Don't let your Ego separate you from your Family - 8 May 12

08 May 2012  Vrindavan, India

Category: Family

Children at Lunch

Children eating at the Ashram

Yesterday I wrote that we see more and more families that break apart because the family members fight with each other. I also said that the most common reason for those fights are property and money. I would like to elaborate a bit about the situation of those family members.

In a joint family, people don’t think of what belongs to them and what belongs to the others. They don’t think ‘This is mine and this is his’. They live in a home together and it doesn’t matter to them on whose name the property is that they are living on. What belongs to your parents also belongs to you. What belongs to your brother also belongs to you. It is the love among each other which makes them feel this. That is the ideal situation.

What often happens is that people start getting ego and thinking of what is theirs. Whatever it is that triggers those thoughts, they now start looking at what they own in a different way. They think about how much their father had and calculate which part of that belongs to them. Next, they look at how much they earn and start comparing it to what their siblings earn. Who brings most money into the house?

You can imagine that this attitude, this individualism, disturbs the peace in a home where everything belonged to everyone. Suddenly you have to compare your income as well as the effort that you do for it. Obviously, the next thing you will compare are your expenses. ‘Yes, I earn less but I also spend less!’ Or: ‘I earn nearly twice as much as you do but I don’t even spend half of your expenses!’ And the logical conclusion in many cases is: ‘I work the whole day and earn this much while you do hardly anything, enjoy your life and just lie around, spending my money!’ The next thing you see is the individualist moving out, the family getting separate and the property being distributed. The children, having seen this example, will do the same to their parents once they have grown up.

I know that those of you who have been in such a situation don’t feel good and don’t like being reminded of that time. It is however a common situation in our country and culture nowadays and we need to address this issue.

If you start having such a feeling for your relatives, please think again. Every one of your fingers is different. If you cut one of them, it will hurt you. Take care of all of them. Don’t let your ego separate you from your family. In the end, you will realize that life was good with a bigger family. You will realize how much the others did for you in other ways.

If you are already in the sad state that you are fighting with your family, see that it is never too late to connect again. Maybe the thought of moving in again together is far away from your mind but you can at least make effort to make a nice relation so that you can invite each other to important events like birthdays or weddings, that you can support each other, that you can share love again and be there for each other in good and bad times.

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Posted By Swami Balendu

Swami Balendu

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