Friday, January 28, 2011

in favor of organized (anti-theist) religion

1) If I had a visiting teacher, I would ask for this. I'd just go get my own, but I've got a vicious flu, and the merits (and road safety) of going out are dubious. Sadly, I disposed of my most recent one some months ago by pointing out that being called as my vt didn't give her the right to call me "baby" and "hon"--not after pretending I didn't exist through two years of classes together and a year of sharing a bus stop. No exploiting the system for me. Quel domage.

2) This, in the words of William J. Doherty's The Intentional Family, is the problem with being an atheist:

"For American families across all income strata and ethnic groups, religion provides a primary source of rituals of community. The great majority of American families belong to a religious organization of some sort, and on a typical weekend 41 percent of all families with children attend a religious service. In addition, families who are members of religious institutions are also more active in nonreligious community groups and organizations than are people who do not affiliate with a religious institution. In other words, religiously active families tend to be involved in all sorts of rituals of community."

Although, take note, "tend to be" does not mean "are," as I can attest to from my own intensely religious, but community starved and ritual hungry, upbringing. Doherty goes on to describe how his young family had benefited from the experienced multi-generational church community.

"What were the odds of us having someone like Judy and the other families be part of our community if we were not involved in a religious organization? Not very great. We could have tried to create a three-generational community around ourselves, but this would have been a full time job for a struggling young couple who were new to the area. A neighborhood community would also have been a possibility, but generally there are not weekly rituals of connection in most neighborhoods during with you can interact with dozens of people at different phases of the life cycle. The reality is that the most widely available source of family rituals of community is a church, synagogue, or mosque."

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