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    Thread: Religion and kids

    1. Member malv1's Avatar
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      10-11-2011 07:45 PM #36
      The one thing I find comically hypocritical is those of you saying that kids should not be pushed into one religion or another and they should be able to figure it out for themselves but yet those same people are atheists and are pushing atheism onto your kids the same way you complain the religious folks do...

      Oh and I don't belong to any religion really, I was baptized LDS, my wife is Lutheran and both my kids are baptized Lutheran and will be attending parochial school until middle school... Which like some of you, I have decided is the best way for them to decide if it is for them or not...

    2. Member jnm2.0t's Avatar
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      10-11-2011 08:45 PM #37
      Quote Originally Posted by malv1 View Post
      The one thing I find comically hypocritical is those of you saying that kids should not be pushed into one religion or another and they should be able to figure it out for themselves but yet those same people are atheists and are pushing atheism onto your kids the same way you complain the religious folks do...
      What you seem to have overlooked is that teaching religious abstinence /= atheism any more than teaching sexual abstinence means you cannot ever have sex in your life. It is only asking the child to delay such a major issue of life until they have the wherewithal to make heads and tails of it...

      Quote Originally Posted by malv1 View Post
      Oh and I don't belong to any religion really, I was baptized LDS, my wife is Lutheran and both my kids are baptized Lutheran and will be attending parochial school until middle school... Which like some of you, I have decided is the best way for them to decide if it is for them or not...
      ... which you apparently seem to disagree with. I mean, your kid you do what you want, but you really think this is something a child is able to make an educated decision about? Really?
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      10-12-2011 04:38 AM #38
      Quote Originally Posted by jnm2.0t View Post
      What you seem to have overlooked is that teaching religious abstinence /= atheism any more than teaching sexual abstinence means you cannot ever have sex in your life. It is only asking the child to delay such a major issue of life until they have the wherewithal to make heads and tails of it...



      ... which you apparently seem to disagree with. I mean, your kid you do what you want, but you really think this is something a child is able to make an educated decision about? Really?
      Easy partner.

      Some people have internal religious conflict and view spirituality an an essential part of life, whether for or against. It is a defining characteristic.

      I was borderline agnostic/atheist until I realized I don't even care about it. Hence, I realized I am truly comfortable with no religion at all--atheism.

      My kid is in Baptist pre-K because we didn't get in the public school pre-K lottery, it's cheap ($230/month), it's close to the house, and they do a good job. It bothers me a little they skipped past the entire Old Testament in bible school and went straight for the New, but it doesn't offend me anymore than teaching her about Zeus or Odin.

    4. Senior Member FlashRedGLS1.8T's Avatar
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      10-12-2011 07:39 AM #39
      Quote Originally Posted by malv1 View Post
      The one thing I find comically hypocritical is those of you saying that kids should not be pushed into one religion or another and they should be able to figure it out for themselves but yet those same people are atheists and are pushing atheism onto your kids the same way you complain the religious folks do...
      It's not comical one bit, you simply don't understand it, so you call it comical.

      I'm curious, how many christians/jews/muslims, that go to services daily or weekly, do you know that take the view "I want to raise my kids in a way that they can decide for themselves, when they are older"?

      Hint: Very, very few.

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      10-12-2011 08:23 AM #40
      Quote Originally Posted by malv1 View Post
      The one thing I find comically hypocritical is those of you saying that kids should not be pushed into one religion or another and they should be able to figure it out for themselves but yet those same people are atheists and are pushing atheism onto your kids the same way you complain the religious folks do...

      Oh and I don't belong to any religion really, I was baptized LDS, my wife is Lutheran and both my kids are baptized Lutheran and will be attending parochial school until middle school... Which like some of you, I have decided is the best way for them to decide if it is for them or not...
      I don't push atheism on my kids any more than I do me being vegetarian (they want meat, they can eat it, that's a decision they can make for themselves down the road if they choose to do so). If they ask questions about religion (which invariably happens because all the kids at school always bring up angels, how wonderful it is that there little hamster is now in heaven, grandma and grandpa keep saying how nice it would be if they went to Sunday school, etc.), I'll answer them as objectively as possible.

      That said, even if I chose to indoctrinate them into religion, which one would I indoctrinate them into? I don't think any of them are right, so that's why when and if they decide it's something they want to get into, they can make up their own minds and pick the one they feel is right for them.

