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Childhood and spirituality linked

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Childhood and spirituality linked

A spiritual environment at home can help children process their emotions better, writes AJIT KUMAR BISHNOI

I was fortunate to take birth in an extremely pious family. My grandmother had established a nice pooja ghar next to her bedroom. There were activities there from morning to evening. Aartis were performed; especially cooked food  was offered to the deities. It was a joint family and we children enjoyed the sumptuous prasad.

My mother was no different; she loved to read Ramayana and other scriptures regularly. My father was a staunch Lord Hanuman devotee. All this put spirituality in my consciousness. Yes, I was not actively doing any spiritual practice but subconsciously God was never too far from me. For example, we would often pray more regularly during ‘examination time’.

Time passed. I moved away to the USA for pursuing higher studies. After finishing, I joined a very reputed firm in a specialized field. They saw something in me, which prompted them to help me set up business in India for their product. At that time, India was mostly importing the kind of equipment we manufactured. As our equipment was superior, the business in India grew fast. This was very nice, but it put a lot of pressure on me.

I was young, so I could tolerate the stress but as time passed, it began to take effect. Hypertension, insomnia, etc. raised their ugly heads. What was I to do? Then, my childhood memories returned, and I decided to take shelter of God. And my way was to learn the Bhagavad Gita for guidance. Being a very serious person, not only did I memorize the whole of the Bhagavad Gita but also took the help of a Sanskrit scholar to get the Gita translated.

Slowly, Gita’s messages began to sink in. I was very encouraged by all round improvement in my life. I began writing articles for newspapers and wrote several books. A time came when we had our own bookstall in book-fairs.

By then, my daughter was married and had given birth to two lovely daughters. They became inquisitive about why I was giving books and newspaper articles to my daughter. She, too, had internalized a sense of spirituality. We always had a pooja ghar in our home. She tried to explain spiritual truths to them. This encouraged them to buy small idols to play with. They also tried to copy their grandmother in doing aarti.

In this connection, I wish to mention an event which really surprised me. My daughter had a pet dogs. Obviously, these two girls were quite attached to it. As the girls were growing up, the dog was ageing. Gradually, the dog became quite sick and immobile, and finally passed away one day.

This was natural and was expected but we were extremely surprised by the reaction of the two girls. Once the dog’s body was buried, they arranged a pooja thali in which a toy dog was put in the center. A lamp was lit. Aggarbattis were duly installed. Flowers were kept and, most importantly, small idols of gods were taken out from where they were kept and put in the thali. My daughter enquired as to what were they doing. They answered that they were praying for a nice birth, maybe a human one for their dear dog.

This is the result of exposing children to spirituality from the very beginning. It runs in their blood. Then, when time comes, one takes God’s help as I did. Such people are never helpless because God is deeply ingrained into their psyche.

Bishnoi is a spiritual writer and can be reached at 




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