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Godless mom strikes a chord with parents
A CNN iReport essay on raising kids without God draws record-breaking number of comments.
January 18th, 2013
06:32 PM ET

Godless mom strikes a chord with parents

By Daphne Sashin, CNN

Deborah Mitchell remembers the time, when her boys were younger, and another mom asked her about her religious beliefs.

Mitchell was raised Catholic but moved away from religion in her early 20s. She told the other mother that she didn’t go to church and didn’t even really believe in God.

Then, she says, the recruiting started.

“She used to call my house and tell me she was praying for me. She’d leave me messages and leave cards in my mailbox with scripture,” Mitchell says. “I do realize that she meant well, but at the same time, I know my views were seen as wrong. I needed to be ‘saved.’”

Mitchell, a mother of two teenagers in Texas who feels “immersed in Christianity,” started a blog about raising her children without religion because she felt frustrated and marginalized. She didn’t want to feel so alone, she says.

This week, she gained a whole new audience and the reassurance that she's not alone. Her essay on CNN iReport, “Why I Raise My Children Without God,” drew 650,000 page views, the second highest for an iReport, and the most comments of any submission on the citizen journalism platform.

It starts:

When my son was around 3 years old, he used to ask me a lot of questions about heaven. Where is it? How do people walk without a body? How will I find you? You know the questions that kids ask.

For over a year, I lied to him and made up stories that I didn’t believe about heaven. Like most parents, I love my child so much that I didn’t want him to be scared. I wanted him to feel safe and loved and full of hope. But the trade-off was that I would have to make stuff up, and I would have to brainwash him into believing stories that didn’t make sense, stories that I didn’t believe either.

Mitchell posted the essay detailing her seven reasons for raising her children without God on CNN iReport because she felt there wasn’t anyone else speaking for women or moms like her. As she sees it, children should learn to do the right things because they will feel better about themselves, not because God is watching. She asks questions like: If there was a good, all-knowing, all-powerful God, why would he allow murders, child abuse and torture?

Lots of people disagreed with her. Tons. They flagged her iReport as inappropriate and criticized CNN for linking to her essay on the CNN.com homepage. But there were plenty of others who wrote thoughtful rebuttals, respectfully disagreeing with Mitchell while not foisting their own beliefs on her. Take, for instance, a Methodist dad, who said faith can be hard to nail down, but “not to avail ourselves of the power of something we don't completely understand is silly.”

Others said Mitchell presented a simplistic view of religion.

“Presentations such as these seem to ignore a substantial percentage of believers - well-educated, compassionate, liberal folk, Christian and non-Christian alike - who, I feel, are able to worship without being blind to the realities of the world, or without lying to their children about their understanding of these complexities,” wrote commenter RMooradian. “I'll be raising my children with God, but I understand those who cannot!”

But Mitchell’s essay also struck a chord with hundreds of like-minded parents raising children in a world where lack of belief puts them in the minority, often even in their own family.

“Thank you for writing this. I agree with everything you say, but I’m not brave enough to tell everyone I know this is how I feel,” a woman who called herself an “agnostic mommy of two in Alabama” posted in the comments. “Thank you for your bravery and letting me know I’m not alone.”

It’s a growing group. One in five Americans is not affiliated with any religion, and that number has grown by 25% in the past five years, according to a survey by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life. Of that group, 88% said they were not looking for religion, although 68% of the unaffiliated said they believe in God. 

Brittany Branyon, an American graduate student and substitute teacher living in Germany, was also compelled to express her thanks to Mitchell. Branyon was raised Southern Baptist in Georgia and Alabama. In high school, when she began to question the theory of creation and befriended gay and lesbian students, she says her mother tried to perform an exorcism.

“She opened all the windows and doors in the house, brought me to the door, held my shoulders and shook me while screaming, ‘Satan, get out of this child!’, ‘Satan, leave this child alone!’.”

After moving away from the South, she and her husband “became more comfortable in our secular ways,” but still take criticism from family members. They are now expecting their first child.

“Though we are elated to welcome our child into the world, we can’t help but dread the religious uproar that is to come from our families,” she wrote in an e-mail.

Such an uproar is familiar to Carol Phillips, a stay-at-home mother in northern Virginia. When she gave birth to her first child, she said her family was shocked that the baby wasn’t baptized. She said her mother-in-law cried and told her the little girl’s soul would not go to heaven.

