Atheist Parents: Parenting Without Belief

Welcome To Atheist Parents.org

 

Thank you for visiting the new internet site of www.atheistparents.org. We are dedicated to helping parents worldwide to raise well-educated, thoughtful, ethical, socially responsible, environmentally aware, and most importantly, godless children. Your journey as a parent raising atheist children will definitely not be as easy as saying "Cuz Jesus made it that way," or "The devil made me do it." Yet as your children grow up as educated atheists in a world without gods, without fear of eternal damnation for thought crimes as an 8 year old, they will thank you in more ways than you can imagine.


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Home Schooling Without Religion? Almost Impossible!

3 Reasons Why Humanist Homeschoolers Help Is Going To Change Secular Homeschooling

1. Public perception about American homeschoolers is that they are generally religious. This is fairly accurate and so most curricula is authored, published, sold, and used by Christian homeschoolers. Secular homeschooling families traditionally have to rely on non-textbook resources, texts written and published overseas, or heavily edited copies of Christian curricula. Humanist Homeschoolers Help will provide a low-cost option for many families who need a quality secular resource for their homeschool. Our goal is to get as many secular families matched up with a secular resource (one that they may not even know exists!) as possible.

2. Secular resources in this country are new enough that they are often pricey even when used. Humanist Homeschoolers Help intends to take on that burden of purchasing curricula and books so that more families can have access to what they need. To Continue Reading Click Here

The Interview with Lance Gregorchuk Author of „Born Again Atheist“

AP: Hello, Lance. Your new book, “Born Again Atheist: The Arguments for the Facts,” has now been released by Enlightened Publishing and you have described the book as a real “Game Changer.” Why do you think that?

 

LG: Well, like my last book, I wrote this one for my children. As you know, I wrote my children’s book “Great Without Religion” two years ago so I could teach my children at a young age about the scientific method, about understanding facts and fiction, fairy tales and religion. My kids...  Continue reading by clicking here

Get your Free Chapter

Get your free Chapter "The Ten Commandments" from the book Born Again Atheist by Lance Gregorchuk by clicking here and get a "laugh out loud funny" insight into Lance Gregorchuk's newest book on religion, belief systems, and the arguments for the facts. 

The Interview with James S. Morrison

The public high school teacher in the USA who teaches a course in religion????

AP: Teaching religion in public schools must be extremely rare, right?

JSM: It is. Typically when I tell people I teach a religion class in a public high school they look at me as if I had just barbequed a kitten. Liberals immediately become skeptical and concerned that I’m some sort of Jesus freak preaching Christian dogma. Evangelicals react with the same kind of skepticism, but their immediate concern is that I’m an atheist trying to discredit God and Jesus. Needless to say, I usually shy away from telling people what I do for a living.

 

AP: Are you an atheist?

JSM: People ask me this all the time, and I hesitate to answer it. But the fact that we have words such as “atheist” and “agnostic” and “deist” speaks to the importance we put on . Continue reading click here

Thank you Cynthia for letting us re-print your blogg

An funny and sad story all at once: "Two Faced Jesus"

I was 14 years old before I had my first encounter with Jesus Christ. Up to that point, I had heard enough about the basic story to get around in the world—born on Christmas, raised from the dead on Easter, and the whole “Born of a Virgin” thing. But I never had to deal with JC directly until my father “found him” after his second failed marriage.

Up until then, I had been raised by my agnostic mother and militant atheist grandmother, who believed that the very notion of a make-believe man in the sky was for the weak-minded. We celebrated Christmas—by celebrate.... Read more by clicking here

If you are currently weighing your options as a parent as to which god or denomination you should raise your child to believe in, then you might be interested in the following:

If a god can be defined as: "a supernatural creator and overseer of the universe," then we must include in this definition all deities, goddesses (very big god word for female gods) and supernatural beings. To differentiate between old mythological gods from hundreds and thousands of years ago and modern gods is unnecessary to answer the question "What is a God?”The fact that in Western societies we might prefer to use JHWA, Jehovah, God, or Allah is irrelevant in the question of god, since every belief worldwide is convinced that only their god is the right god.
 
Children are born atheists. They are born without belief; their belief in a god comes ONLY from their parents’ beliefs, which are also determined from the century in which they were born and the country in which their parents were born.

Since the beginning of recorded history, which is defined by the invention of writing by the Sumerians around 6,000 years ago, historians have cataloged over 3,750 supernatural beings, of which 2,870 can be considered deities or gods. Yet, those numbers are probably a very conservative estimate because we have no accurate written information before 4000 B.C. This means any deities or gods worshipped by man before this period are unaccounted for.

In truth, the possibilities for gods are nearly infinite. For example, in Hindu the entire living universe is merely a unique manifestation of Ishvara. This leads to the fact that there are 340 million "gods or goddesses" which you can pray to right now.

Some examples of the different deities documented through the last few thousand years are:

Greek: Zeus, Hermes, Hades, Hera, Aphrodite, and so many others

Chinese: Shangdi, Mazu, Shou Xing, Tu Di Gong, etc.

Roman: Juppiter, Mars, Terra, etc.
Norwegian: Odin, Thor, Loki, Njordr, etc.
Hindu: Krishna, Vishnu, Kali, Ishvara, etc.
Shinto: Izanagi-no-Mikoto, Izanami-no-Mikoto, etc.
Celtic: Cernunnos, Damona, Epona, etc.
Egyptian: Ra, Isis, Anubis, Osiris, Horus, etc.
Sumerian: An, Ki, Enlil, Enki, etc.
Babylonian: Sin, Marduk, Ishtar, Nabu, etc.
Persian: Simurgh, Rostam, Gaokerena, etc.
Aboriginal: Bunyip, Kurreah, Mutjinga, etc.


Yet, it must be noted that the dominant monotheistic religions of today who declare that theirs is the only REAL and true god, say that their religion must be better because in the past people believed in many gods and now they only believe in one (meaning less is more). Therefore, atheism is the ultimate form of the advancement of religion. From many gods to few gods, to one god, to no gods. Isn’t Evolution an amazing thing?

We would love to hear your comments

Write a comment

Comments: 142

  • #1

    Kaijla (Wednesday, 08 February 2012 01:09)

    I absolutely love this! This was a great idea and very well done!

  • #2

    Amadeus (Sunday, 04 March 2012 18:46)

    Although I am an agnostic atheist, raising children as atheists is IMHO not much better than raising them as theists.
    Yes, lets give them all necessary tools to be able decide what to believe and what not at an appropriate age. But telling them "there are no gods" before they even know the concept of believing is kind of missionary as well.

  • #3

    Chad Kittrell (Sunday, 04 March 2012 19:51)

    As a father one one 5year old girl going to school in a predominantly Catholic area, I'm constantly frustrated when she comes home and tells me about the things she 'learned' in school that day. Anyone claiming that 'God is not allowed in our public schools' has obviously not been inside of a school lately, and is using this line as a justification for their own political/religious agenda. Thank you for starting up this website, I will be visiting often!

  • #4

    Tiktaalik (Sunday, 04 March 2012 20:10)

    Amadeus:

    Raising your children as an atheist IS giving them the tools they need to decide.

    It doesn't mean you tell them outright "there is no god." That's not what atheism is, at any rate. Atheism is the LACK of a belief, so what exactly would I be doing that you believe is so similar to theism??

    I am raising my kids "as atheists", that is: I have not brainwashed them about deities either existing or not existing. I simply haven't talked about it. Instead, I'm teaching my boys how to THINK critically.

    I think you misunderstand what an atheist is; either that or you are making an unnecessary logical leap into thinking that "raising as an atheist" means some kind of indoctrination??

    IN the same way that I'm not pounding it into my boys' head that leprechauns are fake, I'm also not doing so in relation to deities or unicorns or fairies (tooth and other kinds too!)

  • #5

    Amadeus (Monday, 05 March 2012 09:45)

    Hey Tiktaalik,

    "Raising your children as an atheist IS giving them the tools they need to decide."

    Sorry, but this is not true. Children are non-theists as well as they are non-tooth-fairyists unless they are told different.
    The tools are:
    - being sceptical
    - use your senses and logic
    - think critical before you believe implausible stories to be real
    AND:
    - telling them about people who in spite of better knowing DO believe in supernatural things to prevent them to believe as well.

    ok sorry i start splitting hairs.
    i think at the end of the day we don't have much different about this issue.

  • #6

    Jim Japes (Wednesday, 07 March 2012 13:44)

    I'm a grandpa to kids in Christian schools. They sure get brainwashed, but Atheists have a problem in matching the centuries old and improving methods of religious indoctrination. I have a doc on www.daretoreason.info suitable for older kids 11-12 up. The problems start younger than that. We need Lullabies, fairy tales ( they're only fiction),that are set to traditional old formats and melodies for babies & kindergartens - all without any religious reference. Plagiarise them from other religions if necessary. There's no copyright.

  • #7

    Jason (Thursday, 08 March 2012 09:42)

    @Jim Japes. I am not sure atheists need to match their religious indoctrination, I think we can keep the traditions of Christmas and easter alive but just let the children know why it is celebrated on dec 25th ( dec 21st being shortest day of year.. sun stays at same position on horizon for 3 days, and on Dec 25th raises again, after the belt of orion, known as the 3 kings, aligns with the star sirius showing the exact position the sun will raise on December 25th. Easter being celebrated on the first sunday after the first full moon after the spring soltice.) Pretty Pegan Stuff here. My kids love to tell those stories to teachers when they are asked about Christmas and Easter in school, my son who is 8 did a school presentation about the tradition of christmas, he made me so proud, and other kids in his class are now questioning their parents faith and their pagen rituals. I think his teacher will not give that assignment ever again.

  • #8

    Jim Japes (Monday, 12 March 2012 10:46)

    Hi Jason, Indoctrination is simply taking in the environment around babies & children. They don't know if they are being indoctrinated for the better or worse. For example,saying prayers will become a question for them from other children, probably before a teacher gets to them. I worry that it's a "nice" easy thing for them to be exposed to. Non-religious parents should be prepared for a substitute answer & direction. Its dangerous ground to even be "prayerfully wishing" Father Xmas to bring them something. I'd prefer to say "No we read a nice story to go to sleep. Thats better than saying prayers, because no-one ever hears them anyway." Stating the obvious? Sorry. Yes, I can see that Easter & Xmas have become so commecialised that it should be relatively easy for adults to not go into the details, but its the other kids, media etc that will do the baby Jesus stuff."They are fairy tales, not true stories"
    Jim.

  • #9

    Ryan (Friday, 06 April 2012 11:22)

    As a new parent I worry about what I will do when the time comes that my son asks me what god is. I can remember as a kid when i still believed in god there was a girl during recess one day who made some offhand comment about how Jesus couldn't have been a perfect person and I along with every other kid on the play ground began to berate her about this and make fun of her. I don't want my son to go through that when one of his friends brings up god and he says something like "Psh you believe that crap?".

    I have so many questions. If I don't pretend that there's a god at all for him at least while he's very young, should I also not pretend there's a Santa Claus or Easter Bunny? I guess I'm mostly worried about what other kids will say to him about his beliefs. My wife and I said before he was born that we would just not even mention it and wait for him to ask us and explain it to him in the way we understand it. Now though, I'm not sure if that would work.

  • #10

    Jen (Friday, 06 April 2012 12:23)

    @Ryan, There is a big difference between Santa and the easter bunny, unicorns, lepracons, the tooth fairy and the non-belief in a god. Your kid will without a doubt be made fun of for hundreds of things on the playground, he will be too short, too tall, too skinny, too fat, too slow, he wont wear the right clothes or sneakers, wears glasses or anything else. Kids make fun of other kids, that will never change. I love the fact that my son at 7 years old could and can discuss religion with those who believe (including adults) and within only a few minutes has them questioning their faith. Yes, as an atheist I have helped him along but he thinks people who believe have every right to beleive what they want as long as they keep it to themselves, when they do bring it up, I will not allow him to be bullied, he pushes back! His favorite is The fairy Tail of Noahs Arc, he asks people if they believe it? If they answer yes he asks "then what about the fish?" When they cannot answer he says "and Kangeroos, how did they get to Australia?" I personally love discussing religion with him. Good luck to you.

  • #11

    Haley (Monday, 23 April 2012 18:23)

    Just stumbled across this in hopes that I can answer my 3-yr old's question "what is god?".

    Uugh, we said "someone pretend that some people think is real. we know it's silly!"

    Haven't found anything more eloquent and simple for his level of understanding yet. I'm sticking with it.

    I commented to say that we don't do Santa/EasterBunny/Tooth Fairy or any of that other nonsense.

  • #12

    Wes (Thursday, 26 April 2012 00:08)

    @Haley:
    When my child asks, "Who is Hades?" I will respond,"The Greek god of the Underworld.The Greeks believed he ruled the underworld, etc" Just as I would any other god, so likewise when my child asks, "What/(Who) is God?" I'll answer, "The Christian god of the Universe. Christians believe He is the creator of all things, and sent his son, yadda yadda, yadda."
    As a child I never believed Zeus was real, but I was taught to understand that the Greeks did believe, and that was a time before science could explain the unexplainable. Likewise, this is how I will teach my children about Christian Mythology. - isn't this what we really should be calling it????

  • #13

    amy (Friday, 11 May 2012 06:01)

    We are atheists, but have made the mistake of not counter-indoctrinating our son adequately. We never raise the concept of gods--why would we (I thought). But now, at 7.5, he's being intensively evangelized by a christian friend at school. He comes home waxing about the beauties of heaven. (And wonders if he could convince jesus to give him a device to transport his atheist parents to heaven even though they don't believe, gotta love when they mix in the other varieties of science fiction.) I fear that if I'm too reactive (which I feel), it will only make the friend's beliefs more glamorous. Any BTDT advice? As soon as the ethical humanists are back in session in the fall, we'll get him there. I just never expected the religious peer pressure to be so strong this young.

  • #14

    pim (Sunday, 27 May 2012 13:58)

    i am an atheist, just show the child.

    this is evedince,
    this is science.
    this is what some people belive (religion). and why they believe it.
    and why you do not.

    let it think for its self. and raise him to be skeptical and openminden.


    but most importantly a moral person.


    because believes not matter. aslong as they do not negatively influence your life
    deeds > believes

  • #15

    Shaun (Monday, 11 June 2012 23:11)

    There is nothing wrong with telling a child "there are no gods". Just like you can safely tell a child "there are no fairies" or "there is no bigfoot". Because those things are TRUE. Saying that telling children "there are no gods" is similar to Christian proslytization is ridiculous. The burden of proof lies on the party making the positive statement. If you say "Vampires are real." then it's your job to prove it. Not mine. I feel pretty comfortable saying to my
    kids, "Vampires don't exist." Just because you can't prove something doesn't exist, doesn't mean it does. I have no problem with people believing in whatever god they choose, in my opinion it's just intellectual laziness and fear. As long as you're not using your belief in fairy tales to affect my family in any way, we're good.

