Children need to be taught about religions and faiths if you want them to develop a fully rounded view of the world. Here’s how to do that.
Give an Overview of all Faiths and Religions
You should start off by giving your children a basic overview of all the major religions that you think they should know about. Tell them a bit about the history, practices and beliefs of these religions, and answer any questions they might have. It’s important not to make it too dull and boring though. It’s very easy to become a boring teacher when you’re informing your kids, but it’s much better to keep it exciting if you want to hold their interest. They’ll be more likely to learn something if it’s made interesting.
Don’t Forget Atheism
It’s also important to teach your children about atheism, even if it might not seem like a religion or faith to you. To be an atheist is to reject the existence of a God or deities. This is just as relevant as a Christian believing in God. This will give your children the knowledge that you don’t have to have a religion. They can reject all the religions and be an atheist if they think that’s what’s best. Make sure you highlight that this is a legitimate belief, and no less legitimate than any religion.
Introduce them to Different People with Different Beliefs
As well as teaching them about different religions, you should introduce them to real people. This will allow them to see a human side to it. Reading about religion in a book or listening to a parent is one thing. But it doesn’t seem real to them until they meet someone who embodies that religion. So, if you know different people with different religions, you could let them talk to your children about what their religion means to them. It could help their understanding a great deal.
Don’t Pressure Your Children
If you’re a parent with a particular religion, the chances are you want your child to follow the same one as they grow up. But it can be much healthier to let them make their own decisions when it comes to questions of faith and religion. Educating them and telling them about all the religions and faiths out there is the first step in the right direction. This will then help them to make an informed decision when it comes to them choosing which religion, if any, they want to follow. But don’t pressure on them to go a certain way.
Photo Credit: Wikimedia
Always Teach Tolerance
One of the most important things to remember when you’re teaching your children about religion is that tolerance is important. You don’t be responsible for giving your children unnecessary and unhelpful prejudices. You should teach them about understanding and exploring variety rather than just picking a side and sticking to it. And it doesn’t mean that they should accept anything they hear in the name of religion. And they should definitely be able to question things whenever they feel the need.
Disclosure: This is a contributed post.