Today is the birthday of my only daughter Shea. Eight years ago, she came into this world, smiling and bringing me all sorts of joy and interesting experiences nearly everyday.
In coordination with her birthday, I ran across this quote recently from one of my unmet friends on Facebook named Donald Pulsipher. http://www.facebook.com/
If religious instruction were not allowed until the child had attained the age of reason, we would be living in a quite different world. Christopher Hitchens.
I hadn't heard this quote before. I had to stop and ponder it though. How different would our children and grown ups develop if religion weren't instilled into them from such an early age as a given.
As a former Mormon, I can remember very well many of the doctrines concerning the age of 'accountability'. Paradoxically, the LDS Faith asserts in D&C 68:25 that those accountable adults that aren't able to convince their children to be baptized by the age of accountability, the age of eight for you outsiders, will have 'the' sin upon their heads.
The contrast between the two kind of punches me in the face. Which method should a loving parent use?
On the one hand, you are threatened with Godly sin upon your head if you don't get your child baptized. Pretty heavy. Pretty tough punishment for attempting to teach your child to think for themselves (if possible).
On the other hand, you could fit your child getting baptized to ensure they received that saving ordinance.
I read this, and I think we should consider this for ourselves. What if we had never heard of the religion we are currently in. Would we be able to accept it? Or would reason take over? Would superstition rule our lives and thought processes? Or would we decide to investigate and demand proof from those who would ask for our time, money, mentality, etc, etc.
Happy Birthday Shea. I hope that my biggest birthday gift to you today (besides Monsters and Aliens, and dinner at Spanky's) can be your freedom to consider and build your own truth from reason, experience and the beauty in the world and all people around you. Love, Dad.in reference to:
"If religious instruction were not allowed until the child had attained the age of reason, we would be living in a quite different world. Christopher Hitchens."
- The Atheist Missionary: My 10 favorite atheist quotes (view on Google Sidewiki)