Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Firebenders, Avatars and Child Whispering: Teach Yourself and Your Children How to Bend the Elements!

I just finished “The Child Whisperer,” by Carol Tuttle.  Although I have been a fan of Carol Tuttle for a good 4 months now, since first coming across her “Dressing Your Truth: Discover Your Personal Beauty Profile” system, I was beside myself over her newest book.   What started out as a totally self-centered, selfish wish to be more appealing on the outside led to a deeper discovery of energy healing and Chakra theory.   It was just about the time I said to myself about Carol’s work, “This would make a good child-rearing guide…” when “The Child Whisperer” was announced for pre-sale on her website.

For those unfamiliar, Carol’s system is called “Energy Profiling.”  Since we are all some combination of Nitrogen, Oxygen, Hydrogen and Carbon, we can determine what energy or “type” we are from how each of those elements are expressed in our physical features and movement.  I found this system to be more accurate than the usual personality profiles around that determine types based on how one answers multiple-choice questions.

The Fun-Loving or Type 1 Child corresponds to the element of Nitrogen or Air.  The Sensitive or Type 2 Child corresponds to the element of Oxygen or Water.  The Determined, Type 3 Child exhibits movement similar to Hydrogen or Fire, and the More Serious, Type 4’s reflect the movement of Carbon or Earth. Click here to see the summary videos for each type of child: http://thechildwhisperer.com
In TCW, Carol suggests that parents involve the kids (if they are at the age that they can) in determining their own type.  This was the most exciting part for me.  I had been sharing the four types as I had learned them from Dressing Your Truth with my husband and kids, but never had them reflect on these attributes for themselves.  I had my ideas about which type each of my kids are, but I patiently waited for them to tell me.

After printing out the word list for each type, I gave them to my 11 year old and 9 year old to review.  My 11 year old immediately and easily aligned himself to the Fun-Loving or Type 1 child.  He is the Airbender.  My 9 year old hesitated for a bit, but with some gentle conversation determined himself to be the Sensitive or Type 2 child.  He is the Waterbender.  My 4 year old, unable to read yet, but every bit the Determined or Type 3 child is officially dubbed, the Firebender.

Prior to all this, I had introduced meditation, Chakra theory and energy healing to my boys in our homeschool.  We study the anthropology of nature religions as well as the modern applications for ancient theories that have been re-introduced into the mainstream in recent years.  This, along with other applications of mind-body medicine has helped with some health issues my children faced, that pills, shots and cognitive behavioral therapy failed to affect.

So it was all this that made it so fun and easy to employ “bending” with my children.  They understand what bending is from watching the cartoon series, “Avatar, The Last Airbender” and “The Legends of Korra.”  However, before you attempt bending with your children, it is wise to learn elemental bending for yourself.  Your children will learn and adapt quickly and could easily leave you in the dust.  So, for your own benefit, take some time to do the following first:

- Read “It’s Just My Nature” and "The Child Whisperer" by Carol Tuttle (Great for a proper foundational knowledge of Energy Profiling).

Watch a few episodes of Avatar, The Last Air-Bender or The Legend of Korra.

Be prepared to let go of all your old ideas of how things should be and be open to new ideas and experiences.

- Live in the moment.  If you don’t know how, learn.

The energy types can be found in the cartoon and comic series, but analysis of the literature is going to be reserved for a separate blog (or done by my uber-fan sister).  As is the message in TCW, determining the true or dominant type in each of your children is the main object of energy profiling.  The true goal is to recognize that all human beings have a dominant movement that reflects their true nature and that this is what must be honored in our children.

My Air-bender is cute, funny, animated and fun-loving by nature.  He is fully appreciated for the random element he brings into our daily lives.  He is quick and resourceful and his Airbending abilities are a great help to me when I am stymied by a problem or just feeling a little down-in-the-dumps.  Airbender is on his way to becoming an Avatar (a person with command over all four elements) because he also recognizes his secondary natural movement is Carbon, Earth or Type 4.  This amazing combination allows him to Earthbend in situations that require precise, logical and exact action.  Zombie apocalypse, come!  I fear not, as I have and Air/Earthbender in my nest!

My Waterbender is magical.  Truly.He is sensitive in the truest sense of the word. Before I recognized his power, I thought he was afflicted with “sensory processing disorder,” and “obsessive compulsive disorder,” and even “juvenile depressive disorder.”   None of that was the actual case.  His waterbending ability had just been unrecognized.  An Empath, he is able to feel emotions that other people have as if they were his own.  Since he had this ability since birth, but did not have the frontal-lobe cognition to understand despair, jealousy and other adultish emotions, his brain and body managed it through physiological expressions such as nausea, eczema, nervous ticks and nightmares.