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      10-12-2011 09:26 AM #41
      Quote Originally Posted by MeineFolks'wagen View Post
      I don't push atheism on my kids any more than I do me being vegetarian (they want meat, they can eat it, that's a decision they can make for themselves down the road if they choose to do so). If they ask questions about religion (which invariably happens because all the kids at school always bring up angels, how wonderful it is that there little hamster is now in heaven, grandma and grandpa keep saying how nice it would be if they went to Sunday school, etc.), I'll answer them as objectively as possible.

      That said, even if I chose to indoctrinate them into religion, which one would I indoctrinate them into? I don't think any of them are right, so that's why when and if they decide it's something they want to get into, they can make up their own minds and pick the one they feel is right for them.
      Good post.

      Not to derail, but I like that you brought the vegetarian topic up. We have some vegan friends that won't push religion because they are atheist and feel that kids need to make up their own mind. Yet they have to pack their 3 yo's food everywhere so he isn't exposed to butter or any animal product because they self taught themselves that people aren't supposed to eat any animal products. It annoys the **** out of us.

    7. Senior Member FlashRedGLS1.8T's Avatar
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      10-12-2011 09:59 AM #42
      Quote Originally Posted by Papa Dras View Post
      It annoys the **** out of us.

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      10-12-2011 10:46 AM #43
      I am not an atheist but have no rush into getting the kids dialed into which religion. In my experience, some kids who were forced into a religion tend to become very rebellious. In today's world of social media and technology, religion is making less sense for young people.

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      10-12-2011 12:16 PM #44
      Quote Originally Posted by MeineFolks'wagen View Post
      I don't push atheism on my kids any more than I do me being vegetarian (they want meat, they can eat it, that's a decision they can make for themselves down the road if they choose to do so). If they ask questions about religion (which invariably happens because all the kids at school always bring up angels, how wonderful it is that there little hamster is now in heaven, grandma and grandpa keep saying how nice it would be if they went to Sunday school, etc.), I'll answer them as objectively as possible.

      That said, even if I chose to indoctrinate them into religion, which one would I indoctrinate them into? I don't think any of them are right, so that's why when and if they decide it's something they want to get into, they can make up their own minds and pick the one they feel is right for them.
      You don't get atheism.

      Not doing anything is not pushing.

    10. Senior Member FlashRedGLS1.8T's Avatar
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      10-12-2011 12:42 PM #45
      Quote Originally Posted by smittyATL View Post
      You don't get atheism.

      Not doing anything is not pushing.
      Atheism is rejection of god/theism/deities = doing something.

      I don't disagree with an atheist being able to be apathetic but the simple belief of rejecting deism is =/= not doing anything.

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      10-12-2011 12:59 PM #46
      a - without
      theism - belief in diety/god

      let's keep it simple people. atheism is not a belief system. this isn't debateable

      said that, i take exception to the person suggesting some of us are 'pushing' atheism on our kids. i haven't read anything like that & to the contrary, most of us are suggesting that the acceptance or rejection of religion is something that is best left to a more developed mind than that of a child. promotion of critical thinking /= pushing atheism!

    12. Senior Member FlashRedGLS1.8T's Avatar
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      10-12-2011 01:07 PM #47
      let's keep it simple people. atheism is not a belief system. this isn't debateable
      It's most definitely not a religion.

      OTOH you believe there's not a god.

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      10-12-2011 01:32 PM #48
      Quote Originally Posted by smittyATL View Post
      You don't get atheism.

      Not doing anything is not pushing.
      What I mean is that I do not tell my kids categorically that there is no such thing as gods, deities, etc. and that they should think it's all a bunch of BS. I answer their questions so that they can maintain an open mind, but I do not instruct them (maybe instruct is a better term than "push") that atheism is the "right" answer and they should ignore everything else. Does that make sense?
      Last edited by MeineFolks'wagen; 10-13-2011 at 08:11 AM.

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      10-12-2011 01:36 PM #49
      Quote Originally Posted by Papa Dras View Post
      Good post.

