Hi everyone, this is my first discussion here. Pleased to meet you all!

I'm a father of two young kids. The older one is in early grade school, so it's time to figure out how to inoculate them against religion. I'd like to trade notes with other parents, if there's anyone here who's been attempting anything similar?

What I've been doing so far is to discuss dead religions (aka mythologies) as part of the bedtime story process, with the point being that people believed these things back in the day every bit as fervently as modern religious adherents do today. I mean, human sacrifice, right? You don't do that if you're not fully invested in your theology. But most of that discussion is down the road a bit, and for now I'm trying to lay groundwork.

So far we've been through Greek and Norse mythologies. I read up on some story or another before bedtime and then relate the story orally just after lights-out. It's been a lot of fun, and educational for me too. Oh and I've also read a bunch of Narnia, which is less fun but patently ridiculous, and therefore probably useful for later comparisons to the original. ("That Jesus guy? Yeah, he's the lion that keeps popping up and glowing at people.") But Narnia seems pretty slim pickings when you've got Ginnungagap through Ragnarok to play with.

Eventually I want to mine a pile of entertaining whack from the Bible too, and maybe other non-dead religions with interesting stories. I'm not quite diving into that yet because I want to feel confident I won't get called into the office because my child's been giving some religious kid a few home truths in the schoolyard. I mean, it'd probably be good for them, but I'd rather keep out of other families' business.

So... has anyone else here done something like this, or thought about doing it? Any pointers to other fertile mythologies that I should consider digging into? Other completely different approaches that might be worth a try?

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I want to tell my younger brother - he's 13 - about how religion is nonsense but I've never found the courage to do so. Don't really feel comfortable. I'm hoping he gets there on his own as he learns about evolution in school and makes his own conclusions. He's not very exposed to religion at all as we don't go to church nor are my parents religious (though they aren't atheists either) so my parents won't be telling him about "god"....so that might help a bit. Although I'm not sure how my mom would react when he starts to believe god can't be real and all that...she thinks the Bible has some good in it...when I told her I was atheist, she didn't react as maybe a lot of religious parents would, but she wasn't exactly supportive. Another obstacle is that I'm not very close to my little brother and even with my family I don't talk a whole lot. And as I said, I'm a bit uncomfortable talking about these things for some reason.

He's a smart kid, so I really hope he comes to the conclusion that religion is absurd on his own.



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