To not want my DC to participate in nativity?

(632 Posts)
Spru Wed 05-Dec-12 15:47:56

I asked school to excuse DC from nativity (due to religious reasons - we do not depict jesus/mary/joseph.) They were absolutely fine with it. Happened to mention this to work colleagues - and they basically told me that I wasn't willing to integrate! hmm

I was a bit shocked that they saw it like this despite the fact that I explained why. I didn't realise that this decision was perceived as a lack of willingness to integrate - in a country which I have been born and brought up in.

I had to bite my tongue for the sake of peace!

So...MN jury...grin AIBU to exclude DC from nativity for religious reasons (note: DC is not excluded from other christmas activities at school). Am I just not integrating well into the society that I was born and brought up in?



(please be gentle)

bradyismyfavouritewiseman Wed 05-Dec-12 15:48:58

I can see both sides tbh.

Do you celebrate christmas in any form?

hillyhilly Wed 05-Dec-12 15:51:13

YABU, sorry but I agree with your colleagues. I don't understand why your child should not be in a play even if its about a different religion from your own.
I do not stop my child from learning about other cultures, religions and celebrations and I think that excluding him from the nativity is marking him out as 'different'

elfyrespect Wed 05-Dec-12 15:52:06

Can't help but feel a little sad for Dc feeling excluded from all the hustle & bustle of the costumes, songs, performance etc though.

NatashaBee Wed 05-Dec-12 15:55:24

I remember the all consuming Christmas play activities at school. Is any other child not taking part? Personally i would let them take part - I couldn't bear the thought of them feeling left out.

Could you not ask the school to let them be in charge of costumes or something, just so that they're involved?

2old2beamum Wed 05-Dec-12 15:56:06

I am an old jewish lady (now atheist) I did not as a child "do" nativity plays. I felt very left out. However now a mum and atheist I am not bothered and was very proud of DD when she was Mary, Not much help am I?

Spru Wed 05-Dec-12 15:57:18

brady No we do not celebrate christmas as such - but I do participate in secret santa at work, go otu for christmas dinner etc.

DC does everything else at school for christmas but we will strictly never depict any prophets , therefore depicting Mary/Jesus/Joseph in the nativity is not something we could do.

hilly but why is exclusion from nativity reflecting as my lack of ability to integrate?

silvercup Wed 05-Dec-12 15:58:09

I'm agnostic and don't believe in the nativity as it's traditionally told...but I don't think I would want to excuse my DD from being in a nativity play, not when all her classmates would be involved. I would prefer to somehow explain to her that the nativity is a story that some people believe in, and other people don't.

usualsuspect3 Wed 05-Dec-12 15:58:24


Your DCs will just want to be involved like the rest of the school. How mean of you to make them feel left out.

InNeedOfBrandyButter Wed 05-Dec-12 15:58:56

The thing is in the majority of schools they miss other lessons to practise the nativity, lessons like ICT and PE, so in effect you've got your dc sat down watching everyone else be excited and rehearsing while they have to look at a book/do a work sheet.

monsterchild Wed 05-Dec-12 15:59:38

YANBU. Your child, your rules. If it is against your belief, as you say, and you don't think your kids should participate, I think that's ok. Not being in the play won't be the end of their lives.

You could also ask that they not be cast as any main character, so that they aren't breaking any rules.

Electricblanket Wed 05-Dec-12 16:00:20

I feel terribly sad for your children. Why do you participate in secret Santa?

vintagewarrior Wed 05-Dec-12 16:00:42

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

Could the DC be sheep and shepherds or something. Then they are not depicting prophets and they get to take part.

BTW I don't think you ABU for this. Bizarre that people are so unempathetic about deeply held beliefs (even though I have none).

InNeedOfBrandyButter Wed 05-Dec-12 16:02:05

This really annoys me actually, they are your beliefs and until your dc is 18 they should not have to do what you believe in. Brainwashing

YABU - I do think it is very hypocritical of you to go out on christmas do's, indulge in secret santa but then ban your DC from the nativity.

Surely you either celebrate christmas or you don't.

Spru Wed 05-Dec-12 16:02:20

2old2beamum I have absolutely no problem with anyone's choice to participate or not to participate. smile

The school have a few other kids who do not participate either although i am unsure which religions they are affiliated to. DC has no problem with not participating in nativity, nor does the school. I was more shocked at the link made at work regarding no nativity = not integrating.

They also mentioned that why should kids come to your parties (eid) if you wont join in our religious celebrations sad

bradyismyfavouritewiseman Wed 05-Dec-12 16:02:32

So you child doesn't get presents, you don't have decorations?

My point being is that if you can celebrate Christmas, even in a small way then you dc can be in the nativity.

Christmas is about the birth of Christ, therefore any acknowledgment of it (ie secret santa) is and acknowledgement of the prophet.

Personall, as someone who has firmly stepped away from catholisim, i think YABU.

You have participated in secret santa but are excluding your son from his peers ways of celebrating.

Can you not explain to him that it is a story, that some people believe in. But that you (ie you and other half) do not.

I wouldn't make him be excluded. Its isn't like he has to believe in it to take part.

usualsuspect3 Wed 05-Dec-12 16:03:00

I have no beliefs either,but I let my children join in all the religious celebrations at their very multicultural school.

It teaches them tolerance and understanding IMO.

FredFredGeorge Wed 05-Dec-12 16:03:21

Just because you were born and brought up in the society doesn't mean that you are automatically integrated in it, you can still choose to act against it - indeed you are choosing to by your stance on the nativity and school - which is a very common thing in the UK.

But you're absolutely fine not to, and integration isn't about doing everything no matter if it's against your normal views - opting out of it is fine too - especially if it's only out of certain parts, and as you presumably have a religious rule against depiction of Jesus (are Joeseph and Mary prophets too?) I think it's more than fine to opt out.

So no YANBU.

redskyatnight Wed 05-Dec-12 16:03:35

Quite a few children at DD's school don't take part in the Christmas nativity. Never thought it was an issue. I can see the nativity is difficult for non-Christians - it's not just a play about a religious event - quite often the songs/words include references to Christ the Saviour or Lord Jesus.

juneybean Wed 05-Dec-12 16:04:10

It's just a story, will you prevent them from taking part in other plays?

bradyismyfavouritewiseman Wed 05-Dec-12 16:05:09

I would like to point out that dds school also do things for diwali and other holidays.

So it is not that they only do one religion. I think part of religion is learning an accepting other religions.

Jojobells1986 Wed 05-Dec-12 16:05:18

Can they not be something else in the nativity? There's lots of roles that wouldn't be considered prophets. Or, like someone else suggested, they could be involved in behind-the-scenes things so they didn't feel left out.

ethelb Wed 05-Dec-12 16:05:27

what religion are you?


FredFredGeorge Wed 05-Dec-12 16:06:28

bradyismyfavouritewiseman It's not quite the same though is it - as Santa is not part of another religion. Jesus is a prophet, so far from it being simply a different religion and associated stories like Father Christmas or Christmas trees it's actually involving your own religion but in an inappropriate way.

IslaValargeone Wed 05-Dec-12 16:06:54

He could have been included without depicting a prophet though couldn't he.
I think excluding him totally was not a great idea to be honest. He could have joined in with the general 'feel' of the thing, whilst learning about other people's beliefs and not been marked out as different.

ethelb Wed 05-Dec-12 16:07:15

btw my primary school didn't do them as the music teacher was jewish and refused.

She had no problem with Diwali.

DragonMamma Wed 05-Dec-12 16:07:21


It's a play. I don't believe in stories like Rama and Sita but there's no way I'd stop DD getting involved in a play about it. Nor did my dm when I was younger and did the same thing.

I don't particularly believe in the nativity story either but I cheered all the way through the concert this morning. And cried.

WelshMaenad Wed 05-Dec-12 16:08:36

I am an atheist. Dd was in the nativity as an angel. I just view it as a fictional play like any other production she might act in. I think your inability to go the same, whilst merrily indulging in the fun bits of Christmas for yourself, is horribly hypocritical and selfish.

Spru Wed 05-Dec-12 16:08:56

hmmm, i some insightful posts already. You guys are right, i am not setting the best example by participating in secret santa and christmas meals out. I stand corrected. I shall put a stop to those on my part.

gordyslovesheep Wed 05-Dec-12 16:09:37

YANBU - if your religion band depictions, images etc of it's prophets and figures you are within your right to withdraw your child from a play that requires this

Santa is not, as far as I am aware, a prophet or key religious figure!

LulaPalooza Wed 05-Dec-12 16:09:50

I guess it's up to you, but I was under the impression that Jesus is recognised as a prophet in the Islamic faith?

LifeIsBetterInFlipFlops Wed 05-Dec-12 16:10:19

It should be fun, taking part won't make your DC a Christian!

ethelb Wed 05-Dec-12 16:10:37

But Spru, which religion are you? I am a bit confused.

GinandChocolate Wed 05-Dec-12 16:11:14

I have to say I agree with your colleagues. My Christian children celebrate Christmas as do their school - but it is a multicultural school so they also celebrate the major festivals of other religions, visit mosques and temples and when required despite not believing in those religions, join in the celebrations, cover heads, arms, legs as required.

Either you want an integrated culture or you don't - you seem to want to have your cake and eat it.

TwasTheDawnDeeforeXmas Wed 05-Dec-12 16:11:18

As other posters have suggested I would have just asked that they not be cast as one of the 'main' parts. Would you have any religious objections to them being a shepherd or third lobster?

bradyismyfavouritewiseman Wed 05-Dec-12 16:12:00

FredFredGeorge I think it is the same. By acknowledging Christmas you are acknowledging the event, which is the birth of christ.

If the OP does not want to acknowledge the birth of a prophet then celebrating Christmas should be off.

Santa is a story, The birth of Jesus (to many) is a story. I think its unfair for the OP to say 'i will participate in the fun stuff, but dc can't'.

There are ways round both, without excluding her dc.

I don't think it has anything to do with integration. More double standards.

FredFredGeorge Wed 05-Dec-12 16:12:02

Yes LuluPalooza and Sunni's (and probably others) do not allow for depictions of their prophets, so dressing up as a Prophet is inappropriate for adherents.

SolomanDaisy Wed 05-Dec-12 16:12:24

It's strange how participating in a nativity becomes an 'integration' issue when it's a Muslim family, but not when it's, say, a white Jehovah's Witness family.

stookiesackhouse Wed 05-Dec-12 16:12:59


Do you allow DC to partake in other school activities related to religions outside your own i.e. Easter craft activities?

I would want my DC to partake in and enjoy all religious celebrations at their school. As usual said, it encourages tolerance and understanding.

Spru Wed 05-Dec-12 16:13:00

Hi ethelb , i am muslim smile

HenriettaTurkey Wed 05-Dec-12 16:13:24

Going on a Christmas do isn't depicting a prophet.

Taking part in secret Santa isn't depicting a prophet.

Taking part in a nativity performance is taking part in a performance which depicts a prophet.

Yanbu - as long as DC understands it's not a punishment.

As for not brainwashing and allowing a child to make their own mind up at 18 - a parent has to parent according to their own belief system. You do not raise a child in a vacuum. Every decision you take every day says something about you - from the food you eat, the clothes you buy, the tv you watch and the religion you do, or don't practice.

FredFredGeorge Wed 05-Dec-12 16:13:25

BRadyismyfavouritewiseman It's the depiction that's the problem - not the birth or otherwise, the birth is celebrated in the Islamic faith, it's an important event, just not a defining one.

ll31 Wed 05-Dec-12 16:13:32

Yabu, essentially you're enjoying xmas celebrations, not making yourself be left out in your work but your insisting your dc are left out in school. ... what do you do at easter etc

Ihatemakingpackedlunches Wed 05-Dec-12 16:13:46

YABU - My parents did not let me take part in nativity or even go into assembly at school for religious reasons. I felt horrendously left out & I have to say have always felt "on the outside" from then on. Perhaps today schools are better at acknowledging difference and it would be dealt with better.
Taking part does not mean your child will change their beliefs or challenge yours. Just tell them not to say Amen!

HazelnutinCaramel Wed 05-Dec-12 16:14:16

If you don't believe in it, then it's just a story. And they can take part in it as a story, the same as they would if it were Cinderella or The Gruffalo or whatever. You're making too much of a big deal about it.

My ds2 is CofE and was recently in a Diwali play and they celebrate Eid at school too. I think it's nice that he gets the opportunity to celebrate other religions and learn about other cultures around the world.

WinklyVersusTheZombies Wed 05-Dec-12 16:14:59

LifeIsBetter the OP wasn't concerned it would make her DC a Christian, but depiction of the prophets and relatives of the prophets is against Islam.

OP how would you feel about your DC being a sheep or star? Would that be ok, or would it feel like 'aiding and abetting' the breach of aniconism?

I don't see that participating in the secular elements of Christmas, whilst not allowing your DC to do something strictly against your religious beliefs, is a problem. Nobody would (or should) have an issue with your refusal to eat non-halal turkey or pigs in blankets at the office lunch - same thing.

bradyismyfavouritewiseman Wed 05-Dec-12 16:15:40

I still think its double standards.

