Talking to kids about Xian holidays ...
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|Wed, 04-02-2003 - 9:41am|
Do your kids ever have questions about the "other" holidays? How do you handle their questions about holidays that are "not ours" to observe? Do you answer their questions "impartially", or change the subject, or use it as an opportunity to teach them about the Judaic "take" on particular issues? How much "editorializing" do you do about the Xtian beliefs involved?
My response to these types of questions is that I try very hard to stay factual and not to get into any semblance of an "our way is better than their way" discussion; obviously, I *never* ridicule anyone else's beliefs. If the question provides a natural segue to something about Judaism about which I am aware, then I will "go there" ... otherwise, I just answer his questions and not try to artificially make that type of a leap. Sometimes he has questions about the more ... kid-oriented aspects of these holidays (such as santa and the bunny), but other times his questions are more religious in nature. (I have not told him definitively that santa and the bunny are not real, since I don't want him to spoil it for any of the other kids. I do tell him, however, that some Xian people believe that they are real, while other people are not so sure ... but that these characters are not connected with the holidays that we celebrate. He does, however, FIRMLY believe in the Tooth Fairy, LOL!)
FWIW, DH and I incorporate the religious aspects of Judaism that mesh with our own beliefs and values, but we are not afraid to question (and learn more about) those tenets that we do not agree with. Most would probably consider us to be primarily "cultural" Jews; however, we consider ourselves to be quite spiritual, dh hails from an observant Conservative upbringing, and we belong to a Reform temple that is on the "more observant" end of the Reform spectrum.
Just trying to jump-start the board a bit! (Hi Jan!) ~ ruth