  • #16

    Leslie (Tuesday, 10 July 2012 19:20)

    In the cartoon above of the religious figures pointing fingers at a young child, the figure on the far left looks Buddhist. Buddhists, by definition, are atheists. Does atheism mean not believing in a god? Or not believing in any doctrine/religion/philosophy?

  • #17

    Stephanie (Sunday, 22 July 2012 01:00)

    a·the·ist
    noun
    a person who denies or disbelieves the existence of a supreme being or beings.
    (http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/atheist?s=ts&ld=1065)

    I think I'm going to let my children reserve judgement. I share some of the same fears as Ryan, above. The only thing I hope to do as a parent is to educate my child, and I think Wes is on the right track...just inform the child about anything/everything they are interested in...(and maybe even some they aren't, so they have a wide array of general knowledge) and treat them all as fictional if your child questions you on your beliefs on the subject...? I have issue with the religious content in public school as well...I don't want someone telling MY kid that so-an-so IS THE WAY IT IS. The idea that this could take place really irritates me...

    One question I would pose to the general "atheist" here is...how do you feel if your child IS open-minded, well-rounded, and has done tons of research on many different religions...and somehow, they decide they want to have faith in the Christian God? What is the reaction? Do we still have the same open-minded view toward our now-Christian children? I would like to think I would...I pride myself on being accepting...and I certainly would not love my child any less for being gay, Christian, or really really into Country music. Thoughts?

  • #18

    Steph (Sunday, 29 July 2012 18:10)

    I have the problem of simply just believing in the most logical reason. At 5 years old I began questioning my family's religion. Came out to my family after 20 years of anxiety of the whole thing as an atheist. And of course my answer to their whys is not satisfactory to them. My reason is simply because its not logical. So I now feel the need to instead of waiting for my kids to be influenced by my family's radicalism to give them a good boost and
    Help them to argue and question everything. How do I do this? My kids are 3,4 and 5. I don't want them to experience the same anxieties I had to endure for years by myself.

  • #19

    P. S. (Friday, 10 August 2012 19:36)

    I am an atheist with two well-adjusted children who are 17 and 14. I have taken the stance that belief in God or a certain religion is their choice. I tell them the reason I believe or rather do not believe as I do and encourage them to follow their own hearts. We have gone to church when visiting friends and family who are church goers. And I tell them I believe there are good things in religion such as some of the 10 commandments, do not lie, steal, kill, etc, and "treat others like you would like to be treated" - that all people should live by. I explain that no one should have the right to tell them or anyone else what to believe because it is a personal choice. No one walking this earth knows anything concrete or irrefutable about God and as soon as they say they do they should not be trusted. Maybe we were created but God, if there is one, is staying out of the picture and letting us figure things out for ourselves. Maybe the more we understand about the world we live in the closer we come to God. On the topic of death I told them it is the path in life we all follow. No one has ever come back except those who had near death experiences and seem to have enjoyed it. Life is short so live it with wonder, love, and friendship.

  • #20

    Dawn (Friday, 17 August 2012 02:02)

    Thank you for the great info - having 2 young boys 9/11 - the questions are starting. They are very aware of our beliefs as atheists , but will come to their own choices. Thanks for the wonderful words of advice!

  • #21

    Saddened (Tuesday, 21 August 2012 20:13)

    While I'm not entirely surprised, it is rather disturbing to see a resource available for non-believers to push atheism on to their children. I do understand every parent has the right to raise up their child(ren) in his/her own way, but the entire concept of parental roles is defined right in the Bible for both the father and the mother. How do you explain that away? How do you explain that which cannot be proven by science and fact because it transcends our understanding?

    Yes, I do know that I am in the absolutely wrong forum to bring these things up, but on the other hand, I hope that by relaying that atheism does not in itself disprove the existence of God that maybe some parent who is "on the fence" may realize that they do NOT know everything. They would be doing a huge disservice to their own child to work hard to disprove the existence of God while feverishly trying to explain away their child's questions about the creation of the universe, why we're here, how good and evil co-exist and why, everyday miracles that do happen, prayers answered and people posting about it on social media (like Facebook) - attesting to the power of prayer, and so on and so forth.

    I'm not putting down atheists, so please don't read into this as a call to reply in anger or defense. What I am attempting to accomplish here is to prevent the soul-stealing actions of parents to their own children when they themselves cannot definitely answer all questions to completely disprove the existence of God. And my hope is that this reaches at least one parent who may be on the fence to realize that perhaps s/he needs to take a second look at whether or not living a life without faith in a higher power is really the best path for their own child's benefit.

    No preaching or biblical references necessary here. I'm simply reaching out to those who may be considering this concept of parents teaching their children to counter the belief of the existence of God to be a great idea (or those who already have). I want those parents to really take a moment and search deep down inside for that small voice pleading with you to not steal the soul of your own sons or daughters - and maybe, just maybe - the memories of the miracle of the birth of your children will help you to realize what life is all about, why we are here, and our roles as parents to spiritually guard our children - even if it means that someday atheism for the parent is questioned and replaced with faith in a loving God *because* of your children.

  • #22

    Eric (Monday, 27 August 2012 11:34)

    @Sadddened.

    Seriously? You find it disturbing that people who do not believe in talking donkeys and snakes, who teach their children that the earth is NOT 6000 years old and there is no magic man in the sky is disturbing? I also really love the roles of mother and father you talk about in the bible is your favorite I Timothy 2:11-14 "A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I don’t permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner”

    Yes you are right your book of fairy tales does tell men they have authority over women, but atheists simply do not want garbage like that taught to children. And Im just wondering what you think cannot be answered by science? I think we have it all figured out now, there really isnt much left you know.

    To be clear atheism is not a religion in the same way non-belief in unicorns doeant mean I actually think there may be unicorns but cannot prove it. You define atheist in the only way you know how because you believe in a imaginary friend, you think we just don't believe in it, but you cannot define atheism like that!

    Now I am pleading with you, please teach your kids that there is no person watching them, there is no hell as punishment when they do not do what your god wants them to do, that they cannot be punished for thought crimes (though shallt not covet remember). When an atheist listens to your logic it is like being the only sobber guy in a room full of drunks who keep telling him to have a drink because it feels so good. If you want to drink the cool-aid go ahead, but if want my personal oppinion, teaching that crap to children is child abise and should be punished as so.

  • #23

    Carrie (Tuesday, 04 September 2012 04:29)

    My son is almost six and is now starting to ask questions about jesus and heaven... Unfortunately most of our family are catholic and have been talking to him about this. I'm just not sure how to answer his questions...

  • #24

    Lee (Thursday, 13 September 2012 12:12)

    The problem with the children are born atheists argument is that you are making an assumption for ALL people for ALL ages. You can't make that assumption and expect a logical person to agree since no one has asked ALL people for ALL ages if they believed in a god or the God only after someone taught them to believe. What if you are simply ignorant of the truth and wrong? Could that be remotely possible?

  • #25

    Lance Gregorchuk (Thursday, 13 September 2012 17:14)

    @Lee: How can you believe that a child sometime in history was born believing in a god or gods? Are you actually trying to say that a child was born with faith? Do you mean like a caveman believing in the sun god? Atheists are not ignorant and trust me we are not wrong on this one either!

  • #26

    K. (Saturday, 15 September 2012 03:04)

    My family recently found out that my husband and I (I am almost 29 and he near 30) are Athesits. We have a son that turns 4 in a few weeks. Just a few minutes ago, our son told us that my grandma told him that my grandfather "went to the sky and is now in heaven." My husband and I were both in a state of shock, as we were not quite ready for that kind of claim from our child.
    In addition to that, we honestly felt like our family would respect our views and not try to sprinkle a small child's mind with religious babble at such a young age. When my husband and I told our son that people do not go into the sky, he was quick to tell us that we were wrong because his grandma told him it was true.
    At this point, I'm not really sure what to say to him. He is a smart kid...should I just let it be at this point and speak to him later on in life? I am baffled at this point. Any advice from other Atheist or Athesit-Agnostic parents are welcomed.

  • #27

    Lee (Sunday, 16 September 2012 00:02)

    You are the one who made the argument and used it as a reason for your own beliefs. Belief in a Supreme Being, Creator or gods of some sort has been widespread through the ages. You want to label all of that belief in the "learned only" column. Yet you can't because you haven't the evidence. If you want super natural evidence of an untaught tribe teaching the Genesis account as well as God working in the life of an idol worshiper, you could look at the Samuel Morris Story: http://www.taylor.edu/about/heritage/samuel-morris/the-samuel-morris-story.shtml as well as more info on Prince Kaboo aka Samuel Morris at http://scripture-truth.homestead.com/samuelmorris.html

  • #28

    Lee (Sunday, 16 September 2012 00:12)

    Hi again Lance. Here is an article that disputes this site's claim that children are born atheists. It says there are cultures where children were not taught to believe in a god at all and yet many do. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/religion/3512686/Children-are-born-believers-in-God-academic-claims.html

  • #29

    Lance Gregorchuk (Sunday, 16 September 2012 18:16)

    @Lee: Seriously? That is probably one of the most crazy stories I have ever heard and I have heard a lot! Why don't you throw in a beanstalk and you might have a new religion, maybe you could become the high priest and tell people what to do and what to think, how to dress and what to eat, who to love and who to hate, and what is right and what is wrong! To argue againt someone who thinks that children are not born atheists for me is like arguing against someone who thinks children are all born speaking chinese. Lee, you are arguing the absurd and you are making yourself look like a really crazy religious person right now trying to promote some new crazy religion!

  • #30

    Josh (Wednesday, 26 September 2012 19:43)

    I was pleased to come across this website. My children, aged 7 and 4 are essentially being raised atheist. My wife and I both come from jewish parents though we both consider ourselves atheist. My wife considers herself both jewish and atheist. I struggle with that. It seems hypocritical to be both. At any rate, we are interested in providing the history and culture without the religion. But again, where do you draw the line between history and myth?

  • #31

    Ags (Monday, 01 October 2012 18:38)

    So far I have not read any stories here from people that have actually lived through the experience of being brought up as an atheist child with atheist parents. My siblings and I were raised by a very loving, caring yet staunchly atheist father. For anyone curious, here is my short story of that experience.

    I can tell you now, that being told by your father repeatedly at a young age that "there is no God" is psychologically damaging.

    I remember the exact moment this happened as a huge trauma. I asked what happens when people die, and they just pretty much said "Nothing, you just get buried in the ground and become part of the dirt, there is nothing beyond", and then when I started crying, terrified of what they had just told me "it's nothing to fear about, it's a natural part of life, everyone dies and that's it, there's no Heaven". This is my earliest memory as a child, and I cried and cried.

    I can tell you now from the experiences of me and my brothers, (and other religious young cousins my father tried to indoctrinate Atheism into), that this is traumatising for a child.

    Yes of course it's true that children are not born knowing there is a God, but that does no make them atheist. It is natural for human beings to question their existence and purpose on this Earth, it is natural to be inquisitive about spirituality and/or whether there is a higher power.

    By the fact that my parents told me repeatedly through childhood that "There is NO God" as if it's an actual fact, it was just as indoctrinating as parents forcing religion on their child. I grew up thinking that anyone with a religious belief was stupid, and that I was more intelligent (and superior) than them for knowing the real truth about religion.

    This has produced in me and my siblings a huge struggle in our spiritual identities way into adult life. I have a constant battle occurring in my head when it comes to spiritual beliefs. I actually really want to believe, a lot of my life points me towards leading a spiritual life (I am intensely curious about spiritual things), yet I hear this constant voice from my dad "There is no God, you are stupid if you believe in God" "Only people who are dumb and can't think for themselves believe in God, don't be ridiculous".

    You know what? It's like the choice to believe was taken away from me.

    Doesn't this sound a little bit similar to religious indoctrination?

    Anyways, all I have to say it this. You do NOT have the facts to disprove the existence of a higher power or spirituality.
    Please, if you have kids and don't want to bring them up with religion that perfectly fine, but please don't force atheism on them. Whatever you do, don't tell them that you know for a fact that there is no God.

    Let them decide for themselves in their own time. You can tell them what you believe, but also tell them that other people believe in different things, and that it's ok and they have a right to choose for themselves what they believe in. If they ask wether there's a Heaven, don't say and outright "NO". Tell them that you don't believe in one, but tell them that a lot of people do believe so, and that it's ok.

  • #32

    Lance (Monday, 01 October 2012 20:11)

    @AGS: Wow what a story! I was just wondering if you cried as hard when he told you there was no santa claus or easter bunny or tooth fairy? Telling children that there is no god is NOT at all psychologically damaging. Lieing to them that there is an after life is! Telling them that someone is watching you or judging you or reading your thoughts is like living in North Korea or a george Orwell book about animals on a farm. Your father told you the truth, good on him. I will tell you I personally have told my 2 kids that there is no god we discuss atheism weekly and my kids read science books, have a telescope, do well in school and are not at all psychologically damaged. Yes when my son asked about santa last year ( he is 7 now) I had to tell him the truth, he didnt cry though and I asked him to not tell his sister who is only 5. The choice wasn't taken away from you in the same way that the choice in believing in unicorns wasn't. Science and facts is not religious indoctrination. Here is where your argument really comes apart at the seams though. You have reduced atheism is a just another belief, where some think there is a god and some do not. Atheism is not a belief, it is the lack thereof. There is no argument for the non belief in Lepracons or elves either, there is no other side of the story to the holocoust no matter what some people believe. There are facts, and trust me my friend there is no heaven, santa, easter bunny, Zeus or Horus, you don't come back to earth as a worm if your were bad, you dont get a planet when you die, there is no magic underwear which helps you decide between right and wrong, there is no hell, no devil, and no gods. I think your dad was a brave and intelligent man, you on the otherside, and I am sorry to say this and I mean it well, sound like you cried a lot as a kid.

