Social Question

Dutchess_III's avatar

Would you like to discuss this article on raising children in a secular environment?

Asked by Dutchess_III (45372points) January 18th, 2015
4 responses
“Great Question” (1points)


I found it interesting, but a little heavy on the praise, almost as though she was kind of desperate to convince people. But it was a good article, and it made some good points.

Your thoughts?

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sahID's avatar

Well written article that is narrowly focused on secular families exclusively. Still, it does raise two inescapable facts about religion’s impact on society. First, less religiously active countries have lower to much lower violent crime rates than the US. Second, a miniscule per cent of incarcerated inmates are nonreligious.

While there are those in various religious communities who are horrified by the idea of children being raised in Godless homes, they are wrong. Reflecting back on my own junior and senior high experiences a few decades ago, frequently the more blatantly religious a student was, the more intense his or her expressions of bigotry, prejudice and “I’m better than you” became. Conversely, the less religious students tended to be the nicest and friendliest students around.

Overall, I agree with her assessment of secular families. In my personal opinion, the more secular households exist, the better society will become.

stanleybmanly's avatar

I think the secularization of the society becomes increasingly likely as people find themselves more pressed for time and are pushed away from spiritual matters in the struggle to keep a step ahead of the wolf at their heels. Religion is becoming an unaffordable luxury, as more of us come to realize that praying won’t pay the bills.

JLeslie's avatar

I was raised in what I consider to be a secular home. My parents are atheists, I rarely heard about God at all anywhere, definitely not my house. Except when the word was used in an expression like “oh my God,” or, “why is God punishing me?”

We did identify as Jewish and did some of the Jewish holidays, but when I was little it just seemed like something we did like dressing up for Halloween or eating turkey in Thanksgiving.

I have the golden rule on my Facebook as a quote I like. We were taught the golden rule in elementary school. Empathy was definitely a theme in our house. If empathy can be taught that is a very important thing. Lack of empathy is a dangerous thing. Certainly religious people are taught empathy too. However, I do think atheists are more likely to control their behavior for internal reasons, while religious people might be more likely to control behavior for fear if punishment. In the absence of the likelihood of punishment what do they do? Also, in my experience atheists are harder on themselves about mistakes. Not necessarily a good thing, but that’s what I have observed.

The article talked about racism and I have to wonder if that has to do with being secular or being a minority themselves? That sort of identification creates empathy for other minorities typically. Plus, I would assume educated liberals are more like to be atheists so there is a whole group think going on within that community.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I liked the fact that, in a perfect secular household, the emphasis was placed on why we do these things. Why we have empathy. Why we don’t steal. Why we don’t lie. It puts the responsibility upon the individuals, which is so much better than “Because you’ll go to hell,” which puts the responsibility on God

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