Advice please. What does a new atheist tell their children?
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21-01-2013, 02:30 PM
Advice please. What does a new atheist tell their children?
I used to be a charismatic Christian. My kids remember going to church a lot as toddlers, two to four times a week. I recently (by which I mean the last two years) recant this, and even today my 12 year old daughter wonders why we don't go to church anymore. I play the semantic game a LOT, as in "well, some people believe this and some people believe that". I'm not particularly against my kids identifying as Christian as long as I can instill in them the idea that it's never okay to oppress others. My daughter in particular seems to really cling to it, and in some ways, I feel I am failing her by not taking her to church. I don't know what to do.
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21-01-2013, 02:32 PM
RE: Advice please. What does a new atheist tell their children?
Take it slow and let time assist you.

Evolve
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21-01-2013, 02:39 PM
RE: Advice please. What does a new atheist tell their children?
... just crawl into the oven - I wanna check if the light is working...

Sorry couldn't resist Wink Agree with His Beardliness.
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21-01-2013, 02:41 PM (This post was last modified: 21-01-2013 02:45 PM by Peterkin.)
RE: Advice please. What does a new atheist tell their children?
At 12, the girl doesn't have to be taken to church. She can go with relatives or friends, or even by herself. Throughout my teens, i attended services in the various churches of my friends and learned quite a lot about their customs. I would encourage every young person to do this: it gives them perspective.

Another thing that happened during the high-school years was long discussions with my mother and brother (father was not a discusser) about what we were all reading and thinking, how our convictions were shaping up. Did some of that with my own kids in their mid- to late teens, when they were exploring the spiritual, supernatural and paranormal. We tend to patronize and underestimate our children these days. A frank discussion - about issues more significant than homework, allowance or whose turn it is to clean the bathroom - can be rewarding for all concerned, so long as you each listen and respect the other's pov.

It's not the mean god I have trouble with - it's the people who worship a mean god.
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21-01-2013, 02:44 PM
RE: Advice please. What does a new atheist tell their children?
Oh shit, beard battle.

http://i.imgur.com/J63QKp8.jpg
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21-01-2013, 02:53 PM
RE: Advice please. What does a new atheist tell their children?
(21-01-2013 02:44 PM)happy cricket Wrote:  Oh shit, beard battle.

http://i.imgur.com/J63QKp8.jpg
My Beard

[attachment=1051]

You've just been [Image: CtipW.gif]

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21-01-2013, 02:59 PM
RE: Advice please. What does a new atheist tell their children?
Oh shit son. I recall when my beard was so young and unkempt. BAM.
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21-01-2013, 03:06 PM
RE: Advice please. What does a new atheist tell their children?
(21-01-2013 02:30 PM)happy cricket Wrote:  I used to be a charismatic Christian. My kids remember going to church a lot as toddlers, two to four times a week. I recently (by which I mean the last two years) recant this, and even today my 12 year old daughter wonders why we don't go to church anymore. I play the semantic game a LOT, as in "well, some people believe this and some people believe that". I'm not particularly against my kids identifying as Christian as long as I can instill in them the idea that it's never okay to oppress others. My daughter in particular seems to really cling to it, and in some ways, I feel I am failing her by not taking her to church. I don't know what to do.

Have you asked her why?


Wind's in the east, a mist coming in
Like something is brewing and about to begin
Can't put my finger on what lies in store
but I feel what's to happen has happened before...


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21-01-2013, 03:14 PM (This post was last modified: 21-01-2013 03:18 PM by Luminon.)
RE: Advice please. What does a new atheist tell their children?
Try to use some critical thinking skills in front of them. I suppose they don't believe in Santa anymore. Well, try some books about an invisible pink unicorn and other critical thinking or science themes. Buy them on birthdays. You probably should replace the church with something, but you can do it sort of "unofficially", in a seemingly unrelated way.

If your kids become Christians, remember, you're responsible for their moral and intellectual development. You might ask them for some clarification as for how and why do they believe. It's all right, they should be just clear about it, try to justify themselves. And if they can't, if it's just a habit or something, they should just admit that honestly. I believe that lack of clarity about their belief would make the children susceptible to later proselytizing and scare-mongering.

If you claim there are nuances to principles, there are no nuances to getting arrested or shot for disobeying the power.
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22-01-2013, 06:34 AM
RE: Advice please. What does a new atheist tell their children?
I'm taking it slowly with my daughter who turns 7 early this year. I've told her that I'm an atheist. She is identifying as Christian but doesn't really understand all that entails yet. Right now she's struggling with the idea that I won't go to heaven and wishing I would be there to join her, and I don't know. I don't know which is worse. The child abuse of telling her that there is a hell and that she should be afraid of (her words) "the red devil who lives there" and not telling her I don't believe in it, or the child abuse of letting her deal with the idea that if what she's been told by others is true I'm on my way to meet the red devil.

So far I'm letting time do some of the work.

Give me your argument in the form of a published paper, and then we can start to talk.
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