Always remember: children are not adults; you should not expect adult things from children. They are children. They have a totally different vision, a different perspective. You should not force your adult attitudes on them. Allow them to remain children, because they will never be that again; and once lost, everybody feels nostalgic for the childhood days, everybody feels those days were days of paradise. Don’t disturb them.
Sometimes it is difficult for you to accept children’s vision — because you have lost it yourself. A child is trying to climb a tree; what will you do? You immediately become afraid — he may fall, he may break his leg, or something may go wrong. And out of fear you rush and stop the child. If you had known what joy it is to climb a tree, you would have helped the child to learn how to climb trees. You would have taken him to a school where it is taught how to climb trees. You would not have stopped him. Your fear that the child may fall is good — it shows your love, but to stop the child from climbing the tree is to stop the child from growing.
There is something essential about climbing trees. If a child has never been doing it, he will remain somewhat poor, he will miss some richness — for his whole life. You have deprived him of something beautiful, and there is no other way to know about it. Later on it will become more difficult for him to climb the tree, it will look stupid or foolish or ridiculous.
Let him climb the tree. And if you are afraid, help him, go and teach him. You also climb with him. Help him learn so he doesn’t fall. And once in a while, falling from a tree is not so bad either. Rather than being deprived forever....
The child wants to go out in the rains and wants to run around the streets in the rain, and you are afraid he may catch a cold or get pneumonia or something — and your fear is right. So, do something so that he is more resistant to colds. Take him to the doctor; ask the doctor what vitamins should be given to him so that he can run in the rains and enjoy and dance and there is no fear that he will catch cold or will get pneumonia. But don’t stop him. To dance in the streets when it is raining is such a joy. To miss it is to miss something very valuable.
If you know happiness and if you are aware, you will be able to feel for the child, how he feels....
When you understand the child, the child understands you — children are very very responsive. When the child sees that he is never prevented, then once you say, “I am doing something please...” the child will know that it is not from a parent who is constantly looking to shout at him. It is from a parent who allows everything.
Courtesy: Osho international foundation, www.osho.com