On the Indoctrination of Children

I have a very difficult time not saying anything when I hear people talking about children in the church. About how their little one loves Jesus so much, or how they have so much faith. Babies are not born Christian, or any other Faith, they are indoctrinated. Someone once said that a young mind corrupted can never be fully healed. I can’t remember who said it, but I think it’s true.


I remember my own indoctrination as a child, my family didn’t see it as a bad thing and neither did I at the time. But now I wish it never happened, because I will never fully recover and the road is long and dark, full of second guesses and fear of deeply planted superstitions. I also know what I did to my own child or let happen in Sunday school. She actually believed that god was talking to her all the time and was telling her what to do and say. We did manage to show her, with a little test, that she was just using her imagination, like with her other imaginary friends. But, it may be too late for her to see the world that is, not the world of superstition and fear.


No child should have superstition forced on them. I feel very bad that I had anything to do with it. They will believe anything you tell them. They trust without question and believe without reason, because they don’t know any better. I see it as a sick practice. If a person’s god is the one true god why not trust children to come to that conclusion on their own, when they are ready? Will we ever be free of this social sickness?


6 responses to “On the Indoctrination of Children

  1. If your child got superstition and fear from church, you were going to the wrong church.

    Jesus came to free us from fear and superstition, not heap more on top of us.

    Welcome to the blogosphere, by the way!


  2. Thank you for the welcome, jj.
    Every church deals in superstition and fear.
    Superstition because praying for a favorable outcome is the same as tossing salt over your shoulder.
    And fear because if you don’t please god he will burn you in hell forever.

    Couldn’t it be the Jesus never came at all and the whole thing is mythology?


  3. What religion is not based on superstition? Name one god that can be empirically proven.

  4. Selected teachings of Jesus, along with other portions of the Bible, can be morally instructive. However, using fear to motivate children to adopt a highly suspect belief system is malevolent. Religious groups target people when they are very young. Children, for the most part, are unable to mount any counter-arguments to what they are being told. As if the world wasn’t scary enough for a child, the old man in robes is going to frighten him even more with stories of eternal hellfire. It was wrong when they did it to me as a child and its wrong now.

  5. I was “indoctrinated” at an early age as well. I bounced from being a good catholic to presbyterian, to baptist…

    It is a sick feeling to tell children that the boogeyman IS real. Fear-seeds are planted in the young to be “harvested” later in life.

    As a child I remember having my doubts and asking as rigorous a question as a 2nd or 3rd grader can ask and the memory of being shot down or told that that was the “devil talking” just keep turning me off. I played along, but it was difficult.

    Z, I think you have time to talk to your child about the options that exist. The imaginary and the real. It is never too late. Think of it like breaking the news that there is No Santa. Good luck my new friend.

  6. I feel for them. Are you able to think for yourself? Can you understand the implications of Jesus Christ? Can you fly without wings?

    If the answer is no, and I’ve met a few, you’ll be massively traumatized to the point you don’t even take yourself seriously. I’ve always been treated very liberal thoughout my childhood. I was lucky enough to be able to choose my own path.

    The indoctrinated christians I’ve met (and they’re only christians) always had a very low self-esteem and don’t think. Ever. Really, I asked.

    Where I’m going with this is you only have one childhood. Cursed are those who throw their children’s childhood away. You better believe it.

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