My previous article, “From the Mouth of Babes” brought up the discussion of Santa Claus. I remembered reading this and I agree with Gladys Hunt. Definitely a subject for each parent to decide what is right for their family, but I am sharing this with some that I was discussing it with or anyone pondering this issue. Honey For a Child’s Heart is a wonderful read!
Selections quoted from Honey For a Child’s Heart by Gladys Hunt:
What about fairy tales? Some parents are troubled by fairy tales. …Others don’t like elves and talking animals. Some refuse even Santa Claus ….children don’t take life as seriously as adults and read more often for pleasure. …Children have room in their lives for a great deal of miracles. “That’s the problem,” someone will say, If you let them believe in fairies and fantasy, how will they distinguish between truth and falsehood?” I can’t help thinking that since children love make believe, they can easily tell the difference. ….There is nothing unspiritual about an active imagination, a token of the liberty of childhood. One of my young friends at three told me about the tiger who lived in her backyard. I inquired about where she kept him and what she fed him and she told me about the details with great delight. Then I told her about the tiger who lived in my backyard. Her eyes danced as I described his strange behavior and that he had purple stripes. Then she came very close and whispered, “Is your’s a real one?” When I said it wasn’t, she said confidentiality, “Mine isn’t either.” Was I encouraging her to lie? I think not. Both of us were in on the world of pretend, a legitimate adventure. How quickly we want to quench the fine spirit of childhood. Imagination is the stuff of which creativity comes. …”I knew about Santa Claus like I knew about elves and other pretend things. I never got them mixed up with God because I could tell from the way my parents talked and acted what was true.”