When I got pregnant with Kali at 18, her dad and I never discussed what we would do about religion; he and I got married and divorced in less than a year, we really never talked about it, neither of us ever went to church so….that was basically that.
When Damian and I got pregnant in 2009, I had some parenting under my belt and was a little older but still in the same place spiritually. He had been raised by his Pentecostal grandparents who had a church on their property, and we had to have a discussion. He never really felt religion suited him at all, describes himself as spiritual but not necessarily believing in one god, or multiple. He just really doesn’t know. I absolutely hate the idea of forcing a religion on a kid who can’t even sit up on it’s own (baptisms and blessing ceremonies give me the creeps), and I felt the kids needed to be able to pick their own religion if they chose to have one. That is how we decided we were going to raise our kids without religion.
About 60% of you probably just simultaneously crapped your pants. No religion, none at all. They learn about religion in their course work in home school, and we study the good and bad aspects of all religion, but they don’t and won’t practice a religion until they are WAY older. We want them to make educated decisions about all aspects of their lives, and religion should be no different. Just because you believe in one, doesn’t mean it’s the right one for someone else, and that goes for kids!!
There are some SERIOUS downsides to some religions, and one may be overall time spent in practice or in ceremony, depending upon a persons schedule. One may be the hypocrisy of the teachings and leadership, or the irony of a religion screaming there is a war being waged against it, when it is the deadliest religion in history-go ahead, guess which one.
I wouldn’t let my kids make any major life decision without getting all the information first, why would I let them chose a religion that may or may not shun them should their sexuality not be what the church considers appropriate? Why would I assume at their infancy that I know what religion will work for them when they are 25? 30?
We have thus far (almost 11 years in) managed to teach our children manners, respect for others, empathy, self-respect, boundaries and general decency without any religious content what-so-ever. We have taught them to believe in themselves and that they have to work to achieve the things they want in life.
As a secular home schooler, I believe that religion should come in the form of historically documented facts, and that science is quite literally life. I believe that every person has the ability to chose to be good, without a threat of damnation (or whatever your perspective faith believes about what being a shitty human means for your eternal soul), and without the need to have someone spy on them from a far off distant place (modern day stalking charges would be applied). I want my children know that if you took the preferred “good book” of every religion, and wrote it out in story format, it would basically be the same book; the message would be: Don’t Be A Crappy Human. Love everyone. Don’t Judge. Love yourself.
Everyone has the ability to learn all those lessons without religion, and if you choose to have religion, I don’t judge you in the slightest, because we are all just trying to do what we think is right.
Please let me know in the comments if you raise your children with or without religion and why you made that choice.
Absolutely no negative comments or remarks about any religion or person will be allowed, only comments that are respectful will be approved to post.