Then there are the comments from strangers. Last year, Phillips said she and her daughter were at a birthday party when a tornado warning sounded.

“We were all in the basement keeping safe. A little girl was saying baby Jesus will keep us safe. My daughter asked who Jesus was. The rest of the time was spent hearing ‘I'll pray for you sweetie, we can take you to church with us if you want,’” Phillips told CNN.

Commenting on Mitchell’s iReport, Phillips said, “To live out loud and to speak freely about my beliefs brings many clucking tongues. I would think it’s easier to come out as gay than atheist.”

Mitchell said she spent years studying the history of religion and does believe it has “an important place in our community.” She has told her children that she’ll be fine if they decide to join a church when they are older.

She ended her essay:

I understand why people need God. I understand why people need heaven. It is terrifying to think that we are all alone in this universe, that one day we—along with the children we love so much—will cease to exist. The idea of God and an afterlife gives many of us structure, community and hope.

I do not want religion to go away. I only want religion to be kept at home or in church where it belongs. It’s a personal effect, like a toothbrush or a pair of shoes. It’s not something to be used or worn by strangers. I want my children to be free not to believe and to know that our schools and our government will make decisions based on what is logical, just and fair—not on what they believe an imaginary God wants.

After her post ran on CNN, Mitchell said she was encouraged by the number of people who agreed with her, or who disagreed but wanted to have a respectful discussion.

“I’m not saying that everybody should think how I do. I’m saying the people that do should have a place in our society and have acceptance and respect,” she said. “I just want to have children grow up and be able to not be afraid to say ‘I don’t believe that,’ or ‘I’m not part of that.’” 

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Atheism • Belief • Christianity • iReport

soundoff (15,081 Responses)
  1. ManWithThe1000PoundBrain

    The bottom line is that she is the mother and it his her choice–and no one else's business. And no, she is not doing anything wrong, harmful, abusive or being irresponsible. Her children can make their own decisions when they grow up. She was raised to be Christian but has nonetheless decided to raise her children this way–so others should butt out.

    January 21, 2013 at 2:30 pm |
  2. Michael

    I doubt it's true that atheists hit the bull's eye all of the time.
    I thought you're supposed to be about objective, scientific truth?
    Yet here you are making an assertion that can't possibly be true.

    January 21, 2013 at 2:30 pm |
    • TANK!!!!

      You might want to clarify what that assertion is, bud. Not everyone here lives in your brain.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:36 pm |
    • snowboarder

      what assertion would that be?

      January 21, 2013 at 2:37 pm |
    • Richard Cranium

      What assertion would that be?

      January 21, 2013 at 2:42 pm |
  3. John

    As the old saying goes. I would rather be wrong in thinking that there is a God, then find out when it is too late, that there is not.

    January 21, 2013 at 2:29 pm |
    • JWT

      Well at least you are honest in admitting that you only believe in he so-called god because you are terrified of it.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:31 pm |
    • sam stone

      flawed logic, john. but, i don't think you care

      January 21, 2013 at 2:32 pm |
    • The Truth

      And another old saying that shows far more wisdom continues that thought with "Ah, but which God, there are just so many to choose from... I thought this was supposed to be a 50/50 choice...This sounded a lot easier when I just had two options..."

      January 21, 2013 at 2:34 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      OK – but which God?
      Die quietly in bed and go to heaven or gloriously in battle and go to Valhalla?
      Do only Catholics go to heaven? Jehovah's Witnesses claim to have the only entry passes...
      Have you learned the secret, masonic handshakes and passwords you'll need to tell Joseph Smith so you can enter The Celestial Kingdom?

      January 21, 2013 at 2:35 pm |
    • Gir

      And god is a fickle f-ool who let people who worship him "just in case" enjoy eternal bliss.

      Surely god must be offended that you think so little of him, if he exists.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:35 pm |
    • snowboarder

      john, if your best reason to believe is fear you are simply a coward.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:41 pm |
  4. ninerlifer

    I have a simple question for all of you ignorant people who feel that science is the beginning and end of it all.....since you seem to hold onto the premise that life's mysteries, big and small, have to be seen felt and given some scientific genesis, riddle me this. Where does the wind come from? How does it start? We can't see it so maybe it doesn't actually exist does it?

