How will you explain to your children...
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08-09-2013, 04:59 PM
RE: How will you explain to your children...
I was going to add something meaningful then I realized Philosoraptor and Anjele nailed it. Nuff said for me.
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08-09-2013, 05:06 PM
RE: How will you explain to your children...
Setting odds at 5-4 in favor of this being a theist about to make some insane statements about how there can be no purpose to life without an imaginary friend.

(31-07-2014 04:37 PM)Luminon Wrote:  America is full of guns, but they're useless, because nobody has the courage to shoot an IRS agent in self-defense
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08-09-2013, 05:26 PM
RE: How will you explain to your children...
Having had an atheist upbringing, I would say the issue of why our parents had us in the first place didn't even come up. Children don't question their own existence. That comes in a later developmental stage.

Is the thread starter still here?

Did your parents tell you they had you because God commanded it?
If so, at what age did they tell you?
Was it in response to a question from you?

I'll leave the death question for later until this one is pinned down.

Nonsense is nonsense, but the history of nonsense is a very important science.
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08-09-2013, 05:30 PM (This post was last modified: 08-09-2013 05:39 PM by Anjele.)
RE: How will you explain to your children...
Perhaps since gawd didn't tell us specifically to 'be fruitful and multiply' we weren't supposed to.

Maybe it is supposed to be an order from the almighty to his followers (edited to add) only.

I'm not anti-social. I'm pro-solitude. Sleepy
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08-09-2013, 05:39 PM
RE: How will you explain to your children...
If you have to ask what is so great about being alive and sharing it with family, why are you still alive yourself?
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08-09-2013, 05:44 PM
RE: How will you explain to your children...
(08-09-2013 03:30 PM)dimaniac Wrote:  In a world where there's no scientific proof of God's existence and of life after death how will you explain to your children why you brought them into the world and why they will have to die?

I told 'em they just happened. They wasn't planned. They just happened and they're all the greater because of that. And anyone trying to sell you some bullshit promise of a postmortem preservation of identity is full of shit. ... But I didn't tell them that until they asked. Everyone gotta blaze our own trail and shit.

As it was in the beginning is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
And I will show you something different from either
Your shadow at morning striding behind you
Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you;
I will show you fear in a handful of dust.
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08-09-2013, 05:54 PM
RE: How will you explain to your children...
"We are a way for the universe to know itself. Some part of our being knows this is where we came from. We long to return. And we can, because the cosmos is also within us. We're made of star stuff." I think the idea of this Carl Sagan quote sums up the belief of eternity from an atheist's point of view. We are each an eternal and irreplaceable part of our world and the universe as a whole, and will always be.

(08-09-2013 03:37 PM)Impulse Wrote:  What does one have to do with the other? Why does the non-existence of God require an explanation for bringing children into the world and for why they will one day die?

I don't really believe in any kind of afterlife, but I think there are points in life where people naturally begin questioning their ideas about belief and the afterlife. After losing someone to death, most people will ponder on these things whether they were believers before the death or not. I have seen many people lose their faith after sudden painful losses, and I have seen even more find a belief in God or cling even more to their already held beliefs as a way to deal with the trauma they are undergoing. Death and belief are inextricably linked in the minds of many. I believe that fear of death is really the basis of all religions that teach belief in an afterlife. When you lose someone and can't fathom the thought of forever being without them, the hope of some sort of reunion in an afterlife can be a great comfort to people, however false it may be.

Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who has said it- not even if I have said it- unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense. - Buddha
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08-09-2013, 06:11 PM
RE: How will you explain to your children...
He he. Just yesterday my mother in law was telling me that earlier my boy had asked her where her daddy was. She responded with the usual "oh he's in heaven with the angels and he's very happy". Problem is, the boy is three, and very much in his "why" phase. She said she kinda half tried to explain and then went "ooh, look at that red car!" to change the subject. Thumbsup

So I'm pretty sure at this point the boy thinks that grandma's daddy lives in a town down the road called heaven with the Angel family and he's quite happy. He's three, so it hasn't come up yet at home. I'll wait until he comes to me with the questions and I'll provide him with what level of answers I think he's ready for. Not too concerned about grandma trying to indoctrinate him. She not religious, just has a generic "belief in belief".

I hope to be able to show him that if he can stay focused on life, the death thing will work itself out on it's own. And at that point we'll be none the wiser. No reason to get worked up about it.

But now I have come to believe that the whole world is an enigma, a harmless enigma that is made terrible by our own mad attempt to interpret it as though it had an underlying truth.

~ Umberto Eco
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08-09-2013, 09:45 PM
RE: How will you explain to your children...
I didn't bring my son into this world. He grew naturally from the biological (and very very pleasurable) act of reproduction.
When the time was right I did explain to him the nature of the birds and the bees, but unfortunately long before that, he learned about death.
His mother died when he was 3 yrs old. He's 25 now and has a son who will be 3 in January.

We have children through the act of sex. Sometimes it's planned, but I am a firm believer that most of the time it's not.
Lovely, happy, wonderful accidents of life. His son wasn't planned and he is the most wonderful bit of joy we could imagine.
As a first time grandfather, I couldn't be more happy.

I get the opportunity to show him the world and all the magnificent things in it. He will grow up in a loving family and his curiosities about life will be answered as best we can and hopefully shape his desire to learn as much as he can about this world.

Discovery is it's own reward.

If and when it comes time to answer a question about death, that question will be answered by how we live and how the body works.
Emotionally we will miss those who have died and he will understand that sadness. He also will learn that we don't make up lies to comfort our minds.

He will learn that we accept death as something that is natural and nothing to be feared.

Insanity - doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results
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08-09-2013, 09:50 PM
RE: How will you explain to your children...
For someone that believes in a god that comes included with an afterlife in paradise, one has to wonder not about why we die, but why we live in this shit-hole? Also, why they have to die? The naturalistic explanation is that natural selection and evolution didn't select for us the mutations (present in a few other species, like oysters, lobsters, and tortoises) that allow for excessively long life or immortality. Our bodies break down with use, and our cells can only replicate themselves so many times; we all have a biological time limit. To one who believes in a creator god, one has to ask, why did he make us this way? Why did he makes us flawed when he had the ability to make us so much better?

Non-existence after death is much simpler, and makes far less assumptions about the nature of reality, than any religiously based after-life. Assuming a god, and all of the attached dogma of your particular religion, always carries more assumptions with less satisfying answers.

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