Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.
You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
Which you cannot visit, not even in you dreams.
You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.
You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,
And He bends you with His might that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies,
So He loves also the bow that is stable.
We now share with this family the spirit of joy, wonder, and love that is centered upon this child.
To the Parents: This child is hope and joy and love. It is a heavy task that you take upon yourselves, and a task in which we share, in bringing this child into our world with grace, love, and wisdom. Will you, then, teach her by precept and example to walk in the way of truth, righteousness, and love?
Parents: We will.
Will you pledge to see to her spiritual well-being? [We will]
Will you teach her to tell the truth and to trust herself? [We will]
Will you teach her to be compassionate and loving while being there with open ears and open hearts when she needs you? [We will]
Will you keep good words and ways so that you will be an example for her? [We will]
To the Congregation: Do you see in this child a new light sprung forth from darkness, and do you pledge yourselves to him/her on her life’s journey? To listen to her as she comes to know the world, and learn from her? To support and love her as she moves through life and to remain focused on love yourselves so that she has a wealth of love to return to when she has lost her way? [We will]
To the Parents: Name this child. [___________]
Blessing of Child
[Minister touches (or puts water, touches with rose, etc) the child’s head, heart, lips and hands]: May your thoughts be loving. May your heart know love. May your words be truthful. May your hands be used gently and with skill.
With all our hopes and dreams for your future, we celebrate your being. May you always feel the love that surrounds you. May your life be your work of art. May you learn the skills of a trade and be engrossed in a life of meaningful work. May your years on this earth be blessed with strength, health and wisdom. May the love you are be the power forever guiding your light on this earth. And may your days be good and long upon this earth.
Spirit of Life, abundant and transforming love, may there be continual blessing be upon this child throughout all her days. We ask for her that her life may be lighted by truth, and humanity blessed by her love.