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A question for atheists
05-20-2010, 03:30 PM
Post: #1
A question for atheists
This is an honest question, to see if my parents actions/views would be commonplace among other atheists. I know this is not a big enough sample, but go with me here, please. If they don't apply, go wih a hypothetical, please?

1. If you have/had children, how would you raise them with regards to religion and spirituality?

2. How would you react if they wanted to explore religion?

3. How would you react if they came to a belief in a deity or deities, and converted to a religion?
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05-21-2010, 01:57 AM
Post: #2
RE: A question for atheists
(05-20-2010 03:30 PM)Adhara Wrote:  This is an honest question, to see if my parents actions/views would be commonplace among other atheists. I know this is not a big enough sample, but go with me here, please. If they don't apply, go wih a hypothetical, please?

1. If you have/had children, how would you raise them with regards to religion and spirituality?


I'd read world mythologies to them like all parents do.

Quote:2. How would you react if they wanted to explore religion?

buy them whatever books they want.

Quote:3. How would you react if they came to a belief in a deity or deities, and converted to a religion?

I'm sorry, but that wouldn't happen. sufficient perspective changes you on the inside. Any child of mine would have enough direct experience and
skepticism to never rely upon a belief system.
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05-21-2010, 07:56 AM
Post: #3
RE: A question for atheists
(05-21-2010 01:57 AM)prometheuspan Wrote:  Any child of mine would have enough direct experience and
skepticism to never rely upon a belief system.

Famous last words...
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05-21-2010, 08:38 AM
Post: #4
RE: A question for atheists
(05-21-2010 07:56 AM)digipixel Wrote:  
(05-21-2010 01:57 AM)prometheuspan Wrote:  Any child of mine would have enough direct experience and
skepticism to never rely upon a belief system.

Famous last words...

i disagree, but i can see how that might look suspicious if you didn't have
real access.
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05-21-2010, 08:46 AM (This post was last modified: 05-21-2010 08:49 AM by StarStuff.)
Post: #5
RE: A question for atheists
(05-20-2010 03:30 PM)Adhara Wrote:  1. If you have/had children, how would you raise them with regards to religion and spirituality?

I would not make any attempt to lead them to believe or disbelieve anything in particular. I'd probably read to them from whatever mythologies I could find; greek, roman, judeo-christian, norse, etc. Of course, these would be mixed in with the other fictional books I'd read to them, such as works by Bruce Coville, Madeleine L'Engle, Lynn Reed Banks, and others among my own childhood favorites.

Quote:2. How would you react if they wanted to explore religion?

I would have no objections.

Quote:3. How would you react if they came to a belief in a deity or deities, and converted to a religion?

I would be fully supportive of them.
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05-21-2010, 09:10 AM
Post: #6
RE: A question for atheists
It is truly wonderful to see how the childless intend to bring up their children, when and if they have them. I really mean that with all sincerity and humility. I did exactly that 30 odd years ago and I remember it like it was yesterday.
Unfortunately reality stuck it's ugly nose into our plans. Between you and I reality won.
Please don't construe this to mean that you can not have dreams, aspirations or plans. Just be aware that "the best laid plans of mice and men"

????????????????
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05-21-2010, 10:04 AM
Post: #7
RE: A question for atheists
Quote:I'm sorry, but that wouldn't happen. sufficient perspective changes you on the inside. Any child of mine would have enough direct experience and
skepticism to never rely upon a belief system.

Funny, both my parents said the same thing when my brother and I were teens. We're both theists now.

And Geoffrey Taucer, I'm glad you would be fully supportive.
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05-23-2010, 11:38 AM
Post: #8
RE: A question for atheists
At the time I was helping to raise our daughter, I was a Catholic. We raised her in that tradition. Sent her to Catholic schools, helped out with religious instruction, attended Mass regularly. Essentially, we tried our best. But she refused to accept the beliefs of Catholicism and eventually became an atheist. Her decision was greatly disappointing to me because I truly believed in the Church, but I honored her decision and respected her choice.

Now, I too am an atheist (not due to her influence, but entirely on my own). If I had another child I would raise them to be skeptical of outlandish claims from all directions, whether from religion, media, music, or that ShamWow! guy. If they chose to join a religion, I would certainly be disappointed, but understanding.

I certainly think it's reasonable to attempt to influence a child to accept your beliefs. But more than that, it's also our job to teach them to think for themselves and make up their own minds. I don't think I have the right to force any decisions on anybody. In the end, the decision is theirs alone.

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05-25-2010, 09:27 PM
Post: #9
RE: A question for atheists
(05-23-2010 11:38 AM)MerryAtheist Wrote:  At the time I was helping to raise our daughter, I was a Catholic. We raised her in that tradition. Sent her to Catholic schools, helped out with religious instruction, attended Mass regularly. Essentially, we tried our best. But she refused to accept the beliefs of Catholicism and eventually became an atheist. Her decision was greatly disappointing to me because I truly believed in the Church, but I honored her decision and respected her choice.

Now, I too am an atheist (not due to her influence, but entirely on my own). If I had another child I would raise them to be skeptical of outlandish claims from all directions, whether from religion, media, music, or that ShamWow! guy. If they chose to join a religion, I would certainly be disappointed, but understanding.

I certainly think it's reasonable to attempt to influence a child to accept your beliefs. But more than that, it's also our job to teach them to think for themselves and make up their own minds. I don't think I have the right to force any decisions on anybody. In the end, the decision is theirs alone.

Yes I agree, TOO MANY people LOOSE there own ABILITY to learn the truth by being FORCED to follow one particular religious belief, instead of being allowed to experience LIFE for themselves, and learn as much as they can about everything, and formulate there own opinions.

I was raised Roman Catholic, I only had to READ some history to realize that was a BAD choice....

Me personally the GOD of the

Christians/Catholics/Muslims/Jews

is a FAIRY TALE anyways.....we might as well WORSHIP UNICORNS...


I do believe in other beings that have evolved a conscious, and that the universe is filled with billions of living beings some conscious and some not, some would be geniuses to us, others would be amoebas....

GOD to me, is the Planetary/Universal consciousness/Energy...

:-)
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05-27-2010, 11:52 PM (This post was last modified: 05-27-2010 11:53 PM by IMtM.)
Post: #10
RE: A question for atheists
(05-25-2010 09:27 PM)prdamico Wrote:  GOD to me, is the Planetary/Universal consciousness/Energy...
I agree. God is the sum total of all existence, not some peeping-Tom in the sky judging our every action. But such depiction of God is at best suggestive, by necessity. We, as humans, can not perceive the Infinite ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ein_Sof ). Thus, at best, we can use such depictions as a DIRECTIVE toward our Aim, rather than a rationalistic definition.

..
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