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psyche101

Richard Dawkins Books for Children an Teens

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psyche101
1 hour ago, danydandan said:

People don't generally like when they are told how to raise their children. The fact is as a parent your going to do whatever is best for children, whether your Agnostic, Religious or Atheist.

Yeah, you have to get a license for a car, but anyone can have a child. From this we have radical Muslim parentS proudly taking photos of a young child holding up a severed head, or Westboro parents dragging thier kids to protests holding vile signs they don't even understand. I still remember my mother taking us witnessing, which could be days on end of trudging miles on end in awful conditions to spread the word of God to people who tell you to rack off. 

I honestly feel many forms of indoctrination are also forms of child abuse. 

1 hour ago, danydandan said:

My point of view, what ever it's worth is, parents are going to indoctrinated their kids regardless if they know it or not. Culturally, Religiously etcetera. Making your kid read that Dawkins book is still the same as making then read a Bible or Qu'ran.

I don't understand that, I can't see how it's like the Bible or Koran at all. It's science not philosophy for a start. Knowing Dawkins, I honestly doubt there will even be one fact that cannot be backed up. I gather its not a 'don't believe in god' book, but an actual representation of the natural order of things and how they come to be. More along the lines of if someone says 'goddidit' one can say, no, that's a natural process, it works like so.... 

I can't see how that's anything like indoctrination when it is factually correct. 

1 hour ago, danydandan said:

I personally don't like Dawkins, he too often mirrors the people he is 'fighting' against and too often offers his opinion as fact and leaves Science behind. He gets as if not more preachy than the preachers of Religion. But his biological science is excellent.

Your the second person to say so, but I can't say that's my experience and I tend to follow his work and events as often as I can. I have seen him outright jump on fundamentalists like William Lane Craig, but only in debate. He attacks the head of church, the principles, the nonsense like the Catholic proclamation of the ascension of Mary, or the huge holes in the concept of a christian Easter. He doesn't go out in the street attacking others for their belief as the aforementioned groups do. Have you seen the discussions where he talks about issues of faith with Cardinals and bishops? They are very calm and interesting discussions. Even his TED talk in militant atheism is peppered with light hearted comments and is not what I consider militant at all, even though that's his own description. Most people don't even realise he identifies as agnostic, not actually atheist. 

Do you find that you get that impression from his book, debates or the media? Personally, I'd say Lawrence Krauss is much more blunt. 

1 hour ago, danydandan said:

In my opinion, kids should be free to explore what ever they want to explore.

I understand that's the point of this book. To allow children to gain an aspect of rational thought so they can make an informed choice. It's not so much breeding atheists rather than helping individuals to get to make that choice from themselves. I personally don't agree with handing down your religion to your child by default. I do feel that any child born into a Christian household should not be branded a Christian. They should be allowed to be atheist, Buddhist, Muslim, whatever they want. Its removing a choice from day one, and removing chose is where religion goes of the rails IMHO. 

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psyche101
13 minutes ago, eight bits said:

Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials? Fantastic stuff, and not just for young readers.

Thank you, I've never heard of it. I will look it up. 

 

ETA:

Just read this at wiki. 

The fantasy elements include witches and armoured polar bears; the trilogy also alludes to concepts from physics, philosophy and theology. It functions in part as a retelling and inversion of John Milton's epic Paradise Lost,[1] with Pullman commending humanity for what Milton saw as its most tragic failing, original sin

 

Sounds brilliant! Thanks again. I'll have to ask my kids if they have heard of it. 

 

Edited by psyche101
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DieChecker
8 hours ago, GlitterRose said:

It would be great if some parents just let their kids explore all kinds of ideas and then decide for themselves. 

This. This is the best idea.

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psyche101
38 minutes ago, DieChecker said:

This. This is the best idea.

As I say though, that's what I understand this book does. 

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danydandan
1 hour ago, psyche101 said:

Yeah, you have to get a license for a car, but anyone can have a child. From this we have radical Muslim parentS proudly taking photos of a young child holding up a severed head, or Westboro parents dragging thier kids to protests holding vile signs they don't even understand. I still remember my mother taking us witnessing, which could be days on end of trudging miles on end in awful conditions to spread the word of God to people who tell you to rack off. 

I honestly feel many forms of indoctrination are also forms of child abuse. 

I don't understand that, I can't see how it's like the Bible or Koran at all. It's science not philosophy for a start. Knowing Dawkins, I honestly doubt there will even be one fact that cannot be backed up. I gather its not a 'don't believe in god' book, but an actual representation of the natural order of things and how they come to be. More along the lines of if someone says 'goddidit' one can say, no, that's a natural process, it works like so.... 

