My wife turned fundamentalist/born-again Christian about a year ago, and started to (moderately) indoctrinate our 6 years old daughter. My initial reaction was to want to educate our daughter also in the religion of her father, by bringing her to the vihara and Sunday Dhamma school.
But somewhere, I didn't think that's right. I also heard recently Ven. Brahmavamso talking against faith schools, and saying that imposing a religion on a child is akin to child abuse because they don't have the maturity to make their own choices and to make up their minds. I have to admit I think the same, although there is probably a difference between presenting a religion to a child and indoctrinating a child.
At this stage, I think I will bring my daughter to the vihara a couple of times, just so she gets an idea of her father's religion. My main issue really is that in our household, everything is Christian now. The TV is constantly tuned on Christian channels, all the books she gets are Christians books for children, my wife brings her to church every Sunday, etc. There is no "presence" of Buddhism in our household. So my daughter only gets the "Christian" point of view.
On the other hand, I think I should not worry about that, and let things happen... But I am concerned with the well-being and the future of our daughter. Ideally, I would like her to know about all religions, so she can make a choice when she's grown up. But my wife's point of view is very different; she wants our daughter to see and hear only about Christian things so she will not turn away (and go to hell of course!) I also think that subconsciously, my wife is coercing our daughter in believing in the same things she believes in.
Still, I started to talk to my daughter about the importance of being kind, and that all actions have consequences. I try to adapt my speech to her age of course! Sometimes, when she says things I disagree with, I ask her some questions to make her think. For example, she said that only Jesus can heal bad people; then I told her that some bad people became good by themselves, etc.
I would like to know if there is anyone who know about a similar situation? or if someone wants to comment?
Thank you very much!