Forcing religion onto your children

Discussion in 'Opinions, Beliefs, & Points of View' started by houseofcards, Jan 11, 2011.

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  1. houseofcards

    houseofcards Well-Known Member

    So, I'll start this off with a little personal story and see what you think afterwards!

    My parents were both raised as catholics; dad went to a private catholic school for elementary & middle school, had church classes daily, and spent his whole Sunday at church with his family. My mom went to vacation bible school, sunday school, andher whole family went to church while she was in sunday school. When I was born my parents decided to let me choose my own religion and not force me to go to church with them. I explored catholicism, buddhism, unitarian universalism, church after church, found no place that was awesome, then gave up.

    My boyfriend's dad, I dont know what the hell happened to him, but he is the most devout methodist I know.His wife (boyfriends stepmom) doesn't have a job and volunteers EVERY DAY with her church. Volunteering is good, yeah, but holy shit. She should become a nun if she really cares that much :eek:hmy:. ANYWAYS, here's the thing. They shove their religion down my boyfriend's throat. The more they do it, the more and more he hates going to their church. They just recently signed him up for independent bible study with their pastor, starting thursday, and he has absolutely no say in it.

    Why do parents do this? Is is right that they force their children to join their religion at young ages and not let them look at other options on their own? Can it be considered brainwashing?

    I don't know. This seriously pisses me off beyond belief and it's not even me going to the place.
  2. nolonger

    nolonger Well-Known Member

    I believe that it's brainwashing, and it's wrong.

    So many people never actually CHOSE which religion they wanted to 'belong' to. They were simple born into some random ignorant family that said <insert religion> was the do all and end all.

    I can't see how people actually want to get out of bed on a sunday and go to a place full of babbling old people for the sake of their 'religion'. And I thought I was wasting MY life on the internet!.....

    Probly why so many people just give up on the religion they were 'brought up' with. They realise the amount of horseshit their parents were feeding them and think, "Wow...I was told that?".

    What the fuck do people DO at church? Lol?
  3. Gemini1313

    Gemini1313 Member

    I agree completely. The religious brainwashing is absolute bullshit but without people forcing their kids into their faith the church can't pay their bills. people often seem to forget religions are businesses with the power to create the most useful slaves..those who believe they're free. Could your boyfriend try to have a mature, logical conversation with his parents? This is often impossible with the "devout" but maybe his parents will at least listen?

    And CONGRATS for realizing that no religion is awesome!!! My opinion but that because no spirituality is divinely inspired.

    @LongRoad-mostly when I went to church-raised catholic :grr: people mostly just sit there in a stupor and yawn..or look on their phones at football stats
  4. nolonger

    nolonger Well-Known Member

  5. Chargette

    Chargette Well-Known Member

    Forcing religion onto anyone does not work.
  6. houseofcards

    houseofcards Well-Known Member

    I wish he could, but I talked to his older brother that is in town for the next 2 weeks and he is willing to talk to his dad along with him to help out, since he had to fight against him religion-wise as well - he's gay and decided that if some branches of christianity and other religions discriminate against gays, he didn't want to be a part of any of it. Different reason, but still a fight that he won. I'll probably post here again when I hear back about when he talks to his dad.


    When my grandma brought me to church with her, I remember them doing communion with the bread and wine, I was hungry since it was before breakfast so I was like "I want bread!!" and my Grandma was like "You can have bread if you are Catholic, it's for us only" Not too long ago I asked my friend about it and she told me that the bread tastes like crap anyways, so I guess it was a good thing that my grandma didn't let me. Isn't eating Jesus's "flesh and blood" like symbolic cannibalism or something?

    I feel so offensive right now.. Maybe it's just because I'm ticked off about this :laugh:
  7. jota1

    jota1 Well-Known Member

    Forcing anything onto anyone is not good and hardly ever works but I can not see any harm in transmitting your values/beliefs onto your children as long as it is not inherently bad or harmful to them or others.