    January 21, 2013 at 2:29 pm |
    • Thoth

      Wind can be felt. Wind can be duplicated. Wind can be explained.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:37 pm |
    • Katie

      Ignorant? That's pretty harsh. BTW, in answer to your question – the atmosphere moves the earth's temperatures from one place to another creating wind. That's pretty basic.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:41 pm |
    • Katie

      .......and by "harsh", I mean not very Christianlike behavoir.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:50 pm |
    • shoprat

      The world is spinning on it's axis even though you can't feel it. The air in the atmosphere isn't turning at the same rate. The relative motion between the two is called wind. The ground and the seas absorb the heat from the sun at different rates. The heated air will rise (like a hot air baloon if you believe in them) and flow toward the cooler air. This creates a complex weather system that the weather forcasters have been trying to predict. This is simplistic but I thought I better use simple words. It isn't blown out god's holy of holies. Sorry, but you don't need a diety to blow hot air.

      Deus Mortuus Est – god is dead.

      January 21, 2013 at 3:05 pm |
  5. truth be told

    All so called atheists are indeed evil. The first evil of the self deceived atheist is that they lie. Beyond that more innocent people have been brutally enslaved, tortured and murdered by atheists in the last 100 years than were killed in all previous centuries.

    January 21, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
    • Pete

      "All so called atheists are indeed evil. The first evil of the self deceived atheist is that they lie. "

      more lies from the xtians – 127!

      January 21, 2013 at 2:29 pm |
    • hal 9001

      I'm sorry, "truth be told", but all of your assertions to date have been unfounded. Using my Idiomatic Expression Equivalency module (IEE), the expression that best matches the degree to which your repeated unfounded assertions may represent truths is: "CHRONIC EPIC FAIL". Perhaps the following book can help you cope with the problem of repeating unfounded assertions:

      I'm Told I Have Dementia: What You Can Do... Who You Can Turn to...

      January 21, 2013 at 2:32 pm |
    • Damien

      @Truth Be Told: People who are religous leaders and religious orders themselves have mamed murdered and sometimes even commited genocide, Anything that has a good nature can be perverted and manipulated to serve a person or darker purpose. These are not the faults of a religion or a lack ofreligion but nefarious people who are seething with rage and malcontent.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:38 pm |
    • shoprat

      The crusades were a great idea from a pope who could know and speak god's will. It didn't have anything at all to do with the fact "Christian" countries were fighting each other. And it worked out so well... It's nice to see our Muslim friends respect us so much.

      Deus Mortuus Est – god is dead.
      (Allah don't fell too well either)

      January 21, 2013 at 3:34 pm |
    • RoseSelavy

      You must have conveniently forgotten about all of the religious wars that were waged. The Crusades, the Moor's invasion of Spain, that sort of thing.

      January 21, 2013 at 5:03 pm |
  6. Sam

    There can be three “wills” in this world.

    a. God (The Good),

    b. Satan (The Evil One)

    c. Human will.

    Human will can align with God or Satans will. We can all agree that there is good and evil in this world. Human beings needs to be tested inorder to be proved good. We accepting testing for education, jobs etc. By accepting God we are doing good and by rejecting him we are doing evil. After Jesus Christ returns and establishes his kingdom, there will not be evil. You can read about this glorous time in the book of revelation in the Bible. God has to be God before he can be framed to be as a parent. God is a role model based on his own definition, not based on the human one. God is loving and is a righteous judge to be holy, pure and worthy of honor! If God created us like robots without allowing for free will, the same folks would complain that God is a tyrant that he does not allow free will. Free will comes with responsibilities. If a person escapes from their responsibilities, makes choices that are evil, it is not God’s fault.

    Full article at http://godandhumans.wordpress.com/2013/01/21/why-families-should-raise-children-with-god/
    Less

    January 21, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
  7. virginia

    I agree that emotion should be left at home less other see it as a weakness of the heart and cause you harm the athiest mean well when they say this cause it's true that some are evil tours open emotions and feeling of others they see emotion as an opportunity to harm other...and athiest know this so they say keep religion to yourselve we don't want to see you harmed by you open expression of weakness by showing your religion emotions and feelings we care for you though we are loners we don't belong to any group of believe for said reason we too supress all emotion and feeling so other don't get us and cause us harm they mean well when they say this and we too know that showing good faith and emotions can bring good things as well as make us pray to those who so willingly try to capitalize on our weakness when we say we belong and have emotions ....

