Teaching Children to believe IS abused.

Recently I overheard a parent:

“Kids have great faith! Not like teenagers. When I said uncle Bob is in heaven looking down on us, my kids accepted it. Isn’t that great?!”

No! It’s not great- it’s vomit inducing!

Richard Dawkins presents the idea that teaching children to believe in one faith as they’re growing up is child abuse. I have to agree with him.

There’s a lot of things wrong with bringing your child up with faith. To start with children ARE NOT able to tell the difference between fantasy and reality until they’re roughly eight years old. So it’s not faith, they just believe you, they know no better.

Have you ever wonder how come kids have such great imaginations? How they can be  amused with the simplest things for hours?
 
It’s simply: children don’t have the mental limitations of adults, they haven’t experienced enough of the world to know any limitations. They can make a complete and unreal story about a shoe. The key word being “unreal”.
 
There’s a documentary called Jesus Camp. I can embed it. I can’t even watch it myself, like I mentioned above… it’s vomit inducing. So here’s Bill Maher’s take on it:

Dawkins’s argument is that as a society it is wrong to believe that just because a child has Christian parents that it is a Christian child.

The way it should be is that a child is taught about all religions, and then at some age is asked to pick. Can’t be done in most religions. Not least because when a child is exposed to all religions, they will see through them, they will not be brain-washed. But also because religions have ways of settling a child into the religion; Christians have baptism, Jews have circumcision.

“But how will children accept death if there’s nothing higher to believe in?”

The same way adults do: they just accept it, it’s a fact of life. Most adults have a hard time accepting death and for children it must be worse. But that is still no excuse. No excuse for telling children lies and fairytales just so you can avoid the hard talk about death. People have told countless stories that, when they were children, they would spend sleepless nights contemplating if they were going to hell, if their friends or family were going to hell; to burn in the eternal flames.

Your telling me that isn’t child abuse?

Here’s a spin of the coin. We often say that we will miss a loved one but that they’re waiting for us… well, what about them missing us? Imagine your cat Bingo. Floating around for decades waiting to be re-united with it’s beloved owner.

It’s all fucked up!

Faith is wrong. Death is real. So we enjoy life. We love life. 

Teaching children faith IS abused.

Teaching them to love and accept others IS the only true message.

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4 comments so far

  1. Daniel on

    Teaching children to blindly accept a story is not faith at all. People teach their children about God and Santa Claus They probably don’t believe in either. It is absurd to teach what you don’t believe.
    The Bible teaches that faith is in truth and that men hinder the truth in unrighteousness.

    “For I am not ashamed of the gospel: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek For therein is revealed a righteousness of God from faith unto faith: as it is written, But the righteous shall live by faith. For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hinder the truth in unrighteousnes because that which is known of God is manifest in them; for God manifested it unto them. For the invisible things of him since the creation of the world are clearly seen, being perceived through the things that are made, even his everlasting power and divinity; that they may be without excuse: ”
    from The Holy Bible American Standard version

  2. Irish Atheist on

    Tough one to counter.

    First off, blindly accepting anything is faith. I think your trying to blame parents… but if you could make a point instead of copy and pasting bible babble I’d really appreciate it.

  3. Daniel on

    Blind acceptance is not faith as it is taught in the Bible. Faith is like holding a title or a ticket for something you have not received yet. If you buy property from a stranger and pay cash for a photocopied title that is not faith. If you go to church and a preacher says the bible says this and the bible says that and you just believe it, that is not faith. If my parents told me things about God and i don’t investigate for myself that is not faith. I do blame parents who teach their children things they don’t believe.
    When we look at the world around us with our naked eyes or thru microscopes or telescopes we see something about God. If we honestly accept what we see in the world God created around us we must conclude that God is worthy to be worshiped and obeyed. We don’t want to submit to God so we say that He can not be known or does not exist. Some of us make up a god and write rules for him to suit our desires.

    I have a daughter who went to college. While she was there we got a letter from a religious group identifying a problem group on campus. I think they wanted donations to help protect our children. The group was made up of leaders from three different religious groups. All the groups historically had significant differences in regards to truth and what the scriptures taught. The group they were afraid of was stating that truth about God could be known for certain. Do you think that students in a top rated liberal arts school need to be protected from teaching about God?

    Daniel

  4. Irish Atheist on

    I’ve responded to your comment here: https://irishatheist.wordpress.com/2008/08/28/dear-daniel/


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