Atheist parents say raising nonbelievers can be a challenge [Excerpts]
Dale McGowan has developed two ground rules for his evangelical mother-in-law with regard to his children: Don't discourage them from having doubts about the existence of God, and don't tell them they're going to hell.
Other than that, he said, everything else is fair game.
McGowan, the author of "Parenting Beyond Belief: On Raising Caring, Ethical Kids Without Religion," imposed the guidelines as his family was trying to negotiate the relationship between his three children and their grandmother.
While some members of the family are Christian, McGowan said he wants his children to wait until they are old enough to decide for themselves which, if any, faith they want to embrace.
"Childhood is a time to explore ideas," said McGowan, 44, of Atlanta. But "the idea of letting children be undeclared religiously is very new."
"My kids know that there are absolutely no questions they can't ask ... As a result, we have the most amazing conversations," he said.
[TBC: McGowan's amazing conversations can be logically forecast to be short-lived. There is quite a track record of atheist-raised children embracing all sorts of religions and cultic teachings. The lessening of Christian influence in Europe and Great Britain has only opened the door to Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, and other pagan religions. Finally, "the idea [that] letting children be undeclared religiously is very new," is simply untrue. Every age has its contingent of those who are “ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth” (2 Timothy:3:7).]