how to raise a pagan child...?

Jamie - posted on 10/26/2009 ( 10 moms have responded )

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Hello i know it may seem like an odd question but i was raised mormon and the only teachings for small children i know are mormon. this is my first child and he only nine months but i feel like you can never prepare to early. how do you go about teaching a little child everything he needs to know. i don't want to force it on him like my parents did for me but i would like him to know. i would like him to have fun and have a respect for the sabats but i don't want him to feel left out for Easter and Christmas and all the other holidays... what about the tooth fairy. im at a complete loss for everything and as soon as he starts really knowing stuff then ill be in big trouble lol please if you have any ideas let me know

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Amy - posted on 11/01/2009

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Miss out on Easter and Christmas? My dear I guess you aren't aware than EVERY Holiday is based on an ancient Pagan Holiday. Have you ever wondered why most every culture celebrates similar Holidays on similar days? Maybe because it's human nature to feel a need to celebrate about every 6 weeks or maybe it's the Divine connection that joins all life together regardless of personal choice. Christmas is taken from the Winter Soltice, Yule. Christmas trees have nothing to do with Christ that's completely Pagan. And Easter? Ahem...look this up...Easter was a GODDESS. She had a magic hen as her companion that like to turn itself into a cuddly bunny then she and Easter would entertain children as the "bunny" laid colored eggs. Valentine's Day even falls on the Pagan Candlemas (well close enough anyway). I love being Pagan, and I'm completely out of the Broom closet because we have the BEST religion! What is there to hide? We get to celebrate life every 6 weeks! And at every changing of the moon! We get to believe in Magic! You know magic...isn't the Tooth Fairy magic? I'm divorced, so occassionally when my 4 year old returns from the Paternal Grandma's he wants to say "grace" at home so I put my hands together as he instructs and I say "Oh Great Goddess, we are very grateful for the food we have to eat." Then he says Amen and we eat. Sometimes on New Moons I light a Black Round Candle and I ask him that it is the beginning of a new cycle and what would he like to "welcome." I say, health, or wealth usually, he usually says "Ossi (his favorite stuffed toy)." When he make a comment about people skin color or their weight or something inappropriate I tell him that the Goddess made us all different and interesting and that is beautiful. He agrees. I don't believe in any concept of hell or evil when people are horrible I tell him that they are in great pain and that they think that by hurting others that they will feel better but that life doesn't work that way. We are all connected through the Goddess and really when you hurt another creature, what you are doing is causing yourself harm. My little guy is a great little Pagan! But more importantly, he's a great little PERSON. Faith is Faith, the Divine is still divine no matter what name we each give it. If you have faith, real, I want to nuture and love faith, you will pass on the spirit of that to your child. It doesn't matter if he calls himself Pagan. What is important is that he knows that you love him and that he is a part of a divine connection. Don't sweat the small stuff, just do your best, that is enough. And before I quit this length quote, here's a good Faith is Faith story for you. I needed some spirit the other day and this amazing woman saw it. She absolutely radiated with "spirit" I suppose people would say. She was a devote Christian but one that absolutely BELIEVED. She helped me and said things I absolutely needed to hear. I choose to name the Divine the Goddess Diana for the Amazon Goddess for my own personal reasons...Do you know what this amazing follower of Christ's name happened to be? Diane. I need help, but there wasn't a Pagan available. The Goddess sent me a Christian instead...but she gave me yet another sign that She, He, It is all the same no matter what name is given. Have faith, you're going to be a GREAT Mom! In many, many ways.

Heather - posted on 10/27/2009

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Our family celebrates pagan holidays at home & the others with family. I tell my 4 yr. old that the God & Goddess are everyone's mommy & daddy & that they make everything that's living or part of the earth. (Believe it or not, he learned what living means from the movie Walle). Other than that, we just answer his questions as they come up. "Circle Round" is a great book. It covers everything from pregnancy & adoption blessings to facing prejudice at school for older kids.

