Do you raise your child with morals AND religion?

@TessWhite (3147)
United States
June 24, 2008 8:43pm CST
I am one of those people who was raised Christian but changed my religious choice in later years. I no longer consider myself Christian. Many times over the years I was raising my son people would ask me how I could raise him without religion. I often would tell people that I raised him with morals and he can make his own mind up on religion when he grows up. I've known Christians, and people of other religious options too who seem to have no morals or values at all taught to them. Think of how many people who are "God-fearing" that have killed? What are your views on this? And please, be nice, I won't condemn your views so don't condemn mine.
7 people like this
20 responses
• United States
25 Jun 08
I was also raised Christian and I see nothing wrong with the religion, but when I got old enough to choose what religion I wanted if any at first I choose none but now I am Wiccan, or at least thats the religion that I have choosen. I am still learning a lot about the religion. Anyways I always told myself that when I had children I wasn't going to force religion on them. And I won't. I plan to talk to my children when they have questions and I want to make sure that my boys know that there are many different religions out there and I will suggest that before committing to one that they need to do some research to make sure its what they believe in. My sister-in-law is Catholic and thinks that everyone should be. She had made a comment that I needed to raise my children in the Catholic religion, instead of speaking my mind to her which I usually do with MOST people I just blew it off. People can have their opinions, thats fine. But like I said I am not forcing anything on my kids. Morals is what it is all about ! As long as we raise our children with love and honesty and teach them right from wrong thats what counts. Right ?
@TessWhite (3147)
• United States
25 Jun 08
Wiccan is also my choice, and like you I'm always learning. I've been Pagan for about ten years now, and find it so much more enjoyable than Christianity. No, I'm not putting down anyone else's right to be Christian, I'm just saying it didn't "fit" me. Catholics can be a funny group. My partner is Catholic and he is forever trying to "convert" me. LOL His family, although they love me, just don't quite understand me or my views. My partner and I get into some interesting discussions about our views, and just to tease him I frequently point out the similarity in our religious choices. Candles, chanting, rituals, incense. LOL We just agree to disagree. I don't know what Wicca views you have, but I've followed and enjoyed reading many books by Scott Cunningham. It may be something you enjoy too. Thank you for your reply. :)
• United States
27 Jun 08
Scoot Cunningham does have some good books. I really like Raymond Buckland's books. I recently got the big blue book of witchcraft and I am loving it ! Its perfect for beginners like myself.
• United States
2 Jul 08
Im confused, first of all. I know nothing about Pagan, or Wicca, please enlighten me. What most people think they know, they truly have no knowledge of, until they ask a person. From what I thought, is that Pagans worship more than god. They worship idols. Tress, or something, I dont know. Wicca, I assume is like witch craft, spells etc. I believe that there is one God, he created the world, and it is because of him that I have many blessings. I show my fear in his abilities and power, my love and respect for him by doing as his asks. I teach this to my children. I personally do not believe that there is one way to heaven and that there is one true religion per say. But I do not believe that you can be granted heaven on deeds alone. It has to do with faith. But I teach my kids to have good manners, and morals and these specifics are based on my particular faith; but they are similar to other faiths. this reason is because there is one God, who wants the same for all man kind. You can go to church, or mosque, call your self Muslim or Christian, but if your actions are contrary to what God desires its all in vein. Yes he is merciful , and forgiving and only he will judge us in the end. But if you are of a true heart this will reflect in your actions, and the way you treat others, and this is what is most important. During prophet Muhammad's time, and people converted to Islam, they would say, now what, what do I do now. he did not send them to war or anything, in the name of Islam. He asked is your mother alive, do you have family. Go and do good works for them. Go and give charity. Paradise lies at the feet of your mother. She brought you into this world, thee Quran says, and if she is not pleased with you, neither am I. and it does not matter f she is not a Muslim like you.
@TessWhite (3147)
• United States
2 Jul 08
Thank you for your response. I would prefer not to try and "sum up" Paganism or Wicca in a paragraph here since it is so much more than that. Plus, you can learn many views and thoughts on it simply by doing a search on your computer. However I can tell you that no, we don't worship idols.
