Introductory Balavihar: We discussed what A stands for. Children learnt a new word ‘Aspiration’, which means to work hard and with a single pointed attention to achieve what we want. Children heard the story of ‘The Best Archer’. Dronacharya taught archery to the Pandavas archery i.e. how to use the bow and arrow. He gave them a test by asking them to pierce the head of a bird on a tree in the forest with their arrows. While all the Pandava brothers failed, Arjuna’s arrow pierced the head in one go and the bird fell down. When Dronacharya, the teacher questioned the Pandava brothers, they admitted that they could see the trees in the forest, the people around, the branches of the tree, the leaves and the bird while aiming at the head of the bird. Then he asked Arjuna, ‘ What did you see while aiming at the head of the bird?’ Arjuna replied, ‘ Dear teacher, I could only see the head of the bird; I did not see anything else’. Arjuna wanted to be the best archer and focused only on what he had to do; hence he was successful. Homework: To practise the bhajan and song they learnt in class with actions; To share story with family and friends.
Junior Balavihar: We recapped what a Balvihar SKA (Secret Kindness Agent) means and the kind of a superhero that he/she is. This SKA superhero has no wings or invisible powers, but is kind and helpful in everyday life, and makes a difference by helping people in need around him/her. We compared a BVSKA to a star shining brightly. Children wrote their names in the star on the board and decided on their SKA nick-names. A BVSKA is someone who does small acts of kindness that add up to make a big impact. We then related this to parts of the Chinmaya Pledge (BVSKAs serve as an army, courageous and disciplined, ever ready to fight all low tendencies and false values within and without us). We promised to practise being the best BVSKA we can be, during the week, finding opportunities to help everyone around us. We will remember to live our class motto this term by remembering to “Love all and keep smiling.” We stuck photos of each of our Secret Kindness Agents (SKA) on the class display board, along with their nick-names. Children also learnt a Bhajan on Gurudev and a song in preparation for our Annual day. Homework: To practise the bhajan and song with actions and remember to do a small act of kindness every day of the week.
Senior Balavihar: This week we discussed what we can do as secret kindness agents and how we can help the world be a better place. We also discussed what we mean when we say ‘world’. Although everyone wanted to help the world in large, we realised we need to first start with our family, friends and school and we need to be specific in what we want to do. The children finalised their BVSK agent names. We also practised a song and a bhajan. Homework: To practise the bhajan and song and to practise being kind and helpful all through the week.
Junior JCs: This week we did a recap on the three previous chapters covered last year. The first was Chapter 26 – The goal of perfection achieved. We briefly went through what it meant to be in a tamasic, rajasic and sattvic state and that everyone has different levels of these three states in them. We highlighted our previous Sadhana that used the God Principles where we found ways to destroy a fear we have, create a new habit in place and maintain that habit. The next chapter is chapter 27 Japa yoga – here we briefly went through how to start Japa, why we should start it and what we have to gain. By doing Meditation through Japa, the JCs were able to set their own goal. The last chapter in 2019 that we went through was Chapter 28 – Gayatri Mantra. Here we dissected the syllables of Om, what it invokes in us and the meaning behind the three sounds and the silence that falls after it. Om is such a unique word that there isn’t anything like it in any other language that can invoke the same response. Om is also the Pranava in every mantra as it gives it the power that it needs. Leading onto the Gayatri Mantra we learnt that it is a mantra worshipping the sun and represents the entire world of the subjective and objective experiences of man. The first line of this mantra encompasses our entire existence of waking, dreaming and deep sleep states. This mantra is chanted during sunrise and sunset to cleanse our minds of any of the stress, agitations and vasanas we experience. This mantra cannot be used for personal materialistic gains, but rather to cleanse our minds and intellect and make it more clearer. Sadhana: To read this week’s summary and reflect on the past few chapters that we have done. Adults: This week we studied verse 29 of Chapter 13 – “Indeed he who sees the same Lord everywhere equally dwelling, destroys not the Self by the Self; therefore, he goes to the Highest Goal”. When a person sees God in all things and beings, the ultimate reality is understood and this leads to the highest goal of liberation. The statement “destroys not the Self by the Self”, refers to the lower ego-eccentric Self realising the ultimate Self and submitting to this power. This act of submission is the pathway to liberation.