Child indoctrination?

Many people today seem to hold a view that religion is fine to believe in, but not fine to raise a child up in, they feel like it’s indoctrination and somehow a trap that hinders thinking. What can we say in response to this claim that children should learn about religion, but not “forced” to believe it?

How can you force someone to believe something? If there’s a way, I know a lot of parents that would like to know…

Teaching and educating is what your side do. Brainwashing and indoctrination is what your opponents do. No, I’m not trying to be funny. There’s just so much overuse of value-laden words that real communication is getting harder and harder.

If one does not raise one’s child, I swear to you that society will raise it for them. It is a totally bogus and utterly contemptible idea that a child not raised in religion will simply “make their own choice,” completely unbiased when the time is right.

No doubt, the child can make its own choice, but its choice will be biased because it has been raised and educated by a secular world, and it will lean towards secularism.

We believe that Catholicism is not just “blind belief” but rests upon solid evidence. Therefore we teach it as reality. Shall we abandon all hope of teaching any form of reality just because the child might not agree? “What if he wishes to be a nihilist, and we’re corrupting him with all this talk?”

I am raising my children without language, so they can choose their native tongue when they are grown. It’s kinda disrespectful for us to choose their language for them, doncha think?

Anyway, my serious answer is that raising them in a religion develops habits which they can use as adults or choose not to use. If they are raised without religion, they do not have that option.

Not to mention the fact that serious learning of a Thomistic catechism will inculcate habits of logcal thinking that are without equal.

Very true!
If we love our children and have a Faith we hold dearer than our own lives, should we not share this gift with those we love the most, to skill them as we do with all education to attain the tools for their own salvation.
We would be remiss as parents and as Christians if we did not raise our children in a catholic family environment which includes structured instruction. How much they retain will depend on your example and the gift of faith from the Holy Spirit.

How could someone believe in the Good Lord, with all his strength, with all his courage, and with all his heart, and NOT share this truth he holds dear with his children? Sure, you cannot force religion on a child, but why would you set the child up for failure, by not even sharing one’s faith?

There are plenty of very poorly taught children that are in dire need of love and direction whose parents are following advise like this “let them just drift through life” attitude.

This is poor advice built on a half truth of Satan. It is absolutely true that if you believe in something wrong the children you teach will suffer. The twisted logic that takes this and results in this non-indoctrination idea is part of a secular mind set that is a relative and random “truth” that is guaranteed to be wrong, but by some huge stroke of luck they do the right thing.

It is like telling your kindergartner to go out without any warnings or instruction and discover how to cross the road on their own. The answer is not to give up and hope they discover an unknown truth, but to be sure that you are following the true, right path and guide them along it. Yes, holding their hand until they are ready not to need it held.

Blessed be Jesus, the way the truth and the light, and the Church guided by the Holy Spirit that He founded.

If this is someone you see on occasion, you might like to review the cardinal virtues…

They are: prudence, justice, fortitude, and temperance

Prudence is the virtue that disposes practical reason to discern our true good in every circumstance and to choose the right means of achieving it; "the prudent man looks where he is going."65 "Keep sane and sober for your prayers."66 Prudence is “right reason in action,” writes St. Thomas Aquinas, following Aristotle.

Young men and women would do well to be trained in the virtues, to be able to navigate the minefield that teens must get through. Who wouldn’t want their teen to walk in these virtues, to grow into adulthood practicing these? Taking one virtue at a time, it might be a way to have an ongoing conversation. Certainly they are not modeled for us in the movies, television, modern music, magazines, or in traffic or the playground. You might have some very interesting discussions.

If you teach that to a child it is a form of indoctrination. In fact teaching a child anything is.

Won’t kids eventually start thinking for themselves anyways? You’d think the baby boomer generation would have had an easier time raising their own teens if that weren’t the case. :shrug:

People who think that are trying to be opening minded but the problem is that they are so open minded their brains have fallen out. I guess parents should not have their children learn to read and do math either and let their children decide if they want to learn reading and math. this is likewise true of language. Doesn’t seems fair to teach your child the language you speak, they should likewise decide for themselves if they want to speak English or French or German or Spanish. It just doesn’t seem fair that you have imposed your language on your innocent child, they need to decide for themselves.

Your comment made me smile! :slight_smile:

You said a mouthful! In a good way! :thumbsup:

I was a teacher for a lot of years, and raised three kids, and whenever I got the “when are we every going to USE this?” about some thing they had to learn, I’d tell them that whether or not they ever had to use that particular bit of information…their brain was getting trained and exercised by learning it.

Learning to think, evaluate, etc is purposeful.

Good eating habits, physical exercise, spiritual exercise…even if we don’t continue THAT particular thing…we are better for having done it, we are enriched. We can take that base skill and knowledge forward with us.

Same with religion, ultimately each person chooses to practice a faith or not practice, etc.

No set of parents can provide their child with every experience etc, but we give them the best of what we have, we pass on the legacy, and they are better for it.

It’s sad that some parents have a poor legacy or even damaging legacy to pass on, but that doesn’t mean that no parent should pass on any legacy at all.

Religion, or I should say, the True Religion has values that we should incorporate into our lives to make us good people. The values of the world are not always good such as 1) get as much as you can 2) watch out for number one 3) let others fend for themselves, etc.

The truth of religion is that it is about love which the world does not understand. Having good religious core values help us make decisions that will lead us to eternal life and make this place we live in a much finer place to be.

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