Raising Our Children

You know who our real angels are? Our children. If we treat our children as mere humans chances are they will grow up being less than human. If we treat our children as angels they will grow up as fine human beings.

* * * * * * * * * ** * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
When children are born they need more than a little crib. Sadly
enough, a lot of parents think they can buy their children everything.
But children don’t need that; they need a place in the world, a place
of light.

You know, why are children so angry at their parents?
I once went to talk at a college in Ohio. I was teaching the kids
about love between parents and children. This one girl was there, later
she told be about it. That very night, she calls her mother and
wakes her up. And she says to her mother on the phone,
“Mother, I love you!” And her mother says, let me get
your father. So her mother wakes her father up and this
girl is telling her father, “Father, I love you!” Then,
what does her father ask her, “What’s wrong?” So she is
telling both her parents, “I love you both so much!” And she
overhears her mother is asking her father, what month do you think
she’s in? And her father tells her, Don’t go anywhere, I’m
on my way. Her father gets dressed, and drives all through
the night to get to his daughter’s college. And once her
father gets there, do you think he kisses his daughter? Do
you think he tells his daughter how much he loves her? So
he tells her, I don’t want to know what the problem is, here’s
five hundred dollars. Can you believe it! He doesn’t stay
another minute. He drives back home. I’m not saying anything
bad about her parents, I’m sure they bought this girl everything she
ever needed, but what’s their problem????

There is a Holy Zohar that says there are two questions
in the world, “mah” and “mi”, what and who. Brother Esau saw
Yaqov’s children, the twelve holy tribes and asked “mah—what
are these.” The Holy Zohar, our book of mysticism, says, those who
ask “what” are destroying the world.

I once was staying at the house of a famous child psychologist. I asked
him if he ever talks to his children. So he tells me, when his son
has his Ph.d, he’ll be able to talk to him. Until then, they have nothing
to talk about with each other.

Do you know what his son is crying?
“Why do you care what degree I have, ask me who I am!”

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Any parent or teacher who hits children is, G-d forbid,
following in the path of Der Fuhrer ! G-d’s words can be taught to
our children and spread throughout the world only in a loving way that
is completely free of all anger and hatred.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
  Imagine if Avraham and Sarah got married and they had a son,
Yizhaq! How would it sound to you—beautiful, right? Something
is missing. Jewish children are not just born—a man and a woman
get together and they have children. To have a Jewish child, you have
to pray eighty-nine years, you have to pray ninety-nine years. Sarah
and Abraham prayed for all generations to come. I wish it would be
again how it is supposed to be. There is something so special about
holy Jewish families. Gevalt, gevalt, gevalt, do they love their
children. For me, an assimilated Jew is not someone who eats a
hamburger on Yom Kippur. I’m not saying it’s right, but I shouldn’t
say it shows that his Neshama has already gone too far. But when I
see parents who don’t care for their children—oy vey, are they
far from Yiddishkeit! Are they far from Avraham, Yizhaq and Yaqov!

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
So this is also from the psalms, from the Book of King David.
It says, when the sun is shining, when everything in my life
is good, it doesn’t take that much to tell the world that
everything is good. But when the night is very long, when
there is no end to darkness, what do you do then? So King
David says, “In the dark night it’s not enough to believe in
G-d, you have to know how much G-d believes in you.” You
know everyone is teaching our children how to believe in G-d.
But how many schools teach them how to believe in themselves?
I could swear to you, my beautiful friends, that all the
young people in the world, they could bring peace into the
world. Nobody gave them courage to do it. So this is for all
the people in the world to give them courage. And
you parents, when you put your children to sleep, don’t just
tell them to believe in G-d, give them a taste of how much
G-d believes in them, Give them a taste how.much the whole
world needs every child. One of our prayers is, please let the
whole world know that they are only born to make the world
more beautiful and they are not born to destroy the world.


by  Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach
Posted in: Personal Growth