I quickly gave up on the usual mainstream snake oils like, 9-day Novenas and cognitive behavioral therapy and absolutely refused the recommendations to try Aderall, Lexapro and Paxill.  Once he discovered how to ground his Root Chakra, honor the feelings that come to him, and shield himself in universal healing energy, all the “disorders” went away.  Even his nausea, eczema, nervous ticks and nightmares went away.  He simply does his waterbending every single day.  This entails reflecting on the amazing, subtle, yet immense and permanent  transformative power of water.  When there is an obstacle in his life, he simply takes a deep breath and waterbends, becoming the river instead of the rock.  Silly rocks (obstacles) don’t stand a chance and will be eventually, inevitably and permanently dissolved by the river.

My Firebender is a force to be reckoned with.  Being a Type 3 myself, he is my kindred element.  However, because we are of the same assertive, energetic movement, our challenge is to find peace when we are swiftly moving in opposite or different directions.  My answer was to let go, and hover close-by just in case.  I’d take credit for such successful parenting of a Type 3, but Firebender potty trained himself, learned to pour himself glasses of milk and has even attempted to cook scrambled eggs on his own.  No big deal, but this was all before the age of 4.

My first child, deserves his own blog entry, so I will just leave it to say that he is my Earthbender and the soul responsible for saving my life.  He is no longer in my nest as he is 25 years old and living on his own.   His constant, poised energy came into this world during a tumultuous time in my life.  The moment I saw his face was Beatific Vision.  It was the moment I felt I belonged on this earth, felt I was solid and real and the moment I finally became my true self.

In our meditations, I will sometimes ask Airbender to reflect on the characteristics of the all the elements, and not just one that are his primary and secondary nature.  Although he aligns with the movements of Air and Earth readily, he can also find power in reflecting on the movement of water and fire.  As he recognizes these modes in himself, he can more easily call upon the power of water.  For instance, when a slow, subtle influence is needed to successfully change a situation.  Or call upon the reactive, swift movement of fire when that is what is needed.

When we recognize and honor our children and their true nature, they honor and respect each other.  My Waterbender does not feel the need to do things as his brothers do them, nor does he ever fear being compared to them.  Grandparents, who are unfamiliar with peaceful parenting will blurt out hurtful words like, “Why can’t you be more like……”  The simple, confident answer comes from my Sensitive, Type 2, who has found his voice as our Waterbender, by replying, “That’s not in my nature!”

If you want to understand how your Airbender child moves in and relates to this world, go jump on the bed with her.  Take pictures of yourself and your child jumping in the air.  Look at and meditate on the photos of you "flying."  Look at your faces in these pictures.  Do you sense the elation?

Take time to listen to what your Waterbender has to say.  If he can’t say the words, then hold hands and look into his eyes and let him beam it to your heart.  If you slow down, take full deep breaths, open your heart, and let the power of his subtle, fluid energy "flow" between you, you’ll get the message loud and clear. Doubting the power of the soft, fluid, subtle movement of water?  Look up "sinkhole" on Google. 

During fire season in Southern California, my kids were riveted by the method of "fighting fire with fire."  The forestry service actually put out a fire by using a controlled burn.  The process is fascinating and can be a powerful meditation and reflection on the transformative power of fire. When your Firebender has forward momentum, try not to get in her way.  Be thankful for that determined, industrious streak.  It will serve her well all her life and may even save the world someday. 

I had a dream about my Earthbender that had to do with how his soul came to the world.  I dreamt that he was as immense as the universe and over the course of 9 months within my womb, he slowly compacted enough to fit into a 8 lb., 1 oz. baby.  Honor your Earthbender by recognizing him as the whole, complete and amazing individual that he is.  He will see things most people miss.  He will never fail you.  Truly.  He deserves honor and respect because he holds you in the palm of his hand.

If you are open to some timely education and self-discovery, you will find "The Child Whisperer" to be very practical, and accessible, even if you think you don't have an esoteric bone in your body.  I also want to point out that the subtitle of Carol's book is: "The Ultimate Handbook for Raising Happy Successful Cooperative Children."  The only thing I disagree with there is that I think "The Child Whisperer" is so much more.  Generations of Child Whisperers raising and nurturing children honored for their true natures and learning to be Avatars, are changing the world.

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Here are some other sources I found helpful in honoring my Airbender, Waterbender, Firebender and Earthbender:

Mid-life Crisis Begins in Kindergarten by Mariaemma Willis, M.S. and Victoria Kindle Hodson, M.A.

Instead of Medicating & Punishing: Healing the Causes of Our Children's Acting-Out Behavior by Laurie A. Couture

Hold On To Your Kids: Why Parents Need To Matter More Than Peers by Gabor Mate, M.D. and Gordon Neufeld, Ph.D.