    January 21, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
    • JWT

      That's a long run on sentence totally devoid of value.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:30 pm |
    • Saraswati

      Is this what you mean?

      "I agree that emotion should be left at home lest others see them as a weakness of the heart and try to cause you harm. The atheist means well when he or she says this, because it is true that some are evil toward our open emotions and feeling,. They see emotion as an opportunity to harm others.

      The atheist knows this, so they say to keep religion to yourself. 'We don't want to see you harmed by your open expression of weakness, by showing your religious emotions and feelings. We care for you though we are loners; we don't belong to any group of belief. For this reason we, too, suppress all emotion and feeling so other don't get us and cause us harm. '

      The atheist means well when they say this, yet we too know that showing good faith and emotions can bring good things. As well our openness makes us pray for those who so willingly try to capitalize on our weakness when we say we belong and have emotions."

      January 21, 2013 at 2:34 pm |
  8. Colin

    I don't get why all of the Christians are so upset. If you don't have anything good about atheism to say, then just keep your opinions to yourselves. That is what you jerks always say to us. Take a bit of your own poison and shut up. Just because you are empty people who were raised with out atheism, doesn't mean you have to get mad at us who find hope in atheism. (Yeah, there's a little bit of an argument you guys makes turned back at you as well.)

    January 21, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
  9. Irene

    When I was 12, my mother let me make my own decision as to whether or not I wanted to continue to be a member of the Catholic Church. She was a progressive mother, and this was in the early 70's. She was a strong and moral woman. Even at that age, I knew that the whole religious thing was just not who I am. I do believe in God or at least that there is something out there. I am a GOOD person today, people like me when they meet me and know me to be a caring person who will always be there for them. I think this is what my mother would want and what God would want. I don't need to go to church every week to prove this to others. I have turned away from organized religion because I don't believe every aspect of the Bible, and I cannot in good conscience pretend to. But I understand that others need this though. But please understand that I don't. Please respect that and I will respect you.

    January 21, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
  10. Michael

    At least Christians try to hit the bull's eye even though they miss it from time to time.
    This is still better than not trying to hit it at all.

    January 21, 2013 at 2:24 pm |
    • Colin

      But why be a Christian and hit the mark only some of the time when you could be an atheist and hit the mark ALL of the time? :)

      January 21, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Historically, Christians have painted that bullseye on the chest of anyone they don't like.
      Burn the heretics!

      January 21, 2013 at 2:30 pm |
    • Jim P.

      What bullseye are you talking about?

      January 21, 2013 at 2:34 pm |
  11. hawgdog

    This country was founded by men who were Christians on the basis of freedom of religion and freedom from religion. It is high time that as Americans we respect both principles. That is not to say that as parents we have a responsibility to teach kids the basis for intellectual thought which includes everything about the beliefs, dogma and faith required to follow a particular religion or any religion. It includes the history of evil, corruption and intolerance of all religions as well as the positive aspects of all religions. Informed people make informed choices.

    January 21, 2013 at 2:24 pm |
    • Colin

      Not according to actual U.S. law, such as the treaty of tripoli which specifically states that the United States is in no way a Christian nation. Read a history book before you open your mouth, for the love of this country, seriously.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:31 pm |
    • Colin

      Whoops, I've been writing a lot, and misinterpreted your post. I retract my previous statement. However, not all of the founders were Christians, so I still think your post could be corrected. You've simplified the founders beliefs into a whole of Christianity, which they were not.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:33 pm |
  12. John

    I remember years ago when in the military, I was stationed in Hawaii. I attended church services in the chapel at Tripler Army Medical Center. There was a little girl that was dying of cancer. Her parents, obviously stricken with the fact that their little girl was only days away from death were very distraught.

    On the night before she died, the Chaplain and the parents were in the child's room. The parents were doing there best to hold it together. It was then, in front of the priest, that this 4 year-old girl told her parents not to cry. It was going to be alright. Jesus had been there a little bit before and told her that he was going to take her with him, and that everything was going to be ok.

    The little girl passed the next morning. This is a true story. It actually happened.

    Do I believe in God? Yes, you better believe it. There are too many things that have happened throughout history to say otherwise.