      Not to derail, but I like that you brought the vegetarian topic up. We have some vegan friends that won't push religion because they are atheist and feel that kids need to make up their own mind. Yet they have to pack their 3 yo's food everywhere so he isn't exposed to butter or any animal product because they self taught themselves that people aren't supposed to eat any animal products. It annoys the **** out of us.
      We do the same thing with our kids that we do with religion - we answer their questions and tell them how we feel, but we don't tell them one is more right than the other. My kids consistently tell me they love eating meat, so they get to eat meat. If they decide for themselves one day that they don't want to do it anymore, that's fine. If they keep eating meat forever, that's fine too

    15. Senior Member FlashRedGLS1.8T's Avatar
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      10-12-2011 01:48 PM #50
      Quote Originally Posted by MeineFolks'wagen View Post
      I answer their questions so that they can maintain an open mind, but I do not instruct them (maybe instruct is a better term than "push") that atheism is the "right" answer and they should ignore everything else. Does that make sense?
      Yes.

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      10-12-2011 02:55 PM #51
      Quote Originally Posted by MeineFolks'wagen View Post
      What I mean is that I do not tell my kids categorically that there is no such as gods, deities, etc. and that they should think it's all a bunch of BS. I answer their questions so that they can maintain an open mind, but I do not instruct them (maybe instruct is a better term than "push") that atheism is the "right" answer and they should ignore everything else. Does that make sense?
      My kid is doing Bible study at a Southern Baptist pre-K program. So how am I pushing anything?

    17. Member sortadelux's Avatar
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      10-12-2011 05:31 PM #52
      Quote Originally Posted by FlashRedGLS1.8T View Post
      It's not comical one bit, you simply don't understand it, so you call it comical.

      I'm curious, how many christians/jews/muslims, that go to services daily or weekly, do you know that take the view "I want to raise my kids in a way that they can decide for themselves, when they are older"?

      Hint: Very, very few.
      I can tell you how many. Less than very very few. Thats because those of us who do attend, believe that learning about God is an essential part of who we are and who we want to become. This in no way locks our children down for life though. All of you who grew up with religion and now are agnostics or athiests can attest to that.
      "Never attribute to maliciousness that which can be attributed to stupidity."

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      10-12-2011 05:34 PM #53
      Quote Originally Posted by smittyATL View Post
      My kid is doing Bible study at a Southern Baptist pre-K program. So how am I pushing anything?
      Depends on whether or not your kid ASKED you to enroll them in the program or you DECIDED to send them.

      I'm not religious though I consider myself to maintain Christian values. Our daughter came home at age 7 and asked to join a JAM (Jesus and Me) group at a local church as her friends were going. We were happy to let her go, she made up her own mind and gave it up a few years later when they started pulling out contracts and expecting kids to "give their hearts to God". One of her friends stayed on, ours never went back and is now a psychologist who has some very interesting views on religion and the reason some people need it in their lives.

      Cheers
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      10-13-2011 07:24 AM #54
      Quote Originally Posted by sortadelux View Post
      I can tell you how many. Less than very very few. Thats because those of us who do attend, believe that learning about God is an essential part of who we are and who we want to become.
      That's correct, you made my point. As an agnostic I do not believe there's a god and I think that the bible is one of the biggest jokes on western society but I will be fine with my child becoming a christian if that's what they find soothing to their soul.

      This in no way locks our children down for life though.
      Correct, just as showing a kid different religous views, as they're growing up, in no way dissuades them from being a christian.

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      10-13-2011 08:10 AM #55
      Quote Originally Posted by smittyATL View Post
      My kid is doing Bible study at a Southern Baptist pre-K program. So how am I pushing anything?
      We're getting off the rail here - I never accused you or anyone else of "pushing" anything on anyone (at least I don't think I did - if it came off that way, I'll apologize ). As I said, maybe "push" is a bad word to use and maybe "instruct" is better - I'm not sure where the confusion is or started.

      You want to put your kid in any kind of educational program, that is your prerogative as a parent.
      Last edited by MeineFolks'wagen; 10-13-2011 at 08:19 AM.

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      10-14-2011 05:30 AM #56
      Quote Originally Posted by NZTIGUAN View Post
      Depends on whether or not your kid ASKED you to enroll them in the program or you DECIDED to send them.

      I'm not religious though I consider myself to maintain Christian values. Our daughter came home at age 7 and asked to join a JAM (Jesus and Me) group at a local church as her friends were going. We were happy to let her go, she made up her own mind and gave it up a few years later when they started pulling out contracts and expecting kids to "give their hearts to God". One of her friends stayed on, ours never went back and is now a psychologist who has some very interesting views on religion and the reason some people need it in their lives.