I can't see how that's anything like indoctrination when it is factually correct. 

Your the second person to say so, but I can't say that's my experience and I tend to follow his work and events as often as I can. I have seen him outright jump on fundamentalists like William Lane Craig, but only in debate. He attacks the head of church, the principles, the nonsense like the Catholic proclamation of the ascension of Mary, or the huge holes in the concept of a christian Easter. He doesn't go out in the street attacking others for their belief as the aforementioned groups do. Have you seen the discussions where he talks about issues of faith with Cardinals and bishops? They are very calm and interesting discussions. Even his TED talk in militant atheism is peppered with light hearted comments and is not what I consider militant at all, even though that's his own description. Most people don't even realise he identifies as agnostic, not actually atheist. 

Do you find that you get that impression from his book, debates or the media? Personally, I'd say Lawrence Krauss is much more blunt. 

I understand that's the point of this book. To allow children to gain an aspect of rational thought so they can make an informed choice. It's not so much breeding atheists rather than helping individuals to get to make that choice from themselves. I personally don't agree with handing down your religion to your child by default. I do feel that any child born into a Christian household should not be branded a Christian. They should be allowed to be atheist, Buddhist, Muslim, whatever they want. Its removing a choice from day one, and removing chose is where religion goes of the rails IMHO. 

What do you think indoctrination is?

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DieChecker
1 hour ago, psyche101 said:

As I say though, that's what I understand this book does. 

I'd let my kids read it. I came by my faith through friendship and love. If they aren't feeling it, they should be allowed to go their own way.

I've found that those who are allowed to go their own way often come right back, while those who were forced and oppressed will leave forever, and hard feelings will be all around.

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GoldenWolf
13 hours ago, Will Due said:

 

I can't win.

 

 

Not with a hubristic attitude.

Edited by MysticWolf
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Podo

I see it as a good thing, since it is an attempt to teach children the strengths of empirical thinking and rationalism at a young age. I'd probably get something like that for my kids, if I had any. But I'd likely also get them books on mythology and whatnot. More books just means more choices for parents to read to their kids, I don't see the presence of books that hold ideas different than your own as a bad thing. It doesn't bother me that ultra-Christian books exist for kids, for example. I would never get them for my kids, but it's not bad that they exist. 

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danydandan
8 hours ago, psyche101 said:

Yeah, you have to get a license for a car, but anyone can have a child. From this we have radical Muslim parentS proudly taking photos of a young child holding up a severed head, or Westboro parents dragging thier kids to protests holding vile signs they don't even understand. I still remember my mother taking us witnessing, which could be days on end of trudging miles on end in awful conditions to spread the word of God to people who tell you to rack off. 

I honestly feel many forms of indoctrination are also forms of child abuse. 

I didn't get an opportunity to reply in a bit more in-depth, I have to opportunity now so I'll take it.

I completely understand where your coming from, however you, I or anyone doesn't have the right to judge if people are worthy of having children or not. It's not a path I'd like to travel along and I'd assume you'd not like to either?

8 hours ago, psyche101 said:

I don't understand that, I can't see how it's like the Bible or Koran at all. It's science not philosophy for a start. Knowing Dawkins, I honestly doubt there will even be one fact that cannot be backed up. I gather its not a 'don't believe in god' book, but an actual representation of the natural order of things and how they come to be. More along the lines of if someone says 'goddidit' one can say, no, that's a natural process, it works like so.... 

I can't see how that's anything like indoctrination when it is factually correct. 

Indoctrination isn't about a thing being factual or correct. Indoctrination is influencing a person's opinion or nature so they don't think critically. That's all indoctrination is. So if you tell a kid read this it's true and they accept whatever it's true prior to reading it, your effectively doing the same as anyone else telling a kid to read something, like a Bible, without critically thinking about it.

A good example is how you may have been thought mathematics in early school. You were indoctrinated into Euclidean geometry, I can safely assume you were just told Pythagoreans theorem was true? I bet you weren't told about the postulates that make Euclidean geometry correct. I bet you weren't shown the proof for the Pythagorean therom either. Thus you were indoctrinated into accepting these mathematics. You weren't taught to think critically of circles, points, or straight lines. You just accepted Euclidean geometry was correct, then maybe you might have been introduced to Hyperbolic geometry.

8 hours ago, psyche101 said:

Do you find that you get that impression from his book, debates or the media? Personally, I'd say Lawrence Krauss is much more blunt. 

