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thinkingblue on facebook
Are Atheist Parents Doing A
how does the raising of upstanding, moral children work
without prayers at mealtimes and morality lessons at
Sunday school? Quite well, it seems.
Far from being dysfunctional, nihilistic and rudderless
without the security and rectitude of religion, secular
households provide a sound and solid foundation for
children, according to Vern Bengston, a USC professor of
gerontology and sociology."
supervised a 40-year study of religion and family life
across generationsthe largest ever coordinatedcalled
the Longitudinal Study of Generations. He recently added
atheist or agnostic families to the mix alongside the
rise in their self-reported numbers. And rather than
discovering families unbound by the glue of God,
performing nightly Satanic rituals in lieu of a
nutritious dinner, he found
with actual ethics and values and shit.
nonreligious parents were more coherent and passionate
about their ethical principles than some of the
'religious' parents in our study," Bengston told me.
"The vast majority appeared to live goal-filled
lives characterized by moral direction and sense of life
having a purpose."
MORE HERE: http://jezebel.com/godless-parents-are-doing-a-better-job-1682844001
didnt raise/rear my kids to be non-believers
not in actuality with intent. Whenever the topic of god
or religion was expressed, I would tell them my agnostic
view (I was still not sure about the label Atheist)
a person who believes that nothing is known or can be
known of the existence or nature of God or of anything
beyond material phenomena; a person who claims neither
faith nor disbelief in God.
essence, I would say, that we human beings do not know
why we are here or what the physical nature of all things
is about and probably we will never know. However, I
would emphasize the importance of having empathy for
others because we are all in the same boat and that
evolution was real. I also expressed that religion was OK
for some and if they wanted to take that route that would
be equally OK.
Ive come a long way from those ideas, I now believe
religion can hurt more than it can comfort. But,
Im glad that none of my kids took to religion
because now I can have freethinking discussions with them
instead of feeling the need to walk on eggshells whenever
conversation turned to gods, guns, gays and religions. thinkingblue
reason of course, is obvious. Morality comes not from a
book, or a guy up in the sky, but from the idea that how
you treat people matters, because how people feel
matters. The Golden Rule. Doing unto others as you would
have them do unto you, is, Zuckerman writes, "an
ancient, universal ethical imperative. And it requires no
I would like to take this time to say directly to the
small town I grew up in and its endless youth groups and
Bible studies and Baptist churches and even grosser
fundamentalist Church of Christ churches, and all the
prayers before games, and Fellowship of Christian
Athletes and the fear-mongering attitudes and pervy youth
group leaders and gross, self-righteous, hypocritical,
sexist, homophobic, racist, shallow, anti-intellectual,
anti-questioning, anti-books, anti-music, anti-art, utter
crass consumerism in place of actual Christian-ness:
FACE. Big, stupid FACE in your FACE.
But that petty jab aside, seriously: I'm not one of those
people who think anyone who is religious is dumb, or
narrow-minded, or any such thing. Mad props. Even kinda
jealz. I'd love for God to be something I could catch.
It'd be like how I am with football: If only I could like
it, I'm sure I would if nothing else have way more
I'm not even someone who even had that bad an experience
with religion, all considered, mainly because I was never
forced into it. I just grew up in the over-saturated
South, and for every truly genuine, kind, accepting
person who drew on strength from God to do good in this
world (I almost exclusively grew up with Baptists and
Church of Christ nutjobs) that I ever met, there were
easily a hundred who used it as a shield to judge and
shun everything that didn't look like them, which was
usually a white guy in a button-down oxford, Dockers, and
a piece of UT football insignia somewhere. Who got
shitfaced on the weekends. And was a racist. But who was
somehow, inexplicably, considered a "good
person" from a "good family." (I came from
a broken home, and didn't go to church, and this was all
you needed to know.)
Small-town Southern religiousness can take so many
hideous forms, but the worst is this Upstanding Good
Citizen who attends church and gets a free pass to be a
terrible terrible bigot. Belief was assumed of everyone,
too, and not believing was something you kept to
yourself, and the accusation of witchcraft and Satanism
were real things that happened to people I actually knew,
and involved visits from law enforcement. (There was also
a rash of suicides one summer that fueled the suspicions
of Satanism even more.)
Once, in eighth grade, I researched and read about
religions and went to different churches to find out more
about this God thing. I told a youth group leader at one
denomination known for being more laid back that I was
genuinely unsure what I believed, but was interested in
learning more. "Well, now, if you don't believe,
there's only one thing that can mean," he said.
"You're going to hell."
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>live without becoming an old jackass.
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