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Great post and very nice story. It resonated deeply with me and my own "family dharma." Your daughter's statement is so nice! Keep us posted to what happens! My son is five, soon to be six, and he hasn't said he wants to practice, but he is absorbing it very well. He has "sat" before, and he scrunches his face in concentration. : ) All the best to you and your daughter, peace and joy,


This hits home with me as well - my daughter is 11 and she has been "schooled" without knowing it, for a number of years now. The only overtly "Buddhist" thing we do is that every night since 2nd grade our "prayers" have been the Brahma Vihara's/Four Immeasurables (may I be happy etc.)She goes to parochial school (because the public schools in our city are the worst) so I have been feeding her Dharma without a label.
Sounds like you are in a great space with your daughter....be well.......Al


Thanks you two...

Nacho! I love that! He "scrunches his face in concentration"... I can almost picture it...

We are in a really great space, Al...

I found a great article on teaching dharma to children... Instead of burying it here, I'll post it as an entry.

A bow,

Paul M. Martin

I have to ask about these precepts. I agree with all of them, yet the features of Buddhism that have most attracted me are meditation, following the Eightfold Path, and developing one's inner being in a direction of enlightenment.

My Buddhist reading has been eclectic and self directed, but I haven't run into precepts before. I guess that frankly I'm a little concerned that it starts to have the feeling of the Ten Commandments, and the dogmatic rather than experiential approach I was familiar with growing up as a Catholic.

I like the colors of your blog! Different, and relaxing.


Paul I understand exactly where you're coming from... I address your question a little in today's entry, but I thought I would say a little more...

Precepts are not commandments. Most of the time, they aren't written with the words "Do not..." in front of them either... that's just how they are phrased at Still Point where I practice. I guess you could call them "strong suggestions".

In following the precepts, we avoid unskillful actions and instead learn heedfulness. But we decide how we are going to follow them... we look at our actions with respect to each suggestion and reflect on whether that act causes or lessens suffering.

Thich Naht Hanh doesn't call them precepts or vows, he calls them mindfulness trainings. A Google search for 'five mindfulness trainings' should turn up his version.

I like "mindfulness trainings" because that says more about what they really are... There is a book called "For a Future to be Possible" by Thich Naht Hanh with contributions from other teachers that delves into them.

Another book that might be helpful is one called Good Life: A Zen Precepts Retreat with Cheri Huber.

Paul M. Martin

Chalip, that's great. Sounds like a reflective approach. I've read TNH, and it had an impact.

I've always thought of the Ten Commandments as by products of, "Love one another," even it the commandments are supposed to have come first. One of the major Christian mystics, I forget which, used the phrase, "Love and do what you will." If I recall correctly, he was in perpetual danger of being burned at the stake for remarks like that.

But all he meant was that if you're coming from a place of love, you'll automatically be obeying the commandments, and doing a lot more besides.

I'd be interested in reactions to my blogpost of today, May 2, if you or any readers have a chance to look at it. It's as Buddhist as I've gotten, and I haven't had a Buddhist comment to my blog.


blessings to you and your daughter. i think the way you share and the way you are expressing the mother and daughter journey is awesome. i feel something else emerging from this sharing experience. a gift of reflections to all of us who seek to know how to build spiritual relationships with children. they are sages walking the earth that we adults sometimes ignore. their wisdom is always amazing to me. they are gifts to us all. thank you for sharing.
be blessed. paz y luz, ananda


as a mom, i am always thinking of how to share the dharma with my daughter. i think you've done it beautifully just by being you and living the dharma: she wants to be just like you-- just like the buddha in you. that is the best way to teach kids.

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