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  1. Darkcula
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    Darkcula Member

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    Should we force someone into believing something we believe is not true?

    Discussion in 'Debate Room' started by Darkcula, Mar 2, 2014.

    There is no concrete evidence to prove this theory that 'God exists', so why do our parents impose this belief of their's onto us? I don't know whether I would be able to do the same with my children, by the way should I?
     
  2. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    If you don't believe it or think that the belief has value, of course you shouldn't. Parents normally pass their beliefs on their children, and then the children grow up and may well leave those beliefs behind. Whether they "should" is difficult to answer, because part of the belief is usually that they should.
     
  3. Darkcula
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    Darkcula Member

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    But if I tell my kids that there's no God and heaven, won't they feel like an outcast at school?
    And if I tell them that God was always there and will be, won't I be lying to myself and feel low cause I myself don't believe in god's existence and yet preaching it to my kids.
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2014
  4. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    Well, that depends on the school. Also, the fact that you don't have a religion to impose doesn't necessarily mean that you have to impose your lack of religion. That is, you can say, "Well, I don't believe in God and heaven myself, but everyone grows up to form their own beliefs."
     
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  5. erebh
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    erebh Contributing Member Contributor

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    children need beliefs, whether its god in heaven, Santa in the chimney or the Easter bunny at the end of the garden. I look forward to when molly (2 in June) can have a conversation with me about religion, until then she will have good guidance.
     
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  6. Darkcula
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    Darkcula Member

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    So are you a non-believer then?
     
  7. erebh
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    erebh Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'm roman catholic although not practicing. I'd like my girls to make their own mind up though...
     
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  8. Darkcula
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    Darkcula Member

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    So would it be okay with you, if one of your girls turn out to be an atheist in the future?
    I mean how'd you feel?
    Although, I sincerely hope it might not turn out so.
     
  9. Darkcula
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    Darkcula Member

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    But wouldn't it be too confusing for the children, if I tell them I don't believe in God, but it's is up to you?
    I should be their guide and mentor after all, so I have to give them something solid.
     
  10. erebh
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    erebh Contributing Member Contributor

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    my girls can be anything they want. Just be honest with your kids and don't worry dude. Let them find their own feet.
     
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  11. Darkcula
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    Darkcula Member

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    Yes, you are right but it would be a hell lot easier for me if I were like you. I Just hope that 'Atheism' would be added to the school curriculum by the time I have kids.
     
  12. erebh
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    erebh Contributing Member Contributor

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    what? You don't even have kids and you're freaking out over religion? Pffft!
     
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  13. Darkcula
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    Darkcula Member

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    What's wrong in thinking about the future? Someday I will be there and freaking out now will sure help me get a strong grip during that inevitable phase.
     
  14. erebh
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    erebh Contributing Member Contributor

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    time to freak out is when that tiny baby shows its head, believe me!
     
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  15. Darkcula
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    Darkcula Member

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    :cool::)
    I'll keep this in mind.
     
  16. Aled James Taylor
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    Aled James Taylor Contributing Member Contributor

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    @Darkcula It sounds like you would make a really good parent if you are concerned about such things now. If you are looking of something solid, then jumping to conclusions or making things up isn't going to do that. I live in a multi-faith society and my children learn about many religions in school. Some parents choose not to insist their children believe things like Santa or the Easter bunny and those children don't seem to suffer for it.
     
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  17. Duchess-Yukine-Suoh
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    Duchess-Yukine-Suoh Girl #21 Contributor

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    My Mom took me to church every Sunday, and I go to a Catholic school, but when I got older it was all really my own choice, but I chose to stay Catholic.
     
  18. Michael Collins
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    Michael Collins Contributing Member

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    I grew up in an atheist family, and I choose to keep it that way.
     