  • #33

    Winter (Thursday, 04 October 2012 19:28)

    Love this site! My parnter and i were trying 2 wrap our heads around how we explain morals 2 our childern but this site really help

  • #34

    Fast-Eddie (Saturday, 13 October 2012 00:38)

    It's really comforting to know that i'm not a minority in being an atheist. I was born and raised Catholic, went to catecism on saturday mornings, church on Sunday when I was growing up. But it's funny how even at the age of 5, I can remember thinking about how christianity just didn't make sense especially since I was TOTALLY into dinosaurs as a kid! As a teen, it just got more and more confusing, nothing I learned in science class was applicable to the stuff they teach at church. I guess I always knew I was an atheist, but when I would question my faith, my parents werent too pleased, so I kept it to myself. Here I am now at 49 years old, with children of my own now, and finding this site really helps with advice I can help my kids with....BTW, my wife is a catholic so there is some conflicting beliefs (or the lack of, on my part)in my house, but I think she's slowly coming around. :)

  • #35

    eighthwonder (Friday, 19 October 2012 18:02)

    hi all can you some names for boys and girls which doesn't represent any religion

  • #36

    LeonaG (Tuesday, 23 October 2012 15:00)

    Lee - It sounds as though you in fact *were* indoctrinated with some of the God and Jesus fairy tales as a child and were distraught when your parent told you they weren't true.

    It's a better idea not to lie to your kids about anything. Don't indoctrinate them with lies about Santa Claus or the Tooth Fairy or any other imaginary cultural thing (the gods and customs will vary). Don't tell them that if they're bad, Jesus will be angry and after they die, they'll rot in hell, or he'll punish them now. It doesn't happen, and they'll quickly figure that out. Makes me wonder if that's why all the preacher's kids I ever met passed through such a horrendous rebellious stage (and some remained there, forever, as addicts or criminals).

    Not lying to them doesn't mean they need to learn the whole entire adult-appropriate truth. Temper the answer to make it age-appropriate, please.

    Because what's going to happen when you then try to tell your child, drinking and smoking are best avoided? etc.

    You. Won't. Be. Believed.

  • #37

    Olof (Thursday, 25 October 2012 00:32)

    Regarding the list of gods: you write Norwegian, though it would be more correct to write Norse or Nordic, as these gods were worshipped in all of the Nordic countries of Europe (Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Iceland, Faroe Islands). See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Norsemen

  • #38

    Alex (Thursday, 08 November 2012 00:37)

    I do with my kids what my parents did with my siblings and I (Dad is Protestant and Mom is Agnostic)... Don't talk about religion at all! My sister toyed with Christianity (turned Agnostic), I am Atheist, and my brother is Agnostic. My Dad now tries to get me to go to church now that I am old enough to understand on my own without being brainwashed as a small child. Although I think he is the crazy one, I politely decline. :o) My kids talk about God because they have heard about it but there is no telling them what is real and what isn't.. Don't be fooled! They have been brought up with strong morals!!! As have I. :o)

  • #39

    UK Smith (Saturday, 10 November 2012 18:46)

    Surely atheism can't be considered 'a lack of belief'? It's a BELIEF that God or gods do not exist. If it was a lack of belief you wouldn't be quite so vocal about it, because you wouldn't see any need to vocalise something that doesn't exist. I believe in the risen Christ, he is the only human who came back to life without human help, and that has never been disproved. I agree, it's faith, because I can't give you solid, physical proof.

    Similarly, a lack of belief in any form of spiritual existence blinkers your thinking. You have all decided that you believe spiritual form does not exist. Atheism is a BELIEF, it's a FAITH, because atheism claims far less evidence for its truth than God does; in fact atheism can claim NO evidence.

  • #40

    Lance Gregorchuk (Monday, 12 November 2012 19:31)

    @UK Smith: Atheism is non-belief, like the non-belief in unicorns, or elves or lepracons. Just because you think unicorns elves and gods exists does not put us on the same playing field. We vocalise our atheism because of the damage your belief does to mankind. Just to clarify things though, your magic man Jesus is not the only person in history who came back to life, many people have (clinically) died and then been resusitated, it happens every day, thanks to firemen and doctors and paramedics, but I don't think you should go around thinking they are some kind of massiah. We cannot disprove that you have a god, and on the same note, you cannot disprove my refridgerator cannot fly when I am sleeping alone in my house only when noone is looking. I dont have any physical proof it doesnt happen but if you dont beleive that it does does it put us on the same playing field of belief and non-belief because as you know you cannot prove it doesnt happen! If you want to make crazy claims you are the one who requires the evidence, not the person who doesnt believe in elves, gods or flying refridgerators, you need to prove the existance of an event or god, we don't. We can prove that the earth is older then 6000 years (which is documented in your book of fairy tales). We can prove that there was no Noah's flood, that the universe is billions of years old, that there was no Roman census which made Joseph an Marry go to Bethleham to give a virgin birth to a god. Yet do we as atheists really need to prove that there is God Horus, Mithra, Zues or Jesus? NO we don't...you need to prove there is one. Yet what we can do, Mr/Mrs UK Smith is prove that many things which your book of fairy tales says are true, simply are not, we do it everyday and we have the evidence to back it up. Now here is a little advice, the next time you come trolling to a web site preaching lepracons, unicorns, gods or elves... try to show up with some rational argument other then "Well... I just believe my refridgerator can fly"!

  • #41

    Nick (Tuesday, 18 December 2012 03:35)

    Love the site guys. This is a great article by a woman who is an atheist, discussing her extremely religious (comically so!) after. It's a good story. Funny and sad at the same time.

  • #42

    Nick (Tuesday, 18 December 2012 03:42)

    This is an article by a woman who's an atheist, raised by an extremely (almost comically so) father. It's sad and funny all at once. Give it a read!
    http://chaossection.com/2012/12/17/two-faced-jesus/

  • #43

    Sara (Monday, 24 December 2012 07:38)

    I'm so glad I came across this site! It's nice to hear so many voices from other like-minded atheist parents out there. Lance, I am really enjoying your comments. You are so spot-on with your retorts. I was raised Catholic, went to Catholic school, etc. I even married in the same church that I was raised in, although I was definitely questioning my faith at the time. That was ten years ago, and I have since embraced atheism and enjoy thinking logically and marveling at the beauty of nature and the universe. I have three kids, ages 2, 4, and 8. My eldest is very intelligent and is interested in Greek mythology, and I speak about religion openly with her. I see nothing wrong in telling my kids that there is no god, to encourage them to think scientifically and logically, yet to also be kind, respectful people. This evening, my four-year-old asked me who god is and I told him that god is make-believe for grown-ups. He thinks that's silly. Smart little man!

  • #44

    Adrian (Friday, 28 December 2012 23:27)

    Hello all, (I wrote a bit too much so I am splitting it into two posts). I have never posted on a site like this before.

    Just as a disclaimer, I am not a parent. I just enjoy reading different perspectives on theism and atheism. I myself am an atheist, and have always identified myself as such. I want to share with you guys how I grew up, just to offer another perspective to think about. It isn't that eventful, but it may interest you.

    I am 25. I was raised in a semi-troubled household (some abuse/lack of affection) so I have always been skeptical about pretty much everything. People's words, people's actions, people's intentions. You can never fully understand another person. Unfortunately for me I grew up not fully trusting other people, unless they gave me a real reason to trust them.

    I am very thankful for one part of my upbringing though, my mother's decisions. My mother had been raised catholic, and she is a fairly intelligent person. She always went to catholic schools growing up (she is 60 now btw) and she always had these questions that nobody could answer. One thing that stood out to me is a story she told me about the day she learned Santa clause wasn't real. She had a fight at school with some girls who said he wasn't. She was in Middle School I believe, and she came home after this horrible day and told her parents about it. Her mom came clean and said that Santa wasn't real. My mom said she felt absolutely devastated. She thought how could my parents deceive me like this? How can I ever trust them? She said because of this moment, she decided to never lie to her kids about santa. Separetely, she said she found the actual establishment of catholicism corrupt, so she separated herself from the religion when she was older and maintains a sense of spiritualism. She does not believe in organized religion.

    Because of my mom's experiences growing up, she raised a household without mention of religion. Honestly, I don't think I ever talked with her about the subject until I was in college. There were some residual religious elements, for instance apparently she did baptize all of her kids when they were babies (she did it herself for me I know). Also, every year (and still to this day) we get presents from Santa. She continues the Santa tradition, but does not ever promote that Santa is real. It's just part of the holidays. I love getting my presents from Santa.

  • #45

    Adrian (Friday, 28 December 2012 23:28)

    So now I'm going to talk about myself. I never have believed in anything supernatural to my knowledge. My natural skepticism, logic, and general distrust in people (until proven), has led me to never believe something just because somebody says it is. It needs to either make perfect logical sense, or have evidence to back it up. I never believed in Santa even though I was never told Santa wasn't real. It just automically clicked with me as a kid. Something like, "OK, so storybook character flies around the world on a single night to give presents to kids for no apparent reason? Right, that seems possible..". I never believed in Easter Bunny. I always knew the adults hid the eggs. I always knew my mom was the tooth fairy. But I played along because it's just sort of a fun game. A little family play. I didn't even learn of the concept of a god as an actual belief system until elementary school at some point. I immediately dismissed it with the exact same logic that I came up with for every other story book character I had ever heard of.

    Once I learned the word "atheist" I immediately was like, "Oh, that's me." I remember telling all my friends in elementary school that I was atheist. Good thing at that point that none of them really cared. I had a period of time in middle school where I got really sad about religion. But not for the same whiny reasons that AGS above mentioned. But because I was so compassionate. I cried for my family and friends who lived their life dedicating themselves to a lie. I cried knowing that they would die believing in this big farce. It's such a waste of somebodies emotions. To love this god. To sacrifice anything for it. Gosh, it makes me sad still if I really think about it. I read of families and friends torn apart because of it. I've experienced broken relationships because of theism vs atheism also.

    The strange weird thing about my family is that I am the second youngest of 7 brothers and sisters. Of these 8 kids, to my knowledge I am the only atheist. I think my little brother is agnostic, leaning towards atheism. All but one of my sisters go to church now. My older brother I think has some spiritual belief, but no actual religion. We all grew up with the same parents, but still some of us came out as religious. I've realized it is just human arrogance and natural human desire to want to understand everything, and to want to have eternal lives, and to want to have a "meaning of life". A few years back I mentioned to my dad (who is now 66) I didn't believe in god. He said something along the lines of "I knew I shouldn'tve let your momma raise you without taking you kids to church." They are divorced now, he was the abuser, she was the enabler. He has since asked me to go to church a few times (even though he never goes). I always gave an excuse and he eventually stopped mentioning it.

    That's a good summary of my story of how I've been a lifelong atheist. To put it simply, that (supernatural or theistic) stuff never seemed more plausible than any other fairy tail, so it was never a struggle or a revelation. I know I made this a bit too long as I tend to write too much. I hope it will provide another interesting point of view for parents thinking of how to handle their children with this matter.

    If I could give some advice (as unqualified as I am). It would be to teach your kids to value logic, evidence, rationalism, and skepticism. Teach them that everybody believes different things because humans want certain things to be true. Teach them that their own beliefs or non-beliefs should reflect how they themselves perceive the world. Teach them about the history of religions. Why theistic mythologies came about in the first place. If they understand why religion came about (lack of understand), why it spread (control over the population), and why it persists (ignorance, or clinging to false hopes/fantasies, or complete lack of logic/brainwashing) Then I think you kids will grow up just fine. My parents didn't specifically teach me these things. But I figured them out. I'm sure you can teach your kids these things in a loving way.

  • #46

    RanchEarth (Sunday, 06 January 2013 04:31)

    I am going to homeschool my atheist children because we live in such a radical christian area. Does anyone have a program they would suggest?

  • #47

    Naturalistic (Saturday, 12 January 2013 06:15)

    When my mother in laws FAVORITE dog died there was a lot of talk about death. My daughter asked what happens when you die. I told her that nobody knows. She told me (crying)that she didn't want me to die. I told her that I limit sugar and eat lots of vegetables so that I will live a long time. I also told her that sometimes people die young but it's very rare, hardly ever happens. This didn't help much. Next, I told her that if you spend your whole life worrying about death you will not enjoy your life, so try not to worry about it too much because once again nobody really knows what happens after that. She would occasionally bring it up and cry about it but she is a crier. Then It occurred to me to tell her what her dad (totally atheist) would always say to me about the subject

    . "The best you can Hope to be is good dirt"

    ...which I elaborated on to mean that the earth made you out of dirt gave you life and you have to give it back some day. Also at other times I would mention that you and me will turn into good dirt to grow and apple tree that will feed another little girl or boy. So ii love this song by Harry Nilsson called "Think about your troubles" part of song that always gets me happy teary...."and everybody knows that when a body decomposes its basic elements are given back to the ocean, andthe sea does what it outa and soon this salty water". Also described to my two girls 3&5yrs how we all take turns being alive, because otherwise we would run out of places to live (they have to learn a lot about taking turns at this age so this makes a lot of sense to them I've noticed).

    I feel like my religion is worshipping nature. She is beautiful and it makes sense to worship her because she keeps me alive, she is my mother, feeding me and clothing me. If we all believed that she was GOD then she would be treated fairly instead of everyone hoping for something better, later, in the afterlife. I don't understand everything about the earth and not everything can be explained by science but I believe that if I take care of it, it will take care of me. Its probably got a name and it's sort of based on aboriginal beliefs. I think aboriginal beliefs were born out of rituals that benefitted everyone and though I'm it native they make a lot if sense.

    I was raised Christian until my parents became disillusioned with the reformed church and started their own, but some of the reformed people, came over and started trying to shame and make rules. They gave up on church and thats how I realized that it is your parents belief that shapes you. They are still spiritual but even when we went to church they were very open. When I would ask why he would send eve away for eating an apple that he had put there in the first place,( what was his problem!! )and how did we know the Adam and eve story to be true, my mother would tell me that that's what faith was. After they gave up the church i started thinking about a god that would send you to hell for things that were out of your control and it didn't make sense. If he didn't love me for who I was then i didn't want to be in heaven.

  • #48

    Atheist Chick (Saturday, 19 January 2013 18:12)

    Yay for being atheist! Religion sucks!! I'm raising my kids to think logically and realistically and not believe in fairy tales!!! Wooooo

  • #49

    No (Monday, 28 January 2013 05:31)

    Okay. That picture with the Buddhist and the Hindu and the Businessman. No. Just no.

    No.

  • #50

    Adrian (Monday, 28 January 2013 21:41)

    Why No? I am not understanding your reaction, or your reason for your reaction. Please elaborate.

