The Danger of Religion

I am not anti-religion, but I think that any organization that utilizes power and authority to control thought is dangerous. Especially dangerous when leaders use the supernatural and fear tactics to indoctrinate  Indoctrination prevents young minds from becoming free thinkers and when people lose the ability to think for themselves they become robots. Religion becomes a cult.

This is a Facebook conversation I saw on my wall today. I went to high-school with this guy and it amazes me that he is so blinded by his convictions that he has become part of a religious cult. His ability to think freely is gone. He sees only through a lens fogged by Christian presuppositions.

FB

People literally pulling their kids out of school, in fear, to further indoctrinate them with religious teachings. This frightens and saddens me. Just think how their poor children will view the world.

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10 thoughts on “The Danger of Religion

  1. reconciledme

    The problem with your line of thinking is your own presuppositions. You go into this thinking if anyone has thought things through they wouldn’t “indoctrinate” their kids. You assume you are capable of being a free thinker but anyone religious who lives by those beliefs is blindly following out of fear. What leads you to believe these people, or anyone religious, hasn’t decided, after years of questioning and sampling different lifestyles, that Christianity is the truth? You’ve closed your own mind to other options, assuming negative motivations and fear, and proceed to say Christians are closed minded. You can’t just throw a blanket over a whole group of people like that. It’s like Christians who think anyone who is not a Christian cheats on their spouse, beats their kids, abuses drugs and is a generally miserable person because they are exceedingly selfish. That’s nonsense and so I the assumption that Christians pull their kids out of school to further indoctrinate them. Would you not remove you child from a school that was teaching contrary to your worldview? What if the common core is passed and it teaches a that citizens are to unquestioningly obey the state. I guess you can call it indoctrination, but that only highlights your own presuppositions and prejudice. A more accurate explanation would be that these parents want to instill their own values in their children and not the state’s. I would think that’s something you would be for. I plan on instilling my values in my own kids, while allowing them to explorer the world as they see fit. If they choose not to accept my view that’s up to them. If what I believe is true there is no need for indoctrination. I question my beliefs all the time. Answered questions cause growth. Unasked questions, and blindly following, lead to Westboro nonsense.

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  2. Atticus Post author

    I call it indoctrination because many home-schooled Christian children are raised to believe a story written in the bible. They are led to believe (often) that these stories are literal and sometimes even contrary to hard science. Since they are drilled to believe these stories they never have a chance to openly evaluate for themselves if they believe them to be true or if the raw emotion and comfort of what they were taught is blinding them from truth.

    Its the same if a parent raised their kid to believe in something that wasn’t socially acceptable – such as cult leaders do. Just in the case of Christianity and religion people are used to it so deny that it is indoctrination.

    I’m not saying that all home-schooled kids fall in to this category – just that it is a risk I find present. Why not give the kid the chance to be exposed to all viewpoints and let them come to their own conclusions. If you trust the conviction of God then you shouldn’t have anything to worry about.

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    1. reconciledme

      You keep jumping to conclusions. You went from teaching kids things that may not be true to “drilling” them. We are ALL going to instill our beliefs in our kids. There’s nothing wrong with making my own worldview the dominant one. Your issue with it is your assumption that everything else will be neglected. Like the other commenter, you assume ignorance of all for the sake of the bible. Being Christian and homeschooling does not exclude science and modern thought and theories. You also assume that Christians are fearful of competing ideas. I am not, and I know I’m not the only one. I believe my worldview to be right. If I didn’t it wouldn’t be worth believing. It would be kind of cowardly to say I believe something but refuse to allow my kids to explore other things because they might choose that over my beliefs. My point remains. Your own presuppositions are clouding your judgement on this. You keep assuming that to believe the bible is to close your mind to everything else. My wife homeschools our kids but we do so more for the educational benefits than the religious. More homeschoolers do so for the that reason than to teach them about God. We will teach evolution and the “big bang” because they are very real possibilities. You’re just throwing this blanket of ignorance and closed mindlessness over a whole segment of the population and I’m certainly not the only one out of that segment that feels this way.

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      1. Atticus Post author

        This wasn’t a personal attack on all home-schooled kids – just a risk I feel is present.

        Some people may be perfectly able to teach their children, but can they do it an expose them to the same variety of thought and expertise as in a school setting? I doubt it.

        School forces you to encounter people you wouldn’t otherwise. People from different religions, socio-economic backgrounds, races, and belief systems. That exposure ultimately broadens your experience and shapes your ideology.

        Home-schooling, especially when religious doctrine is a prime focus, molds your child to a strict set of ideology while simultaneously depriving them from social and learning experiences found elsewhere.

        Parents/Teachers are the ultimate authority in a child’s life. When you teach them something their whole life and shelter them from other experiences it ultimately affects the way they think for the rest of their lives.

        If it was a cult doing the same – we would call it wrong. If it was a Muslim family doing it we might wish we could teach the child about Christianity. It’s just that in current society Christianity is accepted so we call it normal.

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        1. reconciledme

          If we’re just talking homeschooling I would disagree on your view as well. I’ve had to fend off my mother in law on all your points:) She calls it “socializing”. I told her my kids aren’t dogs:) You do have a point but there are lots of programs available to eliminate those things you’re concerned with. Do some research on it (not said in the typical “you’re an idiot!” sort of way). Homeschooling isn’t the insular, Amish-lite undertaking it used to be. I don’t even make my wife wear an apron and bonnet anymore.

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  3. Jon

    There’s truth to the idea that we’re all caught in our own worldviews, and that we ought not to stereotype those that differ from our own. But I do worry about worldviews that discourage logical thought in favor of belief based upon authority or revelation. If someone feels, for instance, that the worldview they want to pass to their children is threatened by science teaching, Darwin, etc, I believe that’s a problem. Whether the fundamentalism is Moslem or Christian or Jewish, I’m concerned. We live in a dangerous world where ciuntries possess nuclear weapons, and I believe that rational thought and evaluation are necessary if we’re going to survive.

    Of course there are those who look forward to the end of man’s survival on earth, the Apocalypse; and so this wouldn’t concern them. That concerns me.

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  4. John Barron

    I think you might be equivocating a bit. It’s not religion in general, or even all religions. Rather it’s individuals or individual churches within the respective religions.

    But I can see people wanting to homeschool for religious reasons. It seems every week there is some school in the news whose teachers are degrading Christianity or God and requiring students to do the same in the name of tolerance. They mock and single out students for their religious convictions. They teach a politically left view of marriage, sex, sexuality, abortion, and religion and refuse allow parents to know and view the curricula.

    Some cases might be paranoia, but others are really just prudence. We can’t presume the schools are correct on social issues and parents who disagree are wrong.

    Reply
    1. reconciledme

      Yes, what you said. If you’d have posted before me you would have saved everyone from being subjected to my mad ramblings:)

      Reply
  5. Jo Ivan Llaneta

    I agree but not because religion is dangerous by itself. Religion is just a technology. We can always wield a technology to save or destroy, but the worst thing of it is when we wield it not knowing how it really works.

    Religion is dangerous in the hands of those who want to use it for evil but it is much more dangerous in the hands of the ignorant. Let me just put it simply: Anything done in ignorance is dangerous.

    Anyway if these folk you featured are truly Christian they should follow Proverbs 3:5, and remember 1 John 4:1. These are just some of the passages that allow Christians to question if what they’re doing is truly godly as they believe it is. I believe that if there is a God, I don’t think He’d want those with Him in paradise to be ignorant fools.

    Reply

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