Parenting Pagan Children – A Personal View


Growing the Pagan child’s sense of spirituality

  The uncanny thing about children is how well they learn by copying those around them. This can be both in the positive sense and also negative. They learn language and skills like how to use cutlery, they learn social graces and they also learn about the world around us.

I am a strong proponent of teaching children about all aspects of spiritual life, exposing them to meditation, ritual and reading of many different books from a very young age. These books can be as simple as myths and legends of different pantheons, bible stories and fables. I believe they should be emersed in the various cultures that surround us and celebrate Chinese New Year, Christmas as well as Yule and Ostara. I ensure they know when Hanukkah and Ramadan occur and the reasons behind each festival.

I think one of the biggest mistakes that some Pagan Parents make is they either teach their children nothing about Christianity whether in some vague attempt to over compensate for the exposure they get in the wider world or they give them no instruction at all in anything with the intent that the child choose their own path when they are old enough. This raises the first question When is old enough? I believe you can only teach them from the day they are born. They need to see you as the parent living their Pagan life. They need to experience your joy in the world and your experience of nature. You must include them in most things you do as a parent. Just as they tag along when we go on outings and shopping and they learn about the world of finance and retail marketing they need to attend circles and gatherings and socialise with other pagans.

I do not believe and have never found a single person who was given an early child hood absent of any spiritual teachings that did not struggle through the world in some way. Children need to have foundation stones from which to build their sprirtuality even if all they do is reject the foundations of their birth they are in a much better position to rebuild stronger foundations in the future.

Their foundations can be built quite simply through reading myths at bedtime and watching movies that depict similar themes. These are strengthened by answering any of the many questions they may ask and being open to their own experience of the world around them. Of course being a parent means you will look out for the numerous pitfalls that children can be vulnerable to and try and protect them from hurt however we must remember that they have to experience the downs too to grow into stronger adults.

There are many rites of passage for pagan children from “Naming Ceremonies” to “Coming of Age Rites” these give the children a sense of belonging and a sense of identity. They may turn their backs on this in the future and embrace more mainstream beliefs but this usually isn’t the case.

With the wider community viewing our beliefs and paths as “weird” or “strange” we must foster in our children a strong sense of who they are and where they come from so they are empowered to hold on to their beliefs. They must be raised to know that although individual they are not alone and a part of a much bigger picture. As Pagan Parents we need to instil in them a love of nature and a respect for the earth that is increasingly an accepted part of society in the changing globalised world. We need to allow them to experiment with their ideas and be creative in their expression of their belief. We need to allow them to participate in ritual and be responsible for particular roles in ritual as they get older.

And we also need to ensure that they remain true to themselves. That they embrace all aspects of their personality, that they stretch themselves to persue their dreams and become secure, stable yet unique adults.

I have been developing a theory over the last 15 years that uses the Nine Intelligences as the core to raising, teaching and empowering a strong balanced person. It works on the theory that there are many aspects to intelligence and personality and that it is only by addressing all aspects we can truly be whole people. These used to be known as the Eight Intelligences but recently the Ninth Intelligence, Spiritual Intelligence, was added.

This means that we can teach our children the conventional lessons like maths and science and language but we also need to ensure they learn music and dance and sports as well as being exposed to social experiences. To round out the picture they need to learn about what makes them tick and their place within the world and things like meditation can help with this.

So starting as early as possible we need to include them in our lives in a meaningful way. I mark each of the festivals with a special table decorated for the season and with an array of foods. I try and incorporate appropriate activities for each festival. My youngest children are 3 ½ and 21 months and I choose what shows they watch on television so they are encountering ideas and stories that support our beliefs. These can be as varied as “The Fairies” and old stories like fables and indigenous stories. We play music and dance around and sing. We dress up like fairies and blow bubbles.

I have attempted to include a few of these ideas on our web site but I am still developing the whole thing into what I hope will be a good resource but I spend time online looking for good places to utilise and recently have found a few good ones.

But the important thing to realise is that no one is an expert at parenting. All you can know is your own children and what their strengths are. You know what you believe and you know who you are, we hope. This means you are in the best position to parent your child on their pathway through life and provide them with the safest and best example of how they should live.

Safe Journey!

Activities to expand the Pagan Child’s Spiritual Mind

Plant a seasonal garden including herbs and flowers

Organise a little “altar” table where they can put special treasures

Go Beach walking

Visit the Botanic Gardens

Find a special tree

Throw a fairy party

Traditional Egg Hunts at Ostara

Make Play dough Tree Decorations for Yule

Help them make or choose a wand and other tools

Colour in mythical pictures

Music, drumming, singing folk songs and dancing

Colouring in Pictures for the Pagan Child

I have developed a collection of pictures specifically for Pagan Children and I will be adding to this collection each month. Click on an image to download larger copy.





Please feel free to request particular images


Dragonfly’s Competition Page

 No Competition as No Sponsors have came forward in support.

As there was no competition last month there are no winner’s to announce.


Dragonfly’s Recipe Corner

Imbolg – Winter turns to Spring

The fastest way to make a lesson mean something to a child especially a small one is to feed them the lesson…. I find they learn about the seasons faster if you keep the meal seasonal. This Imbolg we toasted marshmallows in front of the fire and decorated the table with blossom. This is one advantage of living in the hills in Adelaide… Beautiful Almond blossom sprouting into flower at this time every year. The bare branches of the trees surrounding an explosion of blossom. Willunga is famous for it's Almond Blossom festival at this time every year.  The tree above is in the yard next door to us. We also have very seasonal produce available in the supermarkets here. There are also white flowers sprouting everywhere like jonquils and lilies.

Bedtime Prayer 

Day is done
It's time for bed
Goddess Bless my sleepy head.
Earth and Water
Air and Fire
Bring gentle dreams as I retire.
When the morning sun does rise
The God will bless my open eyes.

~Author Unknown~

The Pagan Alphabet

To learn your letters you must start 
With a clever mind and a willing heart
Each one is special, just like you
And you will learn them all by the time we are through!

A is Athame, the knife that we use
B is for Beltaine, when partners we choose
C is for Circle where we all are one.
D is for Deosil, path of the Sun.
E is for Esbat, when we gather round
F is for Fire and its crackling sound
G is the Goddess in beauty and love.
H is the Horned One, our Father above.
I is for Imbolg, candles light the way,
J is for June when it's Midsummer's Day 
K is for Karma, the things that we do
L is for Lammas, harvest's almost through!
M is for Moon, riding way up so high,
N is for Nighttime, which darkens the sky
O is for Ostara, when we hunt for eggs, 
P is for Pan, with hairy goat legs
Q is the Quarters and there are just four,
R for the Rites when we open the Door
S is for Samhain, end of the year,
T is for Tarot cards, futures to hear
U is Undines from the watery West
V is Vervain for protection and rest
W's Widdershins, the path of the moon.
X is the sign that's the sign of the God
Y is for Yule and the sun's return
Z is the Zodiac, 12 signs to learn.

To learn them all you will have to try
And now it is time to say goodbye
Merry have we met, and Merry have we been
Merry shall we part and Merry meet again!

Copyright 1989, Breid Foxsong