@baileycows (3667)
• United States
2 Jul 08
I try to raise my child with religion and in doing that morals follow. It is however possible just to raise your child with morals without religion. I just feel that both is best.
@TessWhite (3147)
• United States
2 Jul 08
Thank you for your response.
@cher913 (25859)
• Canada
25 Jun 08
yes and you cant judge every book by its cover, seriously just because of one bad apple, it doesnt mean the rest of us are bad too! we go to church every sunday, my kids are invovled with their programs at church and we try to live the best we can.
@TessWhite (3147)
• United States
25 Jun 08
If you will read my post you will see I am not judging anyone. I know of many great Christians, Catholics and people of other religious choices as well. My post was started to see how many people are including morals as well as religion in their child rearing. Thank you for replying.
@celticeagle (124393)
• Boise, Idaho
25 Jun 08
I feel the same way. I am an agnostic and I feel that kids should be given a choice in religion and not made to go to church and be a christian. Hypocrits.
@TessWhite (3147)
• United States
25 Jun 08
Hmmm I'm not familiar with the term agnostic. I'll have to look that one up. But thank you for your reply.
@alokn99 (5717)
• India
25 Jun 08
Children must be raised with morals. Religion is definitely an individual's choice as a parent. However while making this choice I do not think that One should get biased about the non morality of religious people. After all non religious people have also been known to have no morals or committed crimes. After all one of the purposes of religion is to make people follow some discipline and morals in life. According to me all religions propogate the following of morals. Somewhere down the line a few people may tend to want to ignore these principles for their own reasons. Also on the lighter side, please keep in mind were else would you get a starting point and a collection of morals structured and so well presented but in in a relegion.
@TessWhite (3147)
• United States
25 Jun 08
Yes, there are good and bad people all over the world. Some religious, some not. I found your last sentence interesting. If I'm interpreting it right then morals begin based upon a religious viewpoint. Hmmm maybe you are right. I WAS raised Christian and I suppose that influenced my morals, which I have passed on to my son - even though I didn't include religion in his upbringing. Thank you for your reply. :)
@bubbles89 (122)
• United States
25 Jun 08
Hi Tesswhite. We are a christian family. However we aren't a "religious" family. We are born again and have a heart for people. My husband and I do raise our children with morals but often tell them that just because you're a christian doesn't mean your perfect or innocent. We've all messed up and none of us are in any position to pass judgement. The difference between a "religion" and a "relationship" is huge. In "religion" you follow a lot of laws and man-made traditions, where as a "relationship" with the Lord you reflect the character of God and reach out to people with love; not condemnation following a legalistic point of view. It's not works that cause us to be saved...it's through Jesus. God bless and hopefully you'll come across some christians that are kind (as we should all be). Have a great day!
@TessWhite (3147)
• United States
25 Jun 08
Thank you for your reply. :) I have come across many good Christians. My own mother was one. Actually, I'm the only family member who no longer considers themselves a Christian. But, I respect everyone's right to choose and I never try to judge anyones viewpoint on their chosen religion.
@devilsangel (1817)
• United States
25 Jun 08
I am raising my children to be kind, respectful and honest. I can do that without the introduction of religion into their lives. To be honest given all that's been going on with the different religions I think it's better to raise them without one then to subject them to the hypocrisy of it all. I see most religions as those "do as I say not as I do" type parents. Thats not the way I want to raise my kids.
@TessWhite (3147)
• United States
25 Jun 08
I so agree with your viewpoint. And it is also the way I raised my son. Thank you for your reply.
1 person likes this
@AshleyHasan (1024)
• India
25 Jun 08
I was born and brought up as a christian , My Grand father was a reverand but for their surprise I have married muslim guy. I feel religion is not important, for ex: if you are a real christian you should follow what jesus said and read the bible regularly and follow his instructions but jesus never asked you to convert your self , he said just follow me and I will help and guide you, because he his the savior and lord, I do beleive in jesus and he his the true GOD. However, I dont give importance to religion all my family people force me to go to church regularly I always tell them just going to church we will not get anything , we should follow what is written in Bible and keep our heart true. Peopole are surprised because they dont know what religion my children will follow , I told them only one thing I will raise them with morals and it is their decision to know what is correct and what is wrong which religion they have to choose , if they want to or they can beleive who ever they want to, but as per my expereince I beleive in christ and he his the only true GOD.
