of you, and you take care of me, then we will both
        get down safely from this pole." The master replied, "No. You take care of
        yourself, and I will take care of myself, then we will both get down safely
        from this pole."
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