Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Religion is good for kids

As an atheist, I'm not at all surprised by this US study:

Kids with religious parents are better behaved and adjusted than other children, according to a new study that is the first to look at the effects of religion on young child development.
Bartkowski thinks religion can be good for kids for three reasons. First, religious networks provide social support to parents, he said, and this can improve their parenting skills. Children who are brought into such networks and hear parental messages reinforced by other adults may also “take more to heart the messages that they get in the home,” he said.

Secondly, the types of values and norms that circulate in religious congregations tend to be self-sacrificing and pro-family, Bartkowski told LiveScience. These “could be very, very important in shaping how parents relate to their kids, and then how children develop in response,” he said.

Finally, religious organizations imbue parenting with sacred meaning and significance, he said.
Secular society hasn't, on the whole, found any substitutes for these vital goods:

1. The social networks that centre on churches.
2. Lives that value morality and sacrifice expediency for it.
3. Valuing children, actually having them, putting them first, not trying to "have it all".

And that's killing us.


Anonymous said...

To add to this, I don't think that the church just provides a social network. During a visit to Eastern Europe I popped into a church to be surprised to find it packed with people, they weren't talking to each other, but sat there in slight contemplation of the last week, the following week, what they have done, what they would like and most importantly - how would an independent third party with complete knowledge of the situations judge there actions.

What time is allocated in modern secular society for introspection of your own actions?

The main thing that we lack is the threat of a big beardy man in the sky that will strike you down if you are bad, this works well with children, stupid people and the gullible.

The more intelligent require more sophisticated thinking to encourage them to behave appropriately in society; this is considered to be education.

I suppose that the argument I'm building is only empathic intelligent people can be trusted to be without a religion.


Anonymous said...

Judged by spelling in that last post, I suspect that by my own agrument, I really ought have a religion.