    However, I do believe that RELIGION is NOT necessarily necessary. You can believe in God, but not religion. I believe that, over the years, religion has been molested to suit the needs or desires of corrupt men. I believe in God, but I do not necessarily believe in the corrupt clergy of the churches of the world.

    January 21, 2013 at 2:24 pm |
    • Colin

      But why only hit the mark some of the time, when you can be an atheist and hit the mark ALL of the time? :)

      January 21, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
    • Colin

      Sorry, that was meant for another post.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:29 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @John,

      when Jesus stopped by, did he explain why God likes to give so many innocent four year old children cancer?

      January 21, 2013 at 2:33 pm |
  13. Doc Vestibule

    Whether today's parents admit it or not, the truth of the matter is that children cannot be insulated from the reality of moral relativism.
    Ubiquitous instant, global communication means that modern kids are exposed to as many different cultures as they want to be. Parents who seek to limit their children's world to a single viewpoint by censoring what information comes into their home will find themselves fighting a battle that cannot be won.
    To use a Biblical allegory, the curse of Babel is being lifted. Individuals from vastly different parts of the world with vastly different ways of life can now effectively communicate in real time.
    Hopefully, that is the first nail in tribalism's coffin.

    January 21, 2013 at 2:24 pm |
    • Colin

      Sorry, that was meant for another post.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:28 pm |
  14. Missy

    I am a Christian and I will fight for this woman's right to believe or not to believe as she sees fit. If Christians really want to "witness Christ" to those who profess not to believe, show Him by your actions not by your words. There's a difference between quoting scripture and actually living it. The only "Bible" some people may ever read is how you live your life.
    Peace and God's blessings to all this day.

    January 21, 2013 at 2:23 pm |
    • hal 9001

      I'm sorry, "Missy", but "God" is an element of mythology, therefore your assertions are unfounded. Using my Idiomatic Expression Equivalency module (IEE), the expression that best matches the degree to which your repeated unfounded assertions may represent truths is: "CHRONIC TOTAL FAIL".

      January 21, 2013 at 2:34 pm |
    • sqeptiq

      Amen, Missy. As an atheist, there are many, many christians I admire, not for their words but for their deeds.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:34 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @Missy
      The few who seek to lead by example and strive to live in Christ's image of compassion, charity and humility are unfortunately drowned out by those who would rather condemn this and that from a fiery pulpit.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:39 pm |
  15. Michael

    The orthodoxy that is being imposed on everyone these days is not Christianity, it is political correctness.
    If you don't want to believe in the divinity of Jesus, that's fine and dandy, but if you don't want to believe in the quasi-divinity of Martin Luther King, Jr, or Rosa Parks, then the liberal media will humiliate you on national TV, or your liberal teacher will give you a failing grade. This is coercion.

    January 21, 2013 at 2:19 pm |
    • Bet

      You must not get the day off and are pissed about it. No one is deifying MLKjr or Rosa Parks. Where do you get this nonsense?

      January 21, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
    • CTYank

      Who ever told you that? Do your own thinking. Or get treatment for that systemic paranoia. Troll.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:28 pm |
    • The Truth

      What Michael is trying to say is "Just because I hate black people the media wants to make me look bad..."

      Awwww, poor wittle racist Michael wants "his" America back, boo hoo...

      January 21, 2013 at 2:29 pm |
    • Liz

      Yes, absolutely, every one has the freedom in this country to embrace religion of any denomination or not. Not just Christianity, but many others are available for those who want to connect with a spiritual community. My belief in God is deep and strong but I wouldn't dream of trying to convert an aethiest. I had to laugh at the woman who left messages and called to say she was praying for the non-believer. Sorry, probably not funny to the receiver of all this. The writer talks about teaching morals and the Golden Rule and there is no question that a good person can live without a "religion" or believing in God. Hower, there is no way to escape the Christian influence in our world. Our very calendar is based on B.C. and A.D. God is on our money and prayers are being said at the inauguration today. My only question to athiests is how they believe our world and life itself was created or started. Humans are unable to create life. Or hearts or brains, or the fur on animals. Even evolution started with some living thing. Humans have expanded on life, and learned to clone some species, but always starting with an already living cell. To my knowledge, we aren't able to create semen and the egg of a woman. "Test tube" babies came from donated cells from living humans. Perhaps we will someday. Perhaps humans are in the very infancy of our existence. But until we have the ability to reproduce what the world of nature contains, I have to believe in a higher power. Not a punishing or judgemental God, but certainly a higher power who must be disappointed in the human species.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:48 pm |
  16. Duce

    I can greatly appreciate what this woman has done, and in my opinion she is absolutely correct. Each person in this world should be free to decide how they live their life without either atheism or any other form of religion forced down their throats. I was raised as a christian for many years and forced to go to church with my parents, but as i grew older I began to formulate my own beliefs that ended with my parents changing theirs as well. I won't be necessarily telling my child that there is no God, but that she should think for herself and come to her own conclusion. In the end, the only one who has to live her life will be her.

