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IV 1. Why should parents be good role models for their children?

Children must grow up in homes, where their parents honour their parents, in their turn, and are happy only when they serve their elders. Then only will children revere their parents! This must be taught to them by example, rather than by precept.
Sathya Sai Baba, 19 Jan 1969
Kabir in one of his famous songs advised 'Dil me Ram, hath me kam'. Here the 'dil' or the mind is like the tank, and out of the tank will come good water if the tank of the mind is filled with good water. The teachers and the parents are like the tank and it is only when the teachers and the parents have good ideas and adopt good conduct, out of them will flow good ideas to the students.
Sathya Sai Baba, Summer Showers 1974
The parents must improve themselves for the sake of their children. Example is more profitable than precept. When the parents have no reverence for God, when the pictures of Stalin and Hitler, Churchill and Lenin adorn the walls of the home, when the child has to breathe the atmosphere of scandal, faction and greed at home, how can it grow into a happy, healthy, balanced individual?
Sathya Sai Baba, 3 Apr 1967
If children are to be persons of good character, adhering to good practices, the parents should be of good character and exemplary conduct.
Sathya Sai Baba, 6 May 1992
They must learn the correct attitude they should take to put their children on the right path. The children will accept the advice given by the parents and will take to the right path only if the parents conduct themselves in a correct manner.
Sathya Sai Baba, Summer Showers 1974
Children adore their elders and imbibe by imitation, their prejudices and predilections. They watch the behaviour of the elders and value it more, though they may not follow their advice and admonitions. They can see through the veil of humbug and the pall of hypocrisy.
Sathya Sai Baba, 20 Jul 1972
Members spoke now about the irreverent and wild activities of students and the need to divert their activities and adventures into channels which will make them useful and worthy citizens. They are but imitating the elders and leaders. They find their parents and teachers fighting with others to gain some ends or fighting among themselves to gain superiority or power. So, they too fight with others and among themselves. The parents, teachers and elders must set a good example. Otherwise all this schooling and college-going activities are sheer waste, nay, positively harmful.
Sathya Sai Baba, 20 Dec 1967