    If your values/beliefs include some sort of faith then so be it. Agnosticism is also a value/faith that agnostics transmit to their children (and others! quite forcefully).

    Why is one thing worse than the other.!
  8. titanic

    titanic Well-Known Member

    Brainwashing is a heavy word. Houseofcards, how old is he and why do you say 'shoving religion down his throat?' What do they actually do, sounds violent to say 'shoving down one's throat. Is it any different to signing your children up to a course they don't wish to do?

    My children go to a Church of England school, and it is a far better school that our local school. I'm Christian and teach my children / and they have the opportunity of learning about God. As far as I'm concerned there is only One God, so for me it wouldn't be right for them to learn about false Gods / religions (other than for knowledge purposes). I also believe it would be 'brainwashing' if that's the term you want to use, for them grow up without God, as I believe athiesm is brainwashing.
  9. titanic

    titanic Well-Known Member

    Perhaps you don't fully understand the significance of communion?! It is not about cannibalism.
  10. bhawk

    bhawk Well-Known Member

    The catholic church state that the bread and wine literally becomes the flesh and blood of christ, research it, their stance on it is pretty open....they expect us to be cannibals and eat a 2000 year old zombie!

    Catholics openly promote cannibalism
    Catholics believe condoms spread AIDs
    Catholics protected child rapists, and still do
    Catholics believe a man in male orientated society dressed in a skirt can tell my how to go about my love life!

    Seriously, how can anyone take them serious
  11. Lovecraft

    Lovecraft Well-Known Member

    Signing your kids up for a hockey tournament and signing your kids up to be indoctrinated... hmm... difference? Yes. If his parents were forcing him to hear lectures on the beauty of libertarianism or autocracy I imagine you'd call it a brainwashing.

    So you openly admit to biasing your children against certain beliefs that are no more or less demonstrable then your own.

    So you're saying that, if you weren't putting God in there heads, they'd decide there was no God on their own? That's a bit funny, isn't it? If you believe your God is so great why is it that even children won't believe in him unless forced to?

    @Communion: I have Anglican family I went to for Christmas and, due to Anglicans being pretty chill about everything, I went with them to the Christmas mass. They had some nice cornbread.
  12. Zurkhardo

    Zurkhardo Well-Known Member

    I will not raise my children under any faith. I will teach them only what I can demonstrate and ensure that their moral compass is predicated on a rational, ethical, and humanist basis, not out of fear, obedience, or want of reward.

    At the same time, I will not condemn any religion, but instill my children the capacity to judge any all belief systems for themselves, based on reason and science. If, as they get older, they choose to explore and eventually adopt a religion on their own accord, then I'll allow them to, so long as it is not morally or ethically unsound.

    I believe that imposing a belief system that lacks any basis in rationality or reality is unethical, exploitive, and unhealthy for children. They're too young to understand or rationalize what they're being taught, and often children that do express doubts are scared into obedience through threat of damnation - a concept that would be terrifying to a young child.
  13. jota1

    jota1 Well-Known Member

    Its a set of values that they as parents believe will make them better people and or help them progress in life. Anything you do/tell your children, and yes enrolling them in a hockey team also counts, will form their personality and end up becoming a part of their persona.

    Children are clean slates and as such believe in nothing. Does that mean that they should not be taught any values/morals. What are parents for? What is school for? In your opinion who has the right to choose what values beliefs are taught at home? the state? If so why are these better than their parents and who says they are? prove it.

    I am sure they had nice cornbread and you enjoyed yourself.
  14. Lovecraft

    Lovecraft Well-Known Member

    There's good reason to believe being willing to work or do physical activity is helpful in to a person in their life. There's no reason to think that religion will make them better then they would have been and there's some limiting factors it can bring up in fact.

