At a Professional Conference for Teachers, a Workshop was offered which culminated in self-realization. The title of the workshop was “Self-Regulation: Using the Child’s Capacity to Regulate His Behavior: Help children overcome their negative behaviors through song, “Creative Relaxation” and yoga. Simple techniques will be shared that are powerful tools to shift energy from chaos to peace“.
The Workshop was given three times to different sets of teachers. It began with music playing, relaxing classical music. Teachers were asked how they felt starting the session listening to music. Naturally, they all agreed it was enjoyable and relaxing. We talked about different things we do to relieve stress, some being productive, some not productive, like eating or shopping. I talked briefly how I practice meditation and what a huge difference it makes in my daily life. We agreed that a relaxed teacher is more effective in creating a relaxed atmosphere than a stressed teacher and that relaxed children are more predisposed to controlling their reactions than tense children.
The teachers then listened to the song: “The Happy Road“: Oh, you can go down the happy road, And I can go down the happy road, We all can go down the happy, happy road If we want to ‘Cause you have the power And I have the power We all have the power To choose the happy road.
The teachers commented on the upbeat rhythm and happy tune that empowers the children to control their negative emotions and shift to the positive. When children are angry or sad they are told “you are on the sad road; I love you, but I cannot put you on the happy road by myself; you have to use YOUR power to get back on the happy road.” When they succeed, they are highly praised for using their power.
“Creative Relaxation” was then taught to the teachers. All the children sit in a circle and are asked, “Who would like a present?” They all respond enthusiastically and are told to hold their hands out as if they are receiving a present. [Hands are out, palms up.] “This is the best present in the world, better than a new doll or a new truck….can you guess?” Some children actually guess “love“. “Who likes “love”?” They all respond “Me!” “I am going to send you lots of love.” The teacher puts her hands from her heart then out to the children, making a “woosh” sound. “Did you get my love?” “Now can you send me some love?” They do the same back to the teacher.
“Now, who likes to be on the happy road?” [everyone says “Me”] “I am going to tell you a very special way that you can be on the happy road more and more of the time. And guess what! When you are on the happy road, it helps all the people you love be on the happy road, your mommy and daddy and teachers and sisters and brothers and friends. And we know how happy it makes us when everyone is on the happy road.”
“Inside of you is a love tree. When it grows big and strong it helps you be on the happy road. Do you want to know how to make it big and strong?…. First you plant a seed, then you make it grow up, up, up to the top of your head, then tie a knot. Then plant it again, go up, up, up and tie 2 knots; then plant it again, go up, up, up and tie three knots, 1-2-3. Now we will put a beautiful rainbow over our love tree.” Teacher demonstrates putting on a bandhan.
“Now, let’s all close our eyes and sit very still because there is a bird’s nest on the very top of your tree with little babies sleeping inside and we don’t want to disturb the babies. Now let’s say our special sound: Take a deep breath: ‘Aum‘” [children were taught this sound earlier] They say ‘aum’ three times; in between, the teacher says: “I am feeling so much love. I am feeling like being a good friend, like sharing and taking turns. I am feeling like being a good listener. I feel so happy.”
After a few minutes, the teacher opens eyes and tells the children to slowly open their eyes. “Children, anytime you want to make your love tree stronger you can. You will see how it helps you stay on the happy road.”
We then discussed from where this “power” comes, that helps us overcome negative emotions. Our spiritual energy of pure love that was put into our bodies in the 3rd or 4th month in utero was used to create our pure, spiritual self. The remaining energy was then put in our sacrum bone. We can now access that energy because of this Master [I refer to a small photo of Shri Mataji] whose purpose on earth is to enable anyone with the desire to awaken this energy, the most powerful energy on the planet. Volunteers who wanted to awaken this energy were asked to come to the front of the room. The others were told they could awaken it from their seats.
To awaken the energy, the teachers were told to simply go to their heart and ask to awaken this energy of pure love. “Please awaken my spiritual energy of pure love. I want to feel the energy of pure love.” Then, put your attention over your head.” If I felt it was necessary, I would add, “I forgive.” or “I am not guilty.” After a few minutes, when I felt vibrations over the teacher’s heads, they were told to put their right hands 3 or 4 inches over their heads and feel for a thin wisp of air, then their left hands. Most teachers felt it and felt each others’.
The last thing we discussed was how we are like the seed that is planted in the earth and becomes a beautiful flower. How does this happen? There is a program in the seed, isn’t there? It programs the color, shape, design, size, fragrance of the flower. We are just like the flower. We too have been programmed. When we awaken our spiritual energy we can learn what this program is and we will discover that we were not programmed to have negative emotions. We were programmed to feel love, joy, peace, compassion, security; to be creative, sensitive to others, generous and capable of being in the moment. All the negative emotions we feel are not part of our program, but the result of our free will. We were given the freedom to turn our backs on our spirit, but now we can come home and manifest the beautiful qualities that are our birth right. We can change our classrooms into havens of peace and love and children with the worst behavioral problems will calm down and transform. And the more they strengthen their love tree as teachers, the easier it will be to create this atmosphere.
Some additional things that teachers were advised to do is: leave shoes at the door if possible, make your classroom a slipper room for staff and children; read stories and sing songs about love, joy, friendship, etc. Examples were given of such songs. Do not read stories about anger, jealousy, fighting and all those stories, many that are award winning books, that only bring the attention of children to negative emotions. Fill them up with the energy of love instead.
Lastly, teachers were told that their whole lives are a reflections of where they put their attention. They can remind their children who stray from the happy road: “Where is your attention?”
Handouts were given with the above Creative Relaxation exercise and the website: freemeditation.tv