God or not?(8 Posts)
I have been a Christian all my life. Gone to church, prayed, played the guitar in my youth group (a loooooong time ago) etc etc. I have, however, age 45, come to a point in my life where I absolutely believe God exists, but I don't believe He gives a damn (please don't crucify me, I have my reasons). I now consider myself a Pagan.
My girls (age 8), have been raised as Christians and have strict Catholic grandparents, although their
bloody asshole of a dad doesn't believe, and is now a Buddist.
My dilemma is this: they have RE at school, and it's obviously easier for them to fit in if they are Christians. They have always been told God exists, not to use His name in vain etc. I don't want them to be excluded or bullied if I raise them as Pagans.
But, the biggest thing is that DD1 has mild autism, and her behaviour can be challenging. The idea of a big powerful God that watches what she does goes a long way towards helping her behave better.
I feel like a fraud, however, every time they ask me about God, and I give answers that I was taught, but no longer believe. If I tell them I no longer believe, it would be devastating for DD1 who doesn't cope with change well at all (and possibly DD2, though she is more accepting of things). I can't in good conscience keep pretending to believe when I don't any more.
WWYD? I am interested to hear what you guys think about this.
For the sake of DD1, I'd continue to say God is real and when DD2 is older, tell her what you actually think and leave it for her to decide what she believes; she will also be taught about atheism (right?) or if not, she will learn about it through other people's beliefs, and she will make her own decision when she's ready
Well, is there a big difference from saying that Santa Claus is coming over with the X-mas presents, and then pop out to buy a newspaper?
* every time they ask me about God*
What sort of questions are they asking? Can you perhaps start using the 'some people believe', or possibly 'I was taught...' type of phrasing? Is there any way you can start to introduce what you do believe alongside this?
DD1 often asks: God is watching me, isn't He mommy? Or things like: Do you think God will be angry if I misbehave?
Hard questions to answer with 'some people believe' .
DD2 never asks questions about God, but DD1 is a bit obsessive about things because of her autism, and she doesn't drop things once she's fixated on them.
I'm an aetheist.
I tried to be honest with my kids and say 'some people believe but I've never seen proof so I don't'
That all seemed super rad until the topic if her (currently alive but very elderly) grandmother came up.
My DD got very distraught that I didn't believe in heaven and the implication was therefore if granny died she would just be gone with no possibility oh 'seeing them again in heaven'
For the sake of my childs emotions I backed down and declared I do believe in heaven.
I hate lying to her and saying what I personally think is rubbish but I've had to rationalise that it's like the Santa lie ie the world seems a better safer place for kids when they think there's a benevolent man up there seeing everything and caring about their well being.
My older DD will (I'd guess) eventually come to the same conclusion I did (I was also raised Christian and didn't question God's existence until I was an adult)
If she had autism and I knew she'd obsess about it I wouldn't think twice - say nothing about Pagan God's to her for now.
I'd never tell her god would be angry for misbehavior though. Stick with her belief of a christian god but id be painting him as a nice old man who loves and forgives nothing more.
Im an aethiest. I dont know what happens when we die . I suspect its a bit like trying to remember from before you were born. Just nothingness and no awareness. It would be nice to think your spirit or sould (if we have one) can reconnect in some way with the spirits of thise thst you loved but i think in all reality thats just romanticism. Religeon of any sort is created by man to try and explain things to the masses. Used in the right way it can be a force for good but alas all too often it is used by the few to control the many through fear and cohersion as has been since the very first primitive religeons decided that human sacrifice was needed to make the sun come up each day. Just tell your kids to respect and love people. To practise forgiveness, understanding and tolerance and to try and help those less fortunate than ourselves. Doing this wont give them a pass in to heaven but it will make them a better person and the world needs better people right now.
Join the discussion
Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Register now
Already registered with Mumsnet? Log in to leave your comment or alternatively, sign in with Facebook or Google.
Please login first.