Children: Science, religion and atheism

Children: Science, religion and atheism

There are 5 comments on the News24 story from Jun 21, 2012, titled Children: Science, religion and atheism. In it, News24 reports that:

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“I Am No One Else”

Since: Apr 12

Seattle

#1 Jun 21, 2012
Interesting blog.

“It's just a box of rain...”

Since: May 07

Knoxville, TN

#2 Jun 21, 2012
Yes, and it raises an important point about good parenting, the goal of which is not to create intellectual clones of ourselves but to help our children to discover and develop their own identities. We can't do that while insisting that they agree with us about everything or that they ignore ideas and beliefs that we see as false. There are many ways to explore ideas. Insisting that ours are the only valid ones is not only restricting and shortsighted, it also excites the natural impulse to rebel during the adolescent years during which their chief developmental task is to establish their autonomy and independence.

We are their first teachers, but ultimately, they must learn to investigate for themselves. If we stand in the way of that process, we will either limit their growth or be knocked down by it.
EdSed

Hamilton, UK

#3 Jun 21, 2012
Excellent article.

'One should only believe anything as far as the belief can be justified by reason and evidence'
- I would ask a child to try to discover anything that contradicts that statement.

I would explain that once someone states a belief, it is natural to feel compelled to defend it. I'd encourage them to not to say 'I believe', but to say 'I believe 'X' because...' And always be ready to alter one's belief in the light of any new evidence, argument, logic or reasoning. Be prepared to challenge all and any belief, any day.

This is one reason why religion is so detrimental. I suspect religion is antithetical to critical thinking and undermines a child's very ability to reason properly.

Finally I would emphasise that belief is a matter of degree. It is rarely, if ever, absolute.
havent forgotten

Lamoni, IA

#4 Jun 25, 2012
EdSed wrote:
Excellent article.
'One should only believe anything as far as the belief can be justified by reason and evidence'
- I would ask a child to try to discover anything that contradicts that statement.
I would explain that once someone states a belief, it is natural to feel compelled to defend it. I'd encourage them to not to say 'I believe', but to say 'I believe 'X' because...' And always be ready to alter one's belief in the light of any new evidence, argument, logic or reasoning. Be prepared to challenge all and any belief, any day.
This is one reason why religion is so detrimental. I suspect religion is antithetical to critical thinking and undermines a child's very ability to reason properly.
Finally I would emphasise that belief is a matter of degree. It is rarely, if ever, absolute.
very good, and moderate comment.

Since: Mar 11

United States

#5 Jun 26, 2012
I have heard local atheists talk about while the child is in school anyways to allow them a santa like belief in god until say high school. This solely to curb bullying. Not baptize them or go to church but just a simple basic Godish idea mildly taught them. No creationism or ID nonsense though and always encouraging them to seek their own answers.

Personally I disagree with this concept. I understand doing it so the kid fits in but I don't agree. Perhaps because I don't have children lol Still I would avoid the subject of God all together with my child.

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