  • #51

    richard (Thursday, 07 February 2013 05:14)

    I have a beautiful, intelligent 7 year old daughter. I am divorced and have always been an Atheist. My x-wife insists on taking my daughter to church. The worst of it is that the Sunday school is so inaccurate it is ridiculous. They have taught that Jesus died and was buried then the next day they dug him up, I actually heard them telling this to the children... This week they told her that the stars are all dead people and they are in heaven. Now she is afraid of the stars. My Question is does any one know of an organization that can help me to undo what the “church” is doing to my daughter? If I was say Jewish and the x-wife was catholic my church would teach their version and help to balance the damage. But there is no church of Atheist to go to for help. Anyone have advice? THANKS FOR READING
    Richard

  • #52

    Tony (Friday, 08 February 2013 14:14)

    i cant believe such levels of hypocrisy exists in this world.

  • #53

    Megan (Tuesday, 12 February 2013 02:51)

    hi!! My husband and i are atheist. We never thought our 3 year old son would be dealing with religion issues this young. We live in Florida and we have tried very hard to find a daycare that doesn't claim to be christian based but weren't able to find one. so we found one our son liked and went with that. We thought it wouldn't hurt since we have a private school lined up for him already which he will start at 5. But 3 weeks ago the director of the daycare pulled me a sided and asked why my son knew nothing of prayers at meals, christian songs like "Jesus loves me" and why he looked so puzzled when they asked him who god/Jesus was. i simple told him we we letting him figure out things for him self. Today when i picked him up he was singing jesus loves me, had a picture he painted of a cross, and at dinner just now said "no mommy we have to pray first" i said what? he replied "good boys pray or god will get mad and do bad things to you"..... guess im going to have to pull him out unless you guys have any other ideas? also do you think he will soon forget the ideas they have planted/brainwashed into him? thanks!! ps. he is only 3 but he is very smart. talks in perfect sentences and can hold a conservation better than most 5 y/o's. this is why im soo worried. I dont want hm think there is a man in the sky who will hurt him if he is "bad" as he put it. i also hate when people tell there kids there bad instead of saying "mis behaving"

  • #54

    Hector (Saturday, 16 February 2013 20:07)

    Why do we call our self's atheists, why can we not just call them brainwashed.

  • #55

    C B (Sunday, 17 February 2013 01:22)

    I would really love it if you could issue both "Born Again Atheist" and "Great Without Religion" as e-books for the Nook through Barnes and Noble, I really would rather read books on my Nook. Hope you consider it!

  • #56

    John (Monday, 18 February 2013 01:32)

    @Megan
    I feel your pain. I'm having similar issues with my five year old son. He's keeps bringing up jesus and souls and heaven. Turns out his teacher at spanish-language school has been feeding him this stuff. I've told him not everyone believes in God; myself being one of them. I've spent time with him on the internet researching the beliefs of other cultures (he loves Thor because of the Avengers) hoping to reinforce upon him that the Christian God is but one of many superstitions. Research indicates that acceptance of religious beliefs has a significant genetic component. I was raised in a Catholic family but was an atheist by the time I was a young teen. Whether it is preschool or some other venue, your son will be proselytized ... it is the nature of our society. Best advice I can give is to continually reinforce that your son understands the difference between fact and fiction, and hope his genetics predisposes him to be a critical thinker.

  • #57

    Maureen (Sunday, 24 February 2013 02:46)

    Where can I get a copy of that children's book? Amazon.com didn't carry it.

  • #58

    sammi (Wednesday, 27 February 2013 18:57)

    I believe in jesus christ n no ur wrong ur kids" should be able to grow n have a choice in believe you are guiltyof sin in jesus eye for knowing the truth and still continue not to belive repent" he'll forgive you dont delete an innocent soul for materialize things far as dwelling on the earth eternal life snds better to me more than anything faith believe is all you need" things do get old and man gets old and die off" so when your kids or if they have come to you with the powetful truth how do you go frm their when they find the truth and feel it and belive it will you still deny him? Or will stay attach to this world that one day will be faced by jesus and his father the dead will be called by hus voice!!!the non believers will remain asleep appearing ti be dead already as you dont follow the faith of the good lord... God blesd you your family and the broken souls in jesus name Amen

  • #59

    ADMIN (Thursday, 28 February 2013 08:10)

    @Sammi: Please keep your hate mail and hell wishing to the section "Hate Mail and Hell Wishing". I will leave your comment up for a few days though because it is too funny. I am guessing you didn't really pay that much attention in school especially in the grammer and spelling parts, but then again who has to with the afterlife and everything right? Sammi, here is a tip... if you want to hang out with intellectuals, learn how to formulate a full sentence and spell. Maybe your church offers courses for 8 year olds which is about the level you are at right now, not only in your understanding of religion, but also in your ability to formulate an argument. I really hope you don't have kids, I mean for their sake, it must be so embarrassing to have you as a parent. Ramen! (The noodles, I didn't make a spelling mistake)

  • #60

    Sean (Monday, 04 March 2013 03:15)

    I am one of the children who hasn't been brainwashed. At school, the other students will not shut up about my atheism. Only a few kids accept my atheism. They've made it their mission to restore my former Christian beliefs. No matter how much the creationists complain, they can't restore it. I'm one of the gifted children, and I'm smarter than most of the people in school. I don't take people who aren't as smart as me seriously. I wish the Christians would just shut their mouths and leave me alone.

  • #61

    Elizabeth McGinnigle (Friday, 08 March 2013 08:46)

    Help! My uber- religious ex is going for full custody(again) because I've told my 6 year that in the event something terrible happen, praying will not save you. You need to have a plan, if a bad guy approaches you, run! If he gets you,kick him in the nuts and scream FIRE! If you are close to his face, press your tiny thumbs as far into his eyeballs as hard as you can. Bite. I don't want my son to grow up believing that he may burn in hell for any reason. Can anyone suggest a lawyer in the southeast that has some experience in this?

  • #62

    Azalea (Friday, 15 March 2013 05:26)

    Im so glad I found this site,reading your posts reassured me that I haven´t been making any "major" mistakes when it comes to my son and religion :)

    As a kid,I much like @Adrian... grew up not really believing all the supernatural stories being told to me,but I played along. My mom always read for me b4 bed and I loved books and stories.I had a very active brain and asked a lot of questions. Before bed my mom also said a prayer with me http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lord's_Prayer as a kid I remember it sounding like Chinese (Forgive us our debts? deliver us from evil?.... Whaaaat?) My grandmother always said that prayer with her when she was little so I guess it stuck, other than that same prayer every night there wasnt really any religious pressure in the home,we never went 2 curch but my mom believes in some kind of higher power. She raised me well and taught me 2 be good 2 people and respect the opinions of others,not to steal and all the other things responsible parents teach their children, she also taught me how 2 be responsible and how to work hard,I love her with all my heart. But at a young age I had a million and one questions and few answers. My mom had me when she was 20 and never went 2 college, she worked and provided for us while my dad went 2 school 2 be a carpenter (that led 2 him working long hours).I guess she didn´t really feel like she had the right answers since she usually refrained from answering the tough ones,changed the subject or gave me an answer that left me with even more questions. It wasnt until I was old enough to do research on my own I finally felt like I understood.

    Today I am lucky enough to have a 7 year old son who is very much like me. He is a skeptical young man,constantly wondering and thinking. I never know what he´s gonna ask me.
    I tried to prepare myself as well as I could to be able to provide him with clear answers. I am an atheist, but I dont tell him what to believe or not 2 believe. I simply educate him about everything he wants to know,helping his mind 2 be free but full of knowledge. We´ve been going to the library together since he started walking.
    He learned to read when he was 4 and he is fascinated by space,the earth and pretty much all living things and of course the dinosaurs.
    I think I´m doing a good job of teaching him how to be a good person,treat others the way he wants to be treated,form his own opinions, make choices for himself and to use logical thinking.I show him that I love him every day and that there is more 2 life than money and material things.


    :)

    -Facts are to the mind what food is to the body- EB


  • #63

    Adrian (Thursday, 21 March 2013 18:58)

    Good job Azalea!

  • #64

    Kristeen (Thursday, 09 May 2013 01:04)

    Hello all! I've read pretty much all these posts, save for the few religious ones that said we were sucking the souls out of our children, or something like that. And I love how in that post the sentence before that was "I'm not trying to make you angry!" Please... the soul you speak of is just our brain activity. And no, I'm not going to suck out my childs brain. Haha

    I was raised catholic, went to elementry school with the nuns. My parents never took me to church it was always my grandmother. I prayed at her house before bed and all that fun stuff. When I got older I stopped. I don't think there was a real turning point when I stopped believing. Because how can you stop something that never started?

    She was a very smart woman, and it saddens me that till the day she died she believed noahs arc happened. I actually asked her when I was 20 if she really believed it, and she said yes. I was shocked that this intelligent person could believe such a wild fairy tale.

    I have my own child now. Hes only a baby(6 mons) but already so curious about everything. I try not to say "no" to touching things unless its dangerous or dirty. He wants to know what it is. Why would I constrain that thurst for knowledge already? We read at least one book a day. Whatever he looks at or touches I say "what is that?" And then tell him.

    His father is a christian. Not a practicing one. His mom (my sons grandma) is practicing. She goes to church every Sunday, unless they're out at the cabin. I dont know what her world views are, but shes a nice lady and doesnt seem pushy. I'm going to get my son baptized just to keep the peace. It doesn't matter to me, just a silly tradition.

    I will raise him to be a free thinker. It already seems he is, and I will try my best to nurture that. He will know about all sorts of religions and myths, if hes interested. I won't push anything on him. But if my mother in law starts pressing upon him prayer or any other religios ritual I will have to intervene. Talking about what people do and actually doing what other people do are completely different things. Once he reaches an age where he can understand what prayer and religion actually are, he will be neutral.

  • #65

    Robby (Thursday, 09 May 2013 15:05)

    This site is so helpful to me even when I'm not even a parent (I'll be 8 next week though, yay!!). My mum and dad and 3 grandparents are all Christians and I worry about my sister who is only 5 and is very accepting of what she is told. She doesn't like to read much and thinks the internet is for games and tv, all her friends are Christian too and so she really doesn't get to see the view of people who don't believe in Jesus etc. I'm not worried too much I think I still believed in God when I was about 5 and I grew out of it but I think because I like to learn things and question things it was easier. She doesn't right now but she likes when I tell her interesting things I read so I think I will do what Wes suggested to Haley and tell her about all different religions and mythologies and who believes or used to believe them. Then she will maybe understand there is so much she is not being told and get more curious. I know I am young to be 'teaching' my sister but my family are all so Goddy they never learned about science or anything or anything else and they think they're better than everyone who isn't like them (Muslim, Jew, gay, stem-cell researchers, whatever else they get told is bad) and I don't want my sister to grow up to be as dumb and judgey as they are so I think I have a responsibility to make sure she knows not everyone is like them. Only good thing about religions is that it can make people happy but my mum and dad are too busy judjing everyone to enjoy it.
    I thought about trying to change my parents too since I was worried they would stop loving me or try to change me but I want to be a neuroscientist and that's another thing they think is evil so I will have to tell them eventually. I think I will wait until I leave home and go to uni and for now I will make a diary about all this so I can give it to them to read when I leave and they will maybe understand a bit better.
    Anyway, thank you for this site it is very helpful. :)
    Robby.

  • #66

    ADMIN (Thursday, 09 May 2013 16:09)

    Robby are you seriously 8???? I cannot believe that but will leave your comments up anyway.

  • #67

    Andy (Sunday, 19 May 2013 17:56)

    Love this site, I just wanted to say to Kristeen I did the same in having both my daughters christened to "keep the peace". It is something that I now really regret, because, as the priest said to me before hand ( and I should have listened...) this is something that you can't take back - they will always be christened. Your children can make the decision for themselves when they feel ready, and it should be their decision. I now find I'm on the back foot when discussing beliefs with my daughters, as (in my own mind) I've been a bit of a hypocrite.

  • #68

    Adrian (Wednesday, 22 May 2013 19:59)

    Robby, if you are 8, then please stay off drugs, and at least focus in school enough to get high Bs. If you do these things, you will be successful in life. Communication skills are probably the most important thing in the professional world, and you already got that down! So good luck, man! Oh, and also, don't get anybody pregnant! Wait till you have a good job for that (and should probably wait till marriage). :)

  • #69

    John (Wednesday, 22 May 2013 21:46)

    My parents raised me religiously up until the age of about 18... Now, I use free will and never even step foot inside a church (unless I'm on vacation and I want to admire some architecture). As a child I remember I would believe in "god" and pray often. However, as I became more interested in the sciences and more educated in general, I realized god can't exist. When so many religions are present, how do you even know YOURS is the right one?

    Honestly, most people simply believe what their parents told them, it's not as though they came to a conclusion about their faith. Hence, I don't want to explicitly tell my kids "there is no god" but rather show them both sides of the coin and let them eventually come to the right conclusion that he doesn't exist :)

    Honestly, I also want to prevent my child from WASTING TIME in church (like I did... two hours a week adds up a lot of time in one's life), and WASTING MONEY on church. If they want to donate to a food shelter or volunteer for the Red Cross, that's fine.. but don't waste money feeding the priests who spread the lies. It makes no sense to me.

    I honestly think a world without religious prejudice would be a better place. Religion needs to "go to hell". It may take a million years, but I hope it comes to an end one day.

  • #70

    wiserwoman (Monday, 27 May 2013 16:32)

    I certainly hope none of you allow yourselves, your children or relatives to be dressed nicely when within a casket. I can't see a reason for being all dressed up with nowhere to go. I think it takes people with very little depth of thought to believe there is no God. It's certainly the lazy man's way out to be an atheist. Sure, it's not easy to an aetheist in the world. God is always fighting you. Sorry about that. But it's even easier to not ponder life and the world around you deeply. I often think that God sent His son as visible proof on earth of His existence -- what else does He need to do?

  • #71

    ADMIN (Monday, 27 May 2013 20:58)

    @wiserwomen we will leave your comments up for only a few days and then take them down as hatemail and hellwishing should be left in the hate mail and hell wishing section of this website. I was just wondering what you were doing hanging around an atheist website anyway? How did you find us? You see, if you really didn't question your faith you would never have found us. And what else does your imaginary friend need to do to prove his existence? Well, just about bloody anything.... Still waiting... and nothing...

  • #72

    Todd F. (Friday, 31 May 2013 19:25)

    I pray that you repent, accept the mercy, grace, and atonement offered only in Christ, and begin to live lives for God.

    Hell is no place to spend eternity. It's a horrible separation from the fellowship and love of God.

    Please rethink your position before the Lord and seek His face.

