Grooming and Indoctrinating Young Minds

Love, love, love this video.

Did I say ‘love’ enough?

This video explores religious indoctrination and why it is no more (or should be no more) acceptable than political indoctrination.

The author also dives into the common arguments religious people often give to justify indoctrinating their children.

It’s well worth the time to watch. Let me know in the comment section below what you think; whether you agree or disagree and why.



  1. What I find amazing is the almost uniform way of thought expressed by nearly all atheists.

    It is as if there were some sort of mind mold factory someplace churning out mass produced drones.

    Yet the diversity among Christians is staggering.

    And atheists use diversity among Muslims to explain away the Jihad which stormed out of Arabia in the 7 century to eventually conquer over half of the old Roman Empire (which had been Christian for over 500 years).

    Nearly all atheists believe in the same hoaxes such as global warming, social justice, Black Lives Matter, over-population and alternative energy.

    • Yes, I’ve noticed that general uniformity, too, SoM. I’m pretty sure it’s called critical thinking. Shocking, I know.

      That’s why there’s such a robust correlation between, say, scientific consensus about some explanation or issue and confidence in them by so many atheists. It’s almost as if people who respect evidence-adduced reasons arrive at very similar conclusions. How very, very strange.

      Yet I also see a general uniformity from so many in the religious community who, if the explanation or issue contradicts a faith-based precept, seem to have a problem with exactly this (unless their lives or money depend on it, in which case all faith-based bets are off).

      What are the chances?

    • “hoaxes such as global warming”
      Oh dear, if you really believe that Global Warming is a hoax then I despair at your capacity to seriously consider evidence and reach conclusions.

      The evidence to support the reality of global warming is absolutely overwhelming.

      Furth the fact that only the earth is warming and not Mars shows that is as result of specific conditions on earth.

      • Peter,

        I am not the one who said that global warming was a hoax.

        A hacker got into the emails of the two top global warmers, Michael Mann of Penn State University and Phil Jones of East Anglia University.

        The emails revealed that Mann and Johns where cooking the data and corrupting the peer review process.

        Once that news got out, all the money being invested in Al Gore’s carbon exchange market dried up.

        Only gullible suckers still believe in the global warming hoax.

        • SoM, you say as if true The emails revealed that Mann and Johns where cooking the data and corrupting the peer review process.

          Having been cleared of these charges not once, not twice, not three times, but eight times by a variety of academic and governing professional bodies, Mann is now suing those climate change deniers who continues to claim this falsehood has any truth value. That’s you, SoM. Right here. You are slandering him here.

          Not believing in reality is no excuse to slander a professional’s work where your ignorance outweighs your integrity and doesn’t grant you the right to spread such blatant falsehoods and smear a fine academic just because it suits your anti-reality delusion.

      • actually, Peter, its now called climate change and it’s real. What is not real is that it’s our fault. The oceans are warming, and they regulate the land temps, since this is basically a water heavy planet.
        and, yeah, the other planets are warming too. So it really isnt just us. You may not have noticed, but that sun out there really does keep us warm. When there are solar flares and sunspots our weather changes.

        Some people believe we are in the interstice between ice ages, and there is a small ice age (such as the one we rose out of in the 50s and 60s) a-coming, fairly soon. This is the deep breath between them.

        • Judy, come on, think.

          These are standard climate denial talking points your offering ans they have already been thoroughly debunked. They are false. We – meaning human beings committing actions – really are causing a change in climate patterns at an extraordinary rate unparalleled in geological history. We are. And the scientific consensus supports this claim to 95% confidence. This is a greater confidence than, for example, germ theory.

          Think about that for a moment.

          What you are saying is equivalent to the idea that diseases are real but germs are somehow a real stretch and not to be trusted in spite of applications, therapies, and technologies based on the explanatory germ model being true that, oh by the way, just so happen to work for everyone everywhere all the time. The same is the case with climate change caused by human activity.

          What your reasoning demonstrates is a lack of understanding what climate science has indeed shown to be the almost certainly the case based on a tremendous amount of coherent modeling that fits all the data and has been accurately predictive.

