“Re-Birth, Put Simply”

In Uncategorized on January 31, 2011 at 3:10 pm

I have a small journal where I write down the funny, or amazing things my kids say to me.  I don’t write in it as much as I’d like, but I’ve recorded some goodies.  I took it out the other day to read, and while having some good laughs, I was simply amazed once again by a conversation I had with my son when he was only 4 1/2.  It was the very first time he had asked me questions about God, and dying.  Here’s how it went:

L:  “When people die, can they come back?”
Me:  “No, they go to heaven.”
L:  “Only god can come back from the dead.”
Me:  “yes”
L:  “God’s the boss of everything.  Why?”
M:  “Because he created all things and heaven.”
L:  “When you go to heaven, how do you get back home?”
M:  “Well, I don’t think you can.”
Long pause…
L:  “I think God can send you back to your home, like a (new) born baby again.”
Me:  “You might be right!”
L:  “We better save the baby tub so when I die and come back home, I can get washed!”
Me:  “You’re so smart!”


The pure innocence and clarity of his 4 year old mind was so bright and refreshing to me.  I am not a particularly religious person, but I feel very spiritual.  My husband and I do not practice any particular faith but were raised Catholic.  We decided to raise our children without formal religion, and answer their questions honestly and the best way we can.  We’d like them to have knowledge of all religions, and hopefully someday make their own conclusions.  I sometimes wonder if this is the right thing, but that night I felt at peace with our choice.  If my son can come to that conclusion  at age 4, I think he’ll be all right.

We’ve of course had many more in-depth discussions on the matter since then, and he always amazes me with his insight, even though he’s never been formally taught a religion.  My daughter is doing the same.  I often fall back on my Catholic roots to help me answer some difficult questions, but always with the most honesty.  I share my own doubts, and explain what others might believe, even if I don’t.  I let them know it’s up to them, and they seem glad for that.

And once again, from the mouths of babes, great lessons learned.  I love being taught by a pre-schooler.

I realize this topic may bring strong feelings and debate, which I welcome.  How are you raising your children when it comes to religion/faith?  Do you ever question it?

  1. The adults I’ve met who were raised without a religious base seem to have a hard time with the concept of God. However, it seems your son has grasped the concept, and I suspect it’s because you are raising him with an awareness of spirituality.

    If you have any belief in past lives, I’ve read that young children often remember theirs, but the memories tend to fade as we grow older. I suspect he was having a memory of a past life when he told you about God sending him back home like a newborn baby. Also, children are thought to be closer to God because they just returned from the spirit world, so perhaps he was more in touch with what God does because he’d so recently been in spirit form (until he was born into this world/body).

    Illuminating conversation!

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