January 27, 2007

The younger inspires and the elder protects

A new child is born in a house and something really wonderful happens. A natural miracle of love and harmony occurs that teaches us a principle that we so often tend to forget. A child is born and everyone is inspired. Elder brothers and sisters, aunts and uncles, grandparents and friends, they all want one thing: to be inspired by the newborn.

Not one single person seems to notice very much of the wrinkles in the skin of the baby. Everyone sees beauty in the newborn child and everyone comes to offer their gifts of protection and love.

Not so long ago and still in many societies around the world, the birth of the child was or is a family affair. In the modern world, the ceremony around the beginning of new life is usually one in that the state has made a large claim. The child that begins the course of life is first touched by hands of strangers, or should i call them specialists. They assure that life is kept and controlled and they and other representatives of the government will continue to do so to guard the child's health and education.

The younger child inspires and the elder parents, siblings, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins and friends protect.

A principle of life has made itself visible in this extreme situation of the entirely unprotected and very youngest who for the first time meets the elders. That principle is that the younger inspires and that the elder protects.

Imagine that this principle would be kept for all our families, groups and even the whole world. The younger doesn't necessarily always mean the younger in age. It can also mean the younger in heart, the one whose heart is open for new insights and revelations. The elder means the stronger, the one with foundation, maybe with money, with experience and knowledge.

We all are sometimes the younger and sometimes the elder. Very often the future of a whole tribe of nation depends on how the younger and the elder get along. In a royal family two princes are born. The elder is strong and the younger has deeper thoughts and desire. When the elder and the younger prince get along well, the good future of their nation is guaranteed. But how often do they get in war and when they fight each other, their nation splits and falls in pieces.

We find back this theme of the struggle between the elder and the younger in myths and sages around the world. At a certain period in my life i watched many Bollywood movies. I was amazed that in the majority of these Indian films an elder and a younger brother struggled to harmonize. Usually their mother played a major role to unify them while often a beautiful young woman had to make her choice to give her love to one of the two brothers.

When the elder can let him or her be inspired by the younger and the younger can be grateful for the protection of the elder, how many problems would be solved in our world. This relation of elder-younger is a real test case and field of experimentation for love to win over envy, for harmony to win over war.

The Judeo-Christian tradition lets human history begin with the struggle between Cain and Abel. Cain and Abel, the elder and younger brother, could not unite. Cain killed Abel and the human history of war and division had begun. The theme comes back between Ishmael and Isaac, Esau and Jacob, Saul and David ... The examples are endless and always the outcome of such a relation between the younger and the elder determines the future of a family, tribe or nation or even the entire world.


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