@TessWhite (3147)
• United States
25 Jun 08
Very good viewpoint you have. We have several religious choices mixed in my family. I think some of those differences is what got me to searching for what fit me personally. Thanks for your response. :)
@lazeebee (5466)
• Malaysia
25 Jun 08
Tess, I fully agree with you. It's fine to bring a kid to Sunday school and church when he's young; he will learn about God, people and values. But I wouldn't want to force religion on him. It is sometimes the way people do not practise what they preach; that they are always telling us that we should do this; or do that, in the name of religion. If only they could preach or talk less, and do more, then they could be life examples of their religions, and there will be more converts.
@TessWhite (3147)
• United States
25 Jun 08
Ahhh yes, preaching. I think sermons is one of the big things that turned me off of Christian religion. That and other things. Thanks for your reply.
@ambkeb (782)
• United States
25 Jun 08
I agree completely with you. I to have known people who swear that they are Christian, but I just don't see a person as christian as them would do the things that they do. I was raised Babtist, but like you have decided it just wasnt for me. I just couldnt wrap my mind around some of the things they were telling me. My children are still young (3 and 1) but when they get older and start questioning things I will have them talk to people of different religions (who I know have good morals, or atleast they seem like they do LOL) and will let them decide for themselves. I dont want to push anything on my children. It was pushed on to me and I faught back....HARD.
@TessWhite (3147)
• United States
25 Jun 08
So many of us have had similar experiences. I too was raised Christian and began to question some of it in my early 20s, which is when I left the Church. My son was a toddler then and I made the decision then not to push him also. A wise parent you are. :) Thanks for your response.
• United States
25 Jun 08
I guess I was raised Christian if you get right down to it, but I never saw it that way. As a family, we didn't go to church every Sunday and the only time I really went to church was during the summer for vacation bible school, and that was only a week out of the entire year. I was, however, raised with very strong morals. My mother was intolerant of all prejudices, so I'm probably one of the most accepting people I know- I mean, I don't agree with people who are prejudiced but I can accept them as they are because they may have reasons I don't understand for that prejudice. I'm also pagan, which seems to be recurrent throughout this thread, but I tried out quite a few religions before finding one that really suits me. I think that when you raise a child, it's important that morals come first and that you expose them to a variety of religions so that they can get an idea for which one fits them best. There are always unethical people in all religions, which sucks, but it's the truth.
@TessWhite (3147)
• United States
25 Jun 08
It sounds like you and I have led very similar lives and upbringings. Also, we seem to have made some similar choices in our life. And I agree, there are bad people in all walks of life. Thank you for your input. :)
@kenzie45230 (3560)
• United States
25 Jun 08
I'm a Christian, not because the people are wonderful (some are, some are not), but because I love Jesus with all of my heart and mind and soul, and I want to be more like Him. But I'll be the first to admit that some Christians stink. :-) So do many people who are not Christians. Or who embrace another faith. Of course anyone can raise a child with good morals and not be religious. But in allowing a child to choose for himself/herself - without giving him/her the opportunity to experience different faiths - usually means a child will pick none at all. I've seen that happen in many cases. My son was raised in the Christian church, and sadly, because I worked at a church and he was doing home schooling, he saw much of what happens behind the scenes in the church. In his young mind, he was not able to separate the ugly people sometimes present in church and the awesome relationship one can have with the Lord. Still...when he and his girlfriend marry and IF they ever have any children, he does want them to decide on their own. But his planned approach to that is to help them study each religion and even experience it first hand by attending various kinds of services. I think his approach will help his children make an informed decision, while I think that merely allowing one's children to make a decision on their own will mean that they choose nothing.
