Can you teach Vedanta to kids?

Well, the answer is an obvious No. It is also not a good idea to even talk Vedanta to young minds who are yet to see life. If it is a decided issue, why even write about it. It’s because of my recent experience with my 7-year old granddaughter. Here’s a brief account of what happened.

We were taking a leisurely stroll on our building terrace late in the evening yesterday enjoying the moonshine and gentle, cool breeze. She said: Let us talk as we walk. I told her I prefer to listen to some good classical music as I walk. I added: That makes me feel extreme peace. Her little brother who is too small to understand all this said: Oh, isn’t it something available in the market! Obviously he thought I was talking about peas! My granddaughter reacted saying: Market is full of noise and the opposite of peace that Thata (grand-pa) is talking about. I said: Yes, dear, absence of noise is quietness. I explained to my granddaughter (not expecting her to understand): When I listen to a song, I become the song…I have no thoughts. She readily agreed with me and said: Yes, Thata, when I read a story book, I’m completely absorbed and do not think of anything else. I become the story… When I dance with my friends, I become the dance. I said: Wow! Who told you all this? She said: This is my experience. When I dance at home, I become shy and do not enjoy as much. But, dancing with friends, I become extremely joyful.

So, here’s a surprisingly simple recipe for happiness. Try to become whatever you are doing. Of course that is easier said than done. One has to develop passion for whatever one chooses to do.

This episode shows that one’s own experience and close observation is the best teacher. There is no substitute for experience and observation. No amount of theorizing can replace this. She is just one big step away from realizing Advaita Vedanta. . When you listen to music, you do not become the song….rather you ARE the song… when you are dancing, you ARE the dance. Indeed, when you meditate on the universe, you are the universe. When you meditate on the universe as a manifestation of infinite Jnanam, you are the infinite Jnanam or endless knowledge (Anantam Jnanam). When you meditate on such a Brahman, You are that Brahman. This is expressed by Vedanta as a Maha Vakya (the famous line) in Upanishad which expresses the relationship between the individual and the absolute: Tat tvam Asi! Thou art that!

Published in: on May 2, 2021 at 1:00 pm  Comments (5)  

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  1. When we meditate we bring the infinite to become finite at the object of meditation & then we experience the infinite or try to gradually become the infinite

    • That’s precisely how UPASANA is done. It’s a technique of using an image like that of a God or OM and use it as ALAMBANAM to progress towards Brahma experience.
      I have obviously presented a simplified picture of meditation to experience Brahman. If one needs to have the Brahman experience every moment, one needs to understand what’s Mithya and how to logically negate the world even as one lives here and most importantly why Consciousness is all there is. With that understanding, if one meditates, one can experience Tat tvam ASI easily. Till that understanding comes, one has to use UPASANA of an image or symbol.

      • Contrary to establshed notions, world is not mithya but believing world as real is mithya. God is subtlest hence we have to become subtlest possible of course after first becoming real man as though we are called human beings but animalaty (actually sometimes we are worse than animals, who don’t have parigrah, once contented they don’t go on hunting for future) in us need go. So to become subtlest our alamban too needs be subtlest (sort of impossibility) as gross one cannot last long, one cannot meditate after few days

      • World is Mithya alright. However, we have to keep in mind how Adi Sankara explained Mithya. In simple terms Whatever changes in time is Mithya whereas Satyam is eternal and unchanging. Mithya is NOT illusion which is a wrong translation by the critics of Sankara

      • The evercodemned Maya too is His creation. Though it is not permenant we tend to believe otherwise. Our only friend is He- all others are mere for transactions, so friendship mania needs be avoided.

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