      Cheers
      My child is 4 years old and her opinion has no value in decision making.

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      10-14-2011 03:22 PM #57
      Quote Originally Posted by smittyATL View Post
      This is kind of the crux of atheism a lot of religious or former religious people miss.

      Atheism is not a religion, it is the lack of religion. Is not teaching your kid any religion pushing your views?

      Seems to me you cannot be pushing something while doing nothing.
      I didn't want to start a religion vs. anti-religion pissing match There is plenty I could share with my daughter about why I don't attend church, why I don't pray to a fictional character, why I don't go through life claiming to live by some superior set of morals while breaking a majority of the rules, etc... As stated, I probably will at some point but I won't keep her from seeing the other side and would never put her in a position of "you can't attend church because I don't agree with it".

      I experienced church and religion, heavily as a youth and I am glad I did. I would hope the same for my child
      Th(e/a)n

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      10-15-2011 10:10 PM #58
      Quote Originally Posted by smittyATL View Post
      My child is 4 years old and her opinion has no value in decision making.
      Interesting view.
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      10-17-2011 12:54 PM #59
      Quote Originally Posted by BlckBadged_SwissChee View Post
      I experienced church and religion, heavily as a youth and I am glad I did. I would hope the same for my child
      I only appreciate my youth experience with religion because it helped me form my agnostic views.
      Other than that, it sucked.

      And yes, I hope the same for my children too.

    25. 10-18-2011 05:40 PM #60
      We have talked about it in abstract terms with our children. We are trying to be neutral so that they can make up their own minds when they are older. We have explained to them what "faith" and "beliefs" are, and how people all over the world have different beliefs, and that none of them are right or wrong, as long as they aren't hurting anyone.

      When my daughter asked who Jesus was, I told her he was a superhero from thousands of years ago that people wrote about, kind of like Batman and Spider-Man, and that his superpowers were the ability to heal, walk on water, and immortality. My daughter asked "kind of like a mix of Wolverine and Superman?"
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      10-19-2011 11:36 AM #61
      Quote Originally Posted by Double-V View Post
      We have talked about it in abstract terms with our children. We are trying to be neutral so that they can make up their own minds when they are older. We have explained to them what "faith" and "beliefs" are, and how people all over the world have different beliefs, and that none of them are right or wrong, as long as they aren't hurting anyone.

      When my daughter asked who Jesus was, I told her he was a superhero from thousands of years ago that people wrote about, kind of like Batman and Spider-Man, and that his superpowers were the ability to heal, walk on water, and immortality. My daughter asked "kind of like a mix of Wolverine and Superman?"
      Good luck driving stakes through Wolverine or Superman, just saying...

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      10-23-2011 10:53 AM #62
      I think all religions have a certain ring of truth....in the end the details get everyone's panties in a bunch.

      That being said, Ill probably send my kid to a christian school. Good jumping off point. No need to argue over adam and eve vs evolution when theyre teaching the basics like do unto others....

    28. Member Basil Fawlty's Avatar
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      11-06-2011 07:24 AM #63
      I have been contemplating sending in $30.00 to become ordained in the Church of the Flying Spagetti Monster

      As an aside, I do my best to teach my children, ages 7 and 4 to do the right thing, not because someone is always watching but because it is the right thing to do.

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      12-19-2011 09:44 PM #64
      I'll throw in my two cents, with the disclaimer that I'm married to a woman who is doing her masters in divinity and say that I am a Christian.
      Let me start by saying that my parents didn't become "religious" until I was in my early teens, when they began going to a church that wasn't catholic I followed because I was a kid. I was able to miss church services for hockey, and even occasionally just to go snowmobiling (yeah it's the great white north and I love me some stereotypes). I was baptized catholic which I personally believe didn't do a thing. It wasn't until I hit university that I really had to confront my beliefs and ended up being baptized.
      My wife, though she could be ordained and be a minister, has no desire to work in a church. I have no great love for traditional organized religion. That being said I think the principals that are taught at a young age to children can be agreed upon by most as pretty solid. Don't kill, don't steal, help others, be honest... You don't have to be a Christian to agree that these are components of being a good human being. For those reasons alone I don't think you should be hesitant about letting your children go to Sunday school or a church youth group.


