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Thread: Single Householder

  1. #1

    Single Householder

    Namaste,

    I've been reading a lot about the traditional paths of the householder vs. the renunciate, but I wonder, what about for those of us who do not fit into either?

    I am a single parent, and I have chosen to not engage in romantic relationships for the time being.

    A lot of what I've been reading lately discusses the householder dharma of having a family and raising children, and how the energies of the parents must be balanced in order to nurture children. What about when there is only one parent around? Is there a way to make my household whole without that other half?

    Thank you for your insight.
    Om Namah Shivaya

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    Re: Single Householder

    Quote Originally Posted by fem_phoenix1109 View Post
    Namaste,

    I've been reading a lot about the traditional paths of the householder vs. the renunciate, but I wonder, what about for those of us who do not fit into either?

    I am a single parent, and I have chosen to not engage in romantic relationships for the time being.

    A lot of what I've been reading lately discusses the householder dharma of having a family and raising children, and how the energies of the parents must be balanced in order to nurture children. What about when there is only one parent around? Is there a way to make my household whole without that other half?

    Thank you for your insight.
    Vannakkam: Excellent question, and you're not alone. There are young widows and widowers, divorcees, other single parents, people whop stay single by choice, etc.

    I think our scriptures, and perhaps society think a bit too much in terms of ideals, and not so much on exceptions. Of course there are 'exceptions', and with some general shifts in attitudes, the % is higher than it once was.

    My personal view is 'Do the best you can." on individual levels. Yes, a household can work without the other half. That single parent has double duty, so to speak. It's tough, religious time may have to be cut, a bit more outside the nuclear family support may be needed, etc., but of course its workable. I think anybody who ever got around at all recognises that.

    When I taught school, some of my favorite all time students who went on to successful careers, etc., cane from single parent homes. One young man I know was raised by his Grandmother. He's fine.

    Best wishes.

    Aum Namasivaya

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    Re: Single Householder

    Namaste,

    I would echo EM's wise words,
    Quote Originally Posted by Eastern Mind View Post
    My personal view is 'Do the best you can." on individual levels. Yes, a household can work without the other half. That single parent has double duty, so to speak. It's tough, religious time may have to be cut, a bit more outside the nuclear family support may be needed, etc., but of course its workable. I think anybody who ever got around at all recognises that.
    The last time I checked, Pheonix area had 3-4 mandirs and it would be best to visit them as often as possible with the little one(s). Early exposure with proper explanations should make divinity natural to the young ones. It is not who raises them and introduces them to the God-concept, but how it is done. A single parent can be as effective, and may be more so, as a traditional family structure. Best wishes.

    Pranam.

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    Re: Single Householder

    Quote Originally Posted by Believer View Post
    Namaste,

    I would echo EM's wise words,


    The last time I checked, Pheonix area had 3-4 mandirs and it would be best to visit them as often as possible with the little one(s). Early exposure with proper explanations should make divinity natural to the young ones. It is not who raises them and introduces them to the God-concept, but how it is done. A single parent can be as effective, and may be more so, as a traditional family structure. Best wishes.

    Pranam.
    Vannakkam Believer: I believe that's already happening, but not in Phoenix..

    http://hindudharmaforums.com/showthr...218#post113218

    Aum Namasivaya

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    Re: Single Householder

    hari o
    ~~~~~~
    namasté

    Quote Originally Posted by fem_phoenix1109 View Post
    Namaste Is there a way to make my household whole without that other half?
    You are already whole ( bhūman¹) - now the quest is for you to recognize this. This then fills the entire home.

    Now this dharma, it too is whole and sattvic. But if you needed to find its essence what would that be ? Let me offer you this:

    Dharma is that which upholds/supports. Let's take it one step deeper. For humans , it is the performance of actions in an ethical manner that not only supports the individual but society as a whole. For the jñāni ( he that is established in the Self) this dharma performance supports society and the universe at the same time. This is when it is performed perfectly. So before the re-recognition of the Self, one does dharma the best one can by the various scriptures. And there are so many rules and laws.

