You would be wrong. My daughter is a year old. When she is old enough to read, I hope she will read widely and fearlessly. The Pullman books are not the first books I would put in her path, but I would do nothing to stop her from reading them.
t is a natural instinct to protect young children.
In other words, you can’t engage in serious argument so you resort to ad hominem.
Pullman specifically targets young children as he knows that they are more vulnerable than mature adults that are well formed in your faith.
You have no evidence for this. Lewis was much more explicit about his desire to sneak Christian ideas past “watchful dragons” (in fairness, the dragons were not anti-Christian ideas but the negative associations of conventional Christian education) and “smuggle theology” into the minds of children. However, Lewis and Pullman both insisted that their primary reasons for writing children’s literature were artistic, and I see no reason to disbelieve them.
Would you knowingly allow preteens to associate with drug pushers
False analogy. Books are not drugs. The fact that you think they are shows how radically you despise the great gift of intellect God has given you (and your children). Ideas cannot be compared to food or poison. It’s a different kind of process. My childhood was shadowed by this false, paranoid analogy, and if one thing could have turned me away from God it probably would have been that. I am not the only person to react angrily to this kind of upbringing. Some people do in fact lose their faith because they have no idea how to handle non-Christian ideas.
the creator’s stated intent to “turn our children into good little atheists”.
Actually, he has disclaimed such an intent.
Like any writer, he writes books that reflect his ideas.
why shouldn’t you let your children participate in black masses? :shrug:
Because first of all, participation in a sacred ceremony is not the same thing as reading a book, and in the second place, Pullman’s books are not thoroughly evil–there’s a lot of goodness there along with the error.
A Black Mass is an extreme case because (assuming that thee is such a thing) it is deliberately invoking evil.
My wife and I did take our daughter (and some of my Religions of the World students) to a Buddhist monastery a few weeks ago to witness a ceremony, and I have every intention of continuing to expose her to various religious (and non-religious) perspectives as she grows up.
To quote John Milton, “I cannot praise a fugitive and cloistered virtue.”
I prefer to protect the young.
Well, as someone who was very well “protected” growing up, I would be violating the Golden Rule if I tried to protect my daughter from ideas.
The human mind is active, not passive with regard to ideas.
It’s silly to look at something as important as the faith formation of our children as a contest. Let the best story win?
If you didn’t see it as a contest, you wouldn’t feel threatened. Obviously you think it’s a contest, and a contest you’re not sure the Gospel can win.
If you don’t think Christianity is the best story, why are you a Christian?
Our children are treasures of incalculable value
No, they aren’t. They aren’t things. They aren’t possessions. They aren’t commodities, however precious. They are human beings made in God’s image just as you are.
We should do all we can to protect them from evil when we can. When they mature, hopefully they will have the strength, faith and will to protect their children.
Highly unlikely if they have been protected from anything that might test them.
In your entire post you have not responded to my primary argument. Don’t you have lots of opportunities to teach the faith to your children–a lot more than Philip Pullman will ever have? I was a homeschooler and I am seriously considering homeschooling my daughter. I want her to be surrounded by things that are good and holy. I don’t want her growing up on a diet of pop culture and implicit secularism. (Yes, I know I’m using the same analogy I criticized–it’s a useful metaphor as long as you don’t take it literally.) I’m all in favor of parents thinking carefully about the forces that influence their children, and not simply handing them over to the State and Britney Spears (or whoever the pop idol will be in 15 years) to form as they please. So we have more common ground than you might think, and I’d like to hear your explanation of why, with all the opportunities you have of influencing your children, you think you have to be afraid of one story. It’s a good story, but not that good. And everything good in it comes from the very God Pullman rejects. So what’s to fear?