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Old 10-08-2012, 08:08 PM   #28
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Join Date: Aug 2012
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Re: Parenting style: Raising a person

Originally Posted by mcpforever View Post
There was a long thread here a couple of years ago where we went around and around about how no matter what you purposely teach or don't teach, you instill ideas into your children when it comes to religion or lack thereof. Even allowing your child to just decide for themselves teaches them that it is a decision for them to make and figure out, which is just another of the myriad of philosophies surrounding religion. It's just not possible to not influence/brainwash.
The initial point of my post was to explain how I came to the conclusion of what I consider my parenting style, which I have not seen described the way I describe it myself prior.

Allowing your child to decide for themselves recognizes them as a person. In relation to religion it recognizes them as a fellow countrymen who is guaranteed the same rights by our constitution and by the bloodshed of our forefathers. My religious freedoms are what allowed me to read religious texts for myself rather than only listening to specific parts of holy text and the interpretations given to me by clergy. I did this at six and was often rebuked for wanting to discuss my opinions which were often different than others who believed in the text but had not read it.

I was never suggesting what people should believe or not believe. Up to this point I feel I have not portrayed what I believe or what I do not believe as I feel this is what is asked of us to be refrained from on this forum. I will make the exception here to explain the difference between education and brainwashing. When I say rebuked I mean the way that my parents were explained "spare the rod and spoil the child". This is one example of where I disagree with most on what is actually written versus what we are told is a pillar of our faith. We are told that it means to use physical punishment on our children, which I personally disagree with (not for this reason alone). At the time this religious text was written, animal husbandry was just starting to become a science. The rod is in reference to the tool that shepherds used to guide sheep and to fend off predators, it was never used to beat sheep. Spoil was used in the way we use it in reference to food, not in the way we use it when we mean to say to allow a child to do what he wants. The verse is suggesting we guide our children through life so that they become valued members of our society.

If your child is reading the holy book of your faith out of a want to understand the moral material that his/her parents follow in an effort to become a better person I see this as their personal religious rights being upheld. If they are memorizing specific bits and pieces that require far more information, such as in the situation of a toddler suggesting the intentions of a religious figure, I see this as someone who could just as well be repeating the words of a dictator of the Third Reich if that was the intentions of their parents.
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