Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Religion may not be true...but it makes me feel better!

Here is an incredibly stupid article from the Washington Post about parents who don't believe in God, but want their children to be involved in "religion" for its "psychological and spiritual comforts"...are you serious? Now, I think that they are right in sensing that there is a need for God in order to have moral order in the world, but these people are not looking for Truth (with a capital "T"), but rather they hope that their children get "spirituality"...ugh, I hate that word.

Here are some RIDICULOUS quotes from the article (my comments in yellow):

1) Gauri says he wants to offer Yasmeen (his daughter) the moral foundation and spiritual guidance he believes religion can provide. Perhaps above all, he wants his daughter to enjoy religion's potential for providing solace. Recently, the 5-year-old expressed a deep-felt desire: "I wish people wouldn't grow old and die," she said. Religion, Gauri hopes, "can help her find some ways of living with that kind of loss."

[So you giving your daughter 'religion' so she can cope when you die? What?]

2) Asked if she believes in God, Koralleen Stavish says, "I just don't get it." But years ago, at a relative's christening, an idea hit her: With no experience of religion, how could her kids make up their minds about it? Or, as she quips, if they didn't study religion, "how could they reject it properly?" So she joined a Lutheran church and enrolled the kids in Sunday school. She even started attending services pretty regularly, despite her discomfort mouthing prayers she didn't believe.

[So you giving your kids 'religion' so that they can truly reject it? What?]

3) Khan also believes that spirituality -- with its sense of purpose and meaning -- is key to her children's emotional well-being. And she's convinced it would be a lot tougher for them to develop spirituality without the structure and guidance that religion offers.

So she and Gauri are dishing up a religious smorgasbord: Islam from one grandma, Hindu from the other, a Quaker school, a Buddhist retreat and a bit of evangelical Christianity via their former nanny. As Khan acknowledges, "Only time will tell if we were creating great confusion or great enlightenment."

[Yep, a six-year old will definitely be able to discern the truths of God from this buffet line...]

4) Parents might want to check out a religious school or place of worship in advance to avoid a fundamental clash with their own beliefs. A couple might sidestep a stricter sect if they're concerned their child will worry about God's punishing her parents' irreverent ways. If their kids later want to increase the family's religious observance, parents should be prepared to work toward compromise.

And what if a youngster asks point-blank if Mommy and Daddy believe in God? Mahoney recommends answering honestly but age-appropriately; complex theological musings could frighten a child who wants only a simple reply.

Considering such potential pitfalls, some therapists advise conflicted parents to explore alternative routes to spirituality.

[Man, it would be terrible to go to a church that actually teaches morals (gasp!) and that God exists (gulp!) and that irreverent ways are wrong (oh my!)...if it does, then just go for "alternative routes to spirituality" aka crapola...]

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