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My Hopes as a New Pagan Parent

This post, and many of the posts to follow, were scheduled six months in advance.  It’s actually late October.  But I know that right around this time, I will be going to labor with my first child.  Even as a newbie to the whole parenting experience, I have enough sense to know that come April, I will probably be pretty busy with a newborn, so I figured I should get the blog squared away for this month well in advance.  But as of this writing, I don’t even know if it’s a boy or a girl yet.

I do know that I will screw up lots.  I will get things right, and I will get things very wrong.  I know that I will set goals as a parent.  I will meet some, and I will fail at a lot of other things.  But as a spiritual steward of this new little soul, I hope to get at least this much right.

I want my child to know that the spiritual life matters.  I really don’t care what path he/she chooses.  Really.  I’ve walked many myself.  They’re all beautiful.  I wouldn’t want to tell him/her which path to take, but I do want to show them the road map.   Speaking of which:

I want my child to know that when it comes to the spiritual lives of others, our job is to learn.  Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Shintoism—-these ancient faiths all have important lessons.  They didn’t get passed down a hundred generations for no reason.  I want to expose my child to every possible avenue of faith.

I want my child to respect nature and living creatures as a manifestation of god.  The way you treat helpless creatures, human or animal, says more about the state of your soul than any other single barometer.

I want my child to understand that things are to be used, but not worshiped.   It seems almost insurmountably difficult in our culture to teach a young mind why materialism is so corrosive to the soul.  But I intend to do my best.

I want my child to recognize art as divine expression.   What moves me may not be the same as what moves you.  But it’s the moving that counts.   Art isn’t a medium; it’s not a category.  Art is not limited to dance or music or sculpture.  Sometimes it’s a surf board.  It’s taking any medium and creating something that can only come from a human soul.  Art is the paintbrush of your divine nature.  Make it beautiful.

Most importantly, I want my child to know that the more deeply he/she loves, the closer he/she will be to what some people call “God.”  I think that says it all.

Here’s to high hopes.  Wish me luck.



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