Children and ‘Enlightenment’ and Enlightenment
8 min readFeb 16, 2024

My daughter was yelling at the maids, which is the one thing she cannot do. My wife said she must get that from her, but my wife never yells at the maids. I was confused. Then I thought about it, and it’s true. My wife must be yelling at the maids inside her head, and my daughter just can’t control the voice in her head. In many ways, we as parents are that voice. Her emotions are still externalized, like her brother’s digestive system.

External Organs

They say that having a child is like wearing your heart outside your body for the rest of your life, but for the child’s first years all of their organs are outside. The anus, the stomach, the brain; all somebody else’s problem. I still wash my kids’ butts and feed them by hand, and they’re six and seven now. Indeed, my Amma fed me by hand (occasionally) until I was a teenager. Then I hand-fed her cake at my wedding. The loop is never supposed to close, it’s just supposed to reverse flow. This is the circle. The circle of life. But it’s broken.

As you grow up you’re supposed to keep all your organs inside your body, all your money inside your bank account, all your thoughts inside your skull. You are, in short, expected to be an individual, which is not a natural state of being at all. One of the greatest disproofs of individuality is that we’re literally…



Indrajit (Indi) Samarajiva is a Sri Lankan writer. Follow me at, or just email me at