What's wrong with depicted a birth you acknowledge happened.

Why can't the child be told 'its a story some people believe...., which is what Christmas is about. We believe this instead'.

ethelb Wed 05-Dec-12 16:15:56

I thought muslims weren't supposed to depict humans in general, that's why there are none in Islamic art. But I thought that was art only and didn't think that it included plays. Or does it?

I'm not having a go I just went to a v multicultural school with muslim classmates and though their religion came up occassionally, this never did, and I am a bit confused.

ChippingInLovesAutumn Wed 05-Dec-12 16:16:02

Why couldn't your DC be a star/sheep/whatever? I fail to see how that's depicting a phrophet.

WhenShallWeThreeKingsMeetAgain Wed 05-Dec-12 16:16:08


Stop EVERYTHING, make your DCs feel even more excluded why dontcha?

If your answer is to stop Secret Santa, stop meals out then why don't you stop meals at home and everything else to do with Christmas.

p.s. you could always celebrate Happy Holidays and TRY to include your DC?

stormforce10 Wed 05-Dec-12 16:16:10

Luckily DD's friend's Muslim family don't take your point of view. She's Mary in the school nativity and they are proud as punch because their beautiful dd is gaining confidence and working really hard on learning her lines. they actually told me that its not about religion but about what the skills the children learn from it. I think YABU.

DD took part in a play about Diwali last month and it didn't worry me at all

LookBehindYou Wed 05-Dec-12 16:16:19

Hmmm, tricky. I can see your point of view but your dc is going to a UK school, no? So your colleagues are right in that you're not integrating. It's always fine to opt out, but you are making your dc opt out which doesn't seem fair.

Climbingpenguin Wed 05-Dec-12 16:16:47

there is a difference between acknowledging the event and not wanting to depict prophets. Just because she is happy to take part in some aspects does not make her a hypocrite IMO. In fact we pretty much all do it to one degree or another.

I am an atheist, so celebrate Christmas in non religious way. Just because I exclude certain elements doesn't mean I can't enjoy it as an event.

bradyismyfavouritewiseman Wed 05-Dec-12 16:16:53

Can we all remember that the prophet will be a doll and not portrayed by a person.

bradyismyfavouritewiseman Wed 05-Dec-12 16:17:36


If you don't believe in it, then it's just a story. That would be true for an atheist but Muslims and Jews 'believe' in Jesus just not that he is the son of God.

FWIW, OP, I think 'integration' is overrated, generally by people who are pretty much in the hegemony already so it suits them. Plow your own furrow. I'll come to Eid at your house if that will help. I 'integrate' with anything that involves yummy food.

gordyslovesheep Wed 05-Dec-12 16:18:34

the doll is STILL a physical representation Brandy

gordyslovesheep Wed 05-Dec-12 16:19:48

I think 'integration' is overrated, generally by people who are pretty much in the hegemony already so it suits them

oh and this ^

valiumredhead Wed 05-Dec-12 16:20:13

Massive double standards if you go out from Xmas dinners and take part in Secret Santa imo. I feel sad for your ds tbh.

LulaPalooza Wed 05-Dec-12 16:21:05

Thank you, FredFred for explaining. That makes more sense to me now.

WinklyVersusTheZombies Wed 05-Dec-12 16:23:14

But valium its not double standards, really. The depiction of the prophet and his family is against the OP's (interpretation of her) religion. A cracker, a bit of pudding and a crappy gift isn't.

FredFredGeorge Wed 05-Dec-12 16:23:14

stormforce10 Not all Muslim groups are against the depiction - imagine if only Catholics felt a certain way, the fact other CofE people did it would be irrelevant.

HazelnutinCaramel Wed 05-Dec-12 16:23:20

OP, I understand about depicting a prophet. Would your religion allow them to be a sheep or a star or something?

upsylazy Wed 05-Dec-12 16:23:30

My DC's school has never had a nativity play which really disappoints me. I'm a militant atheist but would have no problem with any of them being in a nativity play - I would just tell them it's a story just like other stories. I just view it as a quaint tradition rather than a really religious thing.

mistlethrush Wed 05-Dec-12 16:23:37

My son's class has children with a range of faiths - some quite strict. However, they all took part in the Nativity play - there are plenty of 'non' prophet related parts

HazelnutinCaramel Wed 05-Dec-12 16:23:54

And I don't think you're refusing to integrate, that's rubbish and hurtful.

Climbingpenguin Wed 05-Dec-12 16:24:10

it's not a double standard, they are two separate entities

Dead69Girl Wed 05-Dec-12 16:25:01

YANBU. Your child, your rules.

hugoagogo Wed 05-Dec-12 16:25:02

I wouldn't bother with trying to integrate in this way, we don't all have to do things the same way to be integrated.

Imagine how great it would be if noone felt they hadto take part in Christian festivals.

valiumredhead Wed 05-Dec-12 16:26:02

Oh I know but I still think it's a bit shit. It's all about the nativity in schools during the lead up to Christmas.

What mistle said

monsterchild Wed 05-Dec-12 16:28:03

Wow, the lack of understanding on this is pretty impressive!

I agree with the hegemony comment, gordy, why is it ok for all the parents of kids in the play to be brainwashing their kids about Christmas, but not ok for OP to want her kids to follow the tenants of their religion?

Double standards is right.

You do what is best for your kids, OP. It sounds like they understand why they are not participating and are ok with that.

hugoagogo Wed 05-Dec-12 16:32:00

I think primary schools should spend a lot less time on the nativity in the run up to christmas; it should not dominate the school day, but sadly does.

Thankfully at secondary schools they concentrate on learning all year around.

KitchenandJumble Wed 05-Dec-12 16:32:51

YANBU. Your religious beliefs do not permit the depiction of prophets, so it is entirely reasonable for your DC not to participate in the nativity play. Some of the posts on this thread indicate a complete lack of understanding of the issue at hand.

Integration does not mean that you must give up your beliefs and traditions. They are every bit as valid, and as much a part of the culture of the contemporary UK, as Christian festivals.

I'm an atheist, from a non-practicing interfaith family. smile We have both Jewish and Christian heritage, and we celebrate all sorts of festivals for reasons of culture and tradition. However, if I were a religious follower of any one religion (as you are, OP), my participation in other faiths' celebrations would be much more bound by what that religion teaches. Stick to your guns and don't worry about the naysayers.

rednosedreindeerinthegarden Wed 05-Dec-12 16:33:31

YABU, in my opinion. DS1 (9) and I are atheists, DS2 (6) is a Christian (Their definiitions). Both have been in Nativity plays. Your child does not have to depict a prophet, but school plays are not just about religion - they teach children a range of social skills too.
I feel rather sorry for your child. Don't they have their own choice in this as well?

littleducks Wed 05-Dec-12 16:33:36

My kids would love me to pull them out the xmas play/concert, they hate the practice and practice and practice and they get bored.

We don't celebrate xmas at all (also muslim but probably a different sectto the OP). No secret santa, no christmas cards, we never go out for xmas work does (though to be fair that is because there is alcohol present not because its an xmas thing).

My kids are in the concert, they dont sing the 'lord, christ saviour, king' bits of the songs. I might pull them out when they are older as they hate it so much and the junior production is after school in the evening rather than in the school day.

There are children (I'm pretty sure they are JW but not certain) who do not participate in any christmas related activities, they go and 'help' in the nursery.

WileywithSageStuffing Wed 05-Dec-12 16:35:50

I feel sad for your DC but only because of the fun that they must be missing out on ...although you say that they are fine with it I just can't really believe that's true

The only part of it I can't understand is why do you do all the fun crimbo stuff like meals out, secret Santa (giving, receiving presents)? That's a bit naughty really!

I don't get the "integration" comment from your colleagues. That has nothing to do with your religious beliefs. They are being unreasonable.

KitchenandJumble Wed 05-Dec-12 16:39:50

MrsTerryPratchet wrote "Muslims and Jews 'believe' in Jesus just not that he is the son of God."

Not exactly. Jesus is recognised as a prophet in Islam. There is no Jewish teaching about Jesus at all, since, of course, Judaism was around long before Jesus was born (if he actually existed at all in the historical sense).

Otherwise, I completely agree with your post.

ChoudeBruxelles Wed 05-Dec-12 16:40:49

If its anything like ds's school the navity play has only a passing reference to Jesus. This year the sang and danced to "feeling hot hot hot", "walk 500 miles" and "holiday" amongst others

Groovee Wed 05-Dec-12 16:41:43

My dh's cousin's children never participate as they are JW. They don't do anything outwith their own religion. They came to my church service in my wedding but not the celebration.

cazza40 Wed 05-Dec-12 16:43:41

YABU - I feel a bit sad for your DC

Yes, true Kitchen. I sort of meant in my befuddled way that it is not a fictional story to Jewish people. Just a fictionalised account of a real person. People were talking about it like it was a Gruffulo or Little Red Riding Hood.

innoparticularorder Wed 05-Dec-12 16:46:04

I'm Muslim and my son played a Shepard in his nativity today, he was pretty oblivious to the actual 'story' anyway.

If that's how you feel then as someone has already said your kids your rules. To suggest you don't integrate is rather bizarre.

ethelb Wed 05-Dec-12 16:47:40

I was under the impression that some Jewish scholars wrote about a man called Jesus who claimed he was the messiah, along with all the other people who claimed they were the messiah at the same time.

RiaUnderTheMistletoe Wed 05-Dec-12 16:49:21

So you and your dc take part in the Christmas celebrations which are permitted by your faith, and not the ones that don't? Can't see a problem with that.

And a number of posters seem to be conflating not-Christian with atheist confused

2cats2many Wed 05-Dec-12 16:49:27

YABU. I don't believe in talking animals, but I didn't kick up a fuss when my DD took part in a school play based on the Monkey Puzzle book.

I also wouldnt kick up a fuss if they took part in a play based on a story from a non Christian religion.

The nativity is just a happy, seasonal thing to do. You always have the opportunity to explain your own views about the truth/non- truth of the story to your DC.

What a shame.

LadyInDisguise Wed 05-Dec-12 16:50:24

This is actually a difficult one.
As England is (mainly) a Christian country and because schools have to include some religious ceremony in their teachings (cue for some hyms to sing at assemblies etc..), the nativity scene seem to be part of the culture of the country and not participating in it will feel like stepping out of the 'cultural norms'.

However, a lot of people refuse to see playing the nativity scene as a religious activity (which it is). They will also refuse to see the impact on children saying 'you can teach what you believe in at home'. It certainly has had some impact on my dcs. One has now decided that all christian are 'stupid' to believe that jesus has done all the things the bible says he has. The other has taken exactly the other way as 'this is the right thing to believe' because that's what his teacher says...

I do have a big issue about the fact 'It's just a story like any other story'. It's not. This is what Christmas is supposed to be about (even though seeing what happens now, you would be forgiven to think this is not what it is about). The nativity scene sets out the idea that there was jesus and he was a very special person indeed. And this is a religious idea part of religious belief.
Taking it as 'just a story' is watering down the strong message given by the nativity actually.

I am actually interested to know why your work colleagues brought this idea of integration to someone who is english, born in the UK.... Is there any other reason why they might think you are not entirely integrated?

squeakytoy Wed 05-Dec-12 16:52:17

You could always say your child is allowed but as a donkey or a shepherd... they dont have to have a leading role.

YABU to object if you yourself take part in some christmas festivities. Being in the nativity play will not make your child a christian. If there was a muslim based play, would you object to non-muslim children participating in it.

MissCellania Wed 05-Dec-12 16:53:14

I find it quite offensive that if you don't allow your children to take part in a religious ritual you are somehow not integrated into your own society.
Especially when the vast majority of people who do have their children participate are non-church goers who care little for the religion anyway, yet feel it is somehow ok for them to force it onto others.

To be integrated is to be a functioning equal part of society, it does not mean pretending to follow aspects of a different religion so people won't call you cruel or say how sad your children must be.

usualsuspect3 Wed 05-Dec-12 16:57:05

It's just a play at school. No big deal IMO.

LadyInDisguise Wed 05-Dec-12 16:57:33

Oh and Santa has nothing to do with a nativity scene. I don't think there has ever being a story linking Santa and Jesus or whoever else.

Santa is Christmas in the non-religious sense whereas a nativity scene is about Christmas in the religious sense.
I can't see an issue with not wanting to do a nativity scene and having Santa coming to your house.
Unless you can't have Santa if you aren't christian confused

usualsuspect3 Wed 05-Dec-12 16:58:03

No need to take a dramatic stand against it really.

LadyInDisguise Wed 05-Dec-12 16:58:13

What squeaky said

LadyIsabellaWrotham Wed 05-Dec-12 17:00:01

YABU of course insofar as unreasonableness is a defining feature of all religions (nothing wrong with that - there's more to life than rationality).

