Bad Theism · Inoculation Against Indoctrination

Inoculation Against Indoctrination: Atheists?

For the last post in this series, click here: Inoculation Against Indoctrination: Ages 0-3: Sights and Sounds.

So I started this series with a basic idea to describe how religious faiths indoctrinate people into their beliefs. However, the very first comment that I received on this through my twitter account was: “Are atheists indoctrinated as well as theists?” So, obviously we need to touch on this idea a bit before moving on to any other age groups.


First let’s look at the definition of indoctrination.

Indoctrination – Noun

-the process of teaching a person or group to accept a set of beliefs uncritically.

So with that said can Atheists indoctrinate their children? The answer is of course yes, they could indoctrinate their children and probably some do, but I don’t see it as being as large of an issue as it is with religious faiths. In this article I will try to explain why?

First off, why would an atheist feel the need to indoctrinate their child? For example, when my daughter comes to me with a question, I don’t simply make things up, or go with what I have been told about something. If it’s something I am unsure of, the answer is as easy as, “I don’t know but let’s find out.” For the most part I try to raise my daughter to think critically, and to come to these answers on her own.

If she asks me what I believe about something I will be more than willing to tell her my own personal views on a topic and show her evidence to support those views, but I am not in the business of telling her this is how things are because I say this is how things are. Perhaps she will be religious when she grows older, so far she doesn’t show much interest in faith but there have been times that she has asked why we don’t go to church?

Her life is her life to live, it’s not my life. She is free to be an atheist, be religious, spiritual, gay, trans, straight, asexual, bisexual, her life choices are really none of my business as long as she isn’t hurting anyone or being hurt herself. My job is to keep her alive, make sure she gets an education, feed and cloth her, and then send her into the world with the tools that she will need in order to survive.

critical thinking

I’ve already touched on it, but the second reason that I don’t think atheists indoctrinate their children to the degree that theists do, that being critical thinking. I teach her to question what she is told, if she thinks what I said doesn’t quite make sense I always encourage her to look it up for herself. We had a discussion about evolution the other day and she wasn’t quite getting the connection between apes and humans, as best as I tried to answer her questions it just wasn’t quite enough. A few minutes doing her own research and she was able to claim for herself that she now knows why humans are considered apes.

Religions for the most part are fairly lacking in the area of critical thinking. My entire blog is devoted to exposing these illogical and irrational mindsets. God said it and so I believe it is the epitome of non-critical thought. If god said it why did he say it, and how do we know which god said it or if this god that supposedly said something even exists. Critical thinking leads you to asking these questions and many more.

As I stated before, my daughter is her own person. I’m not trying to shape her into anything or make her conform to any mindset. Sometimes I will agree with the choices that she makes and other times I will disagree. I made a lot of mistakes growing up and I’m sure she will make plenty of mistakes as well. It’s a part of life and one that it will be her responsibility to sort out.


Lastly, lets talk about the fact that I was indoctrinated into religion. I was taught chapter and verse every single day of my life for nearly 20 years and then I followed the faith for another 10 years after that. No one indoctrinated me into atheism, I came to atheism when I began to think critically about my own beliefs and try to make sense of them in a world where they do not make sense.

  • Why did god have to die so that god could forgive us from god?
  • Why do creationists fight science so much?
  • Why is there absolutely no evidence of a global flood?
  • Why is there no evidence of an exodus?
  • How could Adam and Eve understand the concept of sin if they hadn’t ate the fruit yet?
  • Why is the evidence for Jesus so scarce outside the gospels?
  • Why did the gospel writers wait decades before writing anything down?

Once I started looking at these ideas in a truly critical way, they completely fell apart and I was left with the choice of continuing to pretend being a believer or simply accept the fact that I no longer had a belief in god.

My story is actually pretty common, the number of people born to atheist families is fairly low compared to those who become atheists at a later date.  This makes sense due to the fact that atheists make up a fairly small portion of the general populace. We aren’t indoctrinated, we freed ourselves from the chains of indoctrination.

So when you say that atheism is simply another form of indoctrination, you are really no better than stating that the act of being free from slavery is equitable to still being a slave. My mind is free, I have no belief in god. I might have people I enjoy listening to, reading their books, or watching their videos, but I do not worship these people, I don’t base my life on the religion of Dawkins, the philosophy of Hitchens, or the creeds of Harris. I am my own person who looks at the evidence and come to my own conclusions.

