Children and Purpose …

I’ve been watching this video:

I love the message (especially since I have a son about to enter high school).  It got me thinking about high school and the tribulations of growing up in general.  I thought back to my high school days.  Was I a geek?  Did I try to fit in?  Was I rejected?  How do I view my high school experience?

I became a Christian around the age of 13.  It always bothered me that I didn’t have an exact date!  But fundamentalist Christianity hit my life right before highschool.  The result was that I didn’t spend my high school years in emotional turmoil trying to fit in.  I’m sure I did try to fit in on some level – but in general – when I look back – I spent my high school years feeling very confident and for the most part didn’t care what people thought of me.  Heck – I had a relationship with the creator of the universe.  I cared more what he thought of me than what some idiot high school peer thought of me.  I had a great group of Christian friends who saw the world the same way I did.  So I guess I want to take this opportunity to ackowledge what Christianity did for me during high school.  Of course now I see the baggage that came along with that.  But I’m hoping I can instill in my kids that same sense of confidence that I experienced during high school – without the religion.

My family is an interesting social experiment.  My oldest child is a Christian.  He was homeschooled as a Christian for 6 years.  Then his mom becomes an atheist!  Yikes!  Poor kid!  What is he to make of this?  My next child grew up going to church so I’m sure she has internalized it – but she was never pashionate about it like our oldest.  We’ll see where that goes.  My three youngest are going to grow up without religion.  What do I teach them?  How do I raise them?  I’m learning.

All this is to say that I think atheists can learn something as far as what to teach their children.  I don’t think most Christian kids worry about their purpose in life.  Raising non-religious kids – I’m going to have to instill in them that same sense of purpose.  Although the purpose I teach them to find will be found within themselves – not from some invisibile outside source.

Christians are always trying to improve.  I’ve internalized that as an atheist. Even without a god overlooking my every move – I want to be the best I can be – even as an atheist.  Stay tuned 🙂

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