We started the first class this term by recapping earlier classes by talking about all the qualities of Hanuman – devotee, commander, brave, etc. We then brainstormed and each of us shared instances where we had been a helpful hero like Hanuman. Children then heard the story of how Lakshmana fainted due to a missile hurled at Him by Ravana’s son Indrajit during the battle. And how then Hanuman, who thought fast and acted quickly, brought the whole mountain back that contained the life-saving herb “sanjivani”, from the Himalayas before the crack of dawn, in order to save Lakshmana. We then chanted the next two caupais:
Laye Sanjivan Lakhan Jiyaye
Shri Raghuvir Harashi ur laye
Hanumanji brought the lifesaving herb Sanjivani from the Himalayas, and revived Lakshmana, thus making Lord Rama embrace Him
Raghupati Kinhi bahut badai
Tum mam priye Bharat-hi-sam bhai
Rama praised Hanuman profusely, and compared Hanuman to His dear brother Bharata.
When someone loves you like a brother or sister does, he or she is ready to do anything to help you. To model thinking fast and acting quickly like Hanumanji, we did an activity where the children worked in two teams to complete a set of time-bound tasks, racing to finish as quickly as they could. Tasks included finding a specific page in a magazine, arranging spoons tidily on a stand, putting on socks and hat, zipping a jacket, etc. We made a promise amongst ourselves, to be helpful to at least one person every day of the week.
Homework: Practise chanting of the chalisa till caupais learnt. During the week, practise being a good friend to someone around us by helping without being asked.
The children are learning “Krsna Krsna Everywhere” and have been regularly practising values of forgiveness, sharing and being gentle/ kind (like cows). Today they shared information about themselves and about how Balavihar classes help them in dealing with circumstances/ situations at school and at home. They shared how they have been using the values learnt at BV to deal with bullying, helping friends and making the right choices when it comes to homework or TV/games! They also did an activity to reinforce these concepts.
This week we did Chapter 14 on Harmony and Poise. We discussed how we face many external challenges and that they make us stressed and unhappy. However, when we face challenges, we would prefer to be calm and unaffected as this will help us overcome problems. To do this, we need to rise above our ego and stop thinking just about ourselves. We need to be constantly aware of the totality of the world rather than being ignorant. We did an activity where we each found an object and had to come up with a way to use that object in a way it is not normally used. The purpose of the activity was to understand how to view objects and the world from different points of view. If we can apply this to our life and recognise that we are members of the entire humanity then we can live in harmonious existence.
Sadhana: To do the same activity we did in class but using objects that we use in our daily lives.
We started on Chapter 12 of the Geeta. We read and discussed the introduction. In Verse 1 of Chapter 12, Arjuna asks Lord Krishna, ‘Those devotees who, ever steadfast, thus worship You, and also those who worship the Imperishable, the unmanifested, which of them are better versed in yoga?’ We will continue next week with the Lord’s explanation on Bhakti Yoga or the Yoga of Devotion.