    January 21, 2013 at 2:19 pm |
  17. Austin

    If Paul the apostle was given a vision, and this was the power of God, who would change his mind? no one could do that. i received an internal testimony from the holy spirit. I have also personally experienced an evil medium(demonic activity) .
    there is no way to escape the fact that God and Satan are real. your arguments are understandable, you simply lack faith, or a true spiritual experience. your scientific arguments are desperate attempts to physically disprove a non physical spiritual reality of your soul. you deceive yourself, and others. They called His name "The Word of God" All things were made through Him.

    January 21, 2013 at 2:17 pm |
    • bobs your uncle

      Yeahhh, lack of faith. Mmhmm.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:19 pm |
    • mason

      "faith" has no proof or evidence, it is an evolutionary human coping devise. For those who are willing to see the huge moral disconnect in the blood sacrifice Abrahamic "faiths" they can also discover real answers in Reason and the Sciences. Evolve.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:22 pm |
    • The Truth

      You cannot even prove you have a soul let alone prove there is a God. It rather hard to prove you are saving something when there is no evidence supporting it's existence by closing your eyes and thinking real hard in your head to something else that has zero proof of existence. You might as well pray to Odin that your inner frost giant never awakens which could harm those around you that you love...

      January 21, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
    • Austin

      I hear ya but the living God is not a figment of faith, and He has given me proof through His sovereign ability, and the ministry of the Holy Spirit, and ministering Angels. I have experienced the supernatural being of the Holy Spirit. He can personally over come anyone's hardness of heart. and willing does this for those who understand their need. Joseph in jail. prophets in captivity.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
    • Downy Softness

      Austin,

      This "Holy Spirit" is all-powerful, yet it needs YOU to speak for it?

      How about if you just let it bop around with its magic heart-softener for certain special pets like you, then.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:36 pm |
    • sqeptiq

      Austin, I'm equally sure those apparitions were chemical and electrical in nature.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:36 pm |
    • sam stone

      austin: you seem to have an issue confusing fact with opinion

      January 21, 2013 at 2:37 pm |
  18. virginia

    I agree that emotion should be left at home or the church where one can be critized for them as weakness of the heart...emotions should be express in public less other see it as an open invitation to harm us...hide emotion when the weaked can see we have them...supress and hide religion cause they openly express the capacity to have and show their emotion openly....Religon people adknowledge the existence of their feeling and the need to find confort to their emotins fears and other feeling like love...athiest are too strong to dare show feeling as a weakness of character...they there for refraind form Religion...but in secret they want' belong even to the scientism a share believe where they feel some confor to their anxiaries...it might stil hold even in secret they scientism is their true religion...

    January 21, 2013 at 2:16 pm |
    • Saraswati

      I just spent five minutes trying to translate this into readable English and failed. Could you try putting this in Word or something and verifying your grammar? I actually do think there's a point hidden in there, but I don't want to guess incorrectly.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:24 pm |
    • virginia

      sure let me try again.

      first and formost – I am equating that Religion and emotions are the same thing express in a different action or word. as well as i equate that Science represent reason or logic in the mind of humans....

      I agree that emotion should be left at home or the church where one cannot be critized for them as weakness of the heart...emotions shouldn't be express in public less others see it as an open invitation to harm us...hide emotion when the weaked/evil can see we have them...supress and hide religion cause they openly express the capacity to have and show their emotion openly....Religous people adknowledge the existence of their feeling and the need to find confort to their emotions fears and other feeling like love...athiest are too strong to dare show feeling they see it as a weakness of character...they there for refraind from Religion...but in secret they want to belong( the need to belong is an emotion too) even to the Religion of scientism a share believe they deny they they claim to belong to at scientist where they feel some confor to their anxiaries...it might stil hold even in secret they scientism is their true religion...