  • #73

    ADMIN (Friday, 31 May 2013 19:53)

    Hey crazy Todd F. are you threatening us? Are you from the Christian Mafia? Either we do something you want or something bad will happen to us? Guess what that is extortion, and in most countries that is illegal and so should be your religion. How do you sleep at nights knowing your entire religious belief is based upon old mafia tricks? You are a very sick person, either we love your imaginary "god father" or something bad will happen to us, seriously how stupid do you think we are?

  • #74

    Jude (Sunday, 02 June 2013 09:55)

    Admin: Since you don't believe in God anyway, there's no need for you to feel threatened by what Todd F prayed.

  • #75

    Nitz (Friday, 07 June 2013 05:48)

    Someone please telLance to stop giving atheists a bad name, and also how to spell "leprechaun," which this idiotic, stupid Christian could spell in second grade.

  • #76

    Lance Gregorchuk (Friday, 07 June 2013 06:56)

    @Nitz. I am so sorry for spelling leprechaun wrong, there is no spell check here and I am a horrible speller (just ask my editor who makes fun of me for not spelling believe right). Just to make things clear though we didn't call you an idiot or stupid (or a christian) you came to those conclusions yourself, and wow, you could spell the word lepricon (oops) in the second grade... you must be really smart!

  • #77

    peter (Saturday, 22 June 2013 21:05)

    That is such a sad thought. They want out children to grow up GOD LESS! This is so terrible. I hope some day you realize the truth of the bible and the love God has for you.

  • #78

    Martine (Sunday, 23 June 2013 12:09)

    I was wondering what happened to the old site, sort of miss those guys, technology caught up with it I suppose.

  • #79

    Jaco (Sunday, 30 June 2013 18:37)

    @ peter.... lol, hey dude Wakeup!!! Your 4000 plus year old pagen fairytales, selected & codified in a collection of manuscripts by the Roman Empire in 4th Century ...... THAT IS THE "TRUTH" of the BIBLE!!!

  • #80

    Josh (Thursday, 18 July 2013 04:40)

    Are your children allowed to 'think critically' about atheism too? Can they challenge that? Or is it just theism? Just askin'.

  • #81

    leon st.rumph (Sunday, 21 July 2013 08:03)

    You people are all just a bunch of tucking asa holes

  • #82

    Rae (Sunday, 21 July 2013 19:30)

    My friend made a song about his parents scaring him with religion as a child. Check it out. It's really good. If the link doesn't work you can search on YouTube. It's called no heaven for the sinners. http://youtu.be/141xWS2_hN4. By jvince

  • #83

    ADMIN (Monday, 22 July 2013 17:46)

    @Rae, Thanks... Loved it! Posted it on our FB page

  • #84

    Pamela Harley (Wednesday, 24 July 2013 18:18)

    I need despirate help. I am an atheist (62 years old) raised by an atheist mother. All of my family is gone except two Baptist nieces. I live in Louisiana and iIam married to a Baptist man who excepts my "lack of belief ." (I know one atheist in this state.) All of my husband's family is Baptist and they would not accept our "living together", so we got married in the worst state in the world. Everything is community property and I cannot even ask his doctor's a question without my husband's release. The real estate people tricked me to sign as coborrower on our home loan and I emphasized, NO NO. The title people, at closing" said it was to protecting my marital right to the property,only. And that my signature SHOULD have had as wife only under the signature.They all lied!! I do not steal and I try not to lie. They are all cut throats, theives, and I am trapped again with realestate. I just went through a reloan trying to be good to my other (divorced) husband so he would have a home to live. I now have no patience and I am at my wits end. They all turn a deaf ear to my complaints, although only my husband knows I am an atheist. Sorry for the typos. I am exhausted, alone and cannot afford an attoney. TYVM for listening,Pam

  • #85

    Tricia (Saturday, 27 July 2013 06:57)

    I send my kid to preschool at a Unitarian church, they do not talk about god or Jesus in the classroom. I attended a service once (not at this particular church) and they really just preach about spirituality so I don't have to worry about brainwashing.
    I'm not sure if I'm an athiest even though I don't follow or practice any religion but I do think people can believe whatever they want. Who am I to say what is or what isn't I only know how I interpret the world.
    With this being said I will teach my children to be tolerant of others and their beliefs. When I explain the holidays to my almost 3 year old I tell her every reason (that I know of anyways) why people celebrate. For example Xmas: it's societies day of gift giving and being with family, it's the time santa vbrings presents, it's the time Jesus was born, it's the time that begins longer days after the longest night of the year, it's the end of haunnkah (which I know nothing more about), its the end of Ramadan (ditto)… I know there are more explanations but my point to her, and soon to my son, is there are many reasons behind holidays because of people, history and geographical locations. My goal is they grow to think for themselves and know there is re always many sides to everything and they should consider them all and it's OK if none seem right, it's OK to believe nothing. Or if they end up believing a certain way that's ok too. I won't be sad if one decides to be Christian I hope they won't be fanatics but still it's their decision. Life is about choices religion is one of them.
    Is all the details confusing to a kid, sure but what in life isn't confusing. You have to learn to weigh the choices and go with what is best for you. Anyways my in-laws are lefty Christians so she will be exposed so I don't want her to be swept away. They are really great people and are ok that we have agreed to not talk religion because I am simply not religious. I have grown to love them so when mother in law cried about baptism I was like WTF how does it make any damn difference. So we did it, it made them happy, the grandparents even happier and we got gifts of money to buy her toys. I didn't make any promises to god and made it clear to preacher (pastor?) that I was not religious and this was important to in laws. He was very cool and was like "if you ever change your mind", ha ha, he also baptized my son in the great grandparents house. BFD, no one can say they have never done anything just to make someone they love happy. It doesn't hurt me they are baptized. Despite all this I really hope they grow to believe as I do.… we live, we die, energy is recycled, live life to the fullest, explore who you are and the world, death is part of life it's sad but necessary. I have yet to explain death but on this there will be no giving of explanations just a simple "not here anymore" there are just too many varying beliefs it would take hours, ha.
    Hate is ugly, Judging others is ugly I've read a lot of ugly things in these comments. Organized religion is what it is there are good and bad followers / practitioners / advisors in all. Raise your kids to be accepting and no matter which "path" they choose they will be beautiful and nonjudgmental.

  • #86

    Mike Velazquez (Wednesday, 07 August 2013 14:12)

    Hi.
    I'm an atheist, my wife is an atheist. We were not married in a church and now we are raising our 2 children (4 and 1 respectively) as atheists.

    Since both of them are too young, we have not entered the religous world within our society, just a couple of events of our friends who most of them are catholics.

    We do respect their beliefs, as they do respect our non-beliefs.

    The real problem showed up recently with my mother in law, who is extremely religious. She knows we are not religious, however without consulting us, she has been talking to our 4 year old son about jesus and god. She used to help us babysitting both our kids on weekdays, but we had to ask her not to come to our house anymore.

    How do I explain the best possible way to my 4 year old that jesus and god do not exist, that we do not share those beliefs, when my mother in law stuffed his head with religious crap behind our backs.

    Since he's too young I' sure it will be easy and fast, but he's on that beautiful age where he questions everything and this kind of things are really hard to explain.

    Thanks in advance

    Mike V.

  • #87

    mudi (Sunday, 11 August 2013 15:14)

    As a father, a one 5 year old girl going to school in a predominantly Catholic area, I am constantly frustrated when she comes home and tells me about the things that they "learned" in school that day. Whoever said that "God is not allowed in our public schools' has not been evident in a school lately, and uses this line as a justification for their own political / religious agenda. Thank you for starting this site I will be visiting often I will be a grandfather to children in Christian schools. sure that you undergo a brainwashing, but atheists have a problem with the adaptation of the centuries old and the improvement of methods of religious indoctrination. I have a doc on www.daretoreason. .. suitable info for older children up to 11-12 the problems start younger than we need lullabies, fairy tales, ancient melodies and traditional formats for Babies & Kids gardens (they are just fiction) are set -. they all religious reference without plagiarizing of other religions, if necessary. There is no copyright.

  • #88

    NB (Friday, 23 August 2013 18:55)

    It's the start of the school year again, and already my 7 year old daughter is coming home telling me she's being preached to at school by her class mates. They are telling her such nonsense as "you are a bad person unless you believe in god"
    This has been going on since she started kindergarten!
    Now she's asking if she can believe in god.
    I avoid the question normally, because I figured she'd forget about it or her friends would just get bored with it.
    But it hasn't stopped at all. I even had to mention that she was being harassed in class and on the playground (I did witness it, so I know she is being honest) and the teacher took the time to explain that not everyone has to think the same.
    She is still getting harassed at school for this, and now doesn't want to go. She always looked forward to going and loved learning.
    It saddens me that these kids feel its their business to evangelize any non believer.
    Any advice on how to talk to my girl would be appreciated. :)

  • #89

    Lance Gregorchuk (Saturday, 24 August 2013 18:23)

    Sorry everyone for some late responces, I know the people at Atheistparents.org were hoping I would answer faster but I have been on a European book tour and doing some speaking and debating for the last few weeks, so between that and wine tasting... anyway... @NB @ Mudi @ Mike and @ any other parent who needs to deal with these questions from your kids:

    I am sorry but you need to educate your children on the insanity of religion and the bible! My children in grade school also faced some very serious confrontations about religion but they could answer questions better then the other kids could ask them, and they seriously caused doubt in the other kids minds and moreover, their belief systems. My son when asked by a fellow 7 year old “why don’t you believe in god?” he answered “for the same reason I don’t go hunting unicorns!” Now that is a seriously cool answer! If you push either of my children on the question of religion, (they are 6 and 8) and it does not matter if you are an adult, JW showing up at the door, fellow child, mormon, muslim, or any believer of the other 8000 + religions today in the world they can answer the questions! Most atheists and non believers do not take the time to teach their children about religion and simply say “we don’t believe!” They simply think that is good enough for children to say that, but that will never will be enough! You cannot shield your children from religion you must help them... help them to understand! You wouldn’t accept someone teaching your children that 2 + 2 is 5! You would do something about it, you would teach the opposite and not just say “that is not true” correct? Education is the answer... it always was, sometimes I need to ask myself “why do atheist seem to think that non-teaching is also teaching?” It isn’t.

    Ask any religous person; child, adult, uncle, aunt, grandmother, father, or priest, what was the immaculate conception? They will answer wrong, or in the priests’ case he will tell you some amazing story that even he will not believe (google it, you also probably got it wrong)! Ask anyone “who wrote the bible”? you will get Mathew, Mark, Luke and John right? “Who were they?” You ask next! “Disciples????!!!!” Nope! Get answers to questions!

    Ask an adult what the Roman Soldier did to Jesus on the cross to prove he was dead. “Stabbed him with a spear” will be the answer “ and “blood flowed out...” (John 19:34) But blood cannot flow if your heart doesn’t beat, can it? Should we go to a grade 5 science class together? Questions require answers and not just the answer “that is bullshit!”


  • #90

    Lance Gregorchuk (Saturday, 24 August 2013 18:24)

    Teaching children is the answer to all of your questions! My son is smaller then all the other kids in his class and sometimes kids say things to him about his size and make fun of him. So I teach him what to say when someone says something to him about it ( some nice... some not so nice). Look, these religious parents are teaching their kids hourly, weekly, and daily about a magic man in the sky who can read your thoughts and send you to hell for non-belief (among other reasons) so why don’t you, we, teach (y)our children the perfect come-backs to kids questions? Do you know what “though shall not covet means? (as in thou shall not covet thei neighbours....” GOOGLE IT!!!!!!!! It is the most amazing comeback ever!!!!! That religious kid is going to HELL and he should know it as your child brings it up!!! And so are his parents( that is the best part “ honey I really like our neighbors new car”)!!!! But your child isn’t going to hell because (s)he doesn’t believe is such bullshit!

    Parents... I am not telling you to buy my book (although it is really good), I am telling you to buy lots of books, read Dan Barker’s book “Godless”! Read Dawkins, read Hitchens, read McGowan and McAfee, get yourself the arguments for the facts, your kids will thank you for it and beleive me education is the answer and it is your responsibility. Those christian, muslim, mormon, JW, hindu, etc kids arn’t going to play with your kids anyway, why not try and help them understand that Santa, elves, unicorns, gods and jesus, just are not true and that kids can be sometimes much smarter then parents.

    Yes my kids walk around sometimes with a smug smile on their face. Yes they enjoy reading books on evolution and science, and we enjoy as a family discussing reality and religion. My kids also know that if someone believes that the earth is 6000 years old, that snakes and donkey can talk, and that there is someone watching their every move and even if you kill 1,000,000 people during your life, if you ask for forgiveness to some magic man before you die you will go to heaven but someone like Ghandi will not, is really... amazingly... FUCKED UP.

    Education is the answer.

    Lance

    PS. Sorry for the grammer and spelling mistakes, I must admit I have been drinking some amazing bordeaux!

  • #91

    Kelly (Saturday, 31 August 2013 02:21)

    It would be very useful if the site organizers could organize these posts into threads so that it isn't just and endless string of thoughts / stories but actually allowed for some discussion and archive of ideas.

    I was more or less raised atheist - though my parents approach was to expose me to a lot of religions, religious ideas and a ton of science and let me make my own decisions. That said I have strong, painful memories of other children telling me I was going to hell starting in 2nd grade and continuing through high school. I went through religious periods my parents tolerated, and even accommodated, and
    , like many atheists, I know FAR more about the bible, Christianity and religious doctrine than my husband who was raised in the Catholic Church, went to church every Sunday, confirmation, the whole bit...

    Anyway, I ended up here today because my 5 year old is suddenly talking a lot about God... This morning's question "mommy, did god come before or after the dinosaurs?" was cute... This evening hearing her say something about when she was "inside God" before she was born was far more upsetting...

    I'm looking for practical suggestions about how to talk to a 5 year old about these things? I don't want to tell her her friend is wrong, but I don't want another child who is being indoctrinated by her parents telling my child things that could make her feel badly about herself... Thoughts??

  • #92

    ADMIN (Monday, 02 September 2013 08:49)

    @Kelly, thanks for your input. If anyone wants to discuss atheists parenting topics please use our facebook page, feedback is immediate and we dont need to be the admin. As for your question I have to agree with Lance. Giving children the tools to discuss religion at any age is the right thing to do, most parents just say "we don't believe" and that is that, but kids need input, kids need the truth and they can handle the explanation, this isn't Santa we are talking about here, this is about gods. Education is the answer, it always was.

