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11 Year Old Devout Athiest

Discussion in 'Religious Debates' started by linwood, Oct 27, 2011.

  1. linwood

    linwood Well-Known Member

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    Ahhh...

    I have a problem.

    My 11 year old daughter has just gotten a Facebook page (I know I know 13 is the age limit.) and she`s been having a blast playing games and chatting with her classmates online (Apparently I`m not the only one who could care less about age limits)

    I just checked on her page for the 15th time today and see she has added "Devout Atheist" boldly displayed on her profile page.

    <Sigh>

    My atheism has caused many problems for my daughter most of which revolve around the fact that all my neighbors were very freindly and she played with the numerous kids in the neighborhood up and until my Devout Christian neighbors discovered my atheism.
    Now she`s a leper and none of the kids in the neighborhood are allowed to play with her because she is of course satans child and will lead their kids into the very depths of hell.

    Now her classmates parents will undoubtedly see that she`s a "devout atheist" and I fear the same ostracization will occur.

    My wife wants it removed from her page.
    I don`t want to give her any reason to believe there is shame in what she thinks she believes/disbelieves (I realize she`s 11 and may very well be a baptist preacher by the time she`s 22 but for now she claims atheism undoubtedly due to my beliefs)

    You have to understand this kid isn`t your average 11 year old and neither are her classmates they`re all gifted with 130 or above IQ`s and in special classes running special critical thinking competitions and the whole parent/teacher/student/ situation in this class is very tight knit.
    Most of them could perform well at high school levels in many areas.

    She`s adamant she won`t remove it and I`m at a loss as I`ve always told her she should never be ashamed of whatever she believes about anything.

    I`ve informed her she runs the risk of being ostracized in the same manner she was in our neighborhood and she just doesn`t give a damn.

    She says that if they can`t accept her for what she is she doesn`t want their acceptance.
    This of course fills me with so much pride I could burst but I really don`t want her tight knit "family" that the class has become over the past few years to shun her as it would truly hurt her.

    I`m not worried about the kids reactions as truthfully most of them are smarter than their parents but I`m worried about what the parents might do or make their kids do.

    What do I do here?

    Help??
     
  2. Revoltingest

    Revoltingest I have the kavorka
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    Her decision.
    Her consequences.
    No win for you if you interfere.
    Big win for both if your sage advice helps.
     
  3. outhouse

    outhouse Atheistically

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    Thanks for the post, helps me think about what will happen as my daughter gets older.

    really sounds like she has it under countrol.

    Sucks your neighbors have problems with religious freedom.
     
  4. waitasec

    waitasec Veteran Member

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    why did you tell her
    she should never be ashamed of whatever she believes about anything...?
    because you believe that. now is the time for you to show what that means.

    this is where the rubber hits the road. it's tough, but it is life.

    i feel for her and the trouble these so called christians have put her through
    but i think this experience will make her stronger. it seems she is and she is following your advice
    hang in there and encourage her to to stand with her convictions...

    the alternative is to take her off facebook...
     
    • Like Like x 1
  5. The Sum of Awe

    The Sum of Awe Realitarian

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    She did the right thing... It's just the consequences that aren't fair. She did fine; if she wanted to be a devout atheist (remember DEVOUT) she should stick up for that, just like people do when they are devout liberals or devout conservatives. And never get ashamed at herself for that, be ashamed at the neighbors who ignorantly shame her for being in another religion that has not harmed them.
     
  6. 839311

    839311 Well-Known Member

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    America needs more people to be open about being atheist. The quicker Christianity fades away in the U.S. the better.

    Its usually harder on the trailblazers, unfortunately, but easier for others afterwards.

    I think it would be a shame if she can't be who she is.
     
  7. Jayhawker Soule

    Jayhawker Soule <yawn> ignore </yawn>
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    No, she did the juvenile thing which, in her case, is reasonable. It's sad nevertheless.
     
  8. linwood

    linwood Well-Known Member

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    Please expand on this deut.
    Please?
     
  9. etherealascension

    etherealascension Secular Buddhist Humanist

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    Why can an 11 year old say they're a devout Christian, but not atheist? It's her choice to put it up there anyway.

    Any adult who has a problem with a child for being atheist is beyond immature.
     
    #9 etherealascension, Oct 27, 2011
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2011
  10. outhouse

    outhouse Atheistically

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    Ya I dont follow that either.



    Your daughter admits her status and stands beside it! I find that has charactor and is anything but juvenile.

