Atheists not raising their kids as atheists
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03-12-2014, 12:42 AM
RE: Atheists not raising their kids as atheists
Pretty irrelevant. Given the evidence at a young age, odds are likely they'll turn out atheist.
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03-12-2014, 07:30 AM
RE: Atheists not raising their kids as atheists
Well I am not technically raising atheist. I have a mixed marriage, that did not start out mixed. I think it would be wrong of me to go militant atheist on my wife. When we got married I was a super involved catholic and was for a long time in our marriage, even after I stopped believing. Right now I am trying to raise free thinking kids. I believe I have reached my girls, my son is a bit young still to know for sure.
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03-12-2014, 07:49 AM
RE: Atheists not raising their kids as atheists
(02-12-2014 01:11 PM)CleverUsername Wrote:  I keep seeing atheists with kids online talking about how they let their kids "decide for themselves" and "teach them to think, not to be atheists" and various other things like that.

I never really understood this either, especially since many atheists see religion as harmful, as a sort disease, rather than something innocuous. I mean I don't want my children to decide for themselves if they should be nazis, bigots, racists, or some other forms of scum on the earth, or take on any other extremely harmful lifestyle, that endangers not only them but humanity as a whole.

I would assume if atheists really believed like Sam Harris that religion is worse than rape, then they would warn their children of how vile and disgusting religion is, and insure they stay away from it the best they can.

My hunch is that atheists don't generally buy their own bullshit regarding the harmfulness of religion, particularly when they seem so callous about it in regards to child rearing.
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03-12-2014, 08:30 AM
RE: Atheists not raising their kids as atheists
(03-12-2014 07:49 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  I never really understood this either,

I don't understand it either, not because religion is vile, but because I want to pass on what I know of the world. Leaving the question of gods open, the creatures of myth and fable, makes no more sense to me than leaving open the question of unicorns and goblins; the creatures of fairy tales.

Are goblins real? That's something you'll have to decide for yourself, Sweetie. No one really knows.

Is Odin real? That's something you'll have to decide for yourself, Sweetie. No one really knows.

Is God real? That's something you'll have to decide for yourself, Sweetie. No one really knows.
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03-12-2014, 08:35 AM
RE: Atheists not raising their kids as atheists
(03-12-2014 07:49 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(02-12-2014 01:11 PM)CleverUsername Wrote:  I keep seeing atheists with kids online talking about how they let their kids "decide for themselves" and "teach them to think, not to be atheists" and various other things like that.

I never really understood this either, especially since many atheists see religion as harmful, as a sort disease, rather than something innocuous. I mean I don't want my children to decide for themselves if they should be nazis, bigots, racists, or some other forms of scum on the earth, or take on any other extremely harmful lifestyle, that endangers not only them but humanity as a whole.

I would assume if atheists really believed like Sam Harris that religion is worse than rape, then they would warn their children of how vile and disgusting religion is, and insure they stay away from it the best they can.

My hunch is that atheists don't generally buy their own bullshit regarding the harmfulness of religion, particularly when they seem so callous about it in regards to child rearing.

You really don't get it. What we want to pass on is thinking skills, human dignity, and freedom of thought.

And callous? What do you even mean by that? Do you know what that word actually means?

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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03-12-2014, 09:02 AM (This post was last modified: 03-12-2014 09:06 AM by Tomasia.)
RE: Atheists not raising their kids as atheists
(03-12-2014 08:35 AM)Chas Wrote:  And callous? What do you even mean by that? Do you know what that word actually means?

That they don't care enough for their children to keep them from going through experiences worse than being raped. Of course this only applies to those who believe along the lines of Harris that religion is worse than rape. If you think that it's relatively innocuous then it doesn't.

Quote:You really don't get it. What we want to pass on is thinking skills, human dignity, and freedom of thought.

If you valued human dignity, and if religion is an insult to human dignity, you wouldn't teach your children this?

Do you want them to be free of thought to decide if they should give a shit about morality, human dignity? Free to decide if they should be cruel, oppressors, victimizers or etc? Or would you be the sort of parents who raises them to oppose these sorts of things, to pursue what is good and just?
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03-12-2014, 09:09 AM
RE: Atheists not raising their kids as atheists
If your child was reading a book on nazism, and was seriously interested in becoming a skin-head, would your attitude and approach to him, be the same if he was reading the bible, and considering becoming a Christian?