  • #93

    Janine (Tuesday, 10 September 2013 06:55)

    I work with lots of Christians in a major teaching hospital. We were exposed to Christianity at University when we learnt about the history of Nursing. Florence Nightingale was a well educated Christian and from a wealthy background who changed nursing into a profession. She had a huge influence on my life. All the doctors, nurses, physiotherapist and other health care professionals I work with in Cardiac Care have all studied science and we agree about the knowledge about the heart, however not all text-books contain the same information and some of it appears to contradict other findings. There is documented evidence for spiritual care. According to Chang & Johnson, "the essence of spirituality appears to be deeply integrated with how people derive and live out meaning in and of life" p. 35. "Swinton and Narayanasamy (2002) argue that spirituality is a universally experienced human phenomenon that is intensely subjective" (Chang & Johnson, 2008, 35). All doctors, nurses and health care professionals will acknowledge we don't know everything about the brain and mental health. We can't even prove evolution because we weren't there at the time. However, scientific evidence points us to believe what we do today until evidence shows us we were wrong. The way I practiced cardiac care nursing 10 years ago is different to today. According to Taylor (2002), "Religious beliefs may help the individual to construct a view of the world and thereby derive meaning for living their lives" (Chang & Johnson, 2008, 36). According to Chang and Johnson "spiritually is a human process of finding meaning to life and life experiences. This takes the individual beyond the objective biological determinants of life to the metaphysical..."Why is this happening to me?" cannot be answered by citing test results or biological measures of life. Other approaches are necessary " p.42. According to Chang and Johnson (2008) the humanist approach is to approach a person as a whole of body, mind and spirit. The scientific evidence is there for every nurse / parent to care for the biological, psychological, sociological and spiritual needs of a child. According to Taylor (2002), the process of Spirituality forms the integrative force behind nursing care. It involves supporting the individual in their struggle to traverse suffering, find meaning and hold hope" ( Chang & Johnson, 2008, 42). Farren et al (1995) describes a process of hope as not a denial of reality presented by suffering, but rather an experience. The four components to this process are: an experiential aspect of appreciating suffering as being a human process; a spiritual/transcendent process where hope and faith are one; a rational thought process giving hope a grounding in the reality of the experience; and a relational process that connects the person to others (Chang & Johnson, 2008, 40). I am a mother of 3 and as a parent we all ask ourselves what kind of child/children are we raising. I don't want to raise a child like one of my relatives who killed Jews in Germany, he had no belief in God or any of the Ten commandments and he had no problem with taking more than one life. I love reading history books and we can learn a lot from the past. I don't believe in Santa, Easter bunny, unicorns and witches but I do believe in a historical Jesus. C.S Lewis (1952) wrote "People often say about Jesus: "I'm ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don't accept his claim to be God"...You must make your choice. Either this man was and is the Son of God: or else a madman or something worse...But let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to" p.55-6. Many health professionals have no problem with believing in both science and Christianity as science doesn't prove nor disprove God. Science is more interested in the how and Christianity is more interested in the why and about human relationships. Why haven't I never had to teach my children to fight but I have definitely had to teach them to be kind, loving, caring towards each other, science has no interest in answering this question. I went to public schools and had a few good friends in my life commit suicide. I was always searching for a purpose to living otherwise I wouldn't be here today. Most of the comments I have read have been very negative towards Christians. Unfortunately, parents behaviour is modelled to their children and some comments would be viewed as being a bully. If spiritual care is to be administered with commitment and competence in the future it means that children today will need to learn spiritual knowledge and skills to care for their patients/clients into the future. Chang & Johnson, Chronic Illness & Disability, Elsevier, Sydney, 2008. C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity, MacMilian,1952.,

  • #94

    Robin (Wednesday, 25 September 2013 19:35)

    My 2 yr old daughter goes to a Catholic kindergarten here in Germany and today she did the sign of the cross at home. It worries me.

  • #95

    angie (Tuesday, 08 October 2013 02:57)

    I enjoyed reading this. I am a teacher and an atheist in the south and everyone at my school is very religious even though it is a public school. I've had many occasions during a lesson when I ask a question and when I call on a student there answer is that god did it. I always ignore their comment and give the scientific reason such as what causes day and night. Indoctrination is a big problem in public school system. It seems to get worse every year and there is such an ever increasing lack of tolerance exhibited by Christians.

  • #96

    Dpgc (Thursday, 24 October 2013 10:32)

    What is good? Who is good?

  • #97

    Amanah Hanifah (Friday, 01 November 2013 13:15)

    Children are born on Al-Fitrah, and its not atheism. Leave a child with their own thoughts, and they will tell you about The Creator. May Allah punish these atheist parents in a way they will most hate - by guiding their children straight.

    Allahu Akbar.

    Come and find me on the day of judgement, I want to see the look on your face.

  • #98

    auto-ankauf-kiel (Friday, 01 November 2013 19:57)

    As a father, a one 5 year old girl going to school in a predominantly Catholic area, I am constantly frustrated when she comes home and tells me about the things that they "learned" in school that day. Whoever said that "God is not allowed in our public schools' has not been evident in a school lately, and uses this line as a justification for their own political / religious agenda. Thank you for starting this site I will be visiting often I will be a grandfather to children in Christian schools.

  • #99

    Sue (Sunday, 10 November 2013 06:30)

    I do not think so it is good to spend life downing God. Of course there are many things called gods on this earth but only one is a real true God. The rest are just idols crafted by people; and anything can become a god even power or money which is against the true God. We cannot chunk the God of heaven among the handcrafted gods or the gods of the greeks or all the other 1000's of gods on other lands on this earth. Jesus did came and He made a promise He will come again. What will you do when He comes? You wouldn't know where to hide for there is nowhere to hide. Even now in our time, on this earth there is nowhere to run. If you are afraid of tsunami you would want to live on top of the mountain but there is earth quake or landslides or volcanoes everywhere...you would want to use your scientific skills to overcome it but can your inventions withstand it forever?

  • #100

    Lance Gregorchuk (Sunday, 10 November 2013 10:22)

    @Sue: How are you certain that Horus was not the only one and true god? And sorry there is no proof that Jesus even existed let alone was sent down from heaven. Think about it though; your omnipotent god chose to impregnate a teenage girl, so he could give birth to himself so he could have himself killed in order to save us from a hell he created and then decides to communicate his master plan through anonymous authors hundreds of years after the fact and have it implimented by bunch of child rapists, pedophiles, and people who could decifer his message better then you, only to have the reward of praising his name all day long saying how great he is. Seriously if you actually read the bible and didnt let "others" interpret it for you, you would be an atheist too.

    And Sue like I tell my children, you cant be afraid of something which isnt true, like monsters under the bed, or your boogy-man, and hell. You should really stop threatening people though with your mafia like church tactics, they dont work on atheists so maybe you should try them out on the Native Americans and other indiginous peoples around the world...oh wait you did...how many of them did you kill with your word of god? I bet you would have on the front lines "whippin dem hethens into shape for GAWD and CHEEEZUZ" huh? This is why I personally stand up daily to people like you and your ignorance and threats.

  • #101

    James Steele (Saturday, 23 November 2013 08:24)

    Alot of smugness here- I love how people who don't know how to use an apostrophe try to claim the mantle on reasoning skills. Belief in God IS reasonable or else it would not be worth doing. See Below. . .

    The existence of God can be proved in five ways:

    The first and more manifest way is the argument from motion. It is certain, and evident to our senses, that in the world some things are in motion. Now whatever is in motion is put in motion by another, for nothing can be in motion except it is in potentiality to that towards which it is in motion; whereas a thing moves inasmuch as it is in act. For motion is nothing else than the reduction of something from potentiality to actuality. But nothing can be reduced from potentiality to actuality, except by something in a state of actuality. Thus that which is actually hot, as fire, makes wood, which is potentially hot, to be actually hot, and thereby moves and changes it. Now it is not possible that the same thing should be at once in actuality and potentiality in the same respect, but only in different respects. For what is actually hot cannot simultaneously be potentially hot; but it is simultaneously potentially cold. It is therefore impossible that in the same respect and in the same way a thing should be both mover and moved, i.e. that it should move itself. Therefore, whatever is in motion must be put in motion by another. If that by which it is put in motion be itself put in motion, then this also must needs be put in motion by another, and that by another again. But this cannot go on to infinity, because then there would be no first mover, and, consequently, no other mover; seeing that subsequent movers move only inasmuch as they are put in motion by the first mover; as the staff moves only because it is put in motion by the hand. Therefore it is necessary to arrive at a first mover, put in motion by no other; and this everyone understands to be God.

    http://web.mnstate.edu/gracyk/courses/web%20publishing/aquinasFiveWays.htm

  • #102

    ADMIN (Saturday, 23 November 2013 16:26)

    @James: Thank you for your insight and your corrections on our grammar. Just a couple of points before I let go on your argument that there is a god; first A lot is 2 words not one and although I may forget to use an apostrophe here and there because I type so fast, and unfortunately this forum doesnt (did it again sorry) offer spell check.
    The argument of motion is one we have heard many times before, in fact I am certain you know that you yourself didn’t (hey look I did it) invent this argument and I did notice you didn’t give credit where credit is due as to where the theory comes from, Namely Thomas Aquinas in “Quinque viae” in the 13th century and an argument which Hume and Kant took care of in the 18th century on a philosophical level and today, one which has been covered from every scientist of repute today including Hawkins in the God Delusion which we atheists have all read. The Teleological and Ontological arguments along with Aquinas` (did I use it there right?) assume that there must be a god, some “thing” which started the whole process, because nothing else is possible in YOUR mind. Now Hawkins and Almond are much better at explaining the “why” then I am because they are actual scientists who have more than just Wikipedia at their disposal. Yet here is my personal answer, and yes, it is much more smug:
    “Whatever is put in motion must be put in motion by another” is what you said, well then I guess your god was put in motion by another, maybe his dad? A god’s god let’s say? Zeus? Horus? Or wait…maybe mankind. You see, your argument assumes now that your god is equivalent to the Higgs-Boson particle (which has been proven unlike your god), or maybe you wish now that your god goes one step beyond even HB? For me, if you want to use this argument, this is fine, because then you accept that there was a big bang, there was no Garden of Eden, no Adam and Eve, no 6 day creation where your all powerful god needed to rest on the 7th day (that one always makes me laugh, I guess he was just pooped huh?) The dinosaurs were real, the earth is not 6000 years old, and you need to throw out the bible and at least half which was written in it by saying “science is right, there was a big bang, my god made it happen, and the Old Testament is wrong”!
    Your religion is built upon your bible and if there was a big bang which occurred billions of years ago the bible is full of shit… chose your poison, you do not get to say the bible is true and so is evolution, you do not get to say the bible is true and so is the big bang, you simply do not get to say the bible is true at all, it is a lie and always was, you have reduced your god to nothing more than the HB particle( which won a Nobel prize so it is a much bigger deal then your god). Over the last 2000 years science has done what you have just done; your god went from the guy who makes thunder and earthquakes, plagues, cancer and tsunamis, to the guy who started the big bang. Seriously, is this your argument now? We refer to this as Reducto absurdum, what is next you god made the Higgy-Bosom Particle? Oh wait I guess that is the next step for you, is it not?

    LG

  • #103

    Jubby (Sunday, 24 November 2013 18:28)

    It's true. Atheism is a religion. We have no proof God does not exist. We choose to believe this. My neighbors who are agnostic/atheist, raised children who sensed guilt and sensed a need for forgiveness. Where does guilt come from? Church alone? Programming?

    Why is it we condemn the presence of guilt in some, but condemn the lack of guilt in others, such as rapists/murderers/Hilters?

    I think atheism is the new religion our public schools is teaching. Do you want a godless child? Just sent them to public school, K-12 and college.

  • #104

    Lance Gregorchuk (Tuesday, 26 November 2013)

    And there goes the god argument. If you have no proof then you could be just as well arguing the case for unicorns. My children understand guilt and forgiveness, in fact very much so, or do you believe that only Christians have the corner on this market?
    Quick point to your rapists/murderer/ Hitler comment though, first Hitler was a Christian and the fact is according to your bible, had he asked for forgiveness from some god and accepted this god into his heart, the minute before he died, along with the rapist and Murderer, they would be allowed into your heaven, but me and my kids will not, (well the Pope thinks we might, but that contradicts the scripture doesn’t it …but he is infallible is he not? I’m getting confused now) That is pretty messed up don’t you think? This is what a Christian must accept, this is what a Christian must glorify, this thinking is really sick!!!
    And yes I want, and have, godless children, who are not afraid of your death threats of eternal punishment, who understand science, who respect all other human beings, don’t go around threatening people with torture like you do, and certainly do not wish it upon others, like Christians and Muslims do daily. Yet above all, my children help their fellow man not because there is some kind of point system being judged by a ghost, a god, and his god child, but because it is the right thing to do. Not teaching kids the truth is child abuse, there is a big difference between belief and knowledge, and you have wasted your entire life believing this crap, and your only argument is “we have no proof”, and this is what you want your children to believe?

    LG

  • #105

    Autoankauf (Thursday, 05 December 2013 16:39)

    Robby, if you are 8, then please stay off drugs, and at least focus in school enough to get high Bs. If you do these things, you will be successful in life. Communication skills are probably the most important

  • #106

    Laura Connell (Friday, 27 December 2013 06:39)

    If God wants your child, He will call her/him out. However, having atheist parents is a huge barrier to that. As a child who knew God was real in spite of my parents claims to the contrary I can attest to the fact that we are born with need for God.

    At age 5, I attended a local church through a bus ministry and when my parents put a stop to that it was devastating. I would call being raised by atheist parents abuse because I wanted God and kept being lied to about His existence. I ended up drinking to try and fill this God-shaped vacuum in my soul and when I finally hit rock bottom and sought recovery from alcohol addiction, the Lord healed me.

    I have been sober over three years and been transformed by the grace of God. My atheist parents ridicule and abuse me still because of my Christianity which they only know about through relatives and checking my social media. I don't talk to them about my faith although I do pray for them when I am alone. They won't stop bringing it up and talking about their atheism though - like a Bible thumper without the Bible.

    The point is: if God is going to call out your child to be saved He will but atheist parents just make it harder so the child will get into adulthood without God and have to be brought to their knees before finally accepting the Lord. Teaching atheism is abuse and I am still recovering from it.