However, given that you believe, YANBU to adhere to the tenets of your religion. I'm staggered by the lack of understanding on this thread. Gift giving is not forbidden by Islam, decorated trees, turkey and mince pies are not forbidden by Islam, singing songs about how lovely Baby Jesus is are not forbidden, (although the ones specifically saying he was the Son of God are probably iffy). Depiction of the prophets of Islam is specifically forbidden by most Islamic branches. The OP is not being remotely hypocritical.

While I'm here though - are any Muslim parents sufficiently observant to forbid their DC drawing pictures of people and animals in nursery? Never heard of it being an issue in real life, just idly curious.

KitchenandJumble Wed 05-Dec-12 17:00:12

"So you and your dc take part in the Christmas celebrations which are permitted by your faith, and not the ones that don't? Can't see a problem with that."

Well said, RiaUnderTheMistletoe.

Scheherezade Wed 05-Dec-12 17:02:56


NameGotLostInCyberspace Wed 05-Dec-12 17:05:07

Asa, I understand your dilema. I too am Muslim and get what you are saying. I do let DD partake in the Nativity.
She was actually Mary last year and the teacher asked my express permission for the role. I said fine but on no account will she say Jesus is the son of God or refer to him as God or the son of.

Neither May or Joseph were Prophets and Jesus is usually played by a doll smile.
Anyway, like I said I do understand and each will understand as they want to. I really don' think you need to stop your secret santa or xmas meal with work either smile.

in a nut shell YANBU but just gave my take on it.

KrisMoose Wed 05-Dec-12 17:07:30

I think it's unusual and fab to have a traditional nativity - they get rarer and rarer every bloody year. Narnia and it's equivalents have taken over and that's a shame.

WRT this situation, so far YHBU as you partake in what suits you about Christmas and not what doesn't.

You are trying to have your Christmas Cake and eat it too.

But if you must insist on marking out your DC's as different, then you should also stop joining in with colleagues.

Which is a damn shame. Britain should be getting more intergrated, not less...and attitudes like this do nothing but hinder that.

My sons partake in all religious festivals at School, and quite right too. I think the compliment should be returned.

SoniaGluck Wed 05-Dec-12 17:08:05

YANBU. If your faith says that something is not allowed and you are serious about your faith then you don't do it.

I don't see this as an integration issue TBH. It is a faith issue. Nor do I see that the OP is being hypocritical. It is fine to participate in the aspects of Christmas that are not contrary to her religious beliefs IMO.

It isn't a question of being afraid that the children will be converted to Christianity. The OP's religious beliefs mean that them taking part in a play where a prophet is being represented is wrong. It's really not hard to grasp.

Sirzy Wed 05-Dec-12 17:09:42

I can understand your reasons but I think I would have just let DS take part in the 'story' which is all it is to someone who doesn't believe. Must be hard for someone so little to understand why all his friends are taking part in the fun but he can't.

LadyIsabellaWrotham Wed 05-Dec-12 17:10:50

If the OP went to the office Xmas lunch and had the turkey and roast potatoes but turned down the pigs in blankets and the mulled wine would people call her hypocritical for that?

YuleBritannia Wed 05-Dec-12 17:13:52

The OP takes part (not 'partakes') in her work's Secret Santa. Santa is short for Santa Claus. Santa Claus is short for St Nicholas who was a Christian. Perhaps the OP didn't know that. If she had, she would not be involved in the Secret Santa performance event.

I love a good nativity. (Non-christian here). I wouldn't have a go at anyone who wouldn't get involved but I would think, they were being a little insecure. Its hardly a genuine threat to your belief system, is it?

Hulababy Wed 05-Dec-12 17:14:40

I work in a school with a very wide mix of religions and beliefs, more so than many. Despite this every single child, regardless of belief, has been allowed to participate in our Christmas plays. That's 270 children aged 4-7 allowed. This includes children who are Christian, Muslim, Jewish, Hindu, atheist and others plus others who really don't mind either way. It's far nicer for the children if they get to join in.

Likewise all joined in with eid and divali parties.

Virtuallyarts Wed 05-Dec-12 17:16:06

Isn't Santa originally St Nicholas, Lady in Disguise? Nothing to do with the nativity, I agree, but certainly origins in Christianity (I realise things have moved on - don't think the elves featured!).
I agree that he isn't really associated with Christianity any more, at least in the UK - have a feeling that there may be a more obvious link in other Northern European countries. Does anyone else know?

Virtuallyarts Wed 05-Dec-12 17:21:04

Aha, cross posted with Yule Britannia! Santa = St Nicholas. It may well be that that is becoming less and less well known - I think I actually remember singing in the Benjamin Britten piece at a school Christmas concert, but that was rather a lot of years ago.

MissCellania Wed 05-Dec-12 17:22:06

An awful lot of people missing the point. OP didn't say she doesn't take part in anything christian, or based on christian myth, she specifically said that they aren't in the nativity due to one important rule of Islam which forbids the representation of prophets. Jesus is a prophet in Islam.

Now, if anyone can point out the specific islamic doctrine forbidding giving collegues crappy cheap tat in the name of Secret Santa, then I'll agree with you. Otherwise, do try reading the OP, otherwise there isn't much point to contributing.

DoingItOntheRoofTopWithSanta Wed 05-Dec-12 17:24:19

No, yanbu. Do what you like, if not being in the nativity is the worst thing to ever happen in your child's life you've done pretty well.

DoingItOntheRoofTopWithSanta Wed 05-Dec-12 17:27:43

BTW super surprised by the majority of responses you have received! shock

SilverBaubles33 Wed 05-Dec-12 17:27:43

I didn't realise that this decision was perceived as a lack of willingness to integrate - in a country which I have been born and brought up in.

I may be wrong but this sounds a little disingenuous to me for someone born and brought up in the UK; I wasn't, but I am very aware of the importance if the Nativity play from a cultural, religious and nostalgic point of view.

Perhaps if the OP had spent time in countries which are truly intolerant, and where a divergent viewpoint or different religion has more sinister consequences than the surprise of her colleagues.

In my experience, this country is, in the main, inclusive and tolerant, and where that is not the case, there are societal and legal consequences.

You asked for 'gentleness,' OP. That was an interesting word to use in view of your later (to my ears) militant assertion that you would therefore pull yourself and your dc out of all Christmas activity.

Perhaps a gentle request for a non-Prophet role for your child might be an elegant solution, as already suggested by several poster?

Hope you resolve it without your dc feeling too excluded.

DoingItOntheRoofTopWithSanta Wed 05-Dec-12 17:28:50

If the op feels depictions of prophets is against her religion...surely she won't want the child taking part in any way? Oh be a sheep seems a bit shit tbh

bradyismyfavouritewiseman Wed 05-Dec-12 17:30:21


Get down of your high horse. I have read it, thanks.

As pps have said its actually 'secret Saint Nick'.

Also acting of any kind is looked down by islam. Acting and model etc. In reality he shouldn't be allowed in any play. From what I understand, if its religious grounds.

The point is, is that the OP has asked what people think. I think to pick and choose the bits she can do, which benefit her is unfair when she is excluding her son from his peers activities.

He does not have to represent a prophet. he can be a sheep.

She asked for opinions, thats mine.

DoingItOntheRoofTopWithSanta Wed 05-Dec-12 17:30:56

Also saying you are "refusing to integrate" is to say that you are the other you should be like the normal.

I'd be very offended, you are from the UK you are British, you are "integrated".

butterfingerz Wed 05-Dec-12 17:34:03

I don't think YABU, if it's something you feel very strongly about. I guess your kids have fun celebrating your own respective festivals. Unfortunately some primary schools do got OTT at christmas but once they get to secondary, they don't make a fuss at all so it's not forever!

Verugal Wed 05-Dec-12 17:34:29

Op, the people who are saying Yabu probably don't know that Jesus, Mary and Joseph are prophets in Islam. It's completely reasonable for you to ask that your dc is included in the nativity as a star or a reader or a welcomer.

An example for those who can't understand that there are differences between taking part in some aspects of others' religions and not others. I go to Eid celebrations, even though I don't believe (and Hanukkah, I'm a celebration butterfly). I wouldn't however, want my DD to be in a play where she was depicting Aisha, the prepubescent wife of the prophet, because this conflicts with my moral code. I see no hypocrisy in this, or the OP's position.

RiaUnderTheMistletoe Wed 05-Dec-12 17:35:38

St. Nicholas isn't a prophet, and giving presents in his name is not depicting him. How are people not getting this?

MissCellania Wed 05-Dec-12 17:35:45

You are mixing up cultural idea and specific religious rules.

Are there any rules forbidding Secret Saint Nick? No. There aren't any actual rules forbidding children being in plays either. There are plenty of acting shows on tv in islamic countries!
Only forbidding the depiction of prophets. OP is merely following her religion, and those telling her that she shouldn't are being intolerant and offensive.

SuffolkNWhat Wed 05-Dec-12 17:39:58

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

bradyismyfavouritewiseman Wed 05-Dec-12 17:43:12

and those telling her that she shouldn't are being intolerant and offensive.

Well fuck me for having an opinion. I am neither intolerant or offending anyone. I have pointed out that I think it is nothing to do with integration and everything to do with her being allowed to participate with her peers and her dc not being.

He DOESN'T have to be a prophet, he doesn't even have to be on stage. I also knew plenty of non christians that don't participate in Secret Santa. For reilgious reasons.

Like most people, the OP is picking and choosing which bit of religion they follow. Most people do. Just like catholics who use contraception, or an Islamic super model.

I simply think she should choose to let her dc participate.

takataka Wed 05-Dec-12 17:43:43

surely you cant 'refuse to integrate' into your own society confused
you are part of society...

it is your decision whether your kids take part in the nativity or not <meh>

my kids go to a very diverse school there are lots of athiests/christians/muslims/sikhs...

the kids all seem to take part in all the celebrations, for Eid, Diwali and Christmas....there are certainly Muslim and Sikh children in the nativity. The only time I know of when some of the Muslim children dont take part is the Carol service where they go to church

I dont see the harm in the celbrations; kids arent going to loose your religion/culture because of a nativity. But I may feel differently if i was a CoE school for example

LaCiccolina Wed 05-Dec-12 17:45:27

Could they not b another character? Bit precious out of a class of 30 that urs would be one of the main stars....?

Banning altogether seems overly harsh. I would have preferred a lesson from u as to why others are telling the story this way but that ur religion believe / follow x y z. I think dc would get more from that. Frankly so would I as ur present explanation is a bit vague. I'd be interested to know more if ur prepared to post it.

Might even alter my view....?

bradyismyfavouritewiseman Wed 05-Dec-12 17:46:04

Are there any rules forbidding Secret Saint Nick?

I know several muslims who would say yes there are rules forbidding it. Who do not celebrate christmas at all, because they feel it is against their religion.

MissCellania Wed 05-Dec-12 17:46:06

You think she should disregard an important part of her religion so her children can "fit in". That is intolerant to her religion and offensive to people who find it an important tenet, by treating it so casually.

bradyismyfavouritewiseman Wed 05-Dec-12 17:47:26

he doesn't even have to be on stage.

Sorry I meant he doesn't have to be on stage at the same time as 'the prophets'.

catkind Wed 05-Dec-12 17:47:45

Might just as well say you aren't integrated for not attending church on sundays. While it's an old English tradition, it's still a Christian one. And in this particular case one that your religious principles don't allow.

LadyBeagleBaublesandBells Wed 05-Dec-12 17:48:00

I thought all schools were going down the multi cultural route now as we are a multi cultural country.
So Eid,and Diwali are celebrated but for some reason Christianity is not?
And I say that as a dyedd in the wool athiest.
I just think that integration should celebrate all beliefs and find it a bit sad that the Nativity play is seen in such a negative way by the Op.
I let my ds learn from his school about all types of religion, so he could make his own mind up, he's 17 now and also an athiest, but at least I kept my mouth shut and let him choose.
And if in the future he decides he's found a true faith I'll accept it.
So yes Op, YABU, if you want to live in a truly multi cultural society.

RiaUnderTheMistletoe Wed 05-Dec-12 17:48:08

Muslims don't all believe the exact same thing brady any more than all Christians do.

bradyismyfavouritewiseman Wed 05-Dec-12 17:48:09

You think she should disregard an important part of her religion so her children can "fit in".

Where did I say she should do it so he fits in?

Is that why she does secret santa?

MrsDeVere Wed 05-Dec-12 17:49:37

I think the people who made the integration comment were way out of order.
But I also kind of think you are picking and choosing a bit.

If you feel very strongly about your faith I am surprised you are participating in any Christmas stuff.

RiaUnderTheMistletoe Wed 05-Dec-12 17:50:41

Secret Santa is fun brady and doesn't go against the OP's faith. She said her dc are taking part in Christmas activities at school, just not Nativity.

bradyismyfavouritewiseman Wed 05-Dec-12 17:51:02

Muslims don't all believe the exact same thing brady any more than all Christians do.

I know this I was ansering a post saying 'are there rules against secret santa' I replied that, yes many thing there are. Because they are all picking and choosing.