    Optimally, yes... sort of. What I mean is that a child should be taught what is expected of them and why (You shouldn't kill because murder is counter-productive to the society, etc.) but to simply drill an idea into them and make them think that the idea is completely incontestable (God said it, no arguing!) just sets you up to have a kid of very limited mental ability due to their tendency to not ask why. Understanding morals as a set of rules to remember, as religions make it, does not make a moral being it makes automaton.

    Food, housing, clothing, protection and instruction in what is expected of them. The main idea is to facilitate their growth, though, no? Trimming them for a specific role (Such as being a 'good christian') is like growing a cat in a cup; you've decided for the child what it will be and give it no choice to be what you decide is a good person. By growing them in a confined environment things like closeted gays happen - they keep lying about what they are because you've forced them into the idea homosexuality is wrong for example.

    I hate, much more then many other things, disingenuous people. Let your kid make their own idea of what's important, just give them the tools to be them.

    Instruction in rationalism, abstract thought, and maybe a few more directly useful things like cooking and social interaction.

    I'd like the state to continue being responsible for taking children away from abusive parents but the core idea of what I think children should be taught? Rationalism. They should learn logic and be told why our legal system and concepts of morality exist: to make productive civilization possible.
    I and others would say it's better because it creates a child that is equipped with tools to try and understand and encourages curiosity as opposed to many parental teaching methods centred around authoritarianism (I always know best, so just listen and shut up), which makes it easy for the state to bully its people and causes people to think less, and/or some form of imposed beliefs that parents make their children believe which can cause a schism if that child ever starts thinking for themselves.

    Indeed, one should have rational reasons for things they wish taught. What's the proof for your God?
  15. houseofcards

    houseofcards Well-Known Member

    He is 17, has went to church with his dad and step-mom every Sunday if he likes it or not. It's being "shoved down his throat" because it is. They act as if whatever is in the bible is law, that nothing else is right, and aren't giving him space to explore what he wants or believe what he wants - only his mother and her boyfriend let him do what he is interested in (tennis and guitar). When you physically shove rotten eggnog down ones throat, they have no say in what they can or can't eat - they HAVE to eat it. To me, religion is like that rotten eggnog. And no, it's not any different than signing your child up for a course they didn't want to take. Your child is not your slave; they should have wiggle-room to do whatever sparks their interest. What exactly is the point of signing your child up for a pan-flute class if they really want to learn how to play the guitar or play soccer or something else?

    Brainwashing - forcible indoctrination into a new set of attitudes and beliefs.

    Growing up without god isn't forced, since the child was born with no beliefs of any god. Bringing your child to church under SOME certain age is forceful indoctrination, since they don't know any better and can't speak for themselves. If you're told when you're younger that committing sin will send you to hell, a really really bad place, chances are they'll believe it without question, as opposed to someone who goes to church at an older age and has the mindset developed that enables them to challenge what's given.
  16. Bob26003

    Bob26003 Well-Known Member

    One of my biggest pet peeves are the theocratic right wingers who want to force prayer on school kids and creationism mumbo jumbo taught as science.

    What a joke.

    Out of the 1st world nations the US has by far the most global warming deniers, evolution deniers and religious cooks.

    right wing ideology is evil. Its funny how they claim to be Christian yet do the exact opposite of what Christ taught. Jesus was against war and said help the poor. we all know that is exactly what the teaparty stands against.


    A comparison of peoples' views in 34 countries finds that the United States ranks near the bottom when it comes to public acceptance of evolution. Only Turkey ranked lower.
  17. jota1

    jota1 Well-Known Member

    If mankind only did things that were productive to society then none of the most beautifull things on earth would have been created. Why make music art poetry.
    Thankfully humans are more complex than that. If this is your world, “beam me up scotty”

    Disingenuous are the people that think that any one of us can ever hope to create a human being that can be totaly exempt from external influences. We are condemned to being fruits of our daily existance. As such, if you as a parent wish to add another variable ie a faith then so be it. We hopefully live in a democracy.

