Question: When do you begin to teach children about spirituality?

Sri Chinmoy: We start the day the child enters into the world. In India, mothers sing religious songs, spiritual songs, prayers, from the day the child is born. Then at the age of four, most of the Indian mothers teach their children to learn a few spiritual verses or chants. The mother spends much time at home chanting spiritual prayers or praying and meditating with the young child. The child may not be aware of these prayers, but he learns from his mother.

Then when the child is six years old, he is taught by the village priest and the parents the meaning of the inner life and spirituality. They make it very clear to the children that God is not in Heaven, God is not in the caves of the Himalayas; God is inside their hearts. God is everywhere. For these children, the very name of God makes them feel that He is all Love and Compassion for them. First we try to make the children feel that God is all Love, rather than all Justice. Through love of God we try to help children grow.