Hello everyone! My name is Lance and I have just published my first children`s book, “Great Without Religion: Being an atheist kid in a world full of gods.” I wrote it because, like most authors of freethinking or atheist books, I find it hard to believe that there are no books like the ones we have been forced to write, which tell the truth about gods and religion. Personally, I wrote this book not to be hateful or even disrespectful, but because I, unlike most of you, live in a country (Germany) which does not have a separation of Church and State. Here we have Catholic schools, Protestant schools, and state run non-denominational schools, where my children obviously go. In the state run schools, religion is ONLY taught for 1 hour a week instead of daily and the students don’t need to go to church on Thursdays. Imagine—I live in a country where it is actually against the law to protest the pope (have you ever wondered why you have never seen anyone protesting his visits?) because it is against the law to protest religion, and blasphemy is actually a crime in this country! Don`t believe me?
Use Google Translator and you will understand what I am saying.
The children here, my children, are indoctrinated at age 6+, their first day of school. In a state run school, they all go to church and ask God to help them be good students! Imagine your child’s first day of school: they get to draw pictures of their favorite commandment, and talk about how Jesus is their savior and how God watches their every step...all this on a 6 year old’s first day of school. In this country there is an athiest professor who wrote a children’s book called “Which Way to God Please, Asked the Little Piglet?” and our German family minister actually got it banned so children couldn’t read it or have it read to them! It wasn’t anything more than a story about the different religions, but it was banned. So I decided to do as C.H. said we should—push back.
So I wrote my book. I wrote it to be factual and in a language children would understand, without our adult emotions and biases. Personally, it has helped me discuss religion with my kids and it allows them to bring up questions for discussion. Yet I need to make one thing clear: this is not a “maybe there is, maybe there isn’t” book. It is not designed or written to be a self-discovery of god or gods depending upon the century and country in which you live. This is a book that says there is no god or gods, and it has been written for you as a parent to read to your 6 year old.
Yes, I know my views may conflict with many freethinkers who want their children to discover religion, gods, worship, prayer, or the lack thereof, for themselves. But I wrote this book because I don’t need my son to put his hand on a stove to understand that he will get burned, or to stand in front of a train because he might actually think that superman could stop it. I wrote this 20 page book because I want to prevent exactly that. I am an atheist. You can label it “freethinker” or “thought-finder” or even “crazy” if you want to. I wanted my kids to know that they are, and will always be amazing kids, without the need for a god or gods.
My book is available on Amazon for $12.99 and if you use the code 47DJA7JY there is a $5 dollar rebate off the book. I will also donate 1 dollar from every book sold to atheistnexus.org/ to help with the 2011 shortage during this Amazon promotion, because this is definitely a platform which we need to keep up and running.
Thanks for your time and your feedback.