Churches and Children
“We’ve been got at, and our principal spiritual battle is waking up to that fact”
(Douglas Lockhart, Dark Side of God, 233.)
It is a free world, so Churches have a right to advertise to adults, but when they impose dogma on young children they are playing dirty. Youngsters are prime targets because they are uncritical, trusting, sensitive and pliable, so it is easy to sell them mythical nonsense. Churches own schools for this very purpose. Churches behave like a schoolyard bully preying on little kids for their lunch money.
Children’s heads are filled with prayers, hymns, and stories about heaven, hell, Jesus, sins, death and guardian angels. Behavior is judged in Christian terms, and they are told Satan is a bad guy out to get them. Hell is a concept promoted without considering the consequences. Junior is offered Jesus as his best buddy, yet Jesus cannot stop children’s nightmares. (http://www.youtube.com/watch? v=nzGVateOWto). To teach it to children is just plain sick, and in my opinion is child abuse.
Unhealthy convictions inculcated in children can become so embedded in their subconscious minds young people cannot shake them. The consequences can include paranoia, poor self-esteem, anxiety, suppressed self – expression, sexual guilt, closed mindedness, and hurt due to hypocrisy and prejudices. These problems often do not become apparent until later in life.
Christian teachers and parents do not realize that big businesses are using them to fill children’s minds with so much superstitious nonsense it makes the advertising on television look small time. ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UTedvV6oZjo). The promotional blitz aims to breed brand loyalty to a Church. Brainwashed kids become compliant consumers, pliable people willing to part with their cash. They indoctrinate the next generation and the cycle continues. Churches have perfected the process that keeps them powerful by targeting youngsters. They make the corporations of the commercial world look like amateurs.
I think a fundamental feature of an exceptional education is to give children a picture of their world that is in tune with reality. They should be taught how to explore all possibilities, and that they control their own destiny, and how to be open-minded to everyone else’s opinions. Kids should also be taught how, not always what, to think.
If children are not taught how to think, preachers might teach them how not to, by getting them to turn to an imaginary sky buddy for help. That, in my opinion, is another subtle form of child abuse.
If parents insist their kids be coached in Christianity, why not teach it when children are experienced enough to reason for themselves? Geography, trigonometry, and economics are universally regarded as valuable, but nobody believes a five-year-old should be saturated with them. The truth about this is that most church leaders know it is imperative to get inside little one’s minds early, because their agenda is the institution’s growth, and the child’s welfare is secondary. To use children like that is also child abuse; it is immoral and inexcusable.
Some people may label this a cynical attitude, yet have they considered church greed and the reality of indoctrination? I say a culture of Church loyalty has been so heavily stamped into some people’s minds they have lost touch with the children in their concern about their Church losing little clients. Consider what most Christian teachers would think about another denomination teaching “their” children. The dogma is almost identical, yet they would be put out, because a “Christian education” is all about shoring up the numbers in their own church.
All youngsters deserve nothing but the best. They will have plenty of time in later life to discover the world is sometimes unfair and evil. They do not deserve to be victims of corporate crime.
What helps make kids happy, well adjusted, with a healthy self – esteem, is not religion, but love, gentle discipline and stimulation. Consider the happily radiant children found in close-knit communities who have never heard of God or Jesus. Human love and interactions with people are real. Nonsense about an ancient God with odd ideas, whom they cannot see, hear or touch, is not.