Saturday, September 14, 2013

When Ghosts Decide to Visit My Daughter: Pagan Parenting Challenge

Having kids is difficult at times, no doubt few would argue with me there. In my opinion, having kids in a Contemporary Pagan home can be especially challenging. This statement is not meant to be a comparison by which other people’s difficulties are marginalized. The rearing of children in a Pagan home has its own unique challenges. The chief of whom I feel is that there is not a ready model handed down by the ages in how to approach the path through the woods, with kids in company, and how to gently assist them in finding their own heading on the spiritual map.

Last night one of my daughters, whom is five, stated that she did not what to go in her room because she had seen a ghost. Oh boy, so many things to consider. I am sure any Contemporary Pagans reading this can think of several, so I’m just gonna dive into what I decided to do.

First, I told her to wait on the steps for me and we would go up and have a look at her room. This was a stalling tactic, something all parents should be familiar with. Not sure if I would need to “exorcise” her room or not, at least for her sake, I grabbed a couple of supplies out of the temple room. On the way to her room she pointed out that the ghost wasn’t there now but she had seen it. Awesome news that was; I would not need my wand or to engage in any elaborate ritual on the cusp of bedtime. I decided it would be best to take an approach of warding. I then explained to my dearest daughter that ghosts have trouble crossing certain thresholds, such a moving liquid, and also that salt when empowered could create a threshold on astral linked to here that would keep ghosts away. I, of course, explained this in five year old language.

We then sprinkled salt across the doorway, window, and in a small circle around her bed. She also asked me to put some in the corners of the room “because things come together there and the ghost might get in.” I do love having little Witch-lets in the house; their worldview never ceases to amaze me. I happily obliged.

Once her room was warded with salt, thankfully I did not have to set guardians or do anything complicated, she was more than content to get ready for bed, assured that any ghosts that would be lurking about could not enter her room.

In retrospect, I think I did an alright job handling the situation. There is always something that could have been better; but for now, no little girl notions of the world have been crushed, fears averted, and any phantoms left un-harassed save for the no trespassing barriers.


Boidh Se!


“Lost in a thicket bare-foot upon a thorned path.”


thalia said...

I think part of what's hard is that, especially at bed time, there's the inkling of idea that maybe she's just dragging her feet to not want to go to bed. Yet, she goes willingly and peacefully 363 nights of the year. It's hard to remember that sometimes, especially after a long hard day. Also, if truth be told, my parents would have just said "ghosts aren't real, get your butt in bed." There really isn't a roadmap for this stuff...

Anna Munda at Enchanted Body said...

Two thoughts:

(1) It's harder on ya'll 'cause there isn't a roadmap. But how awesome that you did not dismiss her perceptions out of hand, like 99% of other Western families.

(2) 'Out of the mouths of babes.' She is SO RIGHT about the corners of a room. Wow. Some instinct, hmmm?