This. I loved this. I was fortunate to grow up in a house of spiritual free-thinkers and allowed to pick my own path, but at the same time I find myself regularly wishing that I’d lived in a home where religious actions were carried out. I find I still wobble when it comes to practicing set times of prayer, for instance. Up until the point where I had my daughter, prayer was silent for me, but now I’m sent to the task of teaching her how to pray. Other concepts, reciprocity for instance, I gained naturally, because that was modeled in my home.
I caught a bit of grief from my mother when I said my daughter would be raised Pagan/Polytheist. But even if a time comes where she steps away from her mother’s spiritual path, she’ll still be carrying the tools to practice her own religion.
In thinking on the last post and the centers Nicholas Haney brought up in God-centric?, is that one of the centers that tends to get left by the wayside in the larger polytheist and Pagan blogs is family, and in specific how we raise our kids in our religions. It is something that has been on mind for a while. There’s a host of questions I will tackle here that I hope will generate deeper dialogue in the Pagan and polytheist blogs and communities. I believe these are really important questions, tied not just to the center of family, but to the health and well-being of all the centers. Without children, all we have are new converts to sustain the traditions and religions. In my view, that is a lot of people coming to understand a whole new way of being, whereas kids raised polytheist do not have that learning curve, or…
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Thank you very much, for reading, for reblogging, and for showing your connection with this piece. That really does my heart good!
I look at why I do spoken prayer in two ways: one, in externalizing these thoughts I have to send them through the thought process I do with all my other speech. I have to weigh what I am saying and mull it over in my head before it comes out of my mouth. Two, I do not believe our Gods are omniscient, and so, at least for any of Them I have encountered, I do have spoken prayer because They need to hear it from me. Sure, I could pray in my heart at Them, but the spoken word carries a lot of weight with the Gods I worship.
I also hope you or your readers do not take away from what I have written that ‘wobbling’ is a bad thing. Hell, I wobble too! Especially because I am not able to be home early in the morning due to my job, if I miss the call or forget to call, sometimes I miss morning prayers with the family. If I forget morning prayers, I do them when I remember them, provided Sunna is still in the sky.
“Other concepts, reciprocity for instance, I gained naturally, because that was modeled in my home.”
I cannot emphasize how huge this is. I think that this is probably one of the greatest reasons for raising our kids in our traditions. When you do, your modeling provides that ability for them to naturally absorb these lessons.
“But even if a time comes where she steps away from her mother’s spiritual path, she’ll still be carrying the tools to practice her own religion.”
I think that is the biggest thing with raising our kids in our religions. If our son stops worshiping Thor at some point and chooses another God or Goddess, at least he will understand how to evaluate, and where things stand in relation to this new relationship. He’ll have the tools to at least have a baseline to start from, and evaluate other religions and philosophies by.
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