The experts have been deliberating the fact whether the psychological condition of the mother has any effect on the embryo she is nursing.
Some experts say that if a mother is confronted with excessive fear and unease then the foetus will get affected and there is a strong possibility that the child will be timid and also the tendency of jealousy and malicious nature of the mother will be there in the child. As against this the good nature, humanity, honesty, boldness and affection in the mother will have a salutary effect on the nature of the offspring.
These experts are of the opinion that the child in the womb of the mother is in fact a part of her and therefore it will be influenced by the thoughts and psyche of the mother. But there are some geneticists and child psychologists who reject this theory. They feel that it is not necessary that the psychological condition and thoughts of the mother influence the mind of the newborn permanently.
Dr Jalali writes:
“There is no direct contact between the mother and the foetus but it is only through the umbilicus which does not possess any senses and the closed umbilicus has blood carrying nerves, therefore the earlier opinion that the psychological condition of the mother influences the mind of the child may not be correct."1
But, the truth is with the intellectual, that it cannot be claimed that the thoughts and psychological condition of the mother indirectly influences the mindset of the child. But it is not right to say that the mother’s thoughts have no direct effect at all on the mind of the child. This point of view is illustrated in the following arguments:
1. The human mind and spirit are connected to each other. The illness and good health of the human body and the strength of the nerves and physical potential or weakness and even the appetite or lack of it has a bearing on the thinking and morals of the person. The moral personality of an individual and his nature have a bearing on the development of his brain It is possible that the deficiency or absence of food might give rise to the nervousness and amoral thoughts in the brain.
2. The embryo utilizes the food, which gets synthesized in the womb of the mother and reaches it. As long as the child remains in the mother’s womb it depends on her for its sustenance. The mother’s food habits therefore have a direct bearing on the physical and mental development of the child.
Dr Jalali writes:
Whatever is beneficial for the mother is also beneficial for the foetus. If the mother’s food is deficient in calcium, this deficiency will affect the development of the bones and the teeth of the child.2
3. This is well known that extreme disturbance and restlessness in a person causes indigestion, constipation and affects his body. Excess of sadness or fear reduces the appetite of a person and his digestive system gets impaired. The digestive glands do not function normally.
In the light of the above three points it can be said that although the mother’s thoughts and spiritual condition do not directly transfer to the brain and nerves of the child, it is related to her digestive function which can ultimately affect the child’s physical and spiritual make-up.
The mother’s pangs of anger or uneasiness will affect her general nature and disturb her digestive system. This condition is damaging to the mother’s body as also to the foetus.
It is possible that the child in such a mother’s womb gets afflicted with such disease, which might manifest itself at a later stage.
Dr Jalali writes:
“The pangs of excessive uneasiness suffered by the pregnant mother and the unpleasant happenings in her environment are definitely harmful to the development and the nature of the child. Such conditions create problems and give rise to the unwanted glands. Because of this the digestive system is unable to perform its normal function. Perhaps this is the reason that some children have several nervous ailments. These conditions may also be responsible for the miscarriage of the foetus.3
A pregnant lady physically and mentally at ease will have her foetus in good health. Such peaceful environment is ideal for the perfect development of the child in its mother’s womb. To the contrary the foetus of a jealous, envious, excitable, timid and mentally ill mother will not be properly nurtured and can be affected with several ailments of mind and body.
In this regard:
“The psychological experts have proved that 26% of psychologically ill children have inherited the condition from their mothers. Therefore if a mother is hale and hearty then her child too shall be the possessor of good physical condition. If the mother cares that her child is healthy then she should take good care of her own physical and mental well being during the pregnancy. The effects of the environment on the development of the child are always pronounced."