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Jennifer - posted on 01/20/2010

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Then I say go with it. It may just be a proximity to mommy that he is seeking, but if he is showing an interest, it will not hurt to show him what you do. Should he choose to follow a different path in the future, it will be a decision that is that much better educated. You are his mom, so you know him better than anyone else. Follow your heart, and do what you think is best for him. Best of luck to you and your son.

Jamie - posted on 01/20/2010

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thank you jennifer i do want him to choose for himself but already at the age of one he is wanting to be with me when i do things even when i meditate he wants to sit with me. i use to try and go do things by myself but he would always cry and fuss so that i couldn't so i finally tried letting him come with me and he will just sit in my arms while i do everything and be patient. it is kind of cute to see a child who cant even talk want to be involved with that already.

Jennifer - posted on 01/19/2010

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Try teaching him as you go about your own practices. I never really involved my children because I wanted them to choose for themselves. I involved my son in my last ritual because he asked to be included. He asked me everything I was doing, he wanted to be a part of what was going on. There were a few aspects that worried him, like the candles and the athame, but I explained everything to him as I went along. I think that it was a very interesting ritual for that reason. First, it made me think about why I do what I do, and second, it made me realize that my son may choose to follow my path after all. Just follow your heart, it will tell you the right thing to do.

Amy - posted on 11/04/2009

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Don't let Grandma bully you my dear. If he calls your child a Satanist, or you a Satanist and it upsets your child you just calmly tell her that is not acceptible and then you tell your child that everyone is different and intitled to have different ideas because it is what makes the world interesting and beautiful. The only thing you can do wrong is to teach your child something which you believe to be wrong.

Jamie - posted on 11/04/2009

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yes i know all that i just dont know how to explain to him that if he tells his grandma what i teach him that she will be upset. she has a no tolerance for this kind of thing so it seems like if i dont teach him the jesus ways im being wrong and i dont want him to ever have to have the thought that if he spoke his mind his grandma would think of him as satanic...yes that is what she thinks of me i know how to explain them and of course he will have santa and the easter bunny but what happens when my mother starts asking questions and my son doesnt know any better than to tell her exactly what i have told him about the holidays. thank you for this conversation i think i just realized my whole fear in raising him its not how am i going to do it its how will i make him confident in the ways of the family without making him feel like his grandparents hate him

Jennifer - posted on 11/02/2009

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Amy's quite right about all being one when it comes to God/dess. This is my Witchvox article about that idea: http://www.witchvox.com/va/dt_va.html?a=...



My kids (6 and 10) don't currently identify as pagan, but Unitarian. I'll drag them to a UU church before any other, because I feel that I'm not indoctrinating them with a specific belief system by doing so, but rather giving them a value structure on which to compose their own belief system as they grow.



There are great resources out there for pagan parents, including other "graces" to say at mealtimes:

http://paganwiccan.about.com/od/prayersa...



http://rampant-griffon.net/paganplace/fa...



http://www.rebelleink.com/blog/?page_id=...



I think I like the first one of the third link the best, because it rhymes:

"Earth who gives to us our food,

Sun who makes it ripe and good,

Dearest earth and dearest sun,

Joy and Love for all you’ve done."

Jennifer - posted on 10/30/2009

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I'd do Santa/Tooth Fairy/Easter Bunny the same as all the other kids he'll know growing up. We do a Christmas tree and presents on the 25th like all the other neighborhood kids, and eggs and bunnies and candy on Easter morning like all the other neighborhood kids. In addition to all that, we do a Yule celebration on Yule including a red pillar candle with a sun carved in it painted gold (since we don't have a fireplace), and various other things. We view pagan holidays as separate from secular holidays. In addition to them, rather than replacing them. If you want him to have a Sunday School-like experience, look for a UU church near you and check out their Religious Education program. They tend to be about learning to be a good person because it's the right thing to do, which is the value system I'd want my kids to have. Good luck!

Jennie

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