“Love and respect can sweetly help them to be more understanding about the world, can help them to be more alert, aware, careful,” says Osho.
Respect the children because they are closer to the source, you are far away. They are still original, you are already a carbon copy. And do you understand what it can do if you are respectful to children? Then through love and respect you can save them from going in any wrong direction – not out of fear but out of your respect and love.
My grandfather… I could speak a lie to anybody – even if I met God I could speak a lie without any trouble – but I could not speak a lie to my grandfather because he respected me so much. When the whole family was against me I could at least depend on the old man. He would not bother about all the proofs that were against me. He would say, “I don’t care what he has done. If he has done it, it must be right. I know him, he cannot do wrong.”
And when he was with me of course the whole family had to shrink back. I would tell him the whole thing, and he would say, “There is no need to be worried. Do whatsoever you feel is right, because who else can decide? In your situation, in your place, only you can decide. Do whatsoever you feel is right, and always remember that I am here to support you, because I not only love you, I respect you too.”
His respect towards me was the greatest treasure I could have received. When he was dying I was eighty miles away. He informed me that I should come immediately because there was not much time. I came quickly; within two hours I was there.
It was as if he was just waiting for me. He opened his eyes and he said, “I was just trying to continue to breathe so that you could reach me. Just one thing I want to say: I will not be here now to support you, and you will need support. But remember, wherever I am, my love and my respect will remain with you. Don’t be afraid of anybody, don’t be afraid of the world.”
Those were his last words: “Don’t be afraid of the world.”
Respect the children, make them fearless.
But if you are yourself full of fear, how can you make them fearless?
Don’t force respect on them towards you because you are their father, you are their daddy, their mom, this and that.
Change this attitude and see what transformation respect can bring to your children.
They will listen to you more carefully if you respect them. They will try to understand you and your mind more carefully if you respect them. They have to. And in no way are you imposing anything; so if by understanding they feel you are right and they go on that way, they will not lose their original face.
The original face is not lost by going on a certain way. It is lost by children being forced, forced against their will.
Love and respect can sweetly help them to be more understanding about the world, can help them to be more alert, aware, careful – because life is precious, and it is a gift from existence. We should not waste it.
Osho, From Darkness to Light, Ch 6, Q 1 (excerpt)