It’s a Fine Line Between Truth and Propaganda
By Wendy Thomas Russell | July 22, 2013
- Recently, on Hemant Mehta’s FriendlyAthiest blog, I came across a video done by a guy who runs a Facebook page called Religion Hurts Humanity. The video, titled What Religions Have Contributed to the World This Month, is nine minutes full of news clips and headlines detailing all the terrible things done in the name of religion during the last 30 days. The amount of material alone makes the video pretty compelling. Here are some of the featured headlines: Islamic militants kill 30 in Nigeria School attack Islamic states reject UN’s attempt to protect women: It violates Sharia […] Read more – ‘It’s a Fine Line Between Truth and Propaganda’.
‘Jesus Gosh!’: Explaining Religious Sensitivity to a 4-Year-Old
By Wendy Thomas Russell | June 24, 2013
- When exactly is the right time to broach the subject of religion with children? It’s a common question not easily answered. Kids are so different. The brain develops at different speeds and in different ways. What interests children at any given age runs the gamut of possibilities and is constantly in flux. So parents like me, we look for openings. We keep our ears open for conversation starters, and signs that our little ones might be ready to think a bit deeper about life and people and beliefs. We want them to be old enough […] Read more – ‘‘Jesus Gosh!’: Explaining Religious Sensitivity to a 4-Year-Old’.
12 Simple Differences Between Catholics and Protestants
By Wendy Thomas Russell | June 10, 2013
- The rapid rise of the “Nones” — those unaffiliated with religious groups — was back in the news this week, when the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life released its most recent study on American religiosity. Here’s what Pew had to say: The number of Americans who do not identify with any religion continues to grow at a rapid pace. One-fifth of the U.S. public – and a third of adults under 30 – are religiously unaffiliated today, the highest percentages ever in Pew Research Center polling… Their ranks now include more than 13 million self-described […] Read more – ‘12 Simple Differences Between Catholics and Protestants’.
Should Kids Be Told All Religious Stories are ‘Myths’?
By Wendy Thomas Russell | May 20, 2013
- I’m facing some deadlines over the next few weeks that are going to make it very tough to generate new blogs of any merit. But I’m hoping — PRAYING! (but not really) — that you guys will stick around anyway. Subscribers, I’m talking to you here. BEAR WITH ME. PLEASE DO NOT UNSUBSCRIBE. IT’S ONLY THREE WEEKS. Starting today, I’m going to run six of my most well-read and/or controversial blogs of the last two years. I’ve chosen them based on number of page views, number of comments, or the level of contentiousness within the […] Read more – ‘Should Kids Be Told All Religious Stories are ‘Myths’?’.
Daddy, Daughter Discuss God (Again); More Cuteness Ensues
By Wendy Thomas Russell | May 13, 2013
- My husband and 7-year-old daughter had another totally awesome conversation about God a few days ago. They used to do that from time to time, but it’s been a while since the subject has come up in much detail. I sure love it when it does. The talks are always fun, insightful, thought-provoking and, frankly, cute as hell. They also present Charlie with golden opportunities to teach Maxine about honesty, diversity and the importance of kindness. Anyway, this one’s particularly good, so I wanted to share: Maxine: Where do you think God is? Like, which house or school… […] Read more – ‘Daddy, Daughter Discuss God (Again); More Cuteness Ensues’.
Memory Candles a Secular Way for Kids to Honor Their Dead
By Wendy Thomas Russell | May 2, 2013
- This is how my good friend Katie describes herself: “A confused Catholic married to a cultural Jew, raising a moral, but interfaithless family.” You love her too now, right? So anyway, the other day Katie and I were talking about a recent blog I’d written about the importance of talking with our kids about our dead loved ones in “happy terms.” She said she’d really struggled with this herself, having lost her mom nine years ago to cancer. She still experiences lingering pain, and sometimes the loss makes her profoundly sad. (I expect she’s not […] Read more – ‘Memory Candles a Secular Way for Kids to Honor Their Dead’.
Kids Leaving Parents’ Religion Certainly Gets People Talking
By Wendy Thomas Russell | March 7, 2013
- I’m hella busy today, but wanted to link to a few recent news posts about children leaving the faiths into which they were born. The first is informative, the second is instructive, and the third — well, the third is just trash. But watch it for the comedic value. Study: Religious Parents’ Divorce May Cause Children to Leave the Church The Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion released a study Tuesday finding that children who have two religious parents are twice as likely to lose that religion if the parents divorce. The journal does […] Read more – ‘Kids Leaving Parents’ Religion Certainly Gets People Talking’.
Taking the ‘Myth’ out of the Bible
By Wendy Thomas Russell | November 15, 2012
- Oh, Bible. You do confound us so. You are so very dense, complicated and repetitive, not to mention confusing, contradictory, outrageous and far too long-winded to actually read. And yet you are so wise, textured and powerful. You are surprising and exciting and flush with cultural references. In fact, you make it almost impossible for any of us to understand who we are as a civilization without at least getting your Cliffs Notes. As author E.D. Hirsch Jr. tells children in The First Dictionary of Cultural Literacy: The Bible is by far the best-known book […] Read more – ‘Taking the ‘Myth’ out of the Bible’.
Washington Post Blog Spotlights ‘Relax, It’s Just God’
By Wendy Thomas Russell | October 15, 2012
- This isn’t so much a blog as brag, so if you are my close friends, family, or just really kind readers who don’t mind if I bend your ears for a few minutes, please stick around. The rest of you: I totally understand. Enjoy our day. So this morning, I was featured in the Washington Post’s On Parenting blog. The blog is written by Janice D’Arcy, an amazing parenting blogger whose work I’ve followed for a long time. She contacted me because of the Pew Research Center’s new study finding that 20 percent of Americans […] Read more – ‘Washington Post Blog Spotlights ‘Relax, It’s Just God’’.
The Inheritance of Anxiety
By Wendy Thomas Russell | October 1, 2012
- Sometimes, in looking through the responses to my Survey for Nonreligious Parents, I’m faced with perfect examples of What Not To Do. Here’s one from a mom: My child just yesterday stormed out of her classroom telling the teacher that she was ‘indoctrinating’ her in the telling of the Christian Easter story. I was very proud my child was so confident, assertive, and sure of her own non-belief that she was able to do this. Confident and assertive? You bet! But sure of her own non-belief? In elementary school? Hell no. Most likely, this child […] Read more – ‘The Inheritance of Anxiety’.