It seems as though kids today have a lot of trouble deciphering right from wrong and parents are hard pressed where to turn in teaching moral values. On the one hand they are told that there is no place in education and sometimes even in the home for teaching the ten commandments, but on the other hand, all of the laws in the United States are based on those ten rules for righteous living. So how do you teach your children right from wrong? Check out the Bible Exodus 20 and you will see that everything you need to know is right there before your eyes.
A Nation Built on a Judeo Christian Heritage
Even though the government would like to have you believe that there is a very real division between Church and State, the very principles upon which this country was founded are steeped in the Judeo Christian heritage; that is to say, based on the Ten Commandments. So then, when you hear of states, counties and municipalities ordering those rules to live by be taken down off the courthouse steps, it is no wonder we are a people confused about what is right and what is wrong. If our laws, our very foundations, are supposed to be built on those commandments for living but they are taboo from government buildings, then how are we supposed to look at the laws determining what is right and what is wrong?
All Cultures Have Rules to Live By
In fact, all cultures have rules to live by. In the context of a Judeo-Christian society, those rules would be the Ten Commandments. Those of a Hindu persuasion have the 5 Principles and the 10 Disciplines. These are comparable to the Ten Commandments and are structured as a code of moral living. For example, the Hindu First Principle is that God exists. One Absolute OM. Isn’t that like the First Commandment? There is one God and He is absolute. Next you come to the 10 Disciplines which are:
- Celibacy, non-adultery
- No desire to steal or possess
- Reading the scriptures
- Austerity, perseverance and penance
- Regular prayers
This is a religion that dates back at least 3500 years and it is interesting to note that their moral code of conduct is quite parallel to the Judeo-Christian code of conduct, or rules for righteous living.
Model Exemplary Behavior
So when it comes right down to it, you can preach to your children until the cows come home but that will get you nowhere if they see you acting contrary to how you are asking them to live. Are you asking your child not to steal but ‘pinching’ a piece of candy from the bulk foods aisle in the grocery store? Are you lying to your boss to get out of work some days? Do you let anger get out of control? These are all ‘wrong’ behaviors but we fall prey to them every day. No, you are not perfect and you are human, but these are all behaviors we should make a concerted effort to model for our children.
In the end, we are the way to teach our children the difference between right and wrong. Truly, it is as simple as that because kids will mimic our behavior. Never be afraid of teaching the core values you have been raised with and never be ashamed of your faith, whatever that may be.