      To other people who have turned away from the church let me just say you are not alone. The outdated and miss-founded organization that "the church" has become is going to be a thing of the past. I've sat down and chatted (over a few beers) with many people in seminary, and almost all of them agree the church as our generation (sub 35 year olds) has seen is on its last leg. That there will be a re-organizing and a movement back to acting out Christianity and having more liquid organizations with less bureaucracy and more straight up helping people. Back to leading by example instead of trying to shove religion down your throat, or threaten you with "eternal consequences" as a means of spreading what is supposed to be the good news.

    30. 12-19-2011 10:18 PM #65
      Quote Originally Posted by 1slowVW View Post
      That being said I think the principals that are taught at a young age to children can be agreed upon by most as pretty solid. Don't kill, don't steal, help others, be honest... You don't have to be a Christian to agree that these are components of being a good human being. For those reasons alone I don't think you should be hesitant about letting your children go to Sunday school or a church youth group.
      Thats the plan for us.


      Quote Originally Posted by 1slowVW View Post
      The outdated and miss-founded organization that "the church" has become is going to be a thing of the past.
      I doubt that this will happen until there is a massive restructuring in Churchs throughout the country. When push comes to shove I seriously doubt that these pastors are going to give up their six figure salaries to help out the community. Not saying that all of them are like that, but I would say a good majority are.

      I have always been skeptic, but there was a time when I was around 16 that I really believed and it was because of a youth pastor at the time. I started going to the church with my girlfriend at the time, and this guy really had me believing, then we found out he started looking for another youth pastor job, got an offer for more money and he ran. That's when I stopped going and haven't been to a church since.

      I'm not faulting the guy for making a good career move, but his explanation to us on his last night as pastor was that God was telling him that he should do this and he had to. Yeah right.

    31. Member 1slowVW's Avatar
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      12-19-2011 10:35 PM #66
      Quote Originally Posted by GreenWagen View Post
      Thats the plan for us.
      I doubt that this will happen until there is a massive restructuring in Churchs throughout the country. When push comes to shove I seriously doubt that these pastors are going to give up their six figure salaries to help out the community. Not saying that all of them are like that, but I would say a good majority are.
      Like it or not a lot of big churches, and a lot of country churches as of right now, are going bankrupt. Some will not change, some congregations will have to. I can only hope it's for the best. The fact of the matter is once you're outside the bible belt young people (even those who believe) often aren't going to church.

      PS: my wife chuckled at the idea of six figure salaries for pastors, and is curious as to what denomination is kicking out that kind of coin?

    32. 12-20-2011 12:34 AM #67
      I see what your saying.

      As far as six figures, I personally know of one that is making that. The pastor at the church I attended made 78,000 a year and lived for free in a church owned house. With the perks his income could come close to 100k, mind you this was a medium sized church in a small town.


      Here ya go take a look at this, they make coin and almost all churches provide free housing as well. Your wife should look into it.

      http://www1.salary.com/Pastor-Salary.html

      http://swz.salary.com/SalaryWizard/P...aboutyou=false
      Last edited by GreenWagen; 12-20-2011 at 12:39 AM.

    33. Senior Member FlashRedGLS1.8T's Avatar
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      12-20-2011 07:48 AM #68
      Quote Originally Posted by GreenWagen View Post
      Here ya go take a look at this, they make coin and almost all churches provide free housing as well. Your wife should look into it.
      My wife's church averages 35 people on Sunday mornings. They own a parsonage as well.

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      12-20-2011 09:15 AM #69
      They are teaching the kids about christmas, hanukkah, and kwanzaa in my daughter's school. So in the recital, they sang songs about each one. I'm fine with the exposure and find it amusing that my daughter has been saying, "thank you my lord" when I give her dinner.

    35. Senior Member FlashRedGLS1.8T's Avatar
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      12-20-2011 09:53 AM #70
      Quote Originally Posted by Papa Dras View Post
      They are teaching the kids about christmas, hanukkah, and kwanzaa in my daughter's school. So in the recital, they sang songs about each one. I'm fine with the exposure and find it amusing that my daughter has been saying, "thank you my lord" when I give her dinner.
      Haha, wait until they are older.

      When my kids were little they used to tell everyone "My dad's a bad dude!".
      Now they treat me like an taxicab/ATM machine and roll their eyes at me.

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