Parenting Stories from the Hebrew Scriptures
Consider these parenting tips that are present in the original Hebrew scriptures
Raising kids is a tough task. Parents often seek advice from various people and sources, but religious scriptures would be their last option. Hebrew scriptures in English offer some useful parenting tips that may help guide kids to become confident, empathetic, and socially responsible citizens.
Here are some of the Hebrew scriptures that you may want to consider (or add to your current style) the next time you impart values on your kids.
Allow a child to fulfill life’s purpose
One of the Hebrew Bible scriptures that parents can use is the Chanoch l’naar al pi darko which means to “educate a child according to his / her way, so even when he grows old he will not turn away from it.” This also means that a child must be taught according to his abilities, temperaments, and inclinations rather than forcing him to follow a system that fails to meet his needs—physical, mental, spiritual, mental, and social.
Catastrophic consequences may be triggered when one child is favored over the others, like the story in Genesis 37:3–4 that tells how Jacob showed favoritism to Joseph compared to his other children. According to a study, “Mothers’ Differentiation and Depressive Symptoms among Adult Children,” effects of favoritism can last long in children. Kids who feel that their mother consistently favors or rejects a sibling over the other are more prone to depression in the middle age. The study reported that favoritism can affect both the favored and unfavored kids.
According to the original Hebrew Scriptures, children should be disciplined, but with care and compassion. Talmud (BT Sanhedrin 107b) describes discipline as “pushing away with the left hand while the right hand to draw closer”. The scripture means that even when parents show their disapproval, they have to reassure the child that the disapproval isn’t equal to their withdrawal of love and support. Again, good parenting means flexibility, as stated in the Hebrew scriptures of Talmud, which says an individual should never be as rigid as a cedar tree, but show flexibility like a reed. (BT Ta’anit 20a).
Teaching a child to be a better person isn’t easy. Parents may sometimes resort to a forceful way of disciplining their kids, but there are also other helpful ways found in the Hebrew scriptures that may help parents in raising their kids to be better people.
Which among these parenting advices given in the Hebrew scriptures matches your parenting style? Share your opinion in the comments section below. You can also connect with me on my Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads handles. Remember to take a look at my blog to find some more fascinating parenting articles that may help you.
Rabbi Amsel, Nachum. “Parenting Lessons from Jewish Sources.” My Jewish Learning. Accessed June 7, 2018. https://www.myjewishlearning.com/article/parenting-a-view-from-jewish-sources/
Rabbi Winkler, Gershon. “Ask the Rabbis // Parenting.” Moment, January 6, 2016. Accessed June 7, 2018. https://www.momentmag.com/ask-the-rabbis-parenting/
Bluethmann, Jacquie Goetz. 2018. “Long-Term Effects of Parental Favoritism.” Metro Parent, March 16. Accessed June 7, 2018. https://www.metroparent.com/daily/parenting/parenting-issues-tips/long-term-effects-favoritism/