Paganism, Wicca and our children

Ever been asked by your child “Do you believe in God?” , or maybe you are simply trying to instill in your family some pagan or wiccan values that don’t seem to fit into ‘mainstream’ thought that we see pushed onto our kids from school these days.

I was lucky in my childhood in that while my mother was brought up in a devout catholic family she had already gone through the stage of outright rebellion to the point where she ended up leaving home and going half way around the world to escape those ingrained religious prejudices so that as I grew up her outlook on religion was one of “go have a look’ and if you like it learn more and if you don’t then I won’t force Christianity on you.

The wonderful thing with that upbringing was that while I saw Christian practices and beliefs all around me I was free to make my own decisions on what I believed which certainly lead to some heated debate with the priest that married me and my wife.

Once again I think I was lucky in that the priest I had these discussions with didn’t see the need the ‘bible bash’ me, and rather took the path of ‘these are the things I believe and you should consider these beliefs in your life’. A refreshing approach from a catholic priest indeed.

My personal approach seemed to ‘evolve’ over time and when I started reading about paganism, Wicca and Druidism the beliefs that are espoused by these groups just seemed to ‘ring true’ to what I already believed and practise in my daily life.

We are lucky in that 2 of my children have been able to see and communicate with spirit from an early age and our open acceptance of this has meant the my middle son is still able to communicate with spirit at the age of 24 although his openness to some of his friends on the subject of what he could see certainly made for some interesting discussions with them.

It is my belief that this openness and acceptance of our children’s experiences that has meant that they are also growing up with an open mind and that they will follow the path that best suits them as and when they are ready.

But back to our children, we must at all times keep in mind the laws that govern the location you live in to ensure you don’t put them or yourself in some form of legal jeopardy, but considering the path of Witchcraft, Paganism and Druidism is that of respect, teaching without parental consent is disrespectful and therefore contradictory to our belief system so therefore it merely takes communication.

For those pagan parents who want to raise their children within their belief system, there are still things to consider. Pressure from non-pagan family members not to teach pagan beliefs is the biggest issue. So consider this. A young child (under 14), looks to their parents for guidance and protection. Anything that contradicts that view can create an emotional impact within the child. Trying to understand that there are many views and many spiritual beliefs in the world is something many adults have a hard time accepting. Imagine a 5 year old trying to comprehend the world, when their world experience is home, mum, dad, kindergarten and their siblings. So take charge of YOUR child's path and explain to your relatives that teaching them about life and spirituality is your responsibility.

 

Rob Spijkerman