What is Sanskar ?

1. Definition of Sanskar

1 A. Dear children, what is meant by the word ‘Sanskar’ ? Sanskar is multiplication of virtues and division of personality defects.‘Multiplication of virtues’ means enhancing virtues in self and ‘division of personality defects’ means reduction of personality defects in self. Sanskar also means ‘making good or purifying.’ In this process we are supposed to remove our shortcomings.

1 B. A thought and a related action when repeated a number of times creates an impression of that thought and action on our mind. This process itself is ‘sanskar’.

One who does an action only after contemplating on all its aspects is a human. There is a need to inculcate sanskars for good thoughts and right actions. Every work that we do reflects our sanskars. For example,

1 B 1. According to Bharatiya (Indian) culture, each and every action should be virtuous in nature. Eating when one is hungry is ‘nature’, eating someone else’s food is ‘perversion’, whereas, enquiring whether everyone in the house has had food, and then only after offering the food to God and eating it as a sacrament is ‘culture’.

1 B 2. Throwing the skin of a banana after eating it is an ‘action’, throwing it in a dustbin is a ‘character or nature’, whereas throwing it on the ground is ‘perversion’. Picking up the skin thrown on the ground by someone else and putting it in the dustbin is ‘culture’.

2. Types of sanskars

2 A. Types : Sanskars are of two types namely ‘good sanskars’ and ‘bad sanskars’. Good thoughts and related actions when done repeatedly create an impression on the subconscious mind of an individual and his attitudes becomes positive. Such actions are called as ‘good sanskars’. Bad thoughts and related actions when done repeatedly create an impression on the subconscious mind of an individual and his attitudes becomes negative. Such actions are called as ‘bad sanskars’.

3. Importance of imparting good sanskars in the childhood itself

What does teaching good values to children mean ? It means teaching them values such as paying salutation to parents everyday by touching their feet, not finding faults with others, etc.

If an 8 year old child is instructed to touch the feet of elderly people daily, he will do it for a few days and then stop it. He won’t do it regularly even if he is taught the reasons behind it. However, if the parents themselves touch the feet of their elders everyday, the children too will imitate them and in a few days, even they will touch the feet of their parents and grandparents. They will feel ashamed of the fact that their parents are touching the feet of grandparents while they are not.

Thus, inculcating sanskars means teaching through our own righteous actions and not just preaching. Hence, these values should not be taught to them just by preaching them or by bribing them with chocolates and ice-cream, but by setting an example through our own actions.

4. Some examples of good and bad sanskars

Dear children, since you want to become a ‘good individual’, try to develop good sanskars. To make the difference between good and bad sanskars more clear to you, given ahead are some examples.

4 A. Good sanskars : Geeting up early in the morning, reciting ‘Karagre Vasate Lakshmi’, paying obeisance to Mother Earth, paying obeisance to parents and elderly people, behaving with humility and love with everyone, maintaining cleanliness, living neatly, attending school every day, completing homework on time, helping mother in her housework.

4 B. Bad sanskars : Getting up late in the morning, drinking tea-coffee, watching TV constantly, neglecting studies, back-answering, unclean habits, keeping the drawer of books untidy, telling lies, etc.

5. Role of good Sanskars in progress of Nation

In days of yore all children would respect the elders. They would pay obeisance to them every day. They would recite Sanskrut Verses before having food. In the evening, the children would wash their hands and feet, light a lamp in front of the Deity and would recite stotras like Ganapati Stotra, Ramraksha Stotra, etc. They would sleep early in the night and would wake up early in the morning. This conduct would further generate good virtues in them. When compared to them the present day children have proportionately more bad sanskars. If good sanskars are instilled on the children at an early age then it will make their life happy and help in progress of the Nation.