Do we prevent somebody being hurt by superstition or faith by rejecting and challenging those things? 

Is it mistaken to support organised religion in membership or donations?

If people do good because they are human, not because God prompts them then is it right to risk giving God any credit when they alone own their good?

 


TO BRING UP A CHILD IN RELIGIOUS DOCTRINE OR NOT?

DOGMATIC UPBRINGING AND FAITH IN GOD

DOGMATIC UPBRINGING The child needs God

NON-DOGMATIC UPBRINGING The child does not - it does not have the fears than an adult has of suffering and death. A child can have fantasy friends if lonely. Nobody has the right to invent needs for other people. When the other people are children that is child abuse.

The child will be baptised and psychologically pressured into holy communion if necessary

The child is not to be initiated into any religion but encouraged to make her or his own decision later in life. Atheists should not force atheism on their children or indoctrinate them against religion either. The trouble is that whether reality or myth, God is important so neutrality can be difficult but atheism seems the best way for finding the important with difficulty is the only right way to find the important.

DOGMATIC UPBRINGING Loving God comes first and love your neighbour as yourself is secondary - this is what Jesus taught

NON-DOGMATIC UPBRINGING In other words, religion and belief in God are more important than you! Somebody failing to believe in God is worse than a baby dying of cancer. The child must spurn such notions. The child must see himself or herself as a special person and honour himself or herself accordingly and because he or she sees himself or herself as a gift he or she is keen to help others. Start with proper self-love not the love of God. The child will believe that if he or she does wrong, nobody should say the worst thing in it was how he or she offended God! That attitude promotes a lack of sensitivity to human suffering.

Secular faith is based on what reasonable people agree with and not on what a God or Church or Bible says. Religious people only accept reasonable beliefs when those beliefs are taught by their God or Church or Bible - they accept them because of authority and not because they are reasonable.

Religion is harder to believe in than secularism. To encourage religion in a child is to oppress the child with a difficult faith.

Loving God comes first and love your neighbour as yourself is secondary - this is what Jesus taught

In other words, religion and belief in God are more important than you! The child must see himself or herself as a special person and honour himself or herself accordingly and because he or she sees himself or herself as a gift he or she is keen to help others. Start with proper self-love not the love of God. The child will believe that if he or she does wrong, nobody should say the worst thing in it was how he or she offended God! That attitude promotes a lack of sensitivity to human suffering.

DOGMATIC UPBRINGING The fool says in his heart, "There is no God", none of them have done good none at all must be believed for God said it in scripture

NON-DOGMATIC UPBRINGING Atheists are or may not be fools and many of them are upright people. The Bible is inciting to hatred and the Church should be sued for saying such things.

The Church is provoking believers to anger against unbelievers and Christians who become unbelievers. If they can't be angry with us then they can never be angry! Presumably if a Christian lashes out it is the atheists fault for human nature can only take so much provocation!

DOGMATIC UPBRINGING Even those who disbelieve in God and who say we must live as if there was only the natural and there was no supernatural are expressing their faith. They are making an act of faith and yet they condemn us for making acts of faith too. To say children should not be baptised and should not be raised in a particular religion is to say they should be raised in the faith of secularism. Our faith has at least much right to indoctrinate children as theirs if not more. The secularists don't like babies being baptised because they want to force initiation into the secular faith on them.

However, we should not hold that it takes as much faith to believe in no religion as in a religion. Religion commands faith. We command faith in our holy religion because we know that it is right and every right thinking person would embrace it.

NON-DOGMATIC UPBRINGING This pretence that secularism is faith like religion is a popular trick. Religious faith seeks to pretend that non-religious attitudes are like a secular religion. To trust yourself and your own judgement takes less faith than trusting that God has spoken to you. After all you have to trust yourself to judge if you should judge God trustworthy! Trust yourself like the secularists trust themselves - keep things simple. Secular faith in reason and in what the senses say and in how we think cannot be compared to religious faith. Its different.

DOGMATIC UPBRINGING IN THE LIGHT OF DOCTRINES OF DIVINE RETRIBUTION AND HELL

DOGMATIC UPBRINGING God is our friend and sends nobody to Hell and that there is no Hell for God is so forgiving will do no harm to the child.

NON-DOGMATIC UPBRINGING That is lying about God and Jesus supposedly saying in the Bible that Hell is a reality. It is counter-productive for what is a parent's opinion against a whole religion and tradition?

The harm of the doctrine is being evaded because the Christian is really being her or his own religion and not a true Christian. Real Christians harm.

DOGMATIC UPBRINGING The child may be tormented by thoughts of loved ones going to Hell to suffer forever at death. Religion is quite happy to teach the doctrine of Hell even to toddlers - Jesus said that everybody must be taught. His role and message are all about this Hell for he said he came to stop some people going to Hell. To not know it is to fail to understand him.

NON-DOGMATIC UPBRINGING It would be impossible to put a child through that torment.

DOGMATIC UPBRINGING If a child grows up to reject the faith, we don't try to compel her or him to return. Therefore our indoctrinating children isn't wrong.

NON-DOGMATIC UPBRINGING Yes but what about now? You still take and seek an unfair advantage. The child can suffer grave trauma later in life as he or she tries to extricate himself or herself from the faith especially if that faith claims to be essential to genuine goodness and if it says people go to Hell if they leave it. Are you saying it is okay to do wrong to a child now for later he or she can get over it?

DOGMATIC UPBRINGING You can commit a sin that deserves unending torment in Hell and this torment will start at death

NON-DOGMATIC UPBRINGING You can't be that bad. Religion slanders you. It accuses you without proof. Sue it! You need absolute proof before you can accuse anybody of being capable of wallowing in hate and sin and evil in Hell for all eternity.

If you are undecided about whether or not there is such a fate, then you can't choose it. It is safer not to be a Christian! If you believe that murder is sometimes right, that belief will make it worse for you in court not less when you are on trial for murder. But that is because the law is dealing with a difficult situation and can't encourage people to believe murder is right. The Law would agree that if you commit murder really and sincerely believing that it is right it still has to regard you as a criminal and subject to a life sentence. It agrees you haven't chosen jail but you still have to endure it. You are treated as if you have chosen it. If you don't believe in an eternal Hell you cannot choose it. God doesn't need to put you in Hell as if he were a Criminal Court trying to make the best of a bad situation in an imperfect and flawed world. All he needs to do is keep you away from his saints in Heaven. So if you sin grievously and die, you are not trying to abandon God forever unless you believe you are! If there is a Hell, then the message of Jesus Christ is putting people in it! Or trying to!