    Your child will kmost likely be more influenced by MTV than your beliefs in atheism, empiricism and rationalism.

    Closeted gays are also a product of an overwhelming majority of hetereosexuals in our society. As you know the human being rarely accepts what is out of the box. Are you going to blame religion for the discrimination against ginger haired people or fat people or short people or people that use glasses, punks, piercings etc etc etc acceptance or the lack of it has nothing to do with religion, although I accept that it may have played its part with regards to intolerance towards homosexuality.

    What is morality? In your way of thinking only what is productive? Should we euthanize/destroy all unproductive defective people, animals things? Are these immoral because they exist? BTW who is talking about abusive parents, thats not even in the discussion.

    I don’t need to prove god I keep saying that religions are all about faith and beliefs.
    I am not questioning your views on life, atheists are questioning mine. I can live with and accept your point of view but you seem not to be able to accept mine. Who is the intolerant?

    Agree the state should not impose anything. You live in Canada, I know it yet I was never told that that you were so intolerant. Do all schools teach religion there? Have you no options as an atheist?

    Of course you have options and of course Canada is an open tolerant society. Why are you so condemning of your country?
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 13, 2011

    GRUMPYPA Member

    You are only there to guide your children in the right direction let them know what you believe but do not force it down their throught. Teach them right from wrong.Be there to support them
  19. ZombiePringle

    ZombiePringle Forum Buddy and Antiquities Friend

    Personally I do not force my beliefs on my daughter. My ex and her family do though and it angers me. Me and her had decided when we realized we were having a kid that we would not force either of our religions on her and it would be something she would have to decide on for herself when she's ready. Thats how I feel it should be with kids. Its just my opinion though... but my daughter's grandma is constantly buying all this christian stuff even when she has been asked not to. My mom (who is a christian like them) seems to understand my feelings and does not get her anything religious... Really it comes down to an individuals personal beliefs.. if the parents want to push their religion on their kids then thats them but me personally I don't think its right.
  20. titanic

    titanic Well-Known Member

    Cannibalism is one human person eating the flesh of another human person. Communion is one human person eating the flesh of a divine Person.

    Because Jesus isn't just a human, nor is He dead, nor is He missing pieces of Himself. Anybody who makes the charge of cannibalism is denying the Incarnation.

    The Eucharist is a sacramental oath that Jesus made in promising us his body and blood even though it appears to be bread and wine. When Jesus made the promise in the discourse in John chapter 6, it was clear that the disciples believed him to be speaking of cannabalism and many of them left him.

    If, at that moment in time, the disciples had killed Jesus and eaten his flesh and drank his blood, they would have been guilty of cannabalism. This would not have been a good thing, and it would have been worthy of condemnation. Instead, Jesus gives us his flesh to eat and blood to drink sacramentally in the transubstantiated bread and wine. There is no cannabalism under the classic and graphic definitions that man has attributed to it. The sacramental food of the Eucharist is food for the spiritual journey and it does not carry with it the character of cannabalism.

    Transubstantiation is accomplished through the ministry of the priest at mass only by the power of the Holy Spirit. Only God, himself, actually transforms the bread and wine. God willingly gave us the word and the word became flesh by the power of the Holy Spirit. Jesus willingly lays down his life for the world. Jesus institutes the New Covenant at the Last Supper and fulfills his promise in John 6. Jesus willing gives himself for the world on the cross, and Jesus willingly gives himself to us again in the Eucharist.

    In Genesis 1:2-3 we read that, "The earth was without form and void, and darkness was upon the face of the deep; and the Spirit of God was moving over the face of the waters. And God said, "Let there be light"; and there was light." When God's minister celebrates mass with the faithful, God's Spirit transubstantiates the bread and wine in the same way that God created light in Genesis 1:2-3 and in the same way that the word was made flesh in Luke chapter 1.

    Here's another question for you. Is a baby breast-feeding from a mother committing cannibalism? Why or why not?
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