Tricky Business


Well, this is significant. A seven-year-old Chinese autistic boy is China’s youngest yoga instructor.

He is earning 100,000RMB annually teaching yoga. Did I mention - he hasn’t been admitted to elementary school yet! Here’s a kid that’s actually earning money and maintaining his life independently, instead of spending money. If I were in his shoes, I’d ditch school and start my own yoga school, teach online, create a yoga app, the list goes on. By age 14, the kid would be a yoga master, entrepreneur, and financially independent.

You know, finding talent is a tricky business. Sometimes - usually - you won’t discover it unless you seek it. Sometimes it finds you when you aren’t looking.

I don’t understand why people spend years and years developing a skill set hoping that some miracle would happen. Talent is like a weakened burning flame. You need the right fuel to ignite it. And you don’t need years to recognize it.

If you’re not good at sports or music in less than three years, find something else because you’re just going to be average.

Art is an avenue that can go many ways. You can explore art as a designer, sketch artist, cartoonist, even teaching. Art can also be a complementary skill. Just understand, art classes are nothing but a business.

I’ve taught many kids. From kindergarten students to write like a second grader, to Chinese public school kids to be able to communicate proficiently - almost native like. And given those experiences, I realized that learning a secondary language requires not only some talent in linguistics, but also the effort to recognize ignorance.

That said, I tell parents to give me three years. If a kid is still unable to speak or write proficiently, then either let me quit, or fire me. It is pointless to keep going because the kid is unaware of his or her ignorance. Unless there is a major change at home, nothing will change no matter which teacher you hire.

A friend once said, “It’s easy for you to say all this because you don’t have kids. You should try having kids and you’ll feel the emotional attachment to them.”

“Of course what you’re feeling is completely normal. Your glands are still working. But this attachment is what causes all of your worries, problems, anxiety. This is the reason why cultivating your mind psychologically should be at the top of your to-do list. And it is why I do meditation,” I humbly replied.

One major thing I realized after practicing meditation is admitting that our selfish ego is the enemy. This egotistic behavior is the seed of mankind’s many conflicts.

Attachment to our children is a normal behaviour. However, this creates conflict between pleasure and pain; love and hate; happiness and sorrow.

Some go the other end of the spectrum and be fully detached. But detachment is ignorance - a different form of selfish behavior.

The key is to have equanimity - neither attached nor detached - and be aware. This awareness is important if you want to be ready to notice your child’s opportunity.

One may say, “This is not for everyone.” And I couldn’t agree more because not everyone is intelligent enough to be aware, and wisdom is indeed, not for everyone.

And I don’t need a whole book or PhD to explain it.