Atheists: Would you be sad if your child turned out to be religious?

I was in a discussion about raising children without a particular religion, with the thought that they should be allowed to choose when they are old enough. There was some discussion about the difference between raising them neutral and raising them specifically atheist. One atheist said that she is doing the latter, and would be sad if her children turned out religious. Which makes sense...certainly religious people are disappointed if their children turn out not to be believers.

Since so many mellos are atheist, I thought I'd ask you, would you have similar feelings?

The Long Road Behind Us

Since early high school I have been fascinated by nanotechnology. My first encounter with the subject was a friend of mine who told me about the concept of nanites, microscopic, autonomous machines capable of assembling anything from furniture to complex electronic devices out of constituent matter. I was not alone - this is the introduction the world was given in Drexler’s Engines of Creation back in 1986.

No Greater Joy: Another child dead from Biblical child-rearing advice

Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6

A couple, with nine children, beat one of them to death and left another in critical condition with kidney failure, while following the teachings on child discipline promulgated by Michael and Debi Pearl, which are very popular in the fundamentalist Christian community and in particular the Christian homeschooling movement. Here's the story at Salon, and check out the links in it, particularly by a friend of the family. In short, a 7-year-old girl named Lydia Schatz was beaten until her organs failed from chemicals released by broken-down tissue. She died, and her older sister Zariah is in critical condition.

Review: Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha


TITLE:Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha
AUTHOR: Roddy Doyle
PUBLISHER: Penguin
LENGTH: Novel
GENRE: Nostalgic mainstream fiction
COST: $15.00

The life of a ten-year-old Irish boy named Paddy Clarke, as seen through his eyes…

To call this Booker Prize-winning novel aimless misses the point of the narrative. It might seem like that. Ten-year-old boys tend to be self-involved, with attention spans that wander before they’ve crossed the street, so choosing one as the eyes and ears of the story’s events might seem counterproductive. It’s not. It’s the whole point. What Doyle has done here is recreate the rhythms of what it’s like to be a child, especially one on the verge of adolescence. He captures that driving need for escape and fun and combines it effortlessly with the vestigial beliefs in innocent hope that are so typically child-like.

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