Children should not be forced to endure any kind of indoctrination or molestation of any kind. Kids should not be taught about religion of any kind, they should be entertained through stories and songs. They should be taught about nature, plants and animals, the natural world. Especially in the city it is important to talk about nature and how, for thousands of years, people lived. If a kid asks you what you believe then you should tell them. If they reply in some coy or irreverent way, consider their wisdom carefully. The children’s reaction to dogma may provide valuable clues to the truths of the spiritual path.
Have fun with kids and don’t impose any belief structure upon any of them. It is our job as parents to protect their sanctity and to learn from them. If we indoctrinate them into a faith they may never have the chance to accept a better path when it does come along. Teach them to keep an open mind while at the same time questioning authority. They should rely on their own impressions of divinity from within their own hearts. It is more valuable that they be inquisitive than faithful. It is better for them to freely doubt than to blindly trust and that goes for us adults as well.
Warn the children of danger, tell them the difference between the divine and human traditions. In terms of spirituality tell them to rely upon natures’ instruction rather than peoples instruction. You can explain why things are done a certain way but do not suppose that any book or persons teaching is above the creations’ wisdom. Do not assume that your child shares your spiritual tendency. Not every one is destined to walk the Red Road (spiritual path), but know that all our interactions with children is a divinely guided test. They are here to remind us of the truth and innocence that is inherent in the creation, especially before we, as adults, judge and label it.
Our church is dedicated to to the free minds of our children. If they think what we do is silly, then we should find out why, they may be able to enlighten us! Too many children miss out on being kids because their parents were too busy with religious obligations. An adults’ belief in no holidays should not be imposed upon their children. Kids should not have to wait in the car while their parents preach from door to door. As spiritual people we must understand that the children are a divine blessing to us and we should never compromise their attention or safety for our spiritual practice. If you have children of your own, you have been bestowed with a divine mission. Children are the spiritual path of parents. Do not neglect the path that the creation has given you, instead, celebrate them as the keys to your spiritual affluence.
The young ones are closer to the other side just as the elders are. they have a sacred perspective and sacred position in life. Some old habits and attitudes fall away from a person when he or she becomes the elder and wisdom is born. With the child no old habits or patterns are really there, so we can see another type of wisdom known as innocence. In our way of life the child and elder both are exempt of ritual protocol and rules. If the elders or children begin to express discomfort in ceremony we fix the problem, even if we have to skip that part of the ritual.
In Indigenous Culture there exists many different denominations, things are done a little bit differently everywhere. We are child oriented. At a community feast, some feed the leaders and elders first, we feed the children first. If a baby decides to crawl across the altar, we let them, It is a sacred and profound act to us. If an elders’ speech goes unheard because a baby is crying loudly, we will contemplate the deeper significance of this. The divinitory meanings, omens and divine humor that children add to the ceremonies overrides that of the leaders in a purely magical way. Children are pure magic and even in seemingly irreverent acts, they always bring spirituality into better focus.
Ritual abuse is a serious problem in all cultures. It should be our responsibility as mature adults to grant them the dignity of freedom of choice in spiritual matters. In Indigenous American culture we must rely upon nature for direction, not books. It is important that we get instruction from spiritually advanced teachers, but trust above them what your divine parents show you. Your Mother Earth and Father Sky know much about what is right for you than any spiritual leader. A spiritual leader with integrity will give you the freedom to see the truth for your self and should be mature enough to know that you may receive a different message. In these ways we hear our elders and consider what they say, but do not assume that they are the absolute truth.