I think the OP should choose to let him. Which is my opinion.

The same as I let my dd celebrate eid at her friend house when I was a practicing catholic.

Which technically could be 'against' catholisim.

I think we should all let out kids participate in all religions where possible.

bradyismyfavouritewiseman Wed 05-Dec-12 17:52:56

Secret Santa is fun brady and doesn't go against the OP's faith.

Missing the point. The OP is choosing to think its about fun. While it can be argued its against her religion. So she is CHOOSING to ignore the part that says its against her religion and have fun. Great, good for her.

She could choose to let her child participate.

bradyismyfavouritewiseman Wed 05-Dec-12 17:53:21

The last time I checked the nativity was meant to be fun.

Spru Wed 05-Dec-12 17:53:49

Thank you for all the responses and thanks to the posters who put my view for ward more eloquently than I managed.

Yes, I am not impressed when my decision somehow means that I am not integrated.

SilverBaubles Yes, i have lived in other countries with more liberal and more conservative views than UK. Yes, my 'ethnic origin' is not UK, but my country and my heart is in UK - this is my country of birth.

My assertion to pull out was not militant at all - (to my ears your comment sounds like you are affiliating me with militant islam - but of course, like you, I could be wrong!) It was merely a decision that I made. My DC is not 'feeling excluded' at all.

What I have found interesting is the attitude amongst some that: 'if you do X, then you must do Y, or do neither. You cannot do X and but then not do Y. I thought I would take that on-board (though it was a very weak argument), all of a sudden, i am now militant! hmm

RiaUnderTheMistletoe Wed 05-Dec-12 17:55:04

Everyone, religious or otherwise, picks and chooses which aspects of religion/tradition they take part in. I guarantee there are far more religions your dc don't celebrate than ones they do.

takataka Wed 05-Dec-12 17:55:46

<secret santa is not bloody fun! Its a PITA!>

amirah85 Wed 05-Dec-12 17:56:31

YANBU,integration and assimilation are two different things.if u were living say in China I doubt many of u would be eating dogs just to integrate

somanymiles Wed 05-Dec-12 17:58:20

YANBU. Is your child's school specifically a Christian one? IMHO unless they are, they should have a more inclusive winter celebration, that recognises traditions from around the world. That way your DC could take part in a section that did not include depiction of prophets eg the history of the Christmas tree, or solstice, or your own winter holiday tradition if you have one.

I say this as a Christmas-loving Christian but I really have come to realise that this assumption we have that everyone should embrace Christian traditions is really unfair and horrible and does lead to people feeling left out. If your DC's school is specifically Christian I don't think there's much you can do, but otherwise I would have a quiet word with the head about next year's play.

bradyismyfavouritewiseman Wed 05-Dec-12 18:00:08

Everyone, religious or otherwise, picks and chooses which aspects of religion/tradition they take part in. I guarantee there are far more religions your dc don't celebrate than ones they do.

Yes I have said several times that most people pick and choose and thats fine. I am not condemning the OP for her choices. Just pointing out that as she does pick and choose, she could choose this if she wanted to.

I guarantee you are correct in that there are more religions that my dd doesn't take part in. And what?

We don't have opportunity to because I do not know someone fopr certain religions. But she has celebrated many from islam, hindu, paganisim (several times and different forms), C of E, catholisim and a few more.

bradyismyfavouritewiseman Wed 05-Dec-12 18:00:56

YANBU. Is your child's school specifically a Christian one? IMHO unless they are, they should have a more inclusive winter celebration, that recognises traditions from around the world.

I LOVE this idea.

MrsDeVere Wed 05-Dec-12 18:02:12

I agree that people pick and chose. Its just if they feel very strongly about one aspect they tend to feel very strongly about others IYSWIM

So if a Christian does not take part in Yoga they tend to be the sort of Christian who is against Sunday opening for example.

Personally I feel the OP has every right to withdraw her child. Lots of people do and they did when I was a child, four decades ago, its nothing new.

The OP is British, this is her country. Its not up to others to tell her what she must do to prove it.

thebody Wed 05-Dec-12 18:03:36

Yes it's fine for you to not take part in a nativity play but its not all about you is it???

All of my kids have attended the local C of E school as its my catchment school and we are non religious.

I think the nativity story is nonsense but I allow my children to grow and develop and hopefully make up their own minds about beliefs and religions.

They arnt extensions if our believes but Independant people.

Think you are being unreasonable.

gimmecakeandcandy Wed 05-Dec-12 18:05:26

I find your attitude so so hypocritical. If you don't want your children to participate in the nativity (yet you are willing to do certain Christmassy things) then don't send your child to a Church of England school. Your kind of attitude really annoys me. Why send your child to a school that does religious festivals if you don't want them to participate. Disgustingly hypocritical. As is your reasoning that it is ok to do some Christmas things but not others. Urghh.

RiaUnderTheMistletoe Wed 05-Dec-12 18:09:27

The OP hasn't said her dc go to a CofE school (and lots of people have no choice in schools anyway).

LadyIsabellaWrotham Wed 05-Dec-12 18:09:57

Ok gimme - would the OP be a disgusting hypocrite if she went to a work Christmas lunch, ate the turkey but declined the pigs in blanket and wine?

LadyInDisguise Wed 05-Dec-12 18:10:31

TBH the thing with Santa and St Nicholas is that actually even if Santa is coming from the idea of St Nicolas, they aren't the same thing. To start with, people celebrating St Nicolas (and there are some) actually don't do it on Christmas day. doing so was a way for the church to bring an unwelcome celebration at a time that suited them (That's assimilation in religious terms). So St nicolas celebration moved from beginning of december to christmas day.
More importantly, whatever the story behind Santa, nowdays Santa is the guy dressed in red who lives in North Pole and has elves helping him wrapping presents for the children. There is no connexion at all now with religion, even if, originally, it was the case.
Different from a nativity scene which at the very heart of a religion, the birth of a prophet, the mum who was a virgin etc...

And, most importantly, why why should one should do something that is going against their beliefs for the sake of integration??? How can you even talk about integration about someone who was born in England, brought up here and, feels english confusedconfused? I though integration was about a foreigner wanting to 'integrate' to a new country.
But that doing thing a different way when in your country is just .. well doing things differently (You could even say weird or crazy things if you want).
Telling the OP it would her from 'integrating' means that the people who said it do not think of her as an englishwoman but as a foreigner.

takataka Wed 05-Dec-12 18:10:56

gimmee it has been explained extensively on this thread why OP doesnt like the nativity specifically

all school in the UK by law, have to have collective worship, it is not as easy to opt out as you infer. ALBEIT, SOME SCHOOLS INTERPRET THIS MORE LOOSELY THAN OTHERS

takataka Wed 05-Dec-12 18:11:53

sorry for caps lock

Pozzled Wed 05-Dec-12 18:11:55

OP, YANBU. I'm not religious and don't really mind what my kids participate in so long as they're not taught religious beliefs as fact.

However, if my children were asked to participate in something I felt was morally wrong, I hope I'd have the courage to withdraw them, and would explain why. As I understand it, your religious beliefs mean that to you it is wrong for Jesus to be depicted, whether as a doll, person or whatever. So of course you wouldn't allow them to take part.

It won't harm your children not to take part, it won't matter particularly to the school or anyone else. They might possibly get a bit bored or feel left out, but not necessarily. And if they do, well, it's your parenting decision. I've seen many many poor parenting decisions, this isn't an important one. I don't know why people care so much.

LadyInDisguise Wed 05-Dec-12 18:17:12

It's much easier to say ;Oh let them chose when they are older' when you are not religious than when you have a different religion or you are strongly atheist.
What you believe, your code of conduct (where you religion will have a big impact on) up to how you do things in your house (what you eat, drink etc...). This is all part of choice that you make that related to religion.
Saying you should just 'let your dcs chose' just doesn't make sense because their parents religion is already strongly in their lifes.

And that's wo talking about the fact that, as a parent, you might think doing X will bring a lot of problem to your child (as an adult, after their death etc...) so you would want to protect them from that therefore avoid said child doing X.
I think that's quite a normal thing to do isn't it?

queenofthepirates Wed 05-Dec-12 18:17:20

Well at least you won't be saddled with making a shepherd costume.

StuntGirl Wed 05-Dec-12 18:17:31

The integration comment was bollocks and a little bit bloody judgemental because you are clearly already integrated because you're British. I am white British and I am not Christian - just because I don't go to midnight mass doesn't mean I'm not integrated.

I'm curious though, what Christmas activities are they taking part in? As far as I remember many Christmas activities at school are somehow related to the religious aspect itself.

thebody Wed 05-Dec-12 18:17:33

On well only the ops kids can truly say in later life if they felt left out or not.

Noone on here can.

StepAwayFromTheEcclesCakes Wed 05-Dec-12 18:19:00

I am late to the thread BUT I think joining in with the bits you don't find too opposite to your religion Ie secret santa etc shows you are integrating, if the nativity bit is a step too far then fine, you are not the only one sitting it out, it's depicting something that is uncomfortable to you so don't do it. ignore those who are shock, you have beliefs and you are the best person to understand the limits you have you have explained why to others, explain yes, justify no. if they disagree it's their issue not yours, you are not ridiculing or mocking thier belifs so smile and nod and ignore. henriettaTurkey awesome post, way up thread.

DozyDuck Wed 05-Dec-12 18:20:17

My DS doesn't go to a religious school but he is still doing a nativity wink

They don't do much about other religions that I know of hmm but I might just not hear about it. They do Chinese new year though.

I am Buddhist and my religion tells me that I should allow my child to choose his own path. That's my choice, and I do. DS sings hymns as well as the next child but can also point out Buddha.

I would not be happy with him going hunting, however as that is just really against my beliefs. If school took the kids hunting or stamping on ants I would not allow DS to do that. I wouldn't even let him polish the guns or smoke out the ants. Even if he was not doing the actual killing.

I doubt many of you would question my choice in this.

The OP believes that it is wrong to Play a prophet. The same as I believe killing animals for fun is wrong. It's her belief. She allows her DC to do Christmassy things but the nativity, to her, is going way too far. Just as stamping on ants would be to me. She doesn't want them to take part on any of it because they will be advocating playing a prophet. Just as smoking out the ants would be advocating killing them.

It's the OPs belief and her choice.

OP YANBU and you are integrating. You just aren't comfortable with one thing.

notnagging Wed 05-Dec-12 18:22:02

Amirah85. What kind of racist comment is that?!

LadyIsabellaWrotham Wed 05-Dec-12 18:22:43

Stuntgirl, as I understand it the OP is perfectly happy to celebrate the birth of Jesus - why wouldn't she be? It's only the physical depiction of him (and Joseph and Mary) which is forbidden.

Right, all you hypocritical Christians... stop celebrating some Pagan festivals and not all. Stop decorating a tree (pre-Christian), stop celebrating in December (very good chance this is not the baby Jesus' birthday, it is definitely the midwinter festival), stop with the bunnies and eggs at Easter (fertility symbols. Unless you are up an oak tree cutting mistletoe with a sickle RIGHT NOW stop picking and choosing your Pagan participation.

Floggingmolly Wed 05-Dec-12 18:24:43

I know a Muslim family whose children happily take part in Nativities.
It doesn't correspond with your beliefs, but does it have to? Surely that just makes it a story like any other? Just think of it as you would a pantomime.

DozyDuck Wed 05-Dec-12 18:25:15


You had the guts to say what I was thinking grin

GhoulWithADragonTattoo Wed 05-Dec-12 18:25:50

YANBU at all. Some very worrying attitudes on this thread. If you think the depictions of Jesus, Mary and Joseph in the Nativity are against your faith then you are doing the right thing to withdraw your child and the school are behaving well here it seems. You certainly should not have to go against your faith to be regarded as integrated. The fact you do some minor Christmas related celebrations, mainly at work, that do not run against your faith is a total red herring.

takataka Wed 05-Dec-12 18:25:58

stamping on ants?????? dozy? shock

DozyDuck Wed 05-Dec-12 18:27:25

taka his school don't actually do that but it's something that I think is morally wrong and would never let DS participate in.

Just like the OP thinks the nativity is morally wrong.

Not Christmas in general, just the nativity because it conflicts directly with what she believes is morally right.

thebody Wed 05-Dec-12 18:28:43

Lady!! Then how do you account for children completely abandoning parents religious beliefs or embracing beliefs when parents are atheists.

Of course children can become free thinkers adults despite parents.

Thank goodness.

RiaUnderTheMistletoe Wed 05-Dec-12 18:28:51

grin MrsTP

Spru Wed 05-Dec-12 18:29:46

gimmecake My DC doesnt go to C of E school. I have to ask you this question now - what is christmas? Is everybody celebrating it as a religious thing or a cultural thing. Does it make an atheist a hypocrite for doing secret santa with work or going for xmas dinners or enjoying nativity plays? Does it make JW hypocritical who believe in Jesus but not chrsitmas.

My point is, not everyone is the same - no matter what their affiliations.

