The Spirituality of Children
There is a spiritual center in each and every one of us. Isn’t that remarkable? We’re not just a mechanical arrangement of chemicals destined one day to disintegrate. We all intensely yearn for the indescribable and enduring love that lives inside. This is true of children as well.
How do we know this?
First, the saints and sages of every spiritual path, for thousands of years, have proclaimed it and drew their daily practices from it. And second, over the last few decades, a steadily growing corpus of scientific research has documented the same fact. This research has been presented in a recent book, The Spiritual Child, by Lisa Miller, a Colombia University psychologist.
What does this mean today for a parent of a young child? It means that a child’s spirituality needs to be intentionally nurtured and developed.
Let’s nurture our children’s spirituality by inviting them to the spiritual practices. The practices are the foundation of the spiritual journey. There are several practices. The two we are currently focusing on are prayer and the study of the saints and sages.
This website begins with prayer, but not the formalized prayer we immediately think of. It introduces the child to the prayers that already lay inside. How can the child access these prayers? First, they have a model in Amy, the young girl of our book, Amy’s Best Friend, Prayers of a Child. And second, this same book includes a simple, bedtime technique that stimulates these non-formalized prayers. It is all non-denominational and fully illustrated for children 3-9 years old. Click here to learn more.
The second focus of this website is the study of the lives of the saints and sages. We have chosen six saints; three are still with us, three have passed away; three are male and three are female. They each come from one of our major spiritual traditions. They are all treated in the book, Amy Meets the Saints and Sages. Amy Meets the Saints and Sages is fully illustrated and for children 7-12 years old.
A saint is introduced with a short and reverent biography providing necessary conceptual material. Then a story is told of each saint, Saint Francis and the Wolf, for example. Finally Amy, from Amy’s Best Friend, now a bit older, then has time with each saint to respond to the story. Sometimes she just disputes the saint’s view and doesn’t hesitate to express her disagreement. It’s all fun and stimulating.
This familiarity with the saints and sages of major traditions is armor to dispel religious intolerance, and thus combat terrorism.
Click here to learn more about Amy Meets the Saints and Sages.
Copyright 2012-2016 Ernest Rosenberg All Rights Reserved