It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.

 

Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.

 

The faith of the Fatherless

page: 1
3
<<   2 >>

log in

join
share:

posted on Jun, 22 2014 @ 10:38 AM
link   
The faith of the Fatherless, examines the relationship between father and child, and how it influences ones spirituality.


I had a gentle loving father, that took me to church everyday for the first eighteen years of my life, he was a gentlemen in every sense of the word, His relationship was the same with his father, he worked side by side with his father until his father passed at the age of eighty-six.

My grandfather likewise was totally devoted to my father, and I and my grandfather, we were close and he lived with us .

Now I see how the non existence of a loving relationship of my husband and his father influenced him.

I was once told many years ago that we see god as we see our father, all this comes as no surprise to me, so I decided to find some literature on this subject.

Also taking into consideration all the fatherless children of our generation.



Today, more than a third of American children live apart from their biological fathers. If current trends hold, only about half of America's kids will spend their entire childhood within an intact family.
Read more at www.beliefnet.com...


www.amazon.com...

I haven't read the book but I found the reviews interesting.



Starting with Freud's "projection theory" of religion-that belief in God is merely a product of man's desire for security-Professor Vitz argues that psychoanalysis actually provides a more satisfying explanation for atheism. Disappointment in one's earthly father, whether through death, absence, or mistreatment, frequently leads to a rejection of God. A biographical survey of influential atheists of the past four centuries shows that this "defective father hypothesis" provides a consistent explanation of the "intense atheism" of these thinkers. A survey of the leading intellectual defenders of Christianity over the same period confirms the hypothesis, finding few defective fathers. Professor Vitz concludes with an intriguing comparison of male and female atheists and a consideration of other psychological factors that can contribute to atheism.

Professor Vitz does not argue that atheism is psychologically determined. Each man, whatever his experiences, ultimately chooses to accept God or reject him. Yet the cavalier attribution of religious faith to irrational, psychological needs is so prevalent that an exposition of the psychological factors predisposing one to atheism is necessary.


review

A good part of the book consists of 20 biographical sketches of prominent post-Enlightenment atheists, focusing on their relationships to their fathers or father figures. This group includes Friedrich Nietzche, David Hume, Bertrand Russell, John-Paul Sartre, Albert Camus, and H.G. Wells. As a control group, the book provides biographical sketches of a similar number of prominent theists from the same period, including Blaise Pascal, Edmund Burke, Moses Mendelssohn, Soren Kierkegaard, G. K. Chesterton, and Dietrich Bonhoffer. Vitz finds that characteristically, the atheists had weak, bad or absent fathers, while the theists had good fathers or father substitutes.


Paul Vitz



Vitz analysed liberalism and believes there is a link between fatherlessness and atheism, as he proposes in his book Faith of the Fatherless, the Psychology of Atheism (1999). The thesis of Faith of the Fatherless holds that famous believers—e.g., Blaise Pascal, Edmund Burke, Friedrich Schleiermacher, Karl Barth, and Dietrich Bonhoeffer—had strong and loving fathers, whereas their atheistic counterparts—e.g., Thomas Hobbes, Voltaire, Sigmund Freud, Mao Zedong, and Adolf Hitler—all had fathers who were weak, unloving, or absent. Thus, he says, philosophers, professors, and political tyrants who denounce God do so in order to relive traumatic childhood experiences and to subconsciously seek out help rather than to explore any sort of valid or respectable reasoning process.

en.wikipedia.org...
Vitz says that his own atheism as a young academic derived more from social conformity and a career need than from any damaged relationship with his father. In his view, his positive father relationship probably helped him to get past his temporary atheism and convert to the Catholic faith

Obviously not all atheist have poor relationships with their fathers, and there are many other factors.


edit on 103030p://bSunday2014 by Stormdancer777 because: (no reason given)

edit on 103030p://bSunday2014 by Stormdancer777 because: (no reason given)




posted on Jun, 22 2014 @ 10:43 AM
link   
a reply to: Stormdancer777

I can add some insight to this post because my own biological father took his own life when I was 13 years old.

At that time I had 'almost' convinced myself I was an atheist. As I aged beyond that the complexities of life suggested I change my view but never was the feeling of rejecting god stronger in my life than shortly after that occurrence.

Interesting thread.



posted on Jun, 22 2014 @ 10:45 AM
link   
I always saw God as my heavenly father, who I could take all my troubles to, my refuge, I was surprised many see him as a diabolic tyrant, but after years of reading the reasons why people view him this way, I do understand.

I was never brought up with that negative concept of god, but of Jesus the redeemer, who taught love and compassion, peace and eternal life.



posted on Jun, 22 2014 @ 10:47 AM
link   

originally posted by: corvuscorrax
a reply to: Stormdancer777

I can add some insight to this post because my own biological father took his own life when I was 13 years old.

At that time I had 'almost' convinced myself I was an atheist. As I aged beyond that the complexities of life suggested I change my view but never was the feeling of rejecting god stronger in my life than shortly after that occurrence.

Interesting thread.


