Natasha, thank you for taking the time to comment on my post. I certainly do understand the time constraints of parenthood and can understand that your writing is a labor of love. When I take the time to write a blog post or comment on another’s blog, it, too, is a labor of love. Although you may see yourself as a victim of religious persecution, there truly are victims of religion, those who have no voice to raise: CHILDREN. So, while you are writing with the intent to equip parents to more fully indoctrinate their children, I am attempting to insert rational thought and reasonable doubt into their minds with the hope of making parents slightly less certain of the path that they have chosen for themselves and will ultimately choose for their child. If you’re threatened by this, then by all means, delete and block.
It’s quite easy to look at a child and be totally unaware of the damage inflicted by Christianity’s doctrines regarding sin and hell. I can only look back now and wish that I had not internalized such messages, often crying myself to sleep with the anxiety of my sinful condition. I told no one and and felt deserving of constant guilt. No one had to teach me apologetics to make the Christian message more persuasive. The fear of being tortured for all of eternity in hell sufficed. I’m sure that you will convince yourself that your situation is different, but unfortunately, I have listened to enough deconversion stories to recognize the common themes. This mental and emotional lockdown is the reality that Christian parents and their children find themselves in. The parents, not wanting their child to go to hell, have no choice but to indoctrinate the child. The child, not wanting to go to hell, has no choice but to believe. It really is that simple. And sadly, the child is totally unequipped to think rationally on such dichotomous and unsubstantiated scenarios.
I’m sure that you and other Christian parents truly believe that exposing your children to different beliefs and apologetic arguments is promoting critical thinking in the child, but it is completely ineffective for two main reasons:
1) The parent has a vested interest in the final outcome.
2) As stated earlier, the child already knows the consequence of not believing—eternal torment.
Unless the parent, the person that the child trusts the most, is able to untether himself from the belief, remain completely neutral in teaching the child, displaying no preferential treatment, and respectfully allow the child to choose once he/she has reached the age of reason, then indoctrination is inevitable. You understand that this is an impossible situation for Christians. Despite noble intentions, critical thinking can never take root when fear is the predominant emotion. The parent, rather than taking advantage of their authoritative role, has an obligation and higher responsibility to make discernments that the child is incapable of making.
Natasha, you have a similar responsibility to your audience—to promote transparency. I don’t really blame you for promoting FUD. Christianity has done that since its inception; and yes, the feeling of being scammed does come to mind. However, blocking and deleting thoughtful, yet critical commentary paints a dishonest picture, and I challenge you to rethink your position. After all, a light will shine its brightest through a transparent window. Further, in reading your response, one might be inclined to think that I am constantly challenging you to debate me. We both know this to be false. I rarely comment on blog posts. Yet, when I have, none have felt the need to block or delete my comments. I suppose it was my YouTube comment that bothered you the most, since you were unable to remove it. If I take the time to watch a video, do I not have the right to leave an honest review? Speaking of which, I hope you’ve taken the time to read and understand what Fakespot’s actual purpose is, to analyze the authenticity of reviews, not rate the product. If not, a reader of the blog has provided in the comments an excellent explanation of how Fakespot operates, no logical fallacies required. For example: Fakespot Tim Slege, author of Goodbye Jesus.
Christians hate the word indoctrination, but I humbly encourage you to watch this 24 minute video. It is why I do what I do. I don’t want other parents to make the same mistakes that I have, because it is the children that suffer the most.