My impression is from his books and a number of interviews I have seen. Nothing wrong with being blunt, I just don't like preaching too much. Like I said his Scientific work is sound, his popular books often leak into being preachy.

 

8 hours ago, psyche101 said:

I understand that's the point of this book. To allow children to gain an aspect of rational thought so they can make an informed choice. It's not so much breeding atheists rather than helping individuals to get to make that choice from themselves. I personally don't agree with handing down your religion to your child by default. I do feel that any child born into a Christian household should not be branded a Christian. They should be allowed to be atheist, Buddhist, Muslim, whatever they want. Its removing a choice from day one, and removing chose is where religion goes of the rails IMHO. 

I agree that critical thinking is THE single most important thing we can teach our children. However I feel writing a book that literally states it's intension is to show kids that Science is better than Religion isn't the way to do it.

My 22 month old will be given, Building Thinking Skills, Lolipop Logic and the Bad Arguments book when she is old enough. Not a book that's sole purpose is to illustrate that Religion is wrong. While I agree it is wrong I'm not going to force my children to accept that, they can come to that conclusion themselves, or not.

Edited by danydandan
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NewAge1

''Let the boy mature, but do not let the man hold back the boy''.

-Phillip K. Dick

Edited by NewAge1

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Orphalesion

This sort of thing, what books to buy for my future children, is something I will have to figure out once I have adopted some. The problem wasn't really there when i was a child, I was an extremely curious child who asked for a lot of books, especially science books aimed at children, but I realize not every child might be like that.

That being said, no I would not buy an "Atheism" book for my children. Just as little as I would buy them one of those creepy children's bibles. Especially not one written by Dawkins. Sorry I just can't stand the man (and that has nothing to do with his philosophy, and more with his general personality and writing style)
And I don't think I will need Mr.Dawkins' help to protect my kids against indoctrination or to teach them how to think for themselves, thank you very much.

The only little thing I agree on with Mr.Dawkins is that "What do you think?" should be a phrase that is frequently used when talking to a child about many things. I have resolved long ago that I want to use it with my children, partcularly when it comes to philosophical questions "Here's what I think, here's what some other people thing, nobody is quite sure. What do you think?"
Especially when they come in contact with any sort of Religion I'd be extremely careful to remind them that it's just what some people think and that they must decide for themselves what is right for them.

Bottom line; I'd much rather buy them "George's Secret Key to the Universe". 

Edit: Just wanted to add that I, as a child, didn't need a book like that either to teach me about evolution or naturalism. I had a passion for dinosaurs and a mother who was invested in nurturing my curiosity, that took care of that. And well, where I grew up we learned about evolution in elementary/primary school.
 

Edited by Orphalesion
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Only_
On 31/08/2018 at 2:04 PM, danydandan said:

My 22 month old will be given, Building Thinking Skills, Lolipop Logic and the Bad Arguments book when she is old enough. Not a book that's sole purpose is to illustrate that Religion is wrong. While I agree it is wrong I'm not going to force my children to accept that, they can come to that conclusion themselves, or not.

This is the exact same kind of propaganda you'd see under a Soviet-era, Stalinist or Marxist regime.

Edited by Clockwork_Spirit

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danydandan
23 minutes ago, Clockwork_Spirit said:

This is the exact same kind of propaganda you'd see under a Soviet-era, Stalinist or Marxist regime.

How so?

Letting my child make up their own mind? Do you find something wrong with that?

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Scudbuster

Here's how I view it:

3 Things Kids Don't Need.jpg

Edited by Scudbuster
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danydandan
45 minutes ago, Scudbuster said:

Here's how I view it:

3 Things Kids Don't Need.jpg

No reason why you can't do 5/6. Threatening hell is a no go.

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Cookie Monster
On ‎31‎/‎08‎/‎2018 at 1:50 AM, psyche101 said:

Richard Dawkins Says 'Atheism for Children' Book Will Help Arm Kids Against Religious 'Indoctrination'

Writing on Twitter, Dawkins continued: "I really want to not indoctrinate. Perhaps I can help parents arm them against indoctrination by schools, g'parents & religious books. & against taunting by religious schoolmates. Help them think on evidence, e.g. for evolution. 'What do you think?' is my continual refrain."

The evolutionary biologist previously wrote a book for teenagers and young adults, entitled "The Magic of Reality: How We Know What's Really True," which aimed to show that science — not religion — can best explain the natural world.

A huge problem for Dawkins is his assumption that a critical mind which is free from indoctrination wont find religion. As an intellectual myself I dont see Dawkins as being that bright (although he likes to think he is). It is quite obvious he lacks any knowledge of degree level physics, philosophy, and theology. When it comes to the religion/atheism debate there are three types of people in the world:

Low/Average IQ - These are more likely to believe in religion.

