Monday, October 14, 2013

Traditional Knowledge: Natural Growth!

Time to Opt for Our Traditional Healing Wisdom! 

“Traditions are meant to be followed” shouted our grandma who literally threw tantrum at our declaration that we will not massage our bundle of joy with the oil she prepared for him. There was war of words and she kept mum on the issue for a week till our little one did not seem to do well with our ultra-modern techniques to nurture him (I being a doctor myself)! “I told you!” was her unique reply on asking what to do to make him look healthier? He was looking duller and sadly thinner too!

Finally we budge to our grandma’s whims (or so we looked at them as) and started giving traditional benefits of oil massage. Grandma’s face lit with joy! One day, when I was sitting near her idly, she said in the matter of fact tone, “Look, don’t I care for your son? The natural growth of the children is facilitated by traditional way of living with all the natural products.” I seemed to agree as my sweetheart son smiled on her lap! I being a Natural Medicine-Ayurveda-Homeopathy enthusiast, could not keep my joy to myself when things turned better for the precious piece of my heart- my son!

Through my son’s stages of development, I have only opted for natural products, natural medicines and natural supplements to bring him up. I relied mostly on Ayurvedic and Homeopathic medicines even during his illnesses. I believe that the basic principle upon which the natural systems of medicines are based gives a chance for the body to fight against the disease and not conquer the disease itself.

According to me, the highlights of traditional medicines / products are –

·         Holistic view- If the child is having weak appetite, the synthetic medicine bombards him with liver tonics, which temporarily boost appetite. Natural products consider his entire constitution and gives personalized medicine or product that will cater his unique personality. This holistic yet individualistic view is the hallmark of natural way of healing.

·         Kitchen utility- Many of the traditional healing agents my grandma told me were found easily in my kitchen. Her favorite remedy of grounded Tulasi leaves and dried ginger has acted as a potential deterrent to my son’s so-called viral colds, coughs and even fevers! Fomentation with heated Ajowan (Carom seeds) on his spasmodic belly was almost immediately soothing! Therefore, I can swear and say that if one acquires good knowledge of natural healing agents, the busy life schedule would not be an obstacle to treat your children with utmost care and efficiency.

·         Preventing & treating the mental or emotional problems- Today one can see hoards of mental and emotional problems affecting the children. Ayurveda and/or Homeopathy, as one can rightly say, are not just the therapies to annihilate health problems. But they form a way of life for a healthy future of your child. If the childhood maladies are treated exclusively with natural products instead of artificial and synthetic analogues, one can assuredly have a far enriching future for their kids. I am saying this with lot of precision and experience; it is not a vague sentence. The natural products / drugs / therapies avoid acting unfavorably on a child’s tender psyche and emotions. They do not suppress his bodily / mental expressions but make them subtle enough not to affect adversely. This in turn strengthens their immunity, mental efficiency, emotional quotient, and overall social development as well.

Recently I came across a wise saying- “Don’t eat anything your great grandmother would not recognize as food!” How true is that! With the bombardment of many so-called health products, we are losing on to our traditional wisdom, shared through generations. It’s time we think about our future society, which can be either full of doubts, criminality, and wars, or full of gaiety, knowledge, and bliss! It’s time we choose and apply wisely! 

Monday, October 7, 2013

“We are with you child, come what may!”

लालयेत् पञ्च वर्षाणि दश वर्षाणि ताडयेत् |
प्राप्ते तु षोडशे वर्षे पुत्रे मित्रवदाचरेत् ||

This is a Sanskrit shloka that guides us (parents) on how to behave with our children. It says, till our baby completes 5 years, we should pamper him / her, from five to ten years, we should teach him what’s right and what’s wrong by even scolding (actual meaning in the shloka is beating, as apt to the ancient ages perhaps) but when he or she attains sixteen years, we should treat them as friends!

Well, all the three stages are important in life, if the parent knows how to balance them wisely. Today we see parents that are either unduly friendly with their children since beginning or the ones that bombard their children with all the stress they have during the day! Worse still, parents try to compensate their absent hours by overtly granting all the kids’ whims and desires. The end result? Either the child is cranky whining all the while for some or the other possession or the child sets himself aloof and rarely interacts with the parents informally! I know that both these situations are extremes and many of us enjoy midway between the two but considering the large number of suicide attempts / depression / behavioral disorders in children, I suppose it is time for us to re-consider our priorities, our attitudes and our level of maturity (that we should attain on becoming parents)!

The news of post-exam result suicides rings alarm bells in our mind but rarely we seem to hold on to the positive thought of healthy behavior with our child. It slips our mind when the daily chores fight for their attendance on our body, mind and psyche. But it’s never late to correlate our own thoughts, to communicate with our spouse about our mutual discords, and to treat children without ever ‘taking for granted’ their existence in our life.

Recently I heard from very mature parents a trick that they have been following since the birth of their children. It’s “Avoiding any sort of fight, bad wording and most importantly back-talking about others” in front of their children. You might say, what’s new in this? But this couple followed this very principle without fail and the joy of this achievement was strikingly visible in the happy faces of their children! Such a beautiful family to be around!

As they are our close friends, I happened to ask them- “Besides the thing that you told me, is there anything else that keeps the child secure and happy?” The answer was quick from the mother. She said, “we keep telling our children that we are with them, come what may!” This may sound weird to the parents who always keep on counting the wrong-doings of their kids. But this sole thing can trigger a huge amount of confidence in the kids’ mind and assure them that they are NEVER alone! Through the failures, instead of blaming the child for bad show, if the parents start assuring them of better show next time and instilling a few words of wisdom playfully, thoughts of suicides and depression can never touch the young minds. Your compassion will guard you and your children through the life unabated.

The art of telling about the wrong doing falls at the next important juncture. “Let them do whatever they want. We are earning enough to fund for their future. We have not much enjoyed these things and so they should!” is one of the worst things to imbibe on the fertile minds of today’s generation. Here we have to be very careful not to hurt their creative instincts while delicately moving them away from unmoral things rampantly found around. Foremost thing to follow is not even utter a word about a wrong-doing in front of even your spouse. If one of the spouses has the art of explaining the truth to the child, he or she should talk to him or her about it in complete privacy. This will inculcate the feeling that you care! Sharp criticisms are a strict no. Listening to their point of view in the first place is imperative and many times this listening acts as a buffer to future discussion on the topic. Throughout the conversation, make your child realize that you are with him or her and have his / her best interest at heart.

It is not at all true that today’s generation has a total lack of respect for elders. It is untrue that they lack compassion. If they are very intelligent and have immediate understanding of the things around, they are sensitive to your thinking too. Just bullying them to understand your point of view is not done. If you seek respect from them, respect them as separate individuals, whatever age group they belong to! And as that wise mother said, “Be with them, come what may!”