    Yet if one can keep what bṛ́haspáti offers ( discussed below) one is well served and is acting within dharma.

    If one is looking for direction regarding dharma, then the mahābhārata can be one's support. We look to the śanti parvan, section 60, you will find that bhīṣma-ji offers the ordinances ( or vidhi¹) for the 4 orders varṇa of men. He also talks of the 9 vidhi that are common to all.
    Now this śāsana (teaching) of bhīṣma-ji goes on for many chapters and is a delight to read. Yet for me there are a few instructions that become the essence of the teaching (śāsana). Let me offer one of them.

    This is found in the aṇusāsana² parvan (section CXIII or 113). Yudhiṣṭhira now asks questions to bṛ́haspáti (some also write vrihaspati) ' absence of injury, the observance of yajña, meditation, etc. - which one of these (he asks) are filled with the greatest merit for the individual? ' Bṛ́haspáti talks of the merits of these virtues, yet says the following:
    One should never do that to another which one regards as injurious to one's own self. He continues and says , this in brief is the rule of dharma.
    Just prior to this statement bṛ́haspáti says, that the person who regards all creatures as his own self, and behaves towards them as towards one-self laying aside the rod of chastisement and completely subjugating his wrath, succeeds in attaining to happiness.

    This is the crux of dharma...

    iti śivaṁ


    words
    • bhūman - whole , abundance , fullness
    • vidhi - ordinances, a rule , formula , injunction , ordinance , statute , precept , law
    • bhīṣma and why its a perfect fit.
      • bhīṣma means terrible , dreadful , as k.d. gupta informs us; it was a most rigid vow bhīṣma takes for his entire life.
      • Yet if we look at this word as a composite bhī +īṣma we find it more insightful. bhī is defined as to fear, to put in a fright. But who is bhīṣma putting in a fright to? To īṣma. Who is this īṣma ? It is another name for kāmadeva . Bhīṣma gives fear to kāmadeva by taking this vow for his full life.
        And who is this kāmadeva ? none other then the god of love, some say passion and desire.
    • aṇusāsana - The brilliance of this word aṇusāsana parvan shows the great command of the language by vyāsa-ji ( also known as Kṛṣṇa Dvaipāyana )
      This word can be seen in a few ways:
      aṇu+sā+sana : aṇu = finer +sā =knowledge + sana = presenting, gain, acquisition. Hence the section (parva) presenting finer knowledge.
      • anu + śasana : anu = after or afterwords + śasana = killing. Hence the section (prava) after the war
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

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    Re: Single Householder

    Namaste EM,
    Quote Originally Posted by Eastern Mind View Post
    Vannakkam Believer: I believe that's already happening...
    Thanks. I should not be making posts in the mornings before my few remaining brain cells are awake and active.

    Pranam.

  7. #7

    Re: Single Householder

    Namaste, and thank you everyone for your words and insight.

    I have been visiting the temple and getting more comfortable, but I have not yet brought my son with me. He is 3, and a very energetic, ornery little guy! Whenever I take him places I end up chasing him all over, and I'm afraid he'll try to get into things that he shouldn't or be disruptive. I've thought about bringing him, but I feel like it might be better to wait until he's just a little older and has a little more self control and ability to sit still.

    I have however, been talking to him about god and the gods, and I even got him a few children's books that are about the Hindu gods, and he really likes them. He knows who several of the gods are.