    More adult then many people in this forum actually :bow: praises to her for her strength and conviction.
     
  11. Jayhawker Soule

    Jayhawker Soule <yawn> ignore </yawn>
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    First, thanks for calling me deut - it's been a long time. :)

    In my opinion ...
    To believe oneself smarter and more sophisticated than one's peers is seductive, especially for an adolescent in the process of defining/establishing one's sense of self and self-worth, and skepticism is cheap. Most 11 year olds have no sense of philosophy or cosmology. Most are unaware of religious scholarship and incapable of evaluating its worth. Their 'atheism' is necessarily shallow and oft-times counter-cultural. In my opinion it is, at best, qualitatively premature.​
    ... and I bet she'll turn out great.
     
  12. -Peacemaker-

    -Peacemaker- .45 Cal

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    I'm not trying to argue the validity of either position in this thread. I'm simply trying to present the Christian argument as clear as possible. Understand that most Christian parents do not want their kids around people who could potentially lead their kids away from what they believe is the truth. Why? Because they believe that=hell. It's not out of hatred that they try to keep a safe distance from you and your family, it's out of fear. Most of these Christian parents probably wouldn't want their kids hanging out with any children other than other Christian children. If you were Muslim or Jewish you'd probably be dealing with the same situation. For your kid to really be considered acceptable as a playmate for the Christian children she'd probably have to lie and call herself a Christian. She might be able to sneak in by calling herself a theist (being very ambiguous about the specific type of theism). My attitude is that we as 21st century Westerners spoil our kids. In the Middle Ages, kids that were 8 years old would be working full time and they'd get married at 12. There's was a very harsh world yet they persevered. IMO, you should let your daughter be welcomed into the real world. Better that than live a lie. What kind of a lesson will it teach your daughter to lie about who she is in order to be welcomed. I've never been a parent but I am someone who's had their teeth kicked in on a constant basis since my earliest days. If you knew more about my life I guarantee you wouldn't challenge that claim. It's time to be a warrior I say.
     
    #12 -Peacemaker-, Oct 27, 2011
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2011
  13. angellous_evangellous

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    Damn I wish they had that when I was in school.
     
  14. Revoltingest

    Revoltingest I have the kavorka
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    That's the beauty of atheism. One needn't know any religious "scholarship" to see the lack of evidence for gods & the fecklessness of faith.
    The more I learn, the more I remain wedded to the same shallow view. Maturity does have one big advantage for us heathens though...
    ....we learn to cope better with believers.
     
  15. outhouse

    outhouse Atheistically

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    that applies to the 6-7 billion religious people on the planet.


    Most people including children can have faith in a deity that probably doesnt exist without any knowledge of scholarships.

    A child who turns to reality instead of dogma and has broken free of religious trappings doesnt need a scholarship to understand she doesnt want any part of religion.


    as opposed to what? following a religion like sheep in a flock?



    The child has made choice, because she is a child doesnt mean she should not have the freedom to choose without being labeled
     
    #15 outhouse, Oct 27, 2011
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2011
  16. linwood

    linwood Well-Known Member

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    I agree which is why I mentioned she could be a baptist by 22 but damn she`s headstrong.
    Considering her path so far she does indeed fall victim to the seduction you speak of.
    I don`t think there`s anyway to get her past that other than letting her take the lumps that comes along with it until she learns.


    Oh yeah she`ll be just fine, it`s what she`s doing to me that worries me.

    Thank you Deut

    Thanks for the input everyone.

    I think the consensus here is right for the most part and I`m going to let it be for now and hope for the best.

    It`s so easy for me to take the crap that comes with my beliefs but it`s so hard to see her try and walk the same path regardless of the weak foundation hers lie upon.
     
  17. angellous_evangellous

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    I like a thinking atheist.

    I would consider Nietzsche to be a religious scholar that proves the atheist argument quite convincingly. I don't think that there's been anyone like him, and maybe there never will be.

    An atheist may not "need" Nietzsche, but he certainly will strengthen the atheist's spiritual experience.
     
  18. Revoltingest

    Revoltingest I have the kavorka
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    I never needed proof of atheism....only a lack thereof for alternatives.
    Might have to read that Neetshee fella some day though....just to see what the hubbub is all about.
    Then there's the Conan The Barbarian connection too.
     
  19. Willamena

    Willamena Just me
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    They don't call it "weak" atheism for nothing. No reasoning needed at all. :)
     
  20. Revoltingest

    Revoltingest I have the kavorka
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    There is strength in weakness.
     
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