I am so sorry, thank you for sharing.



posted on Jun, 22 2014 @ 10:49 AM
link   

originally posted by: corvuscorrax
a reply to: Stormdancer777

I can add some insight to this post because my own biological father took his own life when I was 13 years old.

At that time I had 'almost' convinced myself I was an atheist. As I aged beyond that the complexities of life suggested I change my view but never was the feeling of rejecting god stronger in my life than shortly after that occurrence.

Interesting thread.


I wanted to add I see how the loss of your father meant the loss of that godlike figure in your life, very compelling.
edit on 103030p://bSunday2014 by Stormdancer777 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 22 2014 @ 10:51 AM
link   
a reply to: Stormdancer777

Ones spirituality or lack there of is not a result of which parents are present...

Most people inherit the religion of their parents... and whether or not they stick with it depends on their surroundings

One can be brought up in a religious house hold, yet still turn to atheism after a few bad experiences with those who also participate within that particular belief system...

Likewise, someone can be brought up In an atheistic household, and turn to religion to seek out God...

I've heard many people try to claim that people that are raised without a Father turn out bad... That is just pure BS

A child only needs one good parent... and ones spirituality can evolve or change according to the needs of said person within his/her life




posted on Jun, 22 2014 @ 10:55 AM
link   
a reply to: Akragon

I don't disagree with anything you have posted, but I do find merit in his observations, and see it in the lives of friends and family.



posted on Jun, 22 2014 @ 10:56 AM
link   
I haven't had a father since I was six, and I can't say that I ever really needed one. I don't think daddy issues have anything to do with my atheism. It's a lot less personal than that. Simply put, basing your belief (or lack thereof) on your relationship with your father is not nearly as rational as I would like.
edit on 22-6-2014 by AfterInfinity because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 22 2014 @ 10:57 AM
link   
a reply to: Akragon

I think what strikes me most are the large numbers of fatherless children in our society and what seems to be the rise of atheism.



posted on Jun, 22 2014 @ 10:58 AM
link   
My dad was a bit of a renegade and spent most of my youthful years in and out of institutions .He had lost his father when he was young . My own experience towards a heavenly father has always been one I struggled with .I guess my grandfather and some uncles were more of a fatherly figure growing up .It's only after many years of my fathers passing that I can look back and find some sort of a semblance of love towards me .He was one to never spare the rod ,but he was surely not religious .Being Native he was subjected to the residential schools run by the Catholic Church which has a history of not so lovingly approach to children of the past .

Interesting thread op .Should be interesting to hear from others on both sides of the issue .



posted on Jun, 22 2014 @ 10:59 AM
link   

originally posted by: AfterInfinity
I haven't had a father since I was six, and I can't say that I ever really needed one. I don't think daddy issues have anything to do with my atheism. It's a lot less personal than that.


Interesting AI, maybe it had more of an affect on you than you realize.



posted on Jun, 22 2014 @ 11:02 AM
link   
a reply to: the2ofusr1

Thank you for sharing your personal experience, my mother was tough as nails disciplinarian.

My father never laid a hand on me.

edit on 113030p://bSunday2014 by Stormdancer777 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 22 2014 @ 11:16 AM
link   
Your article starts with "Wonder why atheists hate God? Check out their relationship with Dad"

Atheism isn't a matter of "rejecting" or "hating" God. It's the state of not believing that there is a God to accept, reject or hate. I don't "reject" God any more than I "reject" Santa Claus or the Easter Bunny. To me, they are all simply imaginary - manufactured in man's mind to serve a purpose in our society. How can I hate something I don't believe exists??? I don't hate the Easter Bunny.

Many people think atheism is born out of bad experiences with religion or with God. I suppose some people turn away from religion because they had a bad experience, but I would guess that most of us just start asking questions and discover on our own that what we have learned about religion, the bible and God is far too illogical and unreasonable to be actual truth. Also, the more we know about science, the more the old stories don't add up.

I did have a bad relationship with my father, but there are MANY believers who had a terrible relationship with their fathers. I agree with Akragon. I don't think the two are related at all.



posted on Jun, 22 2014 @ 11:21 AM
link   

originally posted by: Stormdancer777

originally posted by: AfterInfinity
I haven't had a father since I was six, and I can't say that I ever really needed one. I don't think daddy issues have anything to do with my atheism. It's a lot less personal than that.


Interesting AI, maybe it had more of an affect on you than you realize.



Perhaps. But the way I look at it is this: if having a healthy thriving relationship with my father is what it takes to believe in a god, then how do I know that "God" is not merely a glorified term for paternal relationships? That's not divine to me, nor does it account for everything typically credited to a god. You may as well attribute theism to the presence of pets or the quality of your social life while growing up. Insert childhood factor here = God.

So even if I were to have a father that I'm on good terms with, that means diddly squat in regard to my spiritual stance. Sure, I'd feel pretty good about having another family member and friend, but in the end, when I die, every concept I founded on that basis dies with me. Which pretty much settles the matter. And as I said before, using familial relationships to determine the existence of a deity falls rather short of scientific standards.
edit on 22-6-2014 by AfterInfinity because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 22 2014 @ 12:30 PM
link   
a reply to: Akragon Line 1 and 2 are contridicting eachother. You are full of it if you really think a child only needs one parent. A child can be raised many different ways but nothing will ever compare to the benefit of a traditional upbringing. Everything else is just getting by.



posted on Jun, 22 2014 @ 01:39 PM
link   
a reply to: deadeyedick

There is no contradiction...