Satanic Sundays

Satanic Sunday: Final Fantasy

Good morning heathens and hell-bound friends and foes alike! Today marks another edition of Satanic Sunday, if you’d like to read the last Satanic Sunday, click here:Satanic Sunday #9: Muppets, Bowie, and Aslan. Also this article will hearken back to the first Satanic Sunday post, Satanic Sunday #1: The Legend of Zelda. As you know by now, this article is about things that were considered Satanic while growing up in a fundamentalist household, they might be things my parents actually considered Satanic or just things that the church or society in general deemed as such. Enjoy!

Growing up in the 80’s, you had to have an NES in order to be included in the social structure of the time. Sure, some kids were unlucky enough to have parents that bought them the Sega Master System instead, but the rest of us had our Nintendo’s. Those Sega Master kids I’m sure have endured countless hours of therapy due to their lack of social life as a child…who did they trade and borrow games from as a child? So sad…

Anyway, the NES was pretty damn cool and for good reason, I mean look at these graphics!

Anyway, as I stated in the blog about the Legend of Zelda, my parents were very selective in what games my brother and I were allowed to play.  Anything involving magic was completely forbidden and so there were a lot of great games that I wasn’t allowed to enjoy as a child. A strange one being Mega Man, not sure what the reasoning was on this but he was considered evil as well.

“It might seem a bit silly, but for the time this story was EPIC!”

Anyway, Final Fantasy is a role-playing series of games that have existed from the dawn of time, well the dawn of my time that is.  The first game followed the journey of the Four Warriors of Light, who are seeking to restore four orbs of light that have been darkened by the evil Chaos. It might seem a bit silly, but for the time this story was EPIC! The game allowed you to fight evil with good magic and so of course it was considered evil.

I’ve included a gameplay video below so you can see just how awesome these spells looked…I mean who wouldn’t want to play this game?

Well, if you read my post about the Legend of Zelda you will know that my cousin gave me a huge collection of NES games and that one day my mother destroyed any game that even might contain the slightest amount of magic. Included in these titles was a copy of Final Fantasy.

muppet adventure
Sadly, there would be no #2. Since this game was shit…

What my mother didn’t know is that shortly after this incident I worked out a deal with a friend of mine for another copy of the game. I gave up a copy of the Muppet Adventure, TMNT 1, and Bomberman for Final Fantasy, when I look back I’m still pretty proud of that trade. My friend definitely ended up on the bad side of the trade.

So now that I had another copy, I had to keep it safe. So while some kids might have concealed a porno mag or cigarettes, I had my copy of Final Fantasy stowed away securely in the garage. This was a great hiding spot and it never was found by my parents. Unfortunately I never had the courage to actually get the game out of its hiding spot and actually play it. I mean my mother had burned my games in the past, who knows what she would do if she found that I had gone against her wishes and procured one of the games again. So there it sat, in my garage, hidden away from my parents, and my fear prevented me from ever playing it.

Well, we moved away from that house and, for all I know, my copy of Final Fantasy remained tucked away in the corner of the garage long after we had moved. Recently that garage has been torn down and so I can only hope that someone found this gem, wrapped in plastic, and got some good use from it…if not it more than likely ended up being burned along with the rest of the garage after they tore it down. Such a sad fate for an incredibly game.


Well, the years passed and I stopped caring what my mother thought of the games that I played, sometimes she would cry if she thought we were playing something evil but she never did burn any of our games again. I grew up, have a family of my own now and much less time for gaming. I had honestly forgotten about this game until one day, in a used game store, I saw a copy and decided to pick it up. Unfortunately, I had forgotten my wallet so I made the journey home to grab my greenbacks.

I walked into the game store, and slammed down my money…sadly, looking in the display case I realized that the copy of the game had been purchased within the 15 minutes that it took for me to run home and grab my wallet.

I seethed in anger, this game had been stolen from me again. What diabolical force of chaos had swooped in and purchased this title? Would I need to gather three friends and go on a search for the game? Well…no…because when I got home and jumped on Facebook the identity of the culprit was made known to all.

It was my brother…

of course.gif


Well, another year went by and I had almost forgotten about the anger that I felt for my brother and the sadness that I experienced over this game that the universe seemed to be keeping me from playing. Christmas came and my brother handed me a gift, I opened it to find a collection of NES games, including the game that have evaded me for so long, Final Fantasy.

final fantasy.jpgThe game is great and it’s honestly sad that people actually found anything evil about the game. The graphics are good but good for the time, the most you learn about spells is that they are done by going through a menu and clicking a button on your controller. It’s a fun game but there is nothing about the game that could ever actually lead a person to evil or dark magic. It’s a good game, I’m glad to have it in my collection, but it is definitely not satanic at all.