Practical Discipline Guidelines
True discipline awakens the child to the feeling dimension
of his or her being, and this allows the child to become aware of the Mystery
of existence in terms of a whole-bodily feeling. Whenever a child in the
first two stages of life (up to approximately age fourteen) has an unhappy
episode or is dramatizing reactive emotions, the following simple steps
can serve as guidelines for bringing him or her back into relationship
and feeling-awareness of the Mystery of life. However, these instructions
should not be followed mechanically. Rather, they must be applied in the
context of intimacy: The adult must be in wholehearted relationship to
the child when applying discipline.
1. Bring the child into intimate bodily relationship
(though not necessarily bodily contact).
2. Ask, “What are you feeling ?” and
allow the child to express his or her feelings simply, without making any
comments or judgments yourself.
3. Ask “Is that feeling Happiness ?”
and wait for a response.
4. Ask the child to do the Feeling-Breathing Technique:
(a) “Breathe up from the bottoms of your feet to the top of your head”;
(b) “Feel that you can relax”;
(c)”Smile from the inside or from your heart.”
Do this with the child until equanimity is reestablished.
5. Ask “Now that you feel Happy in the Mystery,
what are you going to do ?” and let the child determine the appropriate
action of coming back into relationship in the situation.
Never do any of the following:
1. Make degrading comments (“I can’t believe you
are doing this again”).
2. Make righteous demands (“Why don’t you stop being
so silly and just be happy!”).
3. Enter into a complicated abstract consideration of
4. Make judgments about what the child is doing (“This
is completely inappropriate!”).
5. Threaten the child (“If you don’t do what I tell
you, I am going to punish you”).
6. Preach and moralize (“This isn’t the way to live.
You should not do this, you should do that, etc., etc.).
Always observe any feelings on your part of superiority,
reactivity, or needing to control children’s behavior.
“Do not make children
pay the price of a wounded psyche.”
—Sri Adi Da Samraj
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claims perpetual copyright to all photographs and the entire Written
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Wisdom-Teaching of Avatar Adi Da Samraj and the Way of the Heart.
©1999 The Da Love-Ananda Samrajya Pty Ltd., as
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Used in DAbase by permission.
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