If I said i don't do the christmas stocking thing or the christmas tree, but do a chicken roast during the holidays, would that enrage you? Why?

I am waiting for someone to tell me that i should not get christmas day off work as I dont believe in it - and i should not get to pick and choose! smile

Mrsjay Wed 05-Dec-12 18:31:23

the muslim kids at my school in the 70s didnt take part in the nativity or any christmas things at school they are now grown ups and still live here an intergrated part of the community( Op I dunno if you are muslim or not), I wouldnt feel sorry for the Ops children they dont do things for religious reason and that is fine, there is tonnes and tonnes of posts on Mumsnet saying well you are athiest of course you can withdraw your children from religious services or of course you shouldn't have to take part in X Y Z, it is just a nativity really no biggie,

CheerfulYank Wed 05-Dec-12 18:31:49

I don't think you are being hypocritical. Santa is not part of the religious stuff.

Did you already explain why they couldn't be a star or something? Sorry, just skimmed the thread. blush

Hulababy Wed 05-Dec-12 18:32:16

One of DH's ex colleague is Jewish. He always worked on Christmas Day - usually from home though. But he took off holidays important to him, and left early on a Friday, etc.

Mrsjay Wed 05-Dec-12 18:35:44

& pages long and i cant be bothered to look grinOP are you a J W ?

Mrsjay Wed 05-Dec-12 18:35:55


RiaUnderTheMistletoe Wed 05-Dec-12 18:37:10

OP is Muslim Mrsjay

Spru Wed 05-Dec-12 18:37:30

MrsTerryP grin

Pozzled Wed 05-Dec-12 18:37:40

thebody I don't think that's what Lady means. I read her post as meaning that practically it's quite difficult for religious parents to just let the children choose. E.g. if you don't eat pork, you won't be willing to buy it and cook it for your children just so that they can choose later. And if you really believe that your children could go to hell for acting in a set way or believing certain things, then you wouldn't feel able to let them choose- you'd want to teach them in order to stop them from going to hell.

Yes, many children/adults will not follow their parents' beliefs, but I can see why 'let them choose' doesn't feel like an appropriate choice for the parents.

Mrsjay Wed 05-Dec-12 18:37:42

Oh ok I was just being really nosey smile

"my imaginary friend doesn't like me to make pictures of other imaginary friends in a play about events that never actually happened in a book written 400 years after the events that no one could prove .... if I let my kids do this my imaginary friend would be really upset, but its probably ok coz these festivals are all stolen from the pagans anyway"

threads like this just show what a bloody nonsense ALL religion is

OwlLady Wed 05-Dec-12 18:40:08

I think whether you are religious or not it's a nice little story.

My daughter is Mary this year (she has severe learning disabilities) I asked her who was Joseph and she said "T, T is Joseph but he is not baby's daddy' 'Oh' i said, 'who is baby's daddy?' expecting her to say God

'J' she said 'J is baby's Daddy, not Thmm'

I blame the episode of Jeremy Kyle she watched at my Mother's house

RiaUnderTheMistletoe I'm looking at you. I hope you have a sickle and robe or you are a HYPOCRITE.

Spru 90% of Christmas for most people is cultural not religious. Otherwise we would put our Pagan trees up on the Eve (the first night of Christmas) rather than in bloody November. Do what you like, I certainly do. I'm an atheist who does Christmas, Hanukkah, Eid and whatever else I can get myself invited to.

LimeLeafLizard Wed 05-Dec-12 18:40:52

OP you sound very reasonable (and nice and friendly in the face of some baffling hostility on this thread).

YANBU. The school are happy, your kids are happy, the other kids are happy, you're happy.

I don't see anything wrong with enjoying the bits of Christmas (or any other celebration() that you like and not doing the bits you don't like / don't agree with.

Mrsjay Wed 05-Dec-12 18:41:12

Oh dear sounds like your dd has been watching Maury they are awash with baby daddys grin

Mrsjay Wed 05-Dec-12 18:42:07

I'm an atheist who does Christmas, Hanukkah, Eid and whatever else I can get myself invited to.

so you just like a feed and a party then grin

Hell yeah, Mrsjay. Note that I don't participate in the fasting before the feasting. Lent and Ramadan are not for me.

Mrsjay Wed 05-Dec-12 18:46:37

Lent and Ramadan are not for me.

you are just picking and choosing now !

Shit, does that mean I am a hypocrite? blush Even my emoticons are hypocrites.

Spru Wed 05-Dec-12 18:50:39

LimeLeaf Thank you. I am kind of used to baffling hostility nowadays, so this is pretty much what I expected from those who wish to be that way inclined. grin

I also have received great support from the minority of people on this thread - of all religions and none, i should add! smile

I wish I knew how to do the emoticon with a santa's hat, but that to some would probably be hypocritical of me as I am picking and choosing.

Spru Wed 05-Dec-12 18:51:47


you beat me to it again MrsTP! grin

amirah85 Wed 05-Dec-12 18:51:50

How was my post racist??I can everyone is ignoring my valid point...

Mrsjay Wed 05-Dec-12 18:52:16

Shit, does that mean I am a hypocrite? Even my emoticons are hypocrites.

I dont think there is a idont give a shiny shit emoction there should be though grin

No Christmas hats for you, Spru.

Or you MrsJay.

DozyDuck Wed 05-Dec-12 18:53:08

Do what you like OP you're going to be judged by someone whatever you do smile

Do what you feel is right and if they feel the need to judge you let them get on with it wink

GrrrArghZzzzYaayforall8nights Wed 05-Dec-12 18:54:05

Nah, MrsT, you're only doing holidays and festivals you're invited too - Lent & Ramadan don't have invitations so you're okay cause you can't do it if you're not invited wink.

Mrsjay Wed 05-Dec-12 18:54:29

<stmaps>wanna christmas hat from MrsT

Spru Wed 05-Dec-12 18:54:30

found them!


DozyDuck Wed 05-Dec-12 18:56:51

Shit I've just realised I buy Christmas presents and have a [pagan] tree but don't take my DC to church on Christmas eve because I am Buddhist blush I am obviously a hypocrite and also not integrated op.

Perhaps we should start our own integration free club, where we are all free to make our own choices and follow our own beliefs? wink

LimeLeafLizard Wed 05-Dec-12 18:57:55

Spru you're right, more people have been supportive of you than not and there will always be some hostile people no matter what you do / who you are.

The festive smilelys list is at the bottom of the page (put an 'f' before the usual smiley word) so enjoy! smile

LimeLeafLizard Wed 05-Dec-12 18:58:27

x posts!

DozyDuck Wed 05-Dec-12 18:59:13


At least I have the decency to be embarrassed by my hypocrisy OP :p

Sofiamum Wed 05-Dec-12 19:00:03

I am a Christian but I was brought up in Iran. I went to a Christian school and we always had a nativity and my Mulsim friends loved it and always took part. We were children and we had fun together, it was great.

Adversecalendar Wed 05-Dec-12 19:01:33

Dozy duck I like the fact that you say Buddhism says let your child choose their own path.

I am a practicing Christian and DS was christened as a baby but he is a rather proud atheist now and is never made to attend church.

I do understand where the op is coming from because secret Santa is naff all to do with the religious aspect of Christmas but the nativity is.

I was chatting with one of my students who is a muslim today and we were both really pleased to meet someone with some faith regardless of how we feel about Jesus.

All best to you and your family op.

2old2beamum Wed 05-Dec-12 19:02:19

Well done Spru grin Don't worry about stupid remarks you only asked. Us atheists are very understanding I love Eid

LimeLeafLizard Wed 05-Dec-12 19:02:36

Dozy can I join? (I do go to church but I also love my pagan trees, bunnies, etc... and the last celebration my kids attended was Diwali).

Ironically I am now off to phone my (muslim) friend about making Shepherd costumes for our boys to wear at the nativity place at our non-religious school...

We should start a MN quiche - Atheists for Eid.

zzzzz Wed 05-Dec-12 19:05:11

YANBU. There is no need to conform to be integrated. We live, I hope, in an inclusive society. We follow our own moral compasses and protect the right of all to do so.

I see absolutely no problem with restricting your children's participation in an event that you would find blasphemous, whilst attending work functions as an adult to help celebrate another religions festival. It sounds extremely sensible to me.

DozyDuck Wed 05-Dec-12 19:05:33

adverse DS was christened because his dads family believe it's the right thing to do and I don't particularly think it matters either way so it kept everyone happy that way smile

Turns out that now DS (after going to a church school before he moved to a special school) now believes that 'God' is nasty. He does, however, think 'God' means assembly hmm

Oh well smile

We all just do what we believe is right and do our best.

2old2beamum Wed 05-Dec-12 19:06:00

Good idea MrsT smile

sunshine401 Wed 05-Dec-12 19:06:59

YANBU. Your child, your rules

Aww really? Why do we introduce the mix of religious education to help widen our children's knowledge and understanding of others. When it seems other people of different faiths do not.

The case of my child , my rules is very very sad . Children have a right to be educated and join in with all lessons regardless of what their parents may believe.

DozyDuck Wed 05-Dec-12 19:07:17

Lime you can join but only because of how ridiculously hypocritical you are for celebrating one part of a religion without taking part in every last detail of it shock

What disgusting behaviour wink

LynetteScavo Wed 05-Dec-12 19:08:06

YANBU. If you're DC aren't bothered, and the school aren't bothered, what's the issue?

I think so many people find Christmas such a special magical time, they find it difficult to understand why others may not want to participate, or teach their children the magic of Christmas. One person's tradition is another person's peculiarity.

Of course you can be integrated in to the British way of life and not celebrate Chirstmas, (or celebrate Christmas and not believe in God as many do) but you do have to accept that others may not want to come to your Eid party.

IloveJudgeJudy Wed 05-Dec-12 19:09:07

YABU. I work in a school with many non-Christians (non-religious school) that is doing a Nativity. All the children participate. In my children's Catholic school there were also non-Christians. They also participated in the (Christian) Nativity play. they also all went to assembly and participated in all feast days and celebrations.

If your child is not in the nativity, they will feel very left out. It's a big part of the end of the autumn term.

GhostShip Wed 05-Dec-12 19:09:34

We live in a multicultural society, I think you really should expect and welcome taking part in other people's cultures.

You aren't proving anything by not letting them take part.

This sort of things creates segregation, which is something we're suppose to be opposing.

DozyDuck Wed 05-Dec-12 19:10:32

sunshine I think you'll find the OP is very respectful about different faiths. There is just one thing that Christians do that she feels is morally wrong. One thing her kids can't join in with.

Pozzled Wed 05-Dec-12 19:11:21

Yes, sunshine children do have a right to be educated. I don't recall the OP saying that she refused to allow her children to be taught about any aspect of Christian beliefs- perhaps you could point out to me where she said this?

If anyone had come on to MN saying 'I don't want my children to learn about any religion except my own' my response would have been very different. I'm sure many others who supported the OP would also have responded differently.

She doesn't want her children to participate in one aspect of the school's RE. They can cover the Christmas story in many other ways.

sunshine401 Wed 05-Dec-12 19:11:52

I don't think so it is a shame.

DozyDuck Wed 05-Dec-12 19:12:00

ghostship is it segregation if I refuse to eat meat when everyone else is?

OddBoots Wed 05-Dec-12 19:12:14

Oh live and let live. YANBU, you have made a choice for your own child not for anyone else's, if you had asked the school not to have a nativity then I would say you were being unfair but withdrawing your child from an optional activity is fine. I'm glad to live in a country where we have that freedom.

GhostShip does that mean the OP should eat pork, drink alcohol and do all the other things that are regular parts of the dominant culture? I think we all pick and choose. For example, I am British and couldn't give a shiney shite about the Royals. I have picked this.

Even as an Atheist, I would still be perfectly Ok with dd being in the Nativity - it is a story. Much like I wouldnt gove a rats ass about her being in Sleeping Beauty or Cinderella (even with my feminist outlook).


DozyDuck Wed 05-Dec-12 19:14:57

mrsTP you obviously aren't integrated. Don't you know that you have to like the royals to be integrated in Britain? You are causing segregation. I am , quite frankly, appalled.


Pozzled Wed 05-Dec-12 19:15:12

"This sort of things creates segregation, which is something we're suppose to be opposing"

It doesn't have to. It can provide a really good opportunity for discussing different beliefs, especially with older children. I've taught many children who have been taken out of various things for various reasons (birthday celebrations, Christmas parties etc). The rest of the class always understood and accepted it as 'X can't do that because of their/their parents religion'. It wasn't a big deal. Occasionally they'd discuss amongst themselves why they couldn't do it- and so gain a better understanding of another religion.

GhostShip Wed 05-Dec-12 19:15:27

dozyduck How would that segregate you? Would that stop you eating with people? I don't think so.

Whereas the OP's children will probably be stuck in a classroom whilst the rest of the children are practicing their play. That's them being segregated. People will notice and wonder why.

But thats coming from me, I'm willing to embrace everyones, because I don't believe in any myself.