What would your approach be in these given situations?
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03-12-2014, 09:28 AM (This post was last modified: 03-12-2014 09:32 AM by Chas.)
RE: Atheists not raising their kids as atheists
(03-12-2014 09:02 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(03-12-2014 08:35 AM)Chas Wrote:  And callous? What do you even mean by that? Do you know what that word actually means?

That they don't care enough for their children to keep them from going through experiences worse than being raped. Of course this only applies to those who believe along the lines of Harris that religion is worse than rape. If you think that it's relatively innocuous then it doesn't.

Quote:You really don't get it. What we want to pass on is thinking skills, human dignity, and freedom of thought.

If you valued human dignity, and if religion is an insult to human dignity, you wouldn't teach your children this?

Do you want them to be free of thought to decide if they should give a shit about morality, human dignity? Free to decide if they should be cruel, oppressors, victimizers or etc? Or would you be the sort of parents who raises them to oppose these sorts of things, to pursue what is good and just?

What part of 'human dignity' do you not understand?

You seem utterly blind to the fact that we can teach ethics and morals in a secular framework, that ethics can be rationally based.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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03-12-2014, 09:37 AM
RE: Atheists not raising their kids as atheists
(03-12-2014 07:49 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  I would assume if atheists really believed like Sam Harris that religion is worse than rape, then they would warn their children of how vile and disgusting religion is, and insure they stay away from it the best they can.

I don't really know Harris' views on this. Does he mean that religion itself is worse than rape, or that forcing religion on someone who can't stop it is worse than forcing sex on someone who can't stop it?


(03-12-2014 07:49 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  My hunch is that atheists don't generally buy their own bullshit regarding the harmfulness of religion, particularly when they seem so callous about it in regards to child rearing.

My guess for most others is that they were indoctrinated as kids, and they don't want to do that to others.

Personally, I plan on questioning my daughter's choices as they get older. I want them to give me compelling reasons for what they believe. If they can't really explain it, I want them to own up to that they believe something because they want to, and not because they have any reason to.


(03-12-2014 09:09 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  If your child was reading a book on nazism, and was seriously interested in becoming a skin-head, would your attitude and approach to him, be the same if he was reading the bible, and considering becoming a Christian?

What would your approach be in these given situations?

Do you think that explicitly forbidding a willful kid from being a skinhead will stop them from being a skinhead? The very notion itself is likely one of defiance, and explicitly forbidding it seems like it would push them further down that road.

Why not, instead, talk to them rationally about it and get them to explain their stance? Get them to realize on their own that it's stupid. If they figure it out, problem solved. If not, do you really think that telling them "no" is going to fix it?
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03-12-2014, 09:37 AM
RE: Atheists not raising their kids as atheists
(03-12-2014 07:49 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(02-12-2014 01:11 PM)CleverUsername Wrote:  I keep seeing atheists with kids online talking about how they let their kids "decide for themselves" and "teach them to think, not to be atheists" and various other things like that.

I never really understood this either, especially since many atheists see religion as harmful, as a sort disease, rather than something innocuous. I mean I don't want my children to decide for themselves if they should be nazis, bigots, racists, or some other forms of scum on the earth, or take on any other extremely harmful lifestyle, that endangers not only them but humanity as a whole.

I would assume if atheists really believed like Sam Harris that religion is worse than rape, then they would warn their children of how vile and disgusting religion is, and insure they stay away from it the best they can.

My hunch is that atheists don't generally buy their own bullshit regarding the harmfulness of religion, particularly when they seem so callous about it in regards to child rearing.

Sure, I think religion is harmful. Something about demanding unquestioning belief from a person of authority... Kind of like a parent saying "there is no god, and that's a fact" instead of "there probably is no god, and I'll explain why.."

Who said anything about religion anyway? Plenty of people believe in gods without subscribing to religion. Teaching a child how to logically come to their own conclusions is more important than having them memorize things they've been told.
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