Sunday, January 28, 2007

gold houses

I'm back to being annoyed about religion and my daughter.
Refer to this for background.

Maya's friend recently moved from four houses down to the subdivison up the street from us; gorgeous house, btw. Totally jealous.

The friend (H) is Mormon; I am very tolerant and accepting of Mormons. Really. You wouldn't believe the hatred christians have towards LDS. Like, Real Christians do not consider Mormons Christians, even though Mormons definitely (at least the many I know) classify themselves as such. I'm sure everyone has a little Salt Lake somewhere near where they live, but I am seriously nestled in the bosom of Little Salt Lake. Everywhere you turn, there is a Mormon church. Few missionaries, though.

I, however, am not Christian. I do not believe in god or christ. I just don't buy it, and I think that's just fine. Paige is godless, as well, as is Wayne. Brittani loves Jesus. She goes to youth group, but that is the extent of her worship within designated walls.

Maya has minimal exposure to Christianity, except when she goes to H's house.

Maya and I were on our way to my mom and dad's house for dinner, when she mentioned to me that she believe is god and jesus and in heaven and that there are gold houses in heaven. She was very idignant when she was telling me this. She gets really angry that I don't believe in god, etc.

I don't know what to do.

I am conflicted because Wayne and I came to our Atheism/Agnosticism after being raised Christian (he: Baptist; I: Catholic). We arrived at our own beliefs after having exposure to the idea of God, Jesus, the Holy Ghost (do Baptists belive that?). I feel like it is unfair to tell her, "just trust us, baby, there is no god. We know." I don't know how deep I should go into the topic considering she is only 6. But I guess, OTOH, Christians tell their kids, "trust us, baby; there is a God who brought forth his son, Jesus, to die for our sins, etc..."

What I do know is that if I decide for Maya to attend church (Sunday school, most likely), I want to decide which crazy doctrine she'll learn; I don't want her learning religion from my neighbor! And to tell the child that there are gold houses in heaven? That is such a scam. The whole scenario is glamorous and fantastic and really appeals to a 6 year old who loves to play fairies. Oh, and this is the same friend who told Maya that there is no santa claus. Completely out of line, if you ask me. I don't know what to do. maya loves H. H really loves God. I mean, really, really loves God. They have large pictures of the Salt Lake Temple in their house. Framed. Hanging on the wall.

The thing that worries me is that Christianity is an easy sell to kids; it really is. They believe whatever you tell them (just ask my dad, who can tell quite a tall tale), and they trust you to be honest with them. They don't question the existence of God and Jesus. If you say it, they will believe you.

I tend to believe that Maya believes in God and Heaven because people whom she respects frequently talk to her about it. Wayne and I don't engage her in conversation about why we don't believe in God. God is quite simply a non-issue in our household. I don't think about being Agnostic just like I don't think about the color of my eyes. Maybe it is time to start to give her confidence in our godlessness.

H has moved five minutes farther down the road, so I can start to passive-aggressively keep Maya from playing with her for the time being, or I could talk to H's mom, who I like, about talking to her kid about NOT shoving their beliefs down her throat.

I'm going to do some Googling and see what I can find. I wonder if Amazon has a book that addresses this issue.


Renae said...

Tell Maya that while they *believe* they get gold mansions, you *KNOW* that they have to wear odd long underwear.
You could also try this: "I believe that pigs fly and that every Tuesday they come into the laundry room and steal every third white sock."
Or, be a total adult and tell her that in your family you respect others' beliefs and that her beliefs might be different than yours but you respect them. And that she needs to respect your beliefs because that's what Jesus would do! (WAHAHAHAAHAAH...Just kidding about the last part. You can change Jesus to Justin Timberlake.)

Renae said...

Also, am I the only one in the entire world who reads LDS as LSD? Me and millions of dyslexics.