DozyDuck Wed 05-Dec-12 19:16:50

No they won't be stuck in a classroom
They will be helping in the nursery or doing some other fun activity grin

Probably having lots more fun than the kids say in the hall getting numb bottoms waiting for their turn to practice

ilovesprouts Wed 05-Dec-12 19:17:30

my sons does all different religons at school

GhostShip Wed 05-Dec-12 19:17:33

MrsTerry Lets stop being obtuse.

Maybe it's because I was one of the children who left assembly during prayers. There was me and my Jewish mate, causing segregation by not praying to a God we don't believe in. Not well integrated at all, me.

sunshine401 Wed 05-Dec-12 19:18:15

It will not just be the Nativity. As if it was it would not be a no would it really? If it was fine reading stories and making crafts at Easter for example and that was not morally wrong (to the op) then saying a play is just would not add up.
I am not going to ramble on. The op has every right to do what she thinks is right. I was just saying from my point of view it was a shame when children are meant to be encouraged to learn and explore all different cultures not just those taught/practiced at home that there are parents who still will not let this happen.

Pozzled Wed 05-Dec-12 19:18:17

"People will notice and wonder why"

Oh no, they won't will they? What a disaster! My goodness, if only there was a solution, like, ummm... just explaining why?

It's not a big deal. Really.

Karoleann Wed 05-Dec-12 19:18:25

I just think you're being a bit miserable - does it really matter if your DC's take part in a play, lots of shakespeare plays have religious parts to them, are you going to stop your DC's from perfoming in them too.
I think you need to lighten up a bit.

Blu Wed 05-Dec-12 19:18:59

Wow, people have been so harsh on the OP.

As understand it, Islam actually forbids figurative representation of people, as only Allah creates (or something). So drawing the line at depicting a prpophet is just that - drawing a line. Why can't someone join in the cultural aspects of a festival, as she does in the lunch and the secret santa, and her son does in other school Christmas celebrations, but stop short at the point their OWN religion or culture or personal beliefs come into play?

Vegetarians celebrate christmas dinner but stop at turkey. I attend and celebrate the weddings of friends in churches but don't take communion or pray. I would join in a fiesta while on holiday in Spain, but would not particpate in throwing a donkey off a church tower. I celebrate christmas but will not be doing Elf on a Shelf - does that make me non-integrated?

Why are people so confrontational and hostile over these things? Are people taking it personally that her son will not parade about with a tea towel on his head?

Spru Wed 05-Dec-12 19:19:18

DozyDuck grin. In fact grin !!!

sunshine I and many other people of different faiths are quite happy with religious education helping to widen our children's knowledge and understanding. I have no problems with learning about other religions at all. In fact, i love learning about other religions and their beliefs.

LynetteScavo Wed 05-Dec-12 19:20:26

I agree they won't be stuck in the class room, they will either be in nursery, or doing playdoh with the SEN child who can't focus on practicing the nativity for very long.

The other DC will be bored and envy

I'm pretty sure the nativity is much more exciting for parents than children.

Spru Wed 05-Dec-12 19:21:25

lol blu

GhostShip Wed 05-Dec-12 19:21:42

Well I don't expect people to agree with me.

But I think if we want a more tolerant and understanding society, we should all look upon each others cultures with interest and get involved. We don't have to believe in it, but we can take part and support those that do.

I'm Atheist, but I celebrate Eid with my Muslim cousins and friends, go to midnight mass with my Christian friends.. They know I don't believe in their religions but its just a way of showing friendship and support isnt it?

I wouldn't refuse to do harmless things like plays and parties, I wouldn't be so rude.

rednosedreindeerinthegarden Wed 05-Dec-12 19:22:22

OP, i genuinely DON'T understand why your DC can't be IN the play, but not play a lead role. I appreciate your issue with the depiction of prophets, but I don't see why DC couldn't still participate as SOMETHING. Surely that would be an acceptable compromise, and one that would allow your DC to participate in the school activity?

Christmas Cards often depict the Nativity scene, and hideous ornaments arranged around a manger are everywhere. however, i guess that you wouldn't actively avoid a shop which displayed these items?

before I get flamed, this is a genuine question.

I and many other people of different faiths are quite happy with religious education helping to widen our children's knowledge and understanding. I have no problems with learning about other religions at all. In fact, i love learning about other religions and their beliefs. Blinking heck you are sounding reasonable and integrated there OP. You want to watch that!

Spru Wed 05-Dec-12 19:23:33

Karoleann I love some of shakespeare plays, but not others! Is that being miserable

DozyDuck Wed 05-Dec-12 19:23:54


Just out of pure nosiness, why can't they be a different person in the play, or a star?

Is it because they are involved in it still?

not a criticism just interest

Everyone who is saying the OP is causing segregation and being mean is being a bit ridiculous to be quite honest grin

I'm sure your kids will have loads of fun OP.

My DS will probably scream and cry during the nativity, ruining it for everyone because some poor soul will forget themselves and dare to make eye contact with him sad

GhostShip I believe a "more tolerant and understanding society" is one that can deal with difference. We can pick and choose to take part in some aspects of religion but not others. You go to Midnight Mass bit I assume you don't take Communion...

gordyslovesheep Wed 05-Dec-12 19:24:45

Rednosed The OP wouldn't be able to watch the play due to it's content - the issue is the content - the same applies to her child

Lots of Christian families don't take part in anything Halloween related

DozyDuck Wed 05-Dec-12 19:26:54

Thank you gordy I thought that was the case just making sure grin

GhostShip Wed 05-Dec-12 19:28:06

MrsTerryPrachett Isn't really much of a comparison that is it? I'd be strictly forbidden from taking communion anyway, they'd go mad!

And yeah pick and chose, but a nativity play? I can understand that going to church would be a bit far.. but taking part in an hour long play where the kids will probably be a sheep or a star.. grin

TooMuchRain Wed 05-Dec-12 19:28:38

School nativities with random animals and extras all over have about as much to do with religion as a Christmas tree - and I suspect that's why people see your decision as non-integrationist, it's just not perceived as being on the same level as going to church to celebrate etc.

DozyDuck Wed 05-Dec-12 19:29:33

Oh oh oh puts hand up

I didn't let my DS go to an after school trip to the circus because it had wild animals in it.

I am not integrated and am also a complete hypocrite as I let DS eat meat blush

Suitably shamed now just like you OP wink

Spru Wed 05-Dec-12 19:33:05

MrsTP , let me shock people some more grin. In my younger days, intolerant and non-integrated me, managed to get 96% on an a level essay which was about 'all faiths' of the world' ( I am showing off now! grin ) My grammar lost me 4%. Still lets me down! smile

PS: am I hypocritical for not using santa icons all the time or is this a good step toward integration? grin

DozyDuck Wed 05-Dec-12 19:34:57

spru I think a good mix of santa and not Santa smilies is requires for integration. As long as every single person uses both in every post.

Otherwise they are encouraging segregation grin grin <~ doing my bit

whistlestopcafe Wed 05-Dec-12 19:39:25

The Muslim children at my child's school take part, the Jehovah Witness children do not. I respect your views although as an atheist it is quite hard for me to empathise fully. I have no religious beliefs but I celebrate Christmas and I have celebrated Eid, Chinese New Year and hindu festivals too. Although Christmas is obviously a Christian celebration I believe it is also a cultural celebration as well so I don't feel too hypocritical taking part and frankly I couldn't care less if people find it hypocritical.

My mother is an atheist but I had no idea when I was growing up, I assumed she held Christian beliefs. I respect her for not forcing her own views on me as I gained comfort from Christianity as a child.

grin grin [fgrn] grin

It is only OK if you make sure there are an equal number of Santa and non-Santa and that they are strictly alternated. I love arbitrary rules.

GhostShip I actually think it is a good comparison because I'm sure you would not take Communion even if you could. The nativity play is because of the representation of prophets, directly against the OP's beliefs. Not just because she is miserable and joyless. I think she has shown herself, on this thread, to be tolerant, funny and engaged with people of all faiths and none. It's all an act, she is really scary and mean in RL.

Dahm, I broke my own rule with my emoticon fail. grin

Spru Wed 05-Dec-12 19:43:16

lol dozyduck

smile smile

or should it have been the other way round:

smile smile

I think everyone should also give careful consideration to which one should go first. Can't be accused of segregation that way! In fact, they should be done in equal numbers.

You could do it the way that Steve McQueen and Paul Newman did it. One was higher, one was first. So,


Spru Wed 05-Dec-12 19:45:30

x-post again mrsTP Are you reading my mind????????!!!!!!!




That's right.

Spru Wed 05-Dec-12 19:46:09

its spooky! grin

Spru Wed 05-Dec-12 19:46:24

nah, i am just too slow!

No it's not. I'm leaving in shame at my useless, non-integrated emoticons. I think you are great, Spru. Merry Christmas. grin

Spru Wed 05-Dec-12 19:47:46

Merry Christmas to you too MrsTerryPratchett


Spru Wed 05-Dec-12 19:49:41

<waiting to get flamed for picking and choosing to wish merry christmas>


NolittleBuddahsorTigerMomshere Wed 05-Dec-12 19:49:50

Spru, I am a very observant Christian, and I understand why you would feel a conflict here. I cannot/ will not eat Halal Meat and food as I firmly believe 'thou shall worship no other God but me.' Kosher is fine because of old testament being part of the Bible. I have one question, if I were living in a country which practices your religion, would you think IWBU and not integrated if I didn't participate in practices relating to your religion if I had explained why? If not, then in the situation you describe YADNBU. BTW, FWIW, I am touched by your respect for Christian figures by your decision to show them the same respect as the prophets in your religion, by not depicting them, even if you don't follow the religion.

thebody Wed 05-Dec-12 19:50:17

Pozzled understand your point.

It's so far out of my understanding that people allow themselves to be controlled by books and stories and codes of believes of hell and damnation or paradise of all religions that its difficult for me to care.

However I have to confess that when we though dd had died this year I dropped on my knees and prayed.

Wierd aye.

DozyDuck Wed 05-Dec-12 19:51:49

I hope you aren't both wishing merry Christmas without acknowledging all other celebrations at this time of year at the same time shock shock

DoingItOntheRoofTopWithSanta Wed 05-Dec-12 19:53:47

I love that you have received so much abuse for not taking part in a multi cultural society by hundreds of people who have refused to read why you don't take part in something and totally disrespected your religion. very interesting.

Forcing someone to take part in something they feel is wrong is not being muti cultural, it's being a twat. The OP takes part in the festivities and everything else (not that she should have to) but because one thing is morally wrong to her and she doesn't participate she's letting her kids down? Really really? Kids do survive these things christ.

Wallison Wed 05-Dec-12 19:53:51

Haven't read all of the thread but I don't think you're being unreasonable at all. If the nativity play contradicts what you and your children believe then of course they shouldn't take part in it. I am speaking as an atheist here, so of course I don't believe in the Xmas story, but to my mind that is quite different to believing that it's wrong to portray it. I mean, it doesn't go against any of my beliefs, because I don't have any! But you do, and I don't think it's unreasonable to stay true to them and not do things that you are expressly told not to.

ohfunnyface Wed 05-Dec-12 19:58:24


If God is assembly, that God is one cruel bastard!

SilverBaubles33 Wed 05-Dec-12 19:59:07

Ok Spru, thanks for clearing that up. Then you'll understand, I'm sure, why I feel that the UK is one if the most tolerant and inclusive countries I've lived in.

We can have these frank exchanges. I've lived in places where we couldn't.

Sorry if the word offended, I toyed also with bolshy and arsey!

Thread seems to have taken a welcome light turn, which is lovely.

grin grin

Spru Wed 05-Dec-12 20:04:28

NolittleBuddha I wouldnt think that you were BU at all. I only eat halal meat but my friend was not comfortable eating at a Halal Restaurant. So I opted for a non-halal restaurant and had fish and vege option instead. I wasnt offended.

In fact, a part of my belief is that I should be respectful of other people's beliefs. Jesus and Mary mean a HUGE deal to me and hold a great status in Islam and are amazing people from Islam's point of view. I could never do them justice by depicting them in any way. Islam will not allow their depiction as a mark of respect.

DozyDuck Wed 05-Dec-12 20:05:13

ohfunnyface most definitely grin grin poor DS

thebody Wed 05-Dec-12 20:06:19

Be so nice though if all religions could enjoy and explore each others and let their children take part in each others festivals.

At my C of E church school I put EID lights that the children had made onto the shelf above the 'manger area with baby Jesus in a straw cradle'

I am a proud TA and an atheist... ( when going gets tough we all pray though don't we)

DozyDuck Wed 05-Dec-12 20:09:43

thebody I don't pray when the going gets tough smile

Perhaps I should, but to all the gods in all languages. Just to ensure I am not encouraging segregation wink wink

NolittleBuddahsorTigerMomshere Wed 05-Dec-12 20:46:10

YADNU smile

nonameslefttouse Wed 05-Dec-12 20:54:05

The world would be a much nicer place if people believed in what is real and not some story books written far too many years ago!