      I equate logic reason to scientific believe, and emotion and feeling to the traditional Christian believe in God. Logic and reason tell us that feeling or emotions are weakness and must be supress so the athesit equate that since emotions are weakness Religon must be supress deny or kept secret cause if emotions are weakness then they are harmful to religius people...they mean well even when they dont' undestand why they mean well...

      January 21, 2013 at 2:43 pm |
    • Saraswati

      Virginia, although I don't completely agree with you, I think you are making a couple of very good points which are hidden a bit is some writing problems. I did a rewrite attempt on your other post, but really do think you have some interesting ideas that would well with a little formal training in writing.

      I understand you to be saying that religion provides an environment in which one can be more open with one’s emotions. You are arguing that one of the reasons people choose to be atheists is that they don’t like the open expression of emotion that takes place within the context of [many] religions.

      However, you point out that atheists aren’t actually free from normal need and still want to belong, so they create the pseudo-religion of scientism.

      Lastly you argue that when atheists say one should keep religion to oneself it should be understood in terms of the atheist aversion to public emotion. The atheist is saying this not only for religious people, but for all, as it is better in that view for emotions to be kept in a place where one won’t get hurt.

      Could you confirm I understand before I address these points?

      January 21, 2013 at 2:56 pm |
    • Saraswati

      With regard to the writing, I really hate to see well thought out ideas hidden by writing that doesn’t meet the same standard. I’m not sure if you realize how difficult it is to read your writing and that that is probably why so interesting a post has had so few responses. Could you tell me if you are a native speaker and if you are still in school or older?

      A few ideas:

      1) Unfortunately your spelling is really pretty bad. I used to spell very poorly, and I’m pretty sure your spelling is even worse than mine was. If this is a problem not easily fixed you really need to write your posts in Microsoft Word or another editor before posting.
      2) You overuse the “…” structure. It’s ok occasionally in casual writing, but you can’t string a paragraph together that way. For practice, I’d recommend you just stop using the ellipses (…) altogether for a few months.
      3) Make sure when editing in Word you also have the grammar checker (green squiggle) turned on. You are using incomplete sentences a lot and it’s quite confusing.
      4) Consider taking an English comp class, even if just at the local community college. I think it could really help you get your ideas across.

      January 21, 2013 at 3:06 pm |
  19. Proud Christian/Apostolic

    It really amazes me that people teach their children about santa, the toothe fairy, and eather bunny but want to not about God. There is something really wrong with this picture. People actually believe that humans came from monkey. If you do not believe that God created this world, then where did humans come from. I certainly did not come from monkey. If humans come from monkeys then, monkey will continuously turn into humans because science evolves. caterpillars still turn into butterflied, tadpoles still turn into frogs but suddenly, monkeys stop turning into humans. It also amazes me that people don't understand that God does not force people to choose to serve. What kind of God would He be if he made us serve Him? We have a choice to believe in Him. This very country was founded upon religious beliefs. The reason this country is in the state its in is because people want to go against the foundations of moral and religous ways. Every one wants to separate God and school Take a look at the past, you didn't have this kind of violence when prayer was allowed. Its ok to allow muslims to pray but as soon as Christians express their rights we are told to separate ourselves. What foolishness. I feel sorry for those who believe that they are teaching their children not to believe in heaven. Believe me there is a heaven and hell and I pray that your children will grow to seek God for themselves since they have such irresponsible parents who believe that there is only earth and then your soul simply disappears. You don't believe in the bible but I can guarantee you that not one author from the beginning of time is so talented to write such a boo. Not one person. The funny thing is that scriptures talks about what is going on now and its really saddens me. If you are saying God is afairy tale, you are tying to discredit all those who've had an experience. When you or your children go to a hospital and need hope, you can't rely on yourself because you don't have the power to heal, only God does. What kind of hope are you teaching them? Those killers and tortures you talk about Dad are because of parents like you. Raising children to be faithless is wrong in every sense of the word.

