When children are raised naturally, in keeping with their own true hearts, there is nothing that we need to teach them about Zen. In fact, the children then become our teachers, reminding us of what is important and expressing themselves naturally.
To grow a Zen child, means to raise a healthy, expressive, creative child–a child easily in touch with who they truly are. This child is naturally curious about life, experiencing each day as an adventure, going to sleep happy at night. This is a child to whom sharing comes naturally, who can laugh when things are funny and cry when they’re sad, who is not terrified of the consequences of their behavior or focused unnecessarily upon reactions of adults. This child then becomes strong and stable, able to weather all kinds of conflicting demands and pressures.
Actually, all of Zen practice comes simply to teach us how to become a child once again. Not how to become childish, but child-like, how to tap the natural knowingness and spontaneity we were all born with, to find delight in our days and share it with others.
In order to grow a Zen child certain basic steps need to be honored and taken. These...