Millennials are the first generation in history with almost no attachment to organized religion. This doesn’t mean that the conversation about God is dead. It means that the conversation has opened wide to include ideas from science, quantum and metaphysics, earth-based religions, mystical practices, energy medicine, and so much more. The God Question is so expansive that many people find the quest too daunting to brooch at all. It’s both thrilling and paralyzing.
Without organized religion shaping our family culture, a void is left that many people don’t become aware of until they have children. These child-bearing years are the time most of us take pause to look up from the rat race and wonder about our Purpose. We cannot give our kids meaningful answers to their BIG questions if we haven’t first explored those questions for ourselves.
Recent research is showing that children raised with a spiritual context for their lives are faring better in school, have less problems with learning disorders, and are less prone to depression. Those kids are growing up with more tools to handle the natural stressors that come up in adulthood.
My job as a holistic theologian is to help this new generation find their own spiritual guideposts. I don’t teach faith for the sake of faith. A true spirit quest will give you concrete answers, concrete Universal Laws to apply to your everyday life and answers for your children’s questions that you can say you have proven to yourself to be true. Proof comes not from a scientific double blind study in a laboratory, but direct experiences with your five (or more) senses.
I raised my step-son and my biological son without an organized religion. But that has not stopped me from teaching them about the spiritual principles and ideas that I have experienced myself. When my son, Mick, was in preschool his teachers often remarked on his great empathy for his classmates, and his willingness to stand up for other children who were being bullied. Other parents would come to me with stories of how he comforted their child when they scraped their knees on the playground by assuring them that the angels would help heal their wounds. I have experienced healing from angelic beings on my own body, and heard hundreds of stories of friends and clients being miraculously pulled from burning cars or healed from traumatic injury or cancer by the hands of angelic beings. For these reasons, I am comfortable letting my son lean on the knowledge that he is never alone in his pain.
We all gravitate toward stories like Star Wars and the Jedi “Force” because it is an innate human drive to seek after that which is greater than ourselves.
This past year my son befriended a Jewish boy at school. He told me that one of the reasons he likes this boy is that he is the only other child on the playground who also remembers God.
I find this tremendously sad. I believe all children remember God. They’re just not given opportunity to talk about their memories anymore, and over time those memories fade away and are replaced with explanations of the world from Mass Media.
If you’re looking to integrate spiritual inquiry and practices into your parenting, the first step is to integrate them into your own routine, and then adapt those practices to be age-appropriate for your children. My job is to be a tour guide on the journey of meeting your Spiritual Self. I do not give you my answers. I facilitate you finding your own. And your children have forgotten less about the Divine than you have, so teaching them will just be a matter of jogging their memory of what they already know and feel.