Monday, September 5, 2016

Serving the Child, Serving the Future

Karin, a founding member of our original Moon Cycle Circle and guest blogger, starts off the exploration of the role of 'will' (and true service) on the path to Live Truth.  She shares her personal reflections:

During last month's focus on Serving Truth, I was startled by the assertion that I needed to serve myself. (This flies in the face of my Christian indoctrination.)  It took so much pressure off me to serve, serve, and serve some more until I was spent. Working with Kinders these past two weeks--and I mean, young Kinders--with their joyful and willful expression, has reminded me to be aware of and care for my own inner child.  I intuit that I need to cultivate and give witness to an intermingling of service to them and to service to myself. Therein lies the evolution and healing of Planet and Self--one and the same!

It takes daily contemplation and review of my intentions in order to Serve God/The Good.  My intentions encompass guiding the little ones in learning how to 1) distinguish needs from wants; 2) balance their needs and immediate wants with those of their peers; 3) to assert when they have not been heard, yet also practice strategies of patience and grit when faced with challenges.  Basically, to stre-e-etch both their brains AND their hearts when peers trespass their boundaries and they don't receive immediate gratification--tall orders for any of us, let alone Kinders!

August's focus on Service and September's focus on Awareness of Tomorrow's Dreams in its range of manifestations epitomizes my journey through the cycles.  The image of a giggling-then sleepy-then generous babe Wata-jis in the cradle board (from Jamie Sams story of Setting Sun Woman) captures the essence of a Kinder kid!  This morning I looked at our class pictures and could distinctly envision them as high schoolers!  I need to be aware that their future selves will carry the foundational circuitry and emotions from their Kinder selves!

What exactly is my role?  It's imperative that I pray morning, evening, throughout the day (!) for the words and patience to love them just as they are developmentally (as my young Karin needed and did not always receive). Also important is to give them choice and a measure of responsibility in making those choices.  Tell them in word and deed that I trust them.  Model that I, too, make mistakes, but that we can and will become skillful emotionally and cognitively.  This is a process, an entire life's journey. My co-teacher and I are learning that patience and respect (with respectful consequences for obstinacy!) during this journey are the hardest to practice and model.  But the fruits of our labor are so worth it.