    Pranam.
    Om Namah Shivaya

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    Re: Single Householder

    hari o
    ~~~~~~
    namasté

    Quote Originally Posted by fem_phoenix1109 View Post
    I have however, been talking to him about god and the gods, and I even got him a few children's books that are about the Hindu gods, and he really likes them. He knows who several of the gods are.
    Pranam.
    If I may, let me offer this for your kind consideration.
    There is only one Supreme (anuttara¹) . Within sanātana dharma you may hear of many names for the Supreme but again there is only one (tad-ekaṃ or 'That one' ); all the other names and forms are all the wonderful qualities. All different ways of considering , admiring, adoring the Supreme.
    It is like a beautiful tree. We can admire its flowers, or buds; the flowing branches; the strength of the tree; its massive height, its overall form, stability, or flexibility in the breeze. Yet in every case it is the expression of the sap that is being expressed in all these wonderful qualities we see as the tree.

    Like that, the Supreme expresses itself in all the devatā-s and all the devā-s. This is how we come to know of infinite qualities of this Being.

    iti śivaṁ


    1. anuttara - chief , principal , unsurpassable
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

  9. #9

    Re: Single Householder

    Quote Originally Posted by yajvan View Post
    hari o
    ~~~~~~
    namast�



    If I may, let me offer this for your kind consideration.
    There is only one Supreme (anuttara�) . Within sanātana dharma you may hear of many names for the Supreme but again there is only one (tad-ekaṃ or 'That one' ); all the other names and forms are all the wonderful qualities. All different ways of considering , admiring, adoring the Supreme.
    It is like a beautiful tree. We can admire its flowers, or buds; the flowing branches; the strength of the tree; its massive height, its overall form, stability, or flexibility in the breeze. Yet in every case it is the expression of the sap that is being expressed in all these wonderful qualities we see as the tree.

    Like that, the Supreme expresses itself in all the devatā-s and all the devā-s. This is how we come to know of infinite qualities of this Being.

    iti śivaṁ


    1. anuttara - chief , principal , unsurpassable
    (emphasis mine)

    Pranam-s,

    I respectfully disagree. If the above statement is the theological view of a specific, astika-related, theological school of thought, then by all means it is absolutely correct. But, if the above is an indirect exclamation, even if it is a consideration born of personal merit, out of only good will and intention, that all Hindu and Vaidika theological schools of thought attest or stress that there is only one ultimate supreme, then this is a broad brushstroke which contests with a few facets of ground reality such as the bahudevā (many Shri Gods) theological schools of thought that still exist, such as the Shākala Shākhā initiation I received from the Suryapureen [more commonly known as Sompurā] BrāhmaNā in Uttara (Northern) Gujarat - which, as per this sub-Shākhā's evaluation of the Trayī-Veda-s, the theological stance of bahudevā is as valid as any other Hindu/Vaidika theological school of thought, such as Hindu monism, monotheism, pantheism, etc. and related sects or shākhā-s that subscribe to [or by] those theological paradigms.
    Last edited by Sudas Paijavana; 21 January 2014 at 03:25 AM.

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    Re: Single Householder

    Namaste,
    Quote Originally Posted by fem_phoenix1109 View Post
    .....but I have not yet brought my son with me. He is 3, and a very energetic, ornery little guy! Whenever I take him places I end up chasing him all over, and I'm afraid he'll try to get into things that he shouldn't or be disruptive.
    I am sure you know what works for you and what does not regarding taking the 'little guy' along to the mandir. But, here is a suggestion, if a mandir is close by, you could sometime take him there during 'off hours' when there is no puja being conducted and the place is open for him to run around and there is no disruption to anyone. You might be amazed at what kind of calming effect him being in the presence of deities might have on him. And the uniqueness of the atmosphere starts to become second nature at an early age. Just a thought! Additionally, playing aarti on youtube on your computer ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JiWSM5Klcqo ) at home and trying to have some 'sit down' moments with him might help.

    Quote Originally Posted by yajvan View Post
    Like that, the Supreme expresses itself in all the devatā-s and all the devā-s. This is how we come to know of infinite qualities of this Being.
    Just when we thought that the boundaries were well established for SD per the above statement, in comes the theology of a sect which contradicts/expands them. I learn something new every day about SD.

    Pranam.

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