    January 21, 2013 at 2:15 pm |
    • Christie

      I totally agree. When you die, you will meet God. You can try and convince him that he doesn't exist.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:19 pm |
    • the AnViL

      another cogent, very well-worded example of the heart of xian belief in the usa.

      nice

      January 21, 2013 at 2:19 pm |
    • Caroline

      Dear Jesus, Allah, and Adonai: Please protect me from your followers.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
    • Madtown

      monkeys stop turning into humans
      ---–
      Holy cow. I was taught to not poke fun at those less fortunate than I am, so I'm just not going to say anything more about this post.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
    • r0n77

      First, you are confusing metamorphosis and evolution. Second, humans and modern day apes evolved from a common ape-like ancestor, not a monkey – there is a difference.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
    • Pnushkin

      Facepalm.

      You're right. We should teach our kids that god is as real as Santa and the Easter Bunny.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
    • JWT

      So what did god look like Christie when you met him in the afterlife ? I'll never meet him so I am curious.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
    • TANK!!!!

      "monkey will continuously turn into humans because science evolves."

      That's it. I have officially lost any faith I had in humanity.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
    • TANK!!!!

      "you are tying to discredit all those who've had an experience. "

      The argument being that I should trust anybody who says "I've had an experience"?

      My goodness. Where does America's future lie when it is populated by i-diots such as these?? We're finished. Done for.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:29 pm |
    • Proud Atheist

      Proud Christian/Apostolic...... I didn't come from a monkey; that's silly. But we had a common ancestor. It's sad to me that religious people don't bother trying to understand evolution. Anyways, I will have Santa, Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy for my children, because it's fun make-believe that gave me good memories from my childhood. I won't teach them about God, because god doesn't bring gifts or candy or money (that's sort of a joke, but also sort of true)... plus, he's not taught typically in the spirit of make-believe. That's the different between religion santa/easterbunny/etc.... the spirit with which you share these ideas with your kids. And again, I did not come from a monkey!

      January 21, 2013 at 2:31 pm |
    • JW biology grad student

      You have zero, absolutely zero, understanding of evolution.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:34 pm |
    • Jen

      Well if god is the only one that heals, what the h-ll are you going to the hospital for? Just stay home and pray (let me know how that goes for you).

      January 21, 2013 at 2:35 pm |
    • hal 9001

      I'm sorry "Proud Christian/Apostolic", but "God" is an element of mythology, therefore your assertions are unfounded. Using my Idiomatic Expression Equivalency module (IEE), the expression that best matches the degree to which your unfounded assertions may represent truths is: "TOTAL FAIL".

      January 21, 2013 at 2:36 pm |
    • Saraswati

      tallulah, are you there? I think I need some support here. My mouth was just kind of hanging open on the monkey bit and, coming from the sane world, this is the kind of thing I'm just assuming is a put-on. Are you having the same response when you see these things? Is this a real person or someone conning people?

      I'm thinking that laws aside they likely aren't really teaching how evolution works in places like Texas. I assume that people know by the time they learn to sting sentences together, but that's either not the case or this kind of thing is a joke?

      January 21, 2013 at 3:11 pm |
  20. Canada

    I think Athiests are some of the smartest fools around. They are constantly at war in their mind, while I am sound oh mind and heart. There is loads of time to think and debate during the Tribulation. I'll make sure to leave my bible on the coffee table when your looting my house.

    January 21, 2013 at 2:14 pm |
    • Jen

      Stop embarrassing your fellow Canadians please.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:17 pm |
    • bobs your uncle

      *you're

      January 21, 2013 at 2:18 pm |
    • Christie

      Bobs your uncle,"you're" is you are. She was correct with your.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:21 pm |
    • JT

      I wish I could live in a fantasy too and not have to deal with reality all the time.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:21 pm |
    • Happyonetwo

      Wow, how unsubstantiated you are saying that believers in your God are all thieves or at least only thieves are nonbelievers. Read the bible verse about falsely judging others if you adre going to say you are a true Christian., Its people like you that make us true followers look bad.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:22 pm |
    • Happyonetwo

      the 'your' was not correct. sorry nice try Christie, you're wrong

      January 21, 2013 at 2:24 pm |
    • Jen

      Canada's your was not correct; mine is (I think you are each speaking about different posts). Canada didn't get much of anything correct in that post (the many spelling and grammatical errors were the least of the problems with that post).

      January 21, 2013 at 2:29 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      Ummm no. Jen and Christie were correct.

      You're going to die one day.
      Your shirts are at the cleaners.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:29 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      As always, context is important.

      'when you're looting my house'
      'your Canadian friends'

      January 21, 2013 at 2:31 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.