Raising Enlightened Children (Part 1)

Thom Knoles

It was all very shanti-shanti at the Soul Sessions studio for Raising Enlightened Children. Why? Father of eight and good guru to more than 11,500 students Thom Knoles flew in from the U.S. to speak his wise words about parenting. For those who don’t know him, Thom is an exponent in the direct lineage of the Shankaracharya tradition and one of the world’s most sought-after vedic world-view consultants.

One of the things that I think would be helpful would be to give you an idea of the Veydic worldview on children, on parenting, and on raising enlightened children. First of all, raising enlightened children, though clearly it is for parents is also not only for parents. Because every member of the community whether they are active parents, biologically have their own children or not are engaged in to whatever extent you wish it to be so or you don’t acknowledge it, we’re all engaged in the process of raising children. And we better raise them enlightened.

And what I mean by enlightened is that word light is used to give us an idea of our relationship with an object. If I’m in this room and that easel is there, all the lights are off and it’s completely dark, I am the knower, that is an object over there is not known by me. And the reason for it is there’s no light. I have no connection with it so I can just walk straight into it and have an accident. That which connects the knower with that can be known is the process of knowing, and the analogy for that is turn the light on. When a light is on there’s a connection between the knower and the object. The known becomes the known by virtue of the enlightenment of the process of knowing. Knower, knowing, known. Without the knowing, you can have a knower who’s just in the dark. And then there’s lots of accidents.

What we see in the world today is, and Jacinta really demonstrated it beautifully in her talk, that you cannot stop someone from behaving according to their level of consciousness. You cannot stop people from behaving according to their level of consciousness. Someone’s state of consciousness absolutely dictates their behavior. If you raise someone’s consciousness then their behavior changes. But if you don’t raise their consciousness and you even give them an enlightened philosophy, they’ll crucify you for it.

The Veydic worldview uniquely states that heaven is a body dependent phenomenon. That is to say all the other philosophies and religions and so on say that you arrive in heaven when your body drops off… Not in India. In India they say heaven is on earth you live heaven on earth. You arrive in your body. You integrate that cosmic awareness into your life, in your body and you live heaven on earth. If you don’t find heaven on earth and your body drops, you’ve got to come back here and find it. Because it’s not body death dependent. You see all other versions of heaven are, you know somebody’s body dies and they gain heaven. And that allows me, if I don’t like you, I can get my gun and shoot you and I’m just sending you to heaven. Or you know it’s okay if people die because he’s going to heaven, or they might go to hell, but the earth is just a waiting room. You know here you are on earth it’s just a waiting room. The really great place is after your body dies. So what does that do to your life here on earth? It turns his life on Earth into a hell!

I said to my teacher once, what does the Veydic worldview say about hell? And he said first of all describe hell to me. And I said well there’s all these ideas, you know, people being tortured, people being burned, people all this, you know, burning and screaming and gnashing of teeth and fire and wishing they weren’t there and you know. He said, all of that’s on earth. If heaven’s on earth, hell’s on earth too. He said anything you can describe that anybody’s ever described as hell you can read about that in the newspaper today. People are having that experience.

A child who is born to a spiritually aware family. Whether there’s one member in the family or both potential parents are spiritually aware. That child is somebody who has been on the earth before. If you care to at some point I can give you a scientific argument that will demonstrate that reincarnation is a fact. But I won’t go there just yet. That soul, that spirit, that consciousness, is a consciousness that is seeking birth on the earth at a particular time.

Now think about this… Right now, there are something on the order of 10,000 births occurring every eight to nine minutes on the earth. It’s amazing! Population, the speed with which went from 5 billion to 7.3 billion is just mind-boggling. And it’s going to hit 10 billion before you even think about it. And the number of children being born on the earth right now, what percentage of those are going to have the good karma? That is to say the good deserving power. Automatically to be born into a family that’s going to educate them in spiritual matters as a guarantee. That is to say they don’t even have to go seeking for it. It’s right there at home. That is a very small club. It’s a small group of the most highly evolved souls. They’re not enlightened, they will gain enlightenment when they come here.

In the Veydic worldview when you gain enlightenment, you don’t get born again and there’s a simple reason for it. Your awareness has expanded into oneness with the entire universe and you can’t come back because there’s no place you can go anymore. You’re already everywhere. Come back means you went and when you’re already everywhere you can’t go anywhere. And consequently, in the enlightened state at the end of the body life, the body just drops off. The consciousness can’t go anywhere. It’s already everywhere. You see what I mean?

But if you are nearly there you’re on your way to that complete enlightenment and there’s some unfulfilled desires. And there’s yet something to be achieved spiritually. You may be a very evolved person but your body dies. Then you spend a little bit of time in the “in between place”, and then you make a choice about coming to the earth with timing and specificity about what kind of genetics you want. And you’ve got power. And you’ve got the power to get to people who might otherwise might not have even thought of the idea into bed, or the car, or the beach or anywhere else. And to get that body that is needed in order to arrive on the earth at a particular time.

Why is it so popular getting born right now? It’s a very popular time to get born. I don’t know if you’ve noticed but there’s a baby boom going on. It’s yet unreported because the statisticians haven’t caught up with it yet but there’s a baby boom going on right now. Just think about it. Think how many people you know who are either pregnant, having babies, just had one or thinking about just about getting there. It’s an epidemic!

And in the Veydic view, right now is a time when there’s, there are two conditions that are ideal for gaining enlightenment if you get born.

One, the world is swamped in materialism and the suffering that comes from materialism. And so, you’re not going to come to the earth and really be convinced by materialism because the difficulties being created by it are palpable. So that’s going to steer you away from simply being a materialist.

Second thing, there’s lots of great knowledge on the earth today. So many masters. So many gurus. So many great purveyors of knowledge are here right now. So you have darkness, and you have very distinct points of light. And so if you get to the earth now it’s going to be fairly quick to figure out how to get to one of those points of light and gain the final bid of spiritual evolution you need to gain your enlightenment. That’s the Veydic worldview.

LeeRaising Enlightened Children (Part 1)

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