While teaching our daughters Buddhism and meditation, we discovered a glitch along this journey; the bad thoughts that creep into our heads during our silence. I am not going to fool anyone. Last year was the pits. My husband and I finally accomplished a few goals through our turmoil and eventually moved on to meditate successfully. However, children have a much more difficult time moving on from hardship. Tears well up easily when given a moment to silence themselves and let their thoughts be.
I explained to both girls that meditation is about recognizing their thoughts and releasing them. Richard came up with a beneficial idea he borrowed from a Dharma & Greg episode to help them release their negative thoughts. Suppose we cannot seem to release the bad thoughts, and they become persistent. In that case, we can visualize that thought, create a gigantic bubble around it, and blow it away. What a brilliant idea! Each girl was ready and willing to practice that visualization technique during meditation this week.
In addition to the bad thoughts, I also discovered that our daughters struggled with the many big words and phrases used in the book How to Be Compassionate. It was much more difficult for them to answer questions if I read the entire section straight through. My new plan was to ask a question after I had read a paragraph or two. This would allow them to answer the questions and retain the knowledge before continuing with the remainder of the section.
And, would you know it? It worked!
Our session in Buddhism this week was quite successful. I received positive feedback, even from our youngest, who hated it last week. She said it was much better this week and would do it again next week.
I guess she was finally able to “blow away” her bad thoughts.