Tuesday, 01 November 2022
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Hi Instructors,

When teaching/coaching children what are your views on using positive and negative reinforcement?

Is it acceptable to use negative reinforcement when the acceptable behavior is not being met even after many attempts at using positive reinforcement?

Thank you very much for any guidance.
2 weeks ago
·
#28254
Accepted Answer
It is better to think of teaching children in terms of the equilibrium of mercy and justice.
Mercy and Justice, be ye the equilibrium and splendor of my life! -Invocation of Solomon
Children need discipline, but enacted and imbibed with compassion.

Even in justice there is mercy, since reinforcing rules provides the cultivation, ethics, and structure young people need to be acclimated to society. It is a travesty to teach children without consideration of their ethical development. Parents or teachers who refuse to discipline their youth due to fear, weakness, or inadequacy, are in fact lacking compassion, because children who never learn how to behave in life will suffer the maximum later on.

One can deliver consequences with kindness, which has the flavor of love, but is strong, severe, and commanding. Such reinforcement, while disciplinary and harsh to the ego, will evoke respect and understanding in the soul if it comes from the Being.

Compassion and kindness are necessary too, sweetness and consolation. However, knowing how to regulate that in oneself requires that we are raising our level of being. Justice without mercy is tyranny, whereas mercy without justice is anarchy and a broken home.

Knowing the balance requires an awakened will, Tiphereth, in harmony and balance.

For thirty years I sought God. But when I looked carefully I found that in reality God was the seeker and I the sought. -Bayazid al-Bastami

2 weeks ago
·
#28254
Accepted Answer
It is better to think of teaching children in terms of the equilibrium of mercy and justice.
Mercy and Justice, be ye the equilibrium and splendor of my life! -Invocation of Solomon
Children need discipline, but enacted and imbibed with compassion.

Even in justice there is mercy, since reinforcing rules provides the cultivation, ethics, and structure young people need to be acclimated to society. It is a travesty to teach children without consideration of their ethical development. Parents or teachers who refuse to discipline their youth due to fear, weakness, or inadequacy, are in fact lacking compassion, because children who never learn how to behave in life will suffer the maximum later on.

One can deliver consequences with kindness, which has the flavor of love, but is strong, severe, and commanding. Such reinforcement, while disciplinary and harsh to the ego, will evoke respect and understanding in the soul if it comes from the Being.

Compassion and kindness are necessary too, sweetness and consolation. However, knowing how to regulate that in oneself requires that we are raising our level of being. Justice without mercy is tyranny, whereas mercy without justice is anarchy and a broken home.

Knowing the balance requires an awakened will, Tiphereth, in harmony and balance.

For thirty years I sought God. But when I looked carefully I found that in reality God was the seeker and I the sought. -Bayazid al-Bastami

Almustafa selected the reply #28254 as the answer for this post — 1 week ago
5 days ago
·
#28306
Hi Almustafa,

Thank you so very much for this beautiful response.

That makes perfect sense.

I really appreciate the time and love you put into this answer.
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