@TessWhite (3147)
• United States
25 Jun 08
Its amazing how so many people feel the same way isn't it? There are good and bad in all religions. Thank you for your reply. :)
@syankee525 (6293)
• United States
25 Jun 08
i would have to agree. so many who claim to be christian just don;t do what they preach. i raised my kids with morals as well respect. letting them know you get treated as you treat others. and never judge other by who or what they are. i hear too many times from people who claim to be saved or reborn. always preaching or judging other. then treat people bad. telling me or other how we will go to hell for not going to church. i look at myself as rebuild. i do keep my faith in my life. i know what jesus want me to do and how to treat others.
@TessWhite (3147)
• United States
25 Jun 08
My mom was one of those "reborn" people who even chose to be baptized for the third time. It didn't make much sense to me, but it made her happy, so who am I to judge? Luckily, she was also a good and morally strong person and I miss her alot. Thanks for replying. :)
@sid556 (30987)
• United States
25 Jun 08
i have raised 4 beautiful children without subscribing them to any religion. I felt that was a personal choice and one that they could make for themselves. I raised them with morals and integrity. Yes, they did learn about various religions. Most importantly, they have learned not only to accept and tolerate the differences in others but to cherish them.....that is what makes the world such an interesting place.
@TessWhite (3147)
• United States
25 Jun 08
You sound like a good parent. Thank you for your thoughts and response. :)
• India
25 Jun 08
you know my parents allways wanted me to be religious but they never tought me religion most of what i picked about hindu religion was by various festivals Hindus(we) celebrated and reason behind that.My parents hate the fact that I do not believe in religion 1 bit. What they don't understand that I may not believe in GOD or religion but If what they say is correct that GOD is with those who have a good character and strong morals than i believe i have nothing to fear because of all the thing I know about myself I am sure of one I would never do anything that will harm someone innocent and I am more forgiving than most, while trying to help others. What i am trying to say you do not have to follow religion or believe in god to be a good person you just need to have strong moral character. In fact I think i am much better of than most of those god fearing religious people.
@TessWhite (3147)
• United States
25 Jun 08
I definitely agree with you. My partner is always telling me that he will have to "talk fast" to get them to accept me into heaven when I die. Please.... I'm a good soul and I seriously doubt I need anyones guest pass to move on to the next stage of this journey. Thank you for your reply. :)
• United States
25 Jun 08
We do not bring religion into our teaching but we do teach our children morals. I refuse to be locked into a set of rules that I have to follow or else and I will not put my children into that limiting type of life either. They know right from wrong and have very strong convictions they also know the consequences if they do something wrong from a legal and a moral point of view. Me and my husband are both different religions (I'm a witch, he's laid back Christian) but when it comes to morals we are exactly the same on almost 100% of the issues. Where we don't agree we compromise both passing our opinions to our children and why, and they will choose what is right for them from that, or take a totally different path.
@TessWhite (3147)
• United States
25 Jun 08
Merry Meet :) I would imagine it could be difficult in some cases to raise a child in a household with two different viewpoints. I guess I was lucky enough that when I became Wiccan my son was already old enough to make his own choice. His father was Catholic - although NOT a good example of any religion I'm afraid. Thank you for your reply.
@Ravenladyj (22919)
• United States
25 Jun 08
I often would tell people that I raised him with morals and he can make his own mind up on religion when he grows up. I agree and I really wish ppl would learn that "morals" and "religion" do NOT have to go hand in hand...I've raised my kids with morals BUT what they choose religiously or spiritually is really none of my business.. Think of how many people who are "God-fearing" that have killed? LOL and done that killing BECAUSE they are godfearing...
@TessWhite (3147)
• United States
25 Jun 08
Hahaha. Your last sentence is so true. There are many wonderful Christians out there, and many wonderful people of all religions. Thank you for your response. :)
@ynigz1 (472)
• China
26 Jun 08
I don't have a child now. In China, although people not tell you, you should believe for this or that. In fact people doing believe in god or others will affect their child, their child will believe what they are believing as times goes by. Because every person are believe that, how can you don't believe?
@Galena (9120)
25 Jun 08
I was raised in a Pagan moral framework, and as a result, have very good morals.