People inherit their religion for the most part... it has nothing to do with whether or not they have two parents

A single parent can raise a perfectly good child as long as said parent is a good parent...

Mind you it takes more work to take on both rolls... but that doesn't mean having both parents is necessary...

I am a perfect example of this... So don't tell me im full of it... get me?


edit on 22-6-2014 by Akragon because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 23 2014 @ 06:07 AM
link   
a reply to: Stormdancer777
I would have to disagree with this hypothesis. My husband is an atheist. He has never had any interest in any religious dogma. His parents were loving, logical, and as he says, he never lacked anything. They are scientific, just the facts kind of family.

Myself, I was raised amongst all the religious dogma. Church every Sunday. My parents were not exemplary. From the age of 6-13 years, I was physically and sexually abused by my male family members. My belief in God at that time, was actually stronger. I had created in my mind what a perfect father should be. Nowadays, I don't believe in 'the one father in the sky' approach, yet I am still quite personally spiritual.

Based on my own perceptions, I would have to believe that the stance provided in the link and book, is no more than grasping at straws. In reality, whether one has atheist or theist views, cannot be determined by whether one has a good two parent household. It really is more likely determined by what had more influence in your early childhood, not just from your parents...but your whole community. My husband grew up amongst a community of scientists and professors. I grew up in a more rural setting, where everyone went to church.



posted on Jun, 23 2014 @ 07:33 AM
link   

originally posted by: Stormdancer777
I had a gentle loving father, that took me to church everyday for the first eighteen years of my life,



Everyday??

Every single day for 18 years? That's some hardcore indoctrination, abusive even.

It shouldnt be a surprise you hold such warped views I guess...



posted on Jun, 23 2014 @ 09:36 AM
link   
Statistically, this is borne out by the facts:


So are men really only useful as sperm donors, or is there something that the feminist agenda is missing? Studies have shown that, indeed, their thinking is very flawed and they are missing a great deal. The bottom line of research says that it is the father who overwhelmingly determines the moral and spiritual development of the children. Three separate studies that I have read come to mind: One done by the Swiss government, a second reported by the Baptist Press and finally a third one reported by MSNBC (hardly a Christian biased outlet). A variety of sources—the government, church and the liberal left—yet these investigations show the same results. All three sources support the important influence fathers have on their kids—shocking as that is to those in the “we-don’t-need-men” club!

First, the Swiss study, published in 2000 showed that “it is the religious practice of the father of the family that, above all, determines the future church attendance of the children.” Check out this amazing statistics:

Mother and Father attend church regularly:

33% of their children will end up attending church regularly

25% of their children will end up not attending at all


Mother attends church regularly. Father does not attend church at all:

2% of their children will end up attending church regularly

60% of their children will end up not attending at all


Father attends church regularly. Mother does not attend church at all:

44% of their children will end up attending church regularly

34% of their children will end up not attending at all (Source)

If Dad is absent, has a bad relationship with the kid or doesn't attend church himself, it doesn't matter what the mother or other environmental factors are -- the children are unlikely to attend church as grown-ups.



edit on 23-6-2014 by adjensen because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 23 2014 @ 10:10 AM
link   

originally posted by: adjensen
If Dad is absent, has a bad relationship with the kid or doesn't attend church himself, it doesn't matter what the mother or other environmental factors are -- the children are unlikely to attend church as grown-ups.


To me, religion is indoctrination. "Going to church" (or continuing indoctrination) is no measure that the people who do so are moral, kind, generous, caring, "good people" or people who have a good relationship with their deity. In fact, MANY who go to church are mean, immoral bigoted and judgmental people.

And, of course, the opposite is true. There are MANY people who don't go to church that are kind, generous, forgiving, tolerant and loving.

And apparently, churchgoers lie about going to church.



Several years ago we teamed up with sociologist Mark Chaves to test the 40 percent figure for church attendance. Our initial study, based on attendance counts in Protestant churches in one Ohio county and Catholic churches in 18 dioceses, indicated a much lower rate of religious participation than the polls report. Instead of 40 percent of Protestants attending church, we found 20 percent. Instead of 50 percent of Catholics attending church, we found 28 percent. In other words, actual church attendance was about half the rate indicated by national public opinion polls.
...
We attended a total of 38 masses in 13 parishes over several months, counting attendance at each mass. Our counts showed that 24 percent of Catholics attended mass during an average week. In a poll of Ashtabula county residents, however, 51 percent of Roman Catholic respondents said they attended church during the past week. The gap between what people say and do in this rural county is roughly the same as that found in the original study among Catholics in 18 metropolitan dioceses.


Source

I don't buy the premise that having a father in a family makes the child a better person. There are FAR too many factors that contribute to being a "good person".




top topics



 
3
<<   2 >>

log in

join