This Atheist’s Positive Message For Children

This Atheist’s Positive Message For Children August 4, 2018

Ken Ham tweeted yesterday which is not news in and of itself but one of the tweets was quite interesting. The specific tweet spoke to me because it issued a fun and neat challenge to atheists. Ken Ham of Answers In Genesis fame and infamy wants to know what positive message atheists could possibly have for children. So I’ll respond to it myself and I’ll issue this challenge to all of my fellow atheist bloggers: what is your positive message for children?

I'm an atheist with a positive message for children. I hope you are as well.
I’m an atheist with a positive message for children. I hope you are as well.

A Positive Message For Children From An Atheist:

As an atheist, I have a fairly positive message for children that stems not directly from my atheism since atheism itself is just a lack of belief in any deities but rather from an understanding of what a world without deities means for humanity. A world without deities has a significant impact on our role in the world and in the universe. It means that every single person isn’t cursed to walk along a predetermined path where they at most make minor but already accounted for choices that do not alter the future but to decide their own fate and to make choices that will ultimately alter humanity’s future in ways they might not understand or ever even see themselves. It means that it isn’t wrong for boys to like boys or for girls to like girls, or for children to like both or neither.

There is something positive in understanding that there was no plan by God that allowed for children to suffer for things beyond their control like starvation because their parents had no jobs or because they were victims of theft or of nature and lost everything. There is something positive about encouraging children to accept personal responsibility for their own actions (and hold other people accountable as well) and not to blame the condition of the world or even their own imperfections on two folks in the incredibly distant past who took a bite out of fruit and were punished because a deity told them not to do that instead of rightfully understanding that the current state of affairs for better or worse is due to the actions of real people who live and who lived and push and pushed societies in certain ways that are reflected in the different cultures, beliefs, and more.

Positivity can be found in an understanding of the world that doesn’t elevate humanity to some superior status to other lifeforms like many different religions and of course, some understandings of Christianity do but rather understands that humans are animals like gorillas, dogs, cats, elephants, and many other kinds of animals. There is humility is understanding that we are not some special species chosen by a creator but rather a species that has adapted well to the planet and in exercising those adaptations have managed to learn much about the nature of the planet and how to best protect ourselves from the elements and from other lifeforms that once posed major threats to our lives.

Positivity can be found from an understanding of the world and of the universe that is fact-based and rejects faith-based assumptions and assertions. Positivity can be found in an understanding of the world that doesn’t demand that love for children, siblings, and romantic partners be put secondary to love for a deity who even to believers themselves has never shown his face directly.

My positive message for kids is this: you have value and can change the world in ways that no one has ever predicted. You aren’t cursed because of who you find attractive, you aren’t sinful for being human. You are a member of a species that overcame the odds to become a dominant force on this world and to venture out into space. You are your own person and the most important decision you’ll ever make is not something as simple as whether or not you should believe in a deity. Your actions have power and you are responsible for your choices, the world isn’t fallen and you aren’t some horrible sinner. Your value and your legacy cannot be rightfully boiled down to whether or not you believe in something that many of your peers and friends will, but instead what you do with this life that you have, and the impact you have and try to make on your community. Being kind and striving to make the world a better place matters much more than whether or not you believe someone’s claims about somebody being the Messiah and that’s a positive message for kids that genuinely shouldn’t be controversial. How you treat others and how you encourage your community should matter more than whether or not you believe in a god, including to God in the off-chance that God is real.

There are a lot of positive messages for children that atheists can say that are wholesome, family friendly, and worth sharing even if Ken Ham and many other similarly ignorant Christians (and not all Christians are like this) don’t know or believe that we do.

Issuing A Challenge:

Let’s make something positive out of Ken Ham’s ignorance and his baseless claims about atheists. If you’re an atheist and you have a positive message for children, I want to hear it. If you run a blog or a YouTube channel and want to create a post or video about what your positive message for children is, do it and share it with me and I’ll retweet it and share it on my social media platforms. I want to hear your positive messages for children and I bet there are others who are curious about this as well. If you want to share your message privately or need help formatting it so that it can be shared, send me a message over Discord or Twitter, but I’m hoping to be able to share neat things and cool messages!

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