Just my opinion!

defuse Wed 05-Dec-12 22:54:29

This thread turned much better after some very hostile remarks.

It was getting a bit DM, until thankfully, common sense prevailed!

YANBU, your work colleagues are!

thebody Wed 05-Dec-12 23:02:39

Dozy, neither did I till we thought our dd had died in feb.

She was on a school trip and the coach crashed off the motorway in France.

The head teacher was killed and other teachers were injured.

Dd was trapped and suffered multiple injuries. It was some 5 hours later of agony that we heard via British police that she had survived.

And yes us confirmed atheists prayed.

sashh Thu 06-Dec-12 02:40:33

I don't understand why your child should not be in a play even if its about a different religion from your own

I do.

If you believe that it is absoloutly wrong to depict certain figures then that is what you believe, all the time.

It would be like saying, "I know you don't eat porkk, but it's Christmas" and presenting your Jewish / Muslim / SDA friend with a bacon sandwich.


I'm totally with you. It is your belief, it is nothing to do with integration it is to do with the silly sentimentality we have in this country when it comes to Xmas and Nativity plays.

HollaAtMeSanta Thu 06-Dec-12 03:32:53

I see things like not encouraging children to speak English, making daughters wear a headscarf, not allowing them to attend birthday parties as more indicative of failure to integrate, but I do think a non-faith primary school's nativity play is more cultural than religious; very few of the children in the play will be churchgoers. It's just a story to them so it's a shame that your child in't allowed to participate - couldn't you ask the teacher to ensure that they don't play Mary/Joseph? This refreshing request would no doubt have the advantage of endearing you and your child to the teacher for the rest of the year. grin

HollaAtMeSanta Thu 06-Dec-12 03:35:14

By the way, I had no idea that Jesus, Mary and Joseph were even on Islam's radar, so thanks for the new information! I have learnt a new thing today, hurrah smile

justaboutchilledout Thu 06-Dec-12 04:41:54

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

nahla321 Thu 06-Dec-12 08:07:22

I think you are being slightly dramatic. It is not as if they are trying to convert your child into another religion in any way shape or form. It is selfish for children to have to miss out due to parents beliefs and I think it is important for children to learn about and embrace other cultures and religions especially the one they live in. I would rethink your decision.

SilverBaubles33 Thu 06-Dec-12 08:18:32

I think it is important for children to learn about and embrace other cultures and religions especially the one they live in

I've just posted a similar sentiment elsewhere.

It is this sort of open minded approach that will rub off on the next generation. I truly believe it is our parental duty responsibility to model this sort of tolerance and curiosity.

Passing on this laudable approach to our children is so important. We can all be peace envoys in our own ways if we want to see an end to bigotry and intolerance.

Mrsjay Thu 06-Dec-12 08:27:59

I'm pretty sure the nativity is much more exciting for parents than children.

oh goodness me yes children actually find it annoying and some have attention spans of gnats I helped at a nativity years ago poor teacher nearly had a breakdown at curtain up , it is for parents to watch and get the cameras out and all that.

exoticfruits Thu 06-Dec-12 08:29:15

I just think it terribly sad for your DC.

exoticfruits Thu 06-Dec-12 08:31:02

I am pleased that my parents put me before principles. And who knows what your DC will decide for himself in the future? I have yet to meet an adult who says 'I am a ................ because my mother was'!

Mrsjay Thu 06-Dec-12 08:38:29

It isn't principles though it is part of the Op faith, I wouldn't feel sad for her children I am sure they will be fine and catered (for want of a better word) at school when the other children are doing the nativity, we live in a multi religion country we can't expect other people to fall into our traditions because it might upset little ones,

valiumredhead Thu 06-Dec-12 08:39:25

exotic millions of Catholics? wink

Floggingmolly Thu 06-Dec-12 09:10:58

Absolutely, Valium

lljkk Thu 06-Dec-12 10:14:10

The baby Jesus was NOT a prophet. Nor were Mary & Joseph prophets.

I think your religious interpretation is too strict. Do you shun all images of Mary-Joseph-Jesus: cards, billboards, gravestones, outside a church, on leaflets put thru the door? Would you campaign to have those images removed?


amirah85 Thu 06-Dec-12 11:37:13

nolittleBuddah why do u think halal food is worshipping another then God?genuine question,sorry if daft

DozyDuck Thu 06-Dec-12 12:33:57

the body that must have been a horrible experience sad I am glad she is ok.

I have been through a personal experience where some might pray. Many did. I did not.

topsi Thu 06-Dec-12 12:52:07

YABU, sorry I feel very SAD for your children.
Children hate to feel different from others and imagine how they will feel being left out.
I am an aethiest and my son is in the school play and even went to light house this year where he learnt how 'god died on the ex'.
They can make up their own mind in due time.
Please let them join in.

DozyDuck Thu 06-Dec-12 13:03:07

Topsi why do children hate to feel different from others?? Are all children exactly the same then? hmm

Mrsjay Thu 06-Dec-12 13:35:20

children should embrace their differences and not try and be little clones of hating to be left out so we all should fit children into the same little boxes, on the very trivial side what if a child has a very expensive new shiny toy or game should all children get them so they 'fit in' and not be 'left out'

Cookiewise Thu 06-Dec-12 13:39:42


My family is not Hindu but my son will be involved in the school play of Rama and Sita. It's just a play ffs, they are not going to steal your child and force him to be a Christian. If you are that worried about your child being in a Christian play it says more about being insecure about your own religion imo.

camdancer Thu 06-Dec-12 13:54:48

YANBU. I grew up in this country but with a different religion. I think when you have religious beliefs that are different to the majority you have to decide where you draw the lines. My parents said that my sisters and I could be in plays about the Christmas season but not actual nativity plays. I know that my school did nativity plays a few times while I was there and I really can't remember what I did but know I wasn't in it. It really didn't scar me for life. I do remember being one of the 8 maids a milking when we did the 12 days of Christmas one year. smile

It isn't about not integrating. It is about deciding what is important to you and your family. Not depicting prophets is important to you so your children don't get involved. Learning about religions is very different from doing something that is directly against your beliefs.

DozyDuck Thu 06-Dec-12 14:06:06

cookie when did the OP say she was worried about them being in a Christian play? She wouldn't let them depict prophets even if it was a play about a Muslim story. Read the thread please.

milkandribena Thu 06-Dec-12 14:37:04

valium don't forget jewish people (*exotic*)

OP I disagree with you. But you have the right too and as long as your DC knows why...
I doubt your colleagues would have said such a thing to a Jehovah witness.
Father Christmas, present giving to me isn't religious in the slightest, Christmas is mixed up with very ancient traditions and secular customs.

But where do you draw the line with what your children can do? what about the cartoon strips of the Nativity (which everyone seems to do) can they never look at a picture that may be on the side of the road (as ll said). What of learning about moses, abraham, jacob ?? (sorry my OT is very rusty but I think they are all viewed as prohets) Watching Charlton Hestor, or what of Noah's ark?

To avoid all of seeing, drawing being exposed to pictures and dipictions of prophets which bar one are shared by christiannity and bar 2 (?) shared with judaism in northern europe where the dipiction of such people is commonplace and part of (for many) the public religious sphere and religious education seems like you are making a rod for your own back.
Open up any religious text book these major people often have a picture, they obmit pictures of Mohammed out of respect such laws about jesus dont exist (given that of the 2 religions that mention him he plays a much much bigger part in the one that likes having images of him) so they are depicted.

But I'm sure Mary and Joseph aren't -that would be odd if they were they aren't in christianity.

I imagine OP you would let depict major people in sikhism or hinduism - as they are not prohets, correct me if I'm wrong?

Holla the virgin mother is given more coverage in the Quran than the bible. Not something the catholic church goes around advertising - we kind of like to claim her.

I may not agree but you can do it. Personally I think it is sad and ott (one of the muslim girls in one of my primary schools got to be mary) A lot of hard work for something that could just be explained to your DC about why jesus is depicted (as he can be in christianity - we kind of go in for it)

It seems odd and far far to much work and effort and depriving your DC of a lot (going far beyond Nativity which really is a show at the end of the day) in their education and schooling and every day life.
But it isnot about intergration in the slightest.

QueenOfToast Thu 06-Dec-12 14:41:59

YANBU but you are being incredibly naive about the whole thing. What do you think they are doing at school if they're not doing the play?

If it's anything like the schools that I've worked in then a lot of the school day at this time of year is spent rehearsing the wretched nativity thing over and over and over again.

Not sure what happens if your parents don't want you to join in, but I'm guessing that your children will be sitting in the same room as the other children in their class, watching them do the rehearsals but not allowed to join in themselves. Then, on the day of the performance they'll be sitting in a classroom with a TA doing craft activities (maybe making Christmas decorations grin) while the rest of the school community have a jolly time without them.

Let them join in but be a sheep or something that is not offensive. I think that it's about flexibility and compromise and showing that we can celebrate the end of the school term and the holiday season (Eid, Diwali, Chanukah, Christmas, Winter Solstice) together.

GreenPetals Thu 06-Dec-12 14:45:53

I think it is important for children to learn about and embrace other cultures and religions especially the one they live in

???? Children need to embrace the religion of the country they live in???
Do you mean that they should act as if they were following that religion (or at least wouldn't be that bothered about it, ie being very hypocritical) whilst... practising their own religion only in private in such a way that no one knew 'because otherwise they wouldn't be integrated to the society'?
Or do you mean they should follow the religion of that country?

And I though that state and religion were separate a long time ago and religion was now only a personal and private decision. Silly me.

CarlingBlackMabel Thu 06-Dec-12 16:37:14

Half the posters saying 'let them be in the nativity' are making wild and inaccurate assumptions about WHY the OP doesn't want them to particpate.


It isn't because she doesn't want them to learn about Christianity, it isn't because she doesn't want them to take part in Christmas celebrations, it isn't because she is against christianity or integrating.


In fact many muslims, and muslim teaching, bans the depiction of all living things, including humans. That is why Islamic art is very pattern based, and very beautiful it is, too.

Blackberryinoperative Thu 06-Dec-12 17:05:37

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

I've reported your post Blackberry. I know a lot of Muslims and none of them are hostile or annoying. HTH.

Wallison Thu 06-Dec-12 17:07:37

Oh my. Kind of ironic that you're writing about tolerance there, Blackberry.

PorkyScratching Thu 06-Dec-12 17:08:28

My kids were recently in a Diwali play at school. No way would I ask them to be excluded!

Blackberryinoperative Thu 06-Dec-12 17:09:04

(massive shrug ). My opinion.

Mrsjay Thu 06-Dec-12 17:17:21

you shrug as if what you said means nothing I have reported also

lisad123 Thu 06-Dec-12 17:18:31

I'm shocked how many people feel sorry for OP, seriously it's a school play for goodness sake. There's nothing to suggest he isn't loved, cherish and maybe spoilt rotten.

We go on and on about how accepting we should be abouts beliefs and cultures but heaven forbid someone should choose to raise their kids in a religion that isn't Christian and stick to their beliefs

Sirzy Thu 06-Dec-12 17:18:52

May be your opinion, doesn't mean people have to accept it though. Most muslims I know are an awful lot more tolerant than you sound.

Blackberryinoperative Thu 06-Dec-12 17:19:50

I don't have to accept your professionally offended opinions either.

Sirzy Thu 06-Dec-12 17:20:49

Its nothing about being professionally offended. Its about not judging a whole religion based on nothing.

Mrsjay Thu 06-Dec-12 17:20:51

Oh get a grip personally offended my arse

Mrsjay Thu 06-Dec-12 17:21:12

professionally even

Sirzy Thu 06-Dec-12 17:21:27

Good to see MNHQ on the ball this evening!

Blackberryinoperative Thu 06-Dec-12 17:21:47

Op is judging my religion too. Basically "it's a story" blah blah all those comments are offensive to me.

Sirzy Thu 06-Dec-12 17:23:28

So you find someone having differing beliefs to you offensive? What a lovely accepting attitude you have to life!

Mrsjay Thu 06-Dec-12 17:23:46

she isn't judging your religion 1 bit she doesn't want to let her children take part in something in which HER religion doesn't agree with it is about actors portraying phrophets read the bloody original posy she has nothing against your religion at all

FromEsme Thu 06-Dec-12 17:23:54

OP, I think you're in the right here and I'm completely atheist.

If prophets are not depicted in your religion, and you believe that to be something that is important to you, then you should stick to it, not just go along with it because the kids might feel left out. It's important to stick to your beliefs and I think too many people compromise on stuff because they want to fit in.

Mrsjay Thu 06-Dec-12 17:24:11


gordyslovesheep Thu 06-Dec-12 17:24:54

now who's professionally offended !

Mrsjay Thu 06-Dec-12 17:26:04

well I also think Your religion is just a story and a load of nonsense I do not believe in any god so you are offended by all non christians then

Professionally offended. No you're wrong, I'm personally offended. HTH.

Blackberryinoperative Thu 06-Dec-12 17:26:32

Whatever. I know what I think.

thebody Thu 06-Dec-12 17:26:54

Blackberry, there are bigoted and intolerant people of all and no religions.