  19. Mackers
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    Mackers Contributing Member

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    Anyone who's not familiar with Tim Minchin should check this excellent beat poem he does about critical thinking - It captures the flavour of this thread nicely

     
  20. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    Clearly where you live can have a large impact on the relevance of any answer you receive to this question. Remember that most of the answers in this forum are going to be issued from members living within an American, U.K. or Northern European/Scandinavian paradigm. In America this question is one of our hottest hot-buttons. In the U.K. it seems people are more reserved and though they may hold strong feelings, tend to feel it's not right to impose them on others. Northern European and Scandinavian folk tend to look at the whole kerfuffle as just that, a silly kerfuffle that isn't very sensible at all to get worried over.

    I see you are posting from the heart if India. Indian culture is much more universally traditional than any of the aforementioned cultures. It's like living where I live, in Puerto Rico. Religion is as common and in-your-face here as language. Here the expected greeting one gives to elders is to say bendiciĆ³n, and the reply is Dios te bendiga, which is first asking for a blessing and then receiving that blessing from the elder. This is every day speech to be heard everywhere and from all people. Even people who claim atheism are heard saying these things and when pressed as to why they would do it, the answer is invariably It's expected. If I don't, it will be very awkward.

    I don't ever say these things in social discourse and it does often garner me unusual looks, which are often assuaged only when they hear me speak and hear my American accent. They assume incorrectly that my Americaness makes me ignorant of the proper things to say and forgive me on that count, though clearly they are incorrect. I am more than well aware of the "correct" things to say and respond, I simply refuse to do these things because they belong to something I hold not to be true. This dissonance presents only a small discomfort for me here because I don't socialize much and the social circle I do have tends to be of like mind and are also all pretty much culturally Americans, not culturally Puerto Rican, even though many of them are ethnically Puerto Rican.

    I don't know how strong the cultural pressure is where you live to conform to those kinds of outward appearances as regards religion and the like, but I am going to assume at least as strong as where I live (probably stronger) and stronger than where many of those who are answering herein have to deal with. My gut answer is to tell you that no, you should not impart beliefs to your children that you yourself do not believe. If nothing else, this will eventually come to light and your children will have to deal with the idea that you made them believe something you think is untrue, so what else is untrue that you told them? A discomforting thought for a child to have for a parent. I do agree with the others who indicate that if your children grow to have beliefs other than your own, this is natural and fine, not something to hinder but neither do you have to foster it. Let them chose.
     
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  21. Michael Collins
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    Michael Collins Contributing Member

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    His words nailed what I believe in:

    "Science adjusts its views based on what's observed. Faith is the denial of observation, so that belief can be preserved."
     
  22. Mackers
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    Mackers Contributing Member

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    I don't believe the second part of what he says. I don't think practising faith and science (i.e. through observational methods) are mutually exclusive. I know the point he is trying to make, though.

    Minchin is very clever, there's no doubt about that. I love all his songs. He gets quite preachy about his atheism sometimes though, which I'm not a fan of
     
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  23. Michael Collins
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    Michael Collins Contributing Member

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    I tend to see faith and religion as different things. I don't lack faith, but I don't have faith in God (catholic God, that is), or any other deity.

    I agree that Minchin can bee quite the preacher at times.
     
  24. JJ_Maxx
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    JJ_Maxx Banned

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    The question is not should we force someone to believe, but can we force someone to believe...

    That's the funny thing about children, they have a tendency to become adults. It doesn't matter whether you raise them Muslim, Christian, Buddhist or atheist, they will eventually grow up, wipe the slate clean and make their own choice. There are many people on this forum who chose a different path then they were brought up as. As long as you don't instill hatred in your children, you'll be fine. Teach them to treat others the way they would like to be treated, teach them to respect everyone regardless of differences.

    Teach them patience, kindness, love and respect and no matter what religion or lack thereof you teach them, they will turn out fine. And if they turn out to be serial killers, well, you did the best you could.
     
  25. Lemex
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    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

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    No, absolutely not. We shouldn't force anyone to do anything, we all should be the authors of our own characters.
     
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