  • #107

    Lance (Friday, 27 December 2013 11:31)

    @Laura: Let me get this straight, at age 5 you went to church on your own and were devastated when your parents stopped it, so you started drinking and you think god healed you, and now your atheist parents ridicule you? If any of this is true, and I doubt most of it is, your parents were correct in stopping a 5 year old from going alone to church to be brainwashed by some modern day "snake oil" salesman. I also hope you are not actually hearing your god's voice in your head, if so, please go see a doctor. Yet on a serious note, alcoholism is a disease and affects christians, mormons, jews, atheists, buddhists, and scientologists equally, I am happy that you have stopped drinking, but there is no way your parents atheism drove you to drinking. As you know you were the person to blame, and you were the person in control of your life. I am not certain which AA group you go to, but I think they all say the same thing...you need to take control of your life, and you cannot blame other people for your alcoholism. If you want to say GAWD or CHEZUS got you off the booze or a flying elephant did, we are all just happy for you, and I am sure your parents are as well, but as long as you continue to blame other people for your problems, you are not a healthy person. In my personal opinion your GAWD has simply just replaced the booze and now you have something else to cling to and worship. Once you stop drinking the "coolaid", no matter what color, you become the only sober one in a room full of drunks. Laura, you're still addicted, you just picked a different drug.

  • #108

    Mason (Tuesday, 31 December 2013 13:38)

    Why can't I have parents like you ? I love mine but sheesh I told my dad I was athiest and he just said no your not and told my mom and she cried. I'm 17 and became athiest when I was 12. cause I would stay up all night during summer break and think till 6 in the morning about existence and consciousness and the universe cause I was amazed by it . and somehow I started questioning my religion which made me think I was going to hell. so I read the bible all the way through thinking it would keep me believing but ended up helping me realize how absurd and crazy Christianity and religion is. I just feel misunderstood everyone looks at me like I'm an idiot

  • #109

    Lance Gregorchuk (Saturday, 04 January 2014 14:05)

    @Mason. Sorry it took so long to answer. You are not crazy, and I must tell you, your situation was exactly the same as mine and your age, and my parents even today ( I still love them) still ask me if I am not affraid of hell, or why I chose to have my children live with original sin? For me it was like being the only sober guy at a party full of drunks... have you ever tried to reason with someone who is drunk? Good on you and if you are up for adoption or planning on touring europe anytime soon please come visit me.

  • #110

    Scott (Thursday, 16 January 2014 20:28)

    Those of you who argue there is no God because there is no proof are being hypocritical. How about reserving judgment UNTIL you have proof and if you don't obtain it then don't take a position on the matter? To assert otherwise is to believe in something without evidence or proof - thus making your opinion a belief which is exactly what you criticize.

    I'm going to lower myself to using Lance's cartoonesk straw-man comparisons: I believe that leprechauns and unicorns are not real but I don't have proof of their perpetual non-existence. I "believe" they don't exist, just as those of you looking down your noses at me "believe" that divine(s) don't exist.

    If you are truly as you represent yourselves then you would be "indifferent" and "reserve judgment" until such time as there is irrefutable evidence within the scope of your understanding one way or the other.

    As I made clear above, it's my opinion that you look down your noses at those of faith (notice though nobody challenged the Islamist above.... fear maybe?) but know too that many look down in "pity" upon you. You are not the intellectual elite, the enlightened, or the scientific minded... You are the lost, you are the weak of soul, and unless you are cured before your death you will know the misery that is to be separated from the divine.

    Do you have any doubt at all? Are you 100% sure there is no God? If I am right and you are wrong then you will suffer while I bask in glory; if you are right and I am wrong then we will both be at peace in oblivion. Do you really want to be on the wrong side of judgment? Use the logic you claim to possess so copiously - your bet is the bad bet.

    Sincerely,
    A Former Agnostic

  • #111

    Lance Gregorchuk (Friday, 17 January 2014 10:16)

    @Scott. You are using Pascal's Wager as an argument and we have heard it time and time again. Yet acording to your logic we, and you, should probably convert to Islam (and no I am not affraid of them) as their Hell is much worse and their Heaven much better! Anyone using this argument would be wise to pick the god who gave them the most for their worship and the had the hardest punishment for not worshiping them (Mormons get a planet when they die to rule over you know). Have you ever read what your book of magic says about heaven anyway? It really isnt all that nice of a place you know. Read word for word what is there, actually it seems to be more like a hell then a place you would want to spend eternity. I was just wondering though would you use this logic on an african child who has never heard of your god? Woud you use this argument on a child in India who's parents believe in a different god then you do? Would you use it on the Dalai Lama? Would you have forced this thinking on native americans or the inuit? Do you support people who would? Do you know why I am not indifferent to religion? Because of exactly that thinking of yours that you NEED to save people. I love that you think that you are better then us and then actually threaten me with misery. Did you know what you are doing mobsters would go to jail for it? What you are saying is that is I don't do one thing I will be punished for not doing that thing with pain and misery... is that right? Your god is nothing more then a North Korean like dictator and you... you worship this? Read your bible, you are worshiping a seriously sick and messed up god. The atheist is like the only sober guy at the party watching you dance, make jokes, flirt and sing karaoke, guess what? You can't dance, you're not funny, your pick up lines suck and you can't carry a tune. And yes I am 100% certain there is no god, your's or anyone elses. Thanks for dropping by.

    LG

  • #112

    Scott (Friday, 17 January 2014 15:55)

    @Lance.
    You’ve responded to only a few fragments of my post and have attempted to reframe my meaning/intent. I’ll take the liberty of correcting you:

    *I made no such argument that you “should probably convert to Islam.” As far as Pascal’s Wager goes, the BEST case scenario for you is oblivion, the BEST case scenario for me is Heaven, and the worst case scenario for both of us is a hell beyond imagining. Run circular arguments as long as you like, but you must certainly perceive enough to recognize this as obvious. Noted: You attempted to discredit all but the Islamist in your posts, my wager (Pascal reference) is that you are fine attacking a religion that preaches peace and forgiveness but cower at the idea of truly attacking a religion that preaches vengeance and slaughter.

    *Of course I wouldn’t use the exact same argument with other persons/peoples. As a novice author (and possible parent) you are probably aware that you frame your message based on the target audience. I have no NEED to save people, but I do take pleasure in helping those I can.

    *You judging God is the equivalent of an ant that lives under your front lawn passing judgment on you. He is an alien (think about it) beyond your scope and mine. God is a dictator? Obviously yes (just as you don’t let the insects in your yard vote on when or if the grass gets cut). God is equivalent of any human? Obviously no. This is another one of your straw man arguments, and I have returned the favor with my own. Readership: Which one is closer to the mark?

    *You compare yourself to the only sober guy at the party. I compare you to the impertinent child who says “I hate you,” holds their breath, and stomps their feet because they don’t approve of the parents rules/methods.

    *Another straw man argument about mobsters going to jail for it. I’m more like the person leaning out the window and telling you (the vandalistic child in the street) to stop what you are doing because it’s just a matter of time before you will have to face the police. I make no threats, and you know it. I’m sure I’m not the only one who has noticed you like to reframe other peoples arguments in your replies and then knock down your own fiction.

    *You “reframed” my statement about looking down in “pity” upon you to mean that I think I’m better than you. Let me reiterate for your sparse readership that I look down from a high place that is not my own, at those wallowing in the trenches leading to hell. I “pity” you, and I hope that all of you will find your way up, while at the same time understanding that many of you will stubbornly refuse the hand that is repeatedly offered. I pity you Lance… Sputter and rage with self-importance as you will, I “pity” you because you will probably only wake up once it’s too late.

    I have doubts that you will permit this final post on your web site the same way a cockroach avoids bright light. But then again, you may take this as a challenge and your ego will drive you to it anyway. If you do post it, I would say this to your sparse readership: “Reread Lance’s works and look for his reframing. Ask yourself why he does this, and if he didn’t do this would his responses stand up to what he challenges.”

    Sincerely,

    A Former Agnostic

  • #113

    Lance Gregorchuk (Thursday, 23 January 2014 19:30)

    Why wouldn’t we post this comment, although it does belong in the section “Hate Mail & Hell Wishing” I will answer anyway!
    First of all, as a theist you should learn and understand Pascal’s Wager before using it as an argument. I, we, and most people reading this are not afraid of monsters under the bed, the god Thor (whom the day Thursday is named after), or your hell, because they do not exist. For some reason you think it is OK to say that “I will have a punishment beyond belief” but still don’t think that it is not a threat? Oddly enough you think your religion preaches peace when threatening someone with pain and suffering…let me just get this straight, “peace” when we do what you say, worship the god you want us to worship, have sex with those who you say it is OK, dress the way you want us to dress, kill the people you want us to kill, and worship the way you want us to worship?
    I must admit though that you comparing me to your god and ants to people like you I find a little comical. Do you think you are an ant? As smart as an ant? Doing the work of your god and still not understanding it? You should move to North Korea as that is exactly what the “ants” in North Korea are taught, and preach to others, that is how they live and how they die. Comparing talking to ants about cutting the grass to me questioning you about how strange your god is, is the reason why I am free and you are a slave… I know you like being a slave because when you die you come back as bird and I as a worm…oh wait that is what the Buddhists believe, I keep getting confused about all the different gods today.
    You need faith, belief, and hope, I don’t. You need a god because you think you are broken, there is something in your life that you are not happy with and that is why you need prayer and worship, something about this life, the only one you have troubles you, you are not happy with it and hope for another, I on the other hand love this life, the only one I have and enjoy every minute living in it and not sacrificing anything to some fake and crazy god or to those who made him up. I have talked and debated hundreds of people like you, the difference between us is that when there is a problem or a solution, I don’t use a god to blame or to thank, when I need to explain something I don’t compare myself or my kids to ants or worms, when my kids want to understand something we look for real answers based upon evidence, deduction and facts, not hope and prayer and worship. Go back to North Korea, you seem to like it there.
    Next time please post in “Hate Mail & Hell Wishing”
    LG
    PS in order to find this website you must have searched us out under the words “Atheist Parents” in Google. This shows me you were searching for us, we didn’t search you out, we never sent you an email or any form of marketing. You were looking for us, I am sure all the readers find you a bit strange….

  • #114

    Believer (Tuesday, 28 January 2014 22:27)

    @admin & @james : The question of what put God into motion is a dull question to ask, because it is obvious. God is the Alpha and the Omega, and is and has always been and always will be. You say that things need to be put into motion, because that's what science tells you. So you athiests believe in the exact thing that negates your whole theory. If something had to put something else into motion, your theory of evolution and the Big Bang would be negated. That does not make our theory incorrect, however, because we know that God is a constant, and he starts whatever motions he wants to start. He doesn't need anything to start him into motion because he is not bound by any science that you may believe. Just thought I'd put that out there. Food for thought.

  • #115

    Lance Gregorchuk (Thursday, 30 January 2014 11:11)

    Wow how convenient, that what you don’t understand you must blame or thank god for! You are using the ontological “god of the gaps” argument, the only difference is that you don’t understand the argument which you are using (if you want to debate with the big boys you’ll need to do a little better than that). We DO understand the rotation of planets as well as Higgs-Bosom now, 40 years ago we didn’t, and that was when you people were screaming that plate tectonic theory was also wrong. Your god has went from this guy who can create hurricanes and make volcanos explode and over the last few hundred years been reduced to a few milliseconds before the big bang, do you see how the gap gets smaller and smaller. Just for fun though can you explain Neanderthal man for us?

  • #116

    Natkaps (Wednesday, 05 February 2014 04:30)

    Teaching kids about one religion is indoctrination. Teaching kids about all religion is inoculation.

  • #117

    Sean (Friday, 07 February 2014 15:10)

    I was raised in an Athiest family, and my father was super aggressive and liked drinking and yelling at me. He blamed it on his Spanish genes? My point is, where is love if we believe in ourselves and follow after our sinful nature? When I go out into the world, I see a cheating, lying, backstabbing society where people will doing anything to get to the top, you experience it firsthand in people's actions. I've never heard such long beeping car horns in any suburban area's except those of the rich. I've seen my incredibly 'smart', atheist, supposedly 1% uncle commit the most fatal mistake of his life by screwing his whole marriage and being disowned by my whole family. All in the name of selfish desires! I don't trust human nature, the greatest enemy is the self, that's why I had mental health problems (suicide feelings, existential anxiety) for 6-8 years, and couldn't work out how to fix it, either could my parents, cause my father had it as-well. Oh, and I found how to fix it! It came from believing in God, ironically. Actually, I haven't been to a psychologist for 3-4 years, and I'm happier now than I have ever felt in my whole life, seriously. That's what the bible warned us about... the Garden of Eden. Adam and Eve, their bliss turned nightmare after rebelling against God, remember that story? I always hear each of my parents say that they could just leave each other tomorrow... my grandparents are way more loyal to each other and they were all sent to church, funny huh! Have you read the news lately? China is embracing Christianity like nothing else, and they are all atheists, and have been for over 70-years? Every prime minister in my country has been a Christian, every single American president has been a Christian. Presidency is sworn with by with the Bible. Russia is embracing Christianity! What hope does humanity have for anything, if we trust in our own sinful nature, the one that can never not sin? The weak one that doesn't want to get out of bed in the morning? We are all idiots, that's why we need to correct our stupid nature. It's better to strive for the perfection of God than the imperfection of man. Not to just dismiss it completely. If you think Christianity or religion is stupid, then you've missed the point completely. I'd rather strive for being a morally right person in God's eyes then being a selfish, greed-driven, cheating, worldly-driven person - which is unsustainable anyway. Christianity has taught me how to love others, and to lift up the weakest and poorest. My heart goes out to them, and I'd rather help them then follow my own desires, cause I can't stop the thoughts in my head of jealousy, hatred and bitterness, but I can be aware of them, and choose to action the Godly ones and not the Satanic ones. Anyone else feel like that, or am I the only one who has these? A life of giving is better than receiving, and even though I can only do so much, people can ultimately only help themselves. And believing in God is the greatest gift I could ever give someone in that area. Answers do come, you just have to have the patience to wait! I believe in science, but I don't think it's any good as a life road-map. In-fact, it's absolutely useless, it doesn't even correlate with the topic. I hit a stump in the road in my early twenties, when I had concluded that there was nothing in the whole world that could make me happy. No money, no women, no high-grades in college, no pay-check... it was obvious! That's why so many actors and celebrities kill themselves, cause they have no meaning in life. But I found meaning in believing in God. I found absolute meaning, even if it wasn't true - that unhappiness and emptiness wouldn't go away unless i believed it. So i chose to believe in the scriptures, even if my father told me I was an idiot. I was happy, and he didn't look happy to me. Albert Einstein one said that you can believe as though nothing is a miracle or as though everything is a miracle. And I sure bet this didn't come from Athiestic thought! I like Athiests, but I think that they don't see the big picture, and I think what the Bible taught was highly beneficial to everyone, and that can't be lost. Chinese supposedly have the highest average IQ in the world. And they think that America's prosperity came from Christianity alone. What matters more in society than science is social harmony, and religion or the church is the core of that. Capitalism is effective, yet isn't so friendly. It would be allot worse if people didn't have the moral values that are repeated to us in church 52 weeks a year, in-out.