Above Average IQ - These are more likely to be atheists (I would put Dawkins in here).

Genius IQ - These are more likely to believe in religion. There are plenty of people in the world who are far more intelligent and knowledgable than Dawkins who believe in God and can put forward some good arguments for it. In fact, quite a high percentage of physicists go on to become priests and bishops (or the equivalent in various religions) because what they get taught paves the was for spirituality in them.

I always find it quite remarkable the number of people claiming science means there`s no God who have quite a poor understanding of physics. Most of them never did it past high school yet will argue their views with total confidence (which I find both bizarre and funny). Around and around our society it goes and has become part of our culture which doesnt get questioned by so many people.

Any debate on religion/atheism should be free from people with religious issues (Dawkins??) or atheism issues and the panel should be made up of a range of people who have legitimacy to engage in such a debate. Legitimacy comes from having physics, philosophy, and theology degrees. It shouldn`t be a free for all from people who dont know what they`re talking about (but who like to think that they do).

Any debate should also be unbiased which means the liberal media and political left should be prevented from doing a Trump on it. That means stopping them influencing what speakers get invited, stopping them dictating to the viewers the conclusions they should reach, and stopping them from engaging in the character assassination of those guests which dont agree with them.

Edited by RabidMongoose
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Only_
4 hours ago, danydandan said:

How so?

Letting my child make up their own mind? Do you find something wrong with that?

I'm referring to Dawkins' book for children.

Edited by Clockwork_Spirit
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psyche101
On 8/31/2018 at 10:13 PM, DieChecker said:

I'd let my kids read it. I came by my faith through friendship and love. If they aren't feeling it, they should be allowed to go their own way.

I've found that those who are allowed to go their own way often come right back, while those who were forced and oppressed will leave forever, and hard feelings will be all around.

That's a really good way to look at it. If your faith can't stand factual knowledge, it's not very strong. If one finds value in it, one will incorporate it. 

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psyche101
On 9/1/2018 at 3:43 AM, Podo said:

I see it as a good thing, since it is an attempt to teach children the strengths of empirical thinking and rationalism at a young age. I'd probably get something like that for my kids, if I had any. But I'd likely also get them books on mythology and whatnot. More books just means more choices for parents to read to their kids, I don't see the presence of books that hold ideas different than your own as a bad thing. It doesn't bother me that ultra-Christian books exist for kids, for example. I would never get them for my kids, but it's not bad that they exist. 

I agree, there are plenty of children's books on religion, I think this makes a good balance. 

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psyche101
On 9/1/2018 at 4:04 AM, danydandan said:

I didn't get an opportunity to reply in a bit more in-depth, I have to opportunity now so I'll take it.

No worries I was asleep when you made it and had a big weekend  father's day here yesterday. 

Quote

I completely understand where your coming from, however you, I or anyone doesn't have the right to judge if people are worthy of having children or not. It's not a path I'd like to travel along and I'd assume you'd not like to either?

I really don't know to be honest. It's horrendous how people allow the most awful crimes but are excused by religion. I notice the courts are starting to get involved, and a JW boy was forced to undergo a blood transfusion and parents charged with murder for adhering to faith over life saving techniques. 

There's just so many nasty little dark avenues in religion like this that just don't get to see the light of day. Now we are starting to, and I feel it's more than overdue. I guess I'm glad someone else is doing that. I really don't know if it's overstepping boundaries, it seems more just like doing the right thing to me. 

Judge allows blood transfusion for Jehovah’s Witness boy, against parents’ wishes

The child (17) then appealed that decision and lost as well. 

Jehovah's Witness teen loses appeal over life-saving transfusion

And cases where the legal system didn't act in time. 

Baby died of malnutrition after parents ‘refused to get help for religious reasons’, court hears

2-Year-Old Girl Dies After Faith-Healing Parents Refuse Medical Treatment

 

I do hope the next step would be to see children removed from fundamental family's like the Westboro pickets or Radical Muslim teachings. 

Its great that should a person drown a baby in a bathtub these days that one would go to jail or a mental institution and the will of God isn't taken into consideration at all. 

Quote

Indoctrination isn't about a thing being factual or correct. Indoctrination is influencing a person's opinion or nature so they don't think critically. That's all indoctrination is. So if you tell a kid read this it's true and they accept whatever it's true prior to reading it, your effectively doing the same as anyone else telling a kid to read something, like a Bible, without critically thinking about it.

