When you first start to read this post, the title I had given would seem way off....but hold on to your horses and read on.
So, it all started out with a colleague of mine telling me at my last-5-working-minutes that her son did something she was so proud of. That she made the best decision in the world by sending him to this religious kindergarten near her house.
Since we were both 5 minutes away from clocking off, she left it at that.
All the way home, I thought of what she said. Part of me wondered what filial or honorable thing her son did as a result of religious teaching from ages 4-6. And as usual I wondered too about my religious teachings to my son when he was that age. In my opinion, there seemed to be nothing much my son did that would make me exclaim the way she did!
We are from a Christian home. The kindergarten her son went to was a Buddhist school. I cannot say she is Buddhist since they do not really practise any Buddhist customs to the letter. And driving home, I began to analyse how a Christian home is different from a Buddhist home to affect a kid at that tender age.
Now, at ages 4-6, I have already begun teaching my son about God. Reading Bible stories was a norm. Teaching him Godly values and doing all that church has to offer - worship, prayer, Bible reading and even tithing.
From what I hear about the Buddhist kindy, her son has been taught to wash the feet of his parents, served them meals, performed acts of love and kindness in their school to their parents, involved themselves in recycling projects and even abstained from meat.
And then I saw it! As a Christian parent, my religious teaching to my son is always about God. What God did, Who God is and the whole story of Jesus dying on the cross for our sins. I reckon in all my teachings to him, I may have only mentioned honor thy mother and father 3 times!
But it would seem, from what I hear about the Buddhist kindy, is an emphasis on being filial, respecting your parents, and love for the environment. In fact the emphasis on respect, love and being filial is heavily drummed in their eyes and ears and minds.
While I focus upward, it would seem their focus is horizontal. Nothing wrong in that. In fact washing the feet of your parents is the most touching, heartfelt emotion a parent and child can have. And not all Christian homes develop the greatest kids either. Everything does depend on the execution.
However, I did realize this one thing, and that is the upward focus of Christian teaching. And if God helps us to do it well, then from the out flowing of love to God and from God, honoring thy mother and father is a lesson taught as it is.