  • #118

    wellintonian sherkovich (Monday, 10 February 2014 09:14)

    Atheists lives are burdened by religion,They spend there lives arguing against someone they don't believe exists and at the end of life all there hopes will be invain as atheists achieve nothing from this world wide argument. If you be an atheist you live your life with a big risk ( not saved when Jesus comes) and no reward but if you are a Christian you get to live a moral life with a possibility of eternal life with no risk. Why would you not take that bet,Eternal life is the possibility,no risk is involved and your chance of winning is low but bear in mind no risk and large reward,If you are an Atheist there is a large risk if you lose and no reward if you win,because there is always a small possibility of there being a god you may chose what bet you want to take,Only a fool would not be a christen.

  • #119

    Lance Gregorchuk (Monday, 10 February 2014 09:29)

    @ Wellintonian: This argument is called “Pascal’s Wager” and we have heard it many times before. Yet according to your logic atheists, and christians, should chose the religion which has the best heaven and worst hell and if you read your bible you will certainly see that your heaven is not that great and your hell, well, not that bad when compared to the Muslims for example. The bible only has a few references to your heaven and there is a chapter in my book “Born Again Atheist” where I really get into it. Anyone reading this please read the bible’s description of heaven in Revelations 4:8, 4:9 and of course 22:3. Go google it now please! Does that sound like a place you would want to spend eternity?

  • #120

    Deeks (Saturday, 22 February 2014 01:40)

    Hi I am a scary scary Christian and I am on on your site shock horror! Seriously you guys need to take a chill pill. So your kid becomes a Christian and dares to care, even worse dares to care about the ignorant, the arrogant, those who are so sure there is no God because a scientist somewhere tells them so. No doubt you read the stars and hope for a pill so you can live forever or you stoically stare your death in the face. You do not even know what's on the other side of the moon never mind the vastness of the universe.

  • #121

    Kay (Tuesday, 25 February 2014 05:52)

    Um...you guys all sound so worried that your children will end up believing in God. If you are so convinced that God doesn't exist then what what is there to be concerned about? What harm then is there in them wanting to believe in one since in your minds he techinically doesn't exist anyway? If there is no God then how can a non existent God do them any harm? Bizarre...

  • #122

    Lance Gregorchuk (Tuesday, 25 February 2014 12:15)

    @ Deeks and @ Kay
    First of all would you guys please keep your Christian “I’ll pray for you” comments in the section “Hate Mail & Hell Wishing” section, yet I will answer the both of you here:
    First, we scientists do know what is on the other side of the moon and guess what… no god… nothing we didn’t expect… no surprises! Actually, what is on the other side of the moon is predictably what scientists hypothesized about for years and guess what? We were right… nothing special, just the other side of the moon! As for the “does god do kids harm” argument, well yes, very much so! Imagine your kid believing in Santa Claus at 18, would you think that was a little weird? There is an awful lot of evidence he doesn’t exist, there are stories, songs, and even books written about him…but I guess as a parent you can’t be certain right? Teaching Santa “might be true” is for an atheist the same as teaching god might be. I guess as a Christian you must think it is better to bring them to a guy who wears a funny hat and doesn’t sleep with women for guidance about Santa, god, raping women, killing children, having slaves, and believing in magic is the right thing to do, but as an atheist, we think that is pretty weird. Look, having your kids think that the “jack in the bean stock” story is true, or that Jonah lived in side a big fish, or that we speak different languages because of your bible “Babble” story , that Adam and Eve were real people, that snakes and donkeys can talk, that people live to be 950 years old is very hard to take (sorry, just checked my facts and found out that the “jack and the bean stock” story turns out not to be in your holy book, my mistake)!
    LG

  • #123

    Davis (Saturday, 29 March 2014 23:57)

    Loved the read Lg well done . And what about the the wife of jesus (the other Mary)

  • #124

    mary theresa (Friday, 11 April 2014 23:12)

    Having been a believer as a Young person ,when I started to ask questions which were not well answered,and drifted away . By the time my son was going to nursery I was a fully fledged agnostic,and just before I became a believer again I was a determined atheist ,as I was in denial of my negative lifestyle. Unlike most here t was not the bible ,but ancient Indian astrology which brought me back to realise how ordered the world was,and how one could see good ,bad and ignorance ,indifference in the moment of birth.They believed as I do that the moment of birth shown in the stars reveals the level of evolution of a person(soul). After I had become quite expert I had an real experience of 'GOD' telling me to use this knowledge to show His existence,but Christians do not want to know ironically. That was 20 years ago . I knew that this expertise waas not making me happy,my heart wold not heal and I turned to the New Testament ,and have been a happy chrstian for a number of years and regret the atheism which i passed to my son. It is clear in ancient astronomy /astrology ,that those who belived in God over time were happy prosperous ,long lived ,creative,while those who did not were lost to the future .Atheism brought nazi germanyt ,soviet union,and is a very recent thing All it's major proponents like Marx,Freud and, their
    legacies are 'dead' as will be the atheistic version of Darwins work very soon .

  • #125

    Lance Gregorchuk (Sunday, 20 April 2014 16:31)

    @ Mary, thanks for sharing that really strange story with us, and trust me any atheist reading it finds it strange. Also, google your facts before writing them...Hitler was a Christian!

  • #126

    Dollie (Thursday, 01 May 2014 22:40)

    Something like this is very important to me, since I never did run across a family who was -raised- atheist. All the atheists I knew simply came to be on their own, myself included.

  • #127

    vikki (Monday, 07 July 2014 23:06)

    Brilliant to see such strong minded people here :) i was raised a christian and went to Sunday school till i was 5 although i can never remember actually believing the stuff i was told, from a young age ive been fascinated by ancient history,mythology and ancient cultures so obviously ive never actually believed in a god or gods as most of history contradicts the bible, there is clear evidence the earth is older than the mainstream scholars would have us teach our kids, my sons school has a mix of religions but predominantly its Christian and muslim, so those 2 religions are taught in religious education, i am very Lucky to have a strong minded son :) hes 9 years old and after discussing everything appropriately he decided he does not believe in god or any other deity but thinks Jesus was a famous man who did good things in the past, i refuse to fill my child's head with nonsense, my son sees the news, hes sees the destruction of war and famine caused by religion! I would not insult his intelligence by telling him to go join those forces as even though hes only nine even he thinks the idea of people fighting and killing each other over an imaginary floating god in the sky is absurd! Give your child the chance to understand both why people believe in god and why other people don't believe in god it gives them a clear choice but most kids will choose to believe because of the evidence, if you bring your child up brainwashed into believing that we have a moon that defends the earth....guess what? They are going to believe it! Give children a choice!!

  • #128

    Justin Johnson (Friday, 18 July 2014 15:44)

    God and religion is no different than any other absurdity that we steer our children from. If its fine to tell children there is no such thing as the boogeyman or ghosts, then its fine to say the same regarding god. Let's stop pretending religion belongs on some pedestal, exempt from reason.

  • #129

    Drake (Tuesday, 29 July 2014 04:49)

    My wife has been taking my 1 and 3 year old to a Lutheran bible camp during the day while I've been at work - I am completely besides myself. Not really sure what to do.

  • #130

    Jenn Pedersen (Tuesday, 29 July 2014 06:33)

    Has anyone come across any independent or charter atheist schools? I am not originally from the U.S. and find the schools aren't as secular as I would have anticipated. Anyone have any experience with this?

  • #131

    Ben (Friday, 29 August 2014 01:28)

    Great topic! Please visit www.freethinkingforall.com for insight into the lives of our family who is meeting these challenges head on.

    I should mention that we live in the Bible belt of the US and have been met with all kinds of aggression from the christian right. This is what drive us ro tje internet for guidance, and ultimately a therapeutic release.

    Hope to see you soon!

    Ben

  • #132

    Hannah (Friday, 12 September 2014 08:24)

    I'm a very intellectual child, always been open minded. I'm in 7th grade now I guess. I am the only atheist in my class, and I'm proud. When I was little, I believed in God. I only did because everyone I knew was a Christian. Although both my parents are atheists, they were raised by Christian parents, my grandparents. I'm an atheist now, and my grandmother is touchy to the subject. She took me to church once, I have no idea what was in the Bible. They play games, like you swear upon the Bible, kind of like truth or dare. It creeped me out a little, and I disagreed with everything they were teaching young and mindless children. I guess I didn't really think much of it then, but now that I look back on it, I can't believe myself. They had me memorize some kind of pledge, something like ''And he will guide me, my Holy Savior.'' Really creepy. I felt really uncomfortable.

  • #133

    Donna Bedford (Tuesday, 21 October 2014 10:38)

    God is real. Satan is real. Evil is real. Goodness is real. You have chosen evil. I'm sad for u, but even more sad for ur children as they were not given a chance to experience the love of God/Jesus because of their parents' rejection of someone greater than themselves. How can a person consider themselves educated, if they have have not been presented all sides (unbiased, of course) of an issue so that they may come to their own decisions about who or what they believe? God is real & loves everyone. You have rejected Him for whatever reason. Please give ur children an opportunity to know Him, so they might make their own choices.

  • #134

    Lance Gregorchuk (Tuesday, 21 October 2014 12:26)

    @ Donna. Do you have any proof that Satan is real or that your god is real? I have lots of proof they don't. Isn't funny though that your children are also atheists. They dont believe in the god Thor, after which the day Thursday is named, they do not believe in Aman Ra, The "Sun" god or "Moon" god (guess which days of the week are named after them). Or do you let your children feel the love from the Sun God, you can actually feel that love you know as he/she is a partical and a wave, that is amazing isnt it?Your god loves everyone....good one, well unless you are Canaanites and or the Perizzites, a North Korean or African kid who has never heard of him, or, well really about 70% of the population on earth. Your children only get one side of the story...trust me mine get both and there is no justification for rape or geonocide with my kids, your kids on the other hand think it is OK to kill lots of people simply because they don't believe in your god, how screwed up is that? Or wait, if your god asks you to sacrafice your child would you do it? Even if your god was real I would reject it because I don't think it is Ok to commit rape or geonocide under any circumstance, I guess that makes me more moral than your god is because your god and you, seem to think sometimes that is OK. I don't and either do my kids.

    LG

  • #135

    Jenna (Thursday, 30 October 2014 02:37)

    ...does it not seem strange to be having a discussion on whether or not Jesus is a real or imaginary friend on a website called athiestparents.org...one would think it would be more an open discussion amongst athiest parents about how to raise our children in the best way we can in a religiously dominated world....its like the need for places like this are only validated by the religious folks trying to talk their nonsense where it isn't welcome so please if you feel like you need to preach or somehow find athiests morally offensive one would hope that you could be a respectful adult and stay off of a website directed towards athiests...

  • #136

    ASN (Sunday, 09 November 2014 05:30)

    What is sad is this; athiests are teaching children that there is no hope. Their children are made to believe that all they get is this world. It doesn't matter if that child is born with a disease, or disability; its all they get. It doesn't matter if they were born into poverty or abuse; its all they get. What kind of life is that; one with no hope. There is hope; its Jesus. Just give him a try. I promise you, he will give you something to hope for; something much better than what this world has to offer. Don't let your children be depressed in thinking that this is all we get.

  • #137

    sheetal (Tuesday, 11 November 2014 01:40)

    when kids ask who is god that people believe in ...just tell them they mean HOPE

  • #138

    Amber Larson (Wednesday, 19 November 2014 01:05)

    I need advice on how to talk to my child. She came home from school today and told me that two girls decided they didn't want to be friends with her anymore because she "believed in science and not god". I don't know what to tell her or how to comfort her other than explaining that maybe she should look for nicer less judgemental friends... Please help

  • #139

    Taron Shmikeo (Thursday, 20 November 2014 02:53)

    "The Kalki Avatara is the fierce incarnation who vanquishes the class of atheists born in this Age of Kali"

    Srimad-Bhagavatam 6.8.19

    Please, go ahead. Condemn your children, for blood from all the wicked will flow thick and hot once this cursed age finally passes into oblivion and the incarnation either destroys or renews this world. It was said well over two thousand years ago, the last age in the cycle will be full of those with the hubris to deny the divine. They will be obsessed with material possessions and money. Their men will act like women, and their women will act like men. Their societies will be sexually degenerate and yet claim to be moral apexes. Their societies will be technologically unmatched and yet suicidal, fat, lazy, and rotting on the inside. Their societies, having broken down all orders and institutions, will be governed by those who claim to be of the people, and yet will be the most corrupt tyrants in history.

    All has been predicted, from the ancient Indians through to Mohamed. This world will burn. Parents will lead their children like lambs to the slaughter. But they will be on their knees before the end. So Communism and Fascism fell to pieces, so shall liberal democracy. Its adherents will pay a bloody price.

  • #140

    carl (Friday, 21 November 2014 00:41)

    @ lance , lance i have read your comments and have noticed that they carry shall we say a certain "theme " to them . to name a few , intolerance , hatred , no respect for other peoples views ( whether right or wrong ) .condescending attitude to said viewpoints , these are to name a few .. my point is you dont really set a good example of what a parent should be .or as the websites mission statement sets out,are you the right person to be writting on a how to parent website ?

  • #141

    Terry (Saturday, 22 November 2014 04:00)

    In the original statement I read, they made the comment that all children are atheists and they have to be taught. So where did the idea of a god originate, if it has to be taught?

  • #142

    Hyena (Monday, 08 December 2014 13:30)

    Thanks for the great read. I'm what I call a reformed Christian. Much like a reformed criminal.... I was religious up to about 15 then felt the pressure and hypocrisy of the church. So I left, for awhile I believed but not in organised religion. Then I read, actually read the bible and to be totally honest I couldn't stop laughing. That book is so poorly written and yet people take it as fact.

    Now I have my own children, 6 & 4. I don't brow beat them on my atheist views, but when a religious relative makes a comment I am sure to point out that different people believe different things. I won't be rude to my relatives and expect them to be civil and respect my athirst views much as I respect their right to have their views. However if challenged I usually question how they can worship a god who promotes rape by rewarding the rapist and punishing the victim. For the Christian god decrees that a rapist must marry his victim.

    I am yet to receive a reasonable answer to that question.

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