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How Slavs brought up their sons

The liberal approach to upbringing, which is imposed by the West, spoils our sons, and the results of it are weak men.

The technologies are numerous: they are an infantilization of children – an artificially delayed process of social maturity, an equal upbringing for boys and girls – sons are deprived of masculinity, they are prohibitions of corporal punishment and “I accept your choice” policy – children grow up in a permissive environment, they are visits to psychologists, where parents are suggested an idea that they know nothing about parenting.

But our ancestors had a quite different way of upbringing. Of course, the life is changing and there is no need to teach modern boys to plough and sow –why not though? It is possible and even necessary to take the principles of labor education on board.

There was no talk of equal upbringing standards from the very first day. After son’s birth, an umbilical cord was cut by an axe or arrow. So he could become a successful hunter or skilled craftsman.

At what age do baby become an adolescent? At the age of three, when they can identify themselves as individuals. During a special ceremony, a boy had to mount a horse as a sign of his masculinity. However, it was not the only rite of passage.

Children had their own household responsibilities at the age of 6 and 7, parents followed what their children aspired after. The labour was differentiated: a boy passed into father’s work sphere, they were involved in male labour, a girl – in female ones.

A boy participated in everything his father got down to. It was a rare occasion when father explained what to do and how. Because, there was no need to: son adopted father’s techniques during work. Of course, there was an allowance for the age: when a boy was trained to plough, a father entrust his son to furrow a small area. A teenager mastered harrowing at the age of 10-12, ploughing – 14-15, on the threshold of his adulthood.

A boy was involved in the working with horses. He fed and watered them, drove them to water in summer. At the age of 5-6, he was trained to handle the horse. At the age of 8-9 – to harness and handle it, while sitting or standing in the cart. He was sent for horse pasturing at night in this age.

They were taught to hunt and fish. At the age of 8-9, a boy knew how to shoot a bow. At the age of 10, he caught ground squirrels and Siberian weasel. He received his first money for selling a prey to merchants. Every teenage boy knew how to make a seine net and how to set it.

A teenager adopted all household skills and was fit for every man’s work, and if he was hired as a laborer he was paid as an adult. He was considered to be his father’s right hand and substituted him during absences and illnesses. Sons took care of all work in the fields in spring.

They not only worked, they took over farm management skills (were present at discussions of household problems) and father’s behavior pattern.

Of course, the labor education was not the only one the Slavs had – rites and festivals, apprenticeship and military trainings also played a very important role. But it was the male labour that formed a respect for nature, home, family and homeland.


  • October 17, 2016 3:43 PM MSK