“Children reflect the simplicity and fullness of living 100 % in each moment.”
by Anamda Sly
Have your noticed what children bring to the world, whether at school, home or at a community event? They naturally model community to us and in many ways. Many children share their natural innocence and creativity whether they are doing a yoga class, playing with friends or quietly coloring a mandala
Yesterday, I invited a friend with her son and another friend to go swimming. My friend’s son, Ishtiak, is learning to swim and he is still a bit nervous in the water. He became our focal point as we all helped him swim with his paddle board the length of the pool without losing his balance in the water. After ten minutes, Ishtiak started to relax when he felt the support he was receiving and then naturally moved his legs and his arms rhythmically to keep himself afloat better.
Ishtiak’s smile, giggles and excitement were invigorating for us adults. We were all totally absorbed in this experience with each person having a contribution to the success of the paddling experience. Ishtiak was glowing with confidence when he got out of the pool and then instructed us to play a water game with him leading, a natural away to connect us all together. It was a beautiful exchange of energy with all of us feeling light, energized and happy as we left the pool.
Then at the local restaurant, Ishtiak used straws and some lids from coffee cups to play a warrior game with us. We were being very silly at our table, shooting straws at each other, using our shield to defend and fight. Other people sitting close by couldn’t help but notice us and started laughing and joking with us. It was very infectious and brought us into community with new people. Ishtiak’s gift to us was not to take life too seriously and to have fun in any given moment. Children teach us that life is a playground where we can experiment and use our capacities in a creative, spontaneous way.
Children have other ways of bringing us into community. For example, they love to celebrate and help others with community events, special occasions and so forth by dressing up in costumes, doing face painting, performing, fundraising with teacher and parents and so forth. Being creative in community helps them to tap into their own intuition that gives them a strong secure foundation in life. They are like a canvas absorbing all the paint colors, learning from all the influences they are exposed to: from each other, parents, teachers and other significant people in their life.
Children also need time alone to be creative or to collaborate with other children/parents. In our Sunday, Club Yoga program we used to do community projects e.g. painting a white bed sheet for a community event on the beach. One year, at a Christmas party, we were provided a large piece of paper to complete a mandala using paints, beans, rice, beads, anything with texture and meaning for children. We were “one” in the potent silence!