It's not right and its unfair to pick on one specific religion.

A few years ago in Brum the council changed the Christmas celebrations to wintervul so as to not offend Muslims etc.

Muslim leaders thought it was a daft idea and didn't support it.

Mrsjay Thu 06-Dec-12 17:27:42

Whatever. I know what I think.

and now we know as well hmm

Sirzy Thu 06-Dec-12 17:27:54

And I know what I think of people who think like you!

I have to say though, that is a very well constructed counter argument!

Blackberryinoperative Thu 06-Dec-12 17:28:22

The body I think I know what you are getting at. It really pisses me off that some peoples opinions are valid and others are not round here.

Blackberryinoperative Thu 06-Dec-12 17:29:22

So because I don't agree with you, Im wrong? Now who is intolerant.

Mrsjay Thu 06-Dec-12 17:29:31

your opinions are valid to some but not all we dont have to agree with you and we didn't your point is still valid to people who think like you do,

FromEsme Thu 06-Dec-12 17:30:44

Oh Christ thebody , that winterval thing is a load of bollocks, google it and it's the first thing that comes it.

It's one of those things that's become a by-word for bashing people who don't agree with racism.

Blackberryinoperative Thu 06-Dec-12 17:31:20

When did I ask anyone to agree with me!

gordyslovesheep Thu 06-Dec-12 17:32:04

BIRMINGHAM CITY COUNCIL NEVER changed the festivities to Winterval so as not to offend Muslims - what a croc of shit - they changed it to make it A) culturally accessible to ALL council tax payers (Jewish, Muslim, JW, Atheist etc) and B) to make more money out of it by stretching it into January

Many faiths have winter festivals - Winterval included all of them

Father CHRISTMAS featured quite heavily smile

gordyslovesheep Thu 06-Dec-12 17:33:09

Blackberry do you think it's possible you ARE actually wrong? or are you the Pope and therefore infallible

FromEsme Thu 06-Dec-12 17:33:46

It's the Muslims, they're trying to ban Christmas, every time they see a Christmas tree, they pull it to the ground and stand on it because Muslims hate Christmas so.

Sirzy Thu 06-Dec-12 17:34:11

You haven't asked anyone to agree with you, but you seem to be taking very badly to anyone who is telling you that your views are coming across as rather bigoted.

I don't think the OP is BU to not want her DC to join in the Nativity. My own parents CHRISTIAN church will not depict the nativity, and would never have a nativity set on display due to the belief that you shouldn't make an image of God/ Jesus. The OP is entitled to her own opinion and it hardly counts as "not integrating" im--not so--ho grin. It would be nice of teh school could find something that her DC and the other children who will not be participating could get involved in, at teh same time that the nativity is being rehearsed and performed. Whether it was connected, such as lighting, costume making, or something totally different, so they don't feel left out.

Don't forget us atheists as well, FromEsme. We hate Christmas <hides Baileys and The Muppet Christmas Carol>. Those Jews too, none of them have ever come to my Christmas party I'm lying, four did last year.

Mrsjay Thu 06-Dec-12 17:36:17

you didn't ask but you seemed a bit offended when you thought you couldn't have an opinion well you can have an opinion but people are allowed to tell you that it is a load of rubbish

Wallison Thu 06-Dec-12 17:37:47

Re tolerance, you know how at the school gates you get bunches of people where the same people always talk to each other/go for coffee together/have playdates? Well, when my son started school pretty much all of the white people ignored me because I was a single parent. I know that this was the reason. The people who returned my smiles and greetings and who made an effort to include me in their conversations were the Muslim mothers - probably because I was, like them, an 'outsider'. As the years have gone by and our children are growing up together, I am now proud to count them as proper friends, and they have never ever judged me, even though I know that how I live is completely contrary to their own beliefs and customs. I have heard first-hand from my friends how they have been treated in this country - their children being spat on and told to 'fuck off back home' while out playing in the street, the mothers themselves having their head-coverings pulled off in busy shopping areas and being lambasted by complete strangers about halal meat or whatever 'outrage' some local rent-a-gob has got their racist knickers in a twist about. One of my friends even had her garage fire-bombed.

The white parents do talk to me now, but I don't count them as friends in the same way - why would I, when I already now have a close circle of mothers who showed me kindness and took me under their wing when I needed it? So you can shove your comments about tolerance up your arse - my friends are tolerant, much more so than the other parents at that school, and they are tolerant even in the face of outright hostility and criminal behaviour from the people around them.

thebody Thu 06-Dec-12 17:37:48

That's what I am saying.. It became general gossip here in Birmingham that it was changed so as to ' not offend Muslims' and that muslims had 'demanded this' just wasn't true

That's how misinformation and racism is spread.

FromEsme Thu 06-Dec-12 17:38:11

I actually do hate Christmas and do nothing to celebrate it.

Am I not integrating properly either?

thebody Thu 06-Dec-12 17:39:17

Lovely post wallison if sad.

RiaUnderTheMistletoe Thu 06-Dec-12 17:40:50

shock FromEsme Scrooge Grinch Santa-hater

gordyslovesheep Thu 06-Dec-12 17:40:54

I get you TheBody - I love it when people claim 'The Muslims' are 'STOPPING' them celebrating Christmas - unless they are blockading churches I think that's piffle grin

PlaySchool Thu 06-Dec-12 17:41:22

Can't you just see the Nativity as a story, just like any other one? Would you exclude them from a Diwali activity or a Hanukkah one if the school was getting involved. It doesn't mean you have to believe the story in order to take part.

thebody Thu 06-Dec-12 17:41:59

Indeed it's just bl

thebody Thu 06-Dec-12 17:42:37

Bloody daft( daft I phone)

MrsDeVere Thu 06-Dec-12 17:43:18

blackberry most of the posters backing the OP have no religion at all.

I cant see a massive influx of hostile Muslims making her right, can you?

I did question why she felt so strongly about one part of the Christmas thing but not others. But it was a genuine enquiry rather than a criticism.

No one should be forced into religious activities if they do not feel comfortable.

You are a religious person, why don't you understand? confused

Mrsjay Thu 06-Dec-12 17:43:49

Lovely post wallison if sad.

yes it is a sad read but you have lovely friends wallisnon

gordyslovesheep Thu 06-Dec-12 17:45:21

oh playschool read the thread grin

Mrsjay Thu 06-Dec-12 17:45:56

Can't you just see the Nativity as a story,

but she can't do that her faith says she cant take part in anything that depicts ( is that the right word) prophets and in islam mary and joseph and jesus are prophets it would be like celebrating a false idol ' or something'

CarlingBlackMabel Thu 06-Dec-12 17:49:08

PorkScratching - no reason for you to exclude your kids from a Diwali play, because unlike the OP you do not find it blasphemous to depict the prophets in art or by actors.

How can anyone have a discussion in which views are exchanged and people learn from each other if no-one reads the thread and the actual reason the OP wants to withdraw her kids?

Bakingnovice Thu 06-Dec-12 17:50:11


The level of intolerance and ignorance on this, and other AIBU threads, is simply astounding. 'non integration' is the latest weapon with which to bash any community which is considered different.

Mrsjay Thu 06-Dec-12 17:50:35

I have learned loads from this thread some great some not so much hmm

thebody Thu 06-Dec-12 18:04:27

Yes I didn't know depicting the prophets was blasphemous( sorry if that's not quite right and sorry to b a bit thick) op in that case you have to decide to satisfy your own beliefs I think.

V interesting thread.

Sirzy Thu 06-Dec-12 18:07:03

I think it's sad that some people feel the only way to integrate into society is by foregoing their own beliefs.

Surely as a society we all need to be much more accepting of individual difference rather than expecting everyone to fit into one Way of living?

crescentmoon Thu 06-Dec-12 18:11:59

Thawholly to those in this thread who understood the OPs point even if they dont believe in any religion. Merry christmas

crescentmoon Thu 06-Dec-12 18:13:01

Thanks to those in this thread who understood the OPs point even if they don't believe in any religion. Merry Christmas

crescentmoon Thu 06-Dec-12 18:16:09

In my head when I imagine Mary, or jesus, or Muhammad (peace be upon them all) I have a smooth blank space. I imagine the scenery around them but as for them, and Abraham, Moses, joseph, Adam, John the baptist - we believe he was a prophet as well, etc all smooth blank spaces. Not to dishonour them but to honour them and their message

PessaryPam Thu 06-Dec-12 18:17:17

Religion, such a wonderful divisive thing.....

PessaryPam Thu 06-Dec-12 18:18:21

And I think much of this offence and outrage and awkwardness is just attention seeking.

LadyIsabellaWrotham Thu 06-Dec-12 18:20:49

I cannot believe people are still running the "it's just a story" line.

I believe it's just a story. I would be more than happy for my DD to be Mary because it's the star role and she'd get to dress up and show off. IMO it's just like getting to be Juliet in Romeo and Juliet.

The OP, OTOH, presumably believes (as per the Quran) that it is not just a story, and that Mary actually did conceive a baby as a virgin by the direct intervention of God. Telling her that she should treat it as a fairytale is not likely to be persuasive.

inclusion - the definition (bare with me, I am on a course..... a job centre course..... its fine.... but I miss my 'real job') is NOT treat everyone the same, do the same to everyone.... but to celebrate DIFFERENCE and allow people their OWN wishes and preferences.

Their is no intolerance in OPs postings - she is not suggesting the play doesn;t happen. Only to not join in. No big deal.

I am (well.... was before redundancy and many many courses....) and we had no prob in allowing children to do sifferent things. Some children had bigger writing, some signed carols, some danced to xmas pop, some sang about diwali etc etc. Its the difference in us that make us interesting.

How do your kids feel about it OP?

Blackberryinoperative Thu 06-Dec-12 19:05:36

Well in my head the Koran is just a smooth blank space. And that's how I like to imagine it. And that's how I want my children to observe it.

Op you will get from me exactly what you are giving out.

MrsDeVere Thu 06-Dec-12 19:11:02

Wow, cool comeback Blackberry

Stephen Fry will be quaking

RiaUnderTheMistletoe Thu 06-Dec-12 19:11:38

Blackberry how is that even remotely the same thing?

Sirzy Thu 06-Dec-12 19:13:17

The OP hasn't asked anyone to change how they act, simply chosen not to take part in something that her religion doesn't agree with.

On the other hand it would seem Blackberry is unwilling to accept anyones views but her own.

Are you a Christian, Balckberry? Because it may interest you to know I am an atheist who has read the Bible. I see no blank space where the Bible is. I think that would be ignorant and arrogant of me. Being horrible, judgmental and generalising about others' beliefs and culture is alien to me. <Shrugs>

Spru Thu 06-Dec-12 19:16:20

Hi all,

just checked and found this thread has been busy.... smile

Still catching up....

Will write more as soon as i have got to the end.


Spru Thu 06-Dec-12 19:32:40 to the end....

Thank you again for the many who are taking the time out to explain to some what my OP

Blackberry I am still unsure what I have said that may have caused offense?

MrsClown1 Thu 06-Dec-12 19:38:24

My son went to a church primary school where they had a nativity and had a christian ethos. However, they did teach other religions (had Diwali, Ede (sorry if I spelled that wrong). I was never asked if I wanted my son not to learn about other religions it was just done and we were unaware. I wouldnt have expected them to allow my son not to learn about other religions and values - I felt it was important for him to learn these things to help him make choices later on in life. He has to decide for himself and make an informed choice. I shouldnt force him to be anything but who he is. I feel that way for all humans but that is just my opinion.

MrsClown that is a good attitude, one that I think the OP shares. She likes learning about other religions and wants her DC to do the same. It is actively participating in something she considers to be contrary to her beliefs (portraying the Prophets) that she is against. Sorry OP to speak for you.

It would be like my DC visiting a Church (fine) and crossing themselves (less fine) and being made to pray (not fine at all).

Sirzy Thu 06-Dec-12 19:45:22

MrsClown the OP hasn't stated any problems with children learning about other religions. However her religion (and therefore the religion her child is being raised in) states that you don't depict prophets which is why she has taken the choice to withdraw him from this one activity.

Viviennemary Thu 06-Dec-12 19:58:52

YABU. I have worked people that were of a different faith and they joined in Christmas celebrations and sent Christmas cards.

Viviennemary Thu 06-Dec-12 19:59:29

*with people

MrsClown1 Thu 06-Dec-12 20:03:58

Im not saying the OP is or isnt, I was just stating my opinion. I can understand people have different ways of looking at this issue.

Blackberryinoperative Thu 06-Dec-12 20:11:10

Oh sorry, I thought smooth blank spaces were honourable substitutes for other peoples customs and beleifs.

RiaUnderTheMistletoe Thu 06-Dec-12 20:18:56

AFAIK it's the faces/physical representations, not the people or beliefs themselves (although probably you're just being contrary).

PlaySchool Thu 06-Dec-12 20:18:57

Oh, I see. Would have helped if that was explained in the OP. in that case then her children should not take part.