As I understand the description though, this is very much introducing critical thinking. That's why introduces creation myths in perspective. To illustrate the difference between what is possible and what is not. 

Quote

A good example is how you may have been thought mathematics in early school. You were indoctrinated into Euclidean geometry, I can safely assume you were just told Pythagoreans theorem was true? I bet you weren't told about the postulates that make Euclidean geometry correct. I bet you weren't shown the proof for the Pythagorean therom either. Thus you were indoctrinated into accepting these mathematics. You weren't taught to think critically of circles, points, or straight lines. You just accepted Euclidean geometry was correct, then maybe you might have been introduced to Hyperbolic geometry.

But do you not see a huge difference in teaching genuine knowledge and indoctrinating cultural superstitions? I was taught Pythagoras' theorem and ohms law in high school, and no joke I honestly remember being cheeky and sating to my math teacher  how on earth is this required learning? When am I ever going to get asked this in real life? He even said probably never, well imagine my surprise when doing theory at TAFE (like trade college here) for my electrical apprenticeship came up and it turned out I needed both equations. Quite humbled me, but I had the tools and skills to deal with the situation. So I guess I never saw that as indoctrination at all, but genuine teaching. 

I've had to use math but religious instruction has never offered me anything of value in that respect, and its information has only ever let me down. 

To me I think there is much greater value if you do apply indoctrination that can be supported as critical thinking skills are developed. And because one is indoctrinated to a base set of skills, they can and will be built upon, allowing that knowledge to come to complete fruition. I'd call that real teaching. 

Quote

My impression is from his books and a number of interviews I have seen. Nothing wrong with being blunt, I just don't like preaching too much. Like I said his Scientific work is sound, his popular books often leak into being preachy. 

Fair enough. It's not how I see his work, but each to their own. I think it's a shame because I think knee jerk reactions to Dawkins work tends to curb knowledge over emotional reasons. 

Quote

I agree that critical thinking is THE single most important thing we can teach our children. However I feel writing a book that literally states it's intension is to show kids that Science is better than Religion isn't the way to do it.

Why though? It doesn't attack any specific religion, it does recount creation myths and puts them in perspective which I would call critical thinking? 

Quote

My 22 month old will be given, Building Thinking Skills, Lolipop Logic and the Bad Arguments book when she is old enough. Not a book that's sole purpose is to illustrate that Religion is wrong. While I agree it is wrong I'm not going to force my children to accept that, they can come to that conclusion themselves, or not.

I agree with offering a child to take the option themselves and did so for my children. But if religion offers a bad argument, I honestly don't see why building critical thinking skills from an early age does not tech children about bad arguments and the best way to approach them. Mine are almost 14 and one 16, but I would have gone it to them had it been available at the time. If the information is sound, I feel that's the most important thing here. 

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psyche101
On 9/2/2018 at 5:09 AM, Clockwork_Spirit said:

This is the exact same kind of propaganda you'd see under a Soviet-era, Stalinist or Marxist regime.

No, its nothing like Stalanism, your reaction is hysterical and illustrates your fundamentalism. 

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Habitat

Hawking, Dawkins, both guessers when they arrived at the end of their respective areas of expertise, they had conquered, and refused to believe they could not keep conquering, so guessed instead, when there was no way to prove.

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ChrLzs
43 minutes ago, Habitat said:

Hawking, Dawkins, both guessers when they arrived at the end of their respective areas of expertise, they had conquered, and refused to believe they could not keep conquering, so guessed instead, when there was no way to prove.

Was that a problem - were there any guesses that were misleadingly presented as facts, by them?  Or were you looking at media beat-ups, perhaps..?

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psyche101
1 hour ago, Habitat said:

Hawking, Dawkins, both guessers when they arrived at the end of their respective areas of expertise, they had conquered, and refused to believe they could not keep conquering, so guessed instead, when there was no way to prove.

Their guesses seem to be much more accurate than most people's 'facts'. 

I don't see how you are qualified to call those individuals guessers to be honest. It seems ludicrous that someone such as yourself would consider yourself to be more knowledgeable than people who could attain the best positions in the highest learning institutions on the planet. And to insist that some hippies from a time when nobody knew anything about the universe trumps names like Hawking ams Dawkins is just the height of hubris. 

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psyche101
34 minutes ago, ChrLzs said:

Was that a problem - were there any guesses that were misleadingly presented as facts, by them?  Or were you looking at media beat-ups, perhaps..?

Deepak Chopra takes a dim view of them.......... 

Is say that's more habs speed than Dawkins. 

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