The Daily Mail, about six years behind the times, is making a big fuss over something Richard Dawkins wrote in The God Delusion back in 2006: That believing (as a child) that Hell is real and that your non-Christian friends and family members will one day burn in it forever may be worse for you, psychologically, than any physical abuse you might suffer.
That was a controversial claim when the book came out; it was discussed at length at the time and many of his fans didn’t agree. At best, they said, he was comparing apples to oranges. At worst, he was trivializing child abuse.
Still, it’s worth discussing how traumatizing the concept of Hell can be to a child. [Read more...]