Spirituality and Parenting

Those of you who listen regularly to the podcast know that I almost always ask guests about spirituality and parenting.

That is an autobiographical question.

I was in seminary when I had my first son. Suddenly the demands of motherhood flooded into any quiet spaces for prayer, reflection and study that had fueled my pre-motherhood spiritual life.

Parenting changed everything for me.  And not in a bad way.

My spiritual practices have left my head and moved into my arms. Holding, rocking, serving, feeding…these activities have drawn me into new ways of interacting with the sacred. More embodied. More scattered. Perhaps more transformational.

I came across this recently and it tells the same story, the story of spirituality reborn with parenthood. It also tells the story of re-writing spiritual traditions so that they widen just a bit, widen to include the lives of mothers and fathers who barely have time for a shower, much less a full liturgical prayer.

The next interview that I will post here is with Rabbi Sandy Eisenberg Sasso. We will explore some of these same themes in our conversation. In the meantime, enjoy this quick reflection by Danya Ruttenberg.

Parenting as a Spiritual Practice by Danya Ruttenberg

“There is enough room in our spiritual expressions not only for all of the love we feel for our families, but also for the hectic, distracted chaos that so often defines parenting small children — if we are willing to expand our understanding of what religious expression is, and can be.”



One Response to “Spirituality and Parenting”

  1. Kerith Stull says:

    Spirituality and parenting are just naturally connected, although I didn’t see that for years. I was just going through the motions of “church” until about seven years ago when my children were already ten and twelve years old. Since my youngest daughter has moderate cerebral palsy, one might think my faith would have moved in one direction or another in those ten years, but it didn’t budge. Finally, exposure to a “new” church after an invitation from a friend slowly rocked my world. Now it’s difficult to remember my life “before.” I understand Him so much more by considering my parenting relationships with my daughters, especially my younger daughter who needs more care, patience, and teaching…kinda like I did. I was a late bloomer, too.

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