What should I tell my daughter about religion?

My four-year old daughter skipped into the lounge last week and declared ‘baby Jesus’ is coming to school.  My heart skipped a beat as this was a conversation that I wasn’t prepared for.  It’s time for the Christmas Nativity.  As it’s not a church school, I do question why they’re doing the birth of Christ. However, I’m not anti-Christmas but, as a family we look at it as a time to celebrate family and friends with less emphasis on religion.

I’m an atheist, but I was baptised (can’t remember what religion) and I did attend Catholic School for a year.  However, my daughter was not christened, to the surprise of my mother in-law, as we felt that it would be hypocritical of us as we aren’t practicing Christians.

It’s not my intention to shelter her from religion but I will make it clear what I believe.  I love that schools have Religious Education in the curriculum, introducing children to many different religions thus, hopefully, fostering respect for people’s different beliefs.

I think that religion is a very personal choice, one that I don’t feel she can make till she is quite a bit older, at least pre-teen.  I’m going to do my best to remain unbiased and let her sort out her own belief system.  If she wants to regularly attend services we will support her.  Unless it’s some bizarre cult of course and then I’m totally up for an intervention.

This is why I probably turned my nose up when I was sent a copy of ‘Littlest Angels’ to review as it introduced the concept of Heaven and Angels.  It’s based on the classic children’s story by Charles Tazewell.  To be honest, I haven’t watched it from start to finish, hubby has and said it was ‘okay’ but Madame really liked it and has asked to watch it several times.  The Littlest Angel is out to own and download on DVD now

When should you introduce your children to religion?  What should you tell them?  I’d love to hear your comments.













The Ten Commandments

I read this tweet by @peachypics the other day and it reminded me about something my mother used to say.

Firstly, I should point out that we’re not a religious family. My mother grew up in a very large Catholic family, lived next to a church and I assume that they attended church weekly. I myself attended Catholic school for one year but this was because our local school had closed and it was the nearest one. I was baptised but, too be honest, I can’t remember as what. As for my daughter, I feel that religion is something she should discover for herself in time. She’s not been baptised as we feel it would be hypocritical as we have no intention of attending church weekly. I know some people who’ve done it just for the party and presents!

My mother always said that you should live your life by the 10 commandments which made perfect sense to me at the time (though shall not kill, covet neighbours wife, commit adultery, etc) and I didn’t question it. However, when I sat down and thought about it, I couldn’t remember what all 10 of them were.

This is not intended to be blasphemous but tongue in cheek.

1.) You shall have no other gods before me.

As I’m agnostic, I’m not convinced either way, I think I’m okay with this one. If I don’t believe in god I can’t put any others before. Yes???

2.) You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them.

I can’t even peel a Butternut Squash so the likelihood of this happening is minimal.

3.) You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain.

I’m guilty of this one….I’ve been known to utter for Jeezuz H. Christ or Jesus on a Bicycle.

4.) Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.

Does religiously going to the pub for Sunday Lunch count?

5.) Honour your father and your mother

For the most part, however, it was a bit shaky in my teens!

6.) You shall not murder.

I’ve never intentionally killed anything. I tend to rescue insects and set them free outside. However, I’ve accidently trodden on slugs/snails more than once.

7.) You shall not commit adultery.

So far so good!

8.) You shall not steal.
Does nicking stationery from work count?

9.) You shall not bear false witness against your neighbour.
I’ve called the Police, the Council, Health and Safety, and Environmental Health on numerous occasions on the neighbours but never beared false witness.

10.) You shall not covet your neighbour’s house; you shall not covet your neighbour’s wife, nor his male servant, nor his female servant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbour’s.

Luckily, my neighbour doesn’t have any livestock or servants and I don’t fancy him or his wife. However, their son is a bit of a jackass! And for coveting their house, you know my feelings about their extension.

Hmmm, come to think of it there is a slim chance I may murder my neighbour. Please see 6.

As, you can see I’m not doing so well following my mum’s advice, but I’m a good person and I am living a good life.