          Also, consider this: that suggesting otherwise means you are assuming your opinion is greater in knowledge and expertise than every major scientific organization in the world. Are you really that smart? Or might it be that you may not have all the facts to justify such a blatant contrarian position? Which is more likely? Remember, you’re going to have to produce a model that fits the data at least as well. And climate change deniers have not been able to do this because their model is wrong.

        • Judy for a while I thought that it was the sun getting warmer that was driving climate change, not human activity, but I know realise that is not the case. NASA has demonstrated that it is only the earth that is warming in this manner, if the sun was the main driver then we expect to also see some warming on Mars..

  2. when I was a kid you grew up with what your family believed. It was no big deal. You went to church when they did, you went to Sunday School and didnt think much about it. I surely cannot call that indoctrination. We did not as they seem to today, segregate ourselves into tight little cliques, only allowing our children play dates with other children of the same stripe.
    My best friend’s mother was Baptist, her father wasnt. On Sundays they played quietly. That was about it. I never saw a bible reading, or an attempt to inculcate anything, or to tie every living event in their lives to god and his miracles. It just wasnt done.

    I had another friend who went to the Catholic Parochial school, and my mother asked me if I would like to go there too. I said no, the nuns there were scareee (and they were. they had rulers and used them) and the uniforms were ugly. she agreed. So I went to the nearly totally Jewish public school instead. She never made a huge deal out of Being Catholic, nor did I.

    it was also considered tacky to talk about your religion, even amongst yourselves, at least the way it is discussed now. No preaching, no indoctrination. “you cat’lic?” “yeah.” “cool, Im a methodist.” “Cool”. end of discussion.

  3. You don’t seem to understand my point. My point isn’t if something is cultural it should never be questioned or blindly accepted. My point is we take for granted how much our everyday habits and thinking, preferences, ideas of good and bad, are products of the cultures in which we grew up and that such a process to some extent is inevitable, hence why you’re speaking to me in English as opposed to Swahili. Just as one can trace the idea of thinking for oneself and questioning the wisdom of society all the way back to the Ancient Greeks. There is a culture already in place with loads of history in the background that influences what we value and think, whether we like it or not!

    I did watch the video before responding to you. My point is I think the video takes this idea for granted to some extent. The video’s political analogy works best when it assumes homogeneous families and ignores the existence of mixed families. There are kids who view themselves as both Christian and Jewish because they have parents of each. There are families with atheist and theist parents. The video suggests that thinking for oneself is at odds with religious indoctrination, and yet to qualify the point I made earlier with some data when different religions and ethnicity were given 5 choices of the most important values on how to raise a child: the group that ranked “thinking for oneself” as the most important value to teach children were Jews (with 71% putting that as the most important value based on GSS data. link)*

    That doesn’t quite comport .with some of the claims–let’s call them what they are: assumptions–the video makes. It calls religious education indoctrination as opposed to education. Well, okay. But again this assumes that all religious education does is teach beliefs.

    My “religious” education was taught by a Holocaust survivor. (link)

    1) I heard first hand stories about her experiences. If I heard first hand stories about a Holocaust survivors experiences in a history class, I think we would call that teaching.

    2). I learned Hebrew and Yiddish, although not well. If you take a Spanish class and learn some Spanish (very likely also not well) in a public school, we would call that teaching.

    3) I learned Biblical stories, which I accept as fictional stories.

    4) I learned the symbols of Judaism. Such as the meaning of the Shofar.

    Teaching or indoctrination? Depends on how you look at it and I suspect in what context it is presented.

    * For the record, they measured religious nones as one of the comparisons groups and atheists weren’t separated out as a distinct group.

        • Because it’s disjointed and you seem confused. Yes, learning about the holocaust is teaching. Learning religion would be teaching if religions were taught together along with non-religion, so that the person gets a choice. There aren’t competing holocaust ideologies. You can learn multiple languages. You aren’t told you will be punished for learning another language.

          If you accept them as fictional stories then you and I seem to agree on something.

          • Yes, but if religious indoctrination wasn’t indoctrination but something else entirely, something more like teaching about a religion, sort of a narrow kind of comparative religion course without the comparison bit, and if religion in the broad sense was seen more like an immersion into a language or exposure to a national dress or ethnic culinary dish, then we could pretend we were being reasonable to excuse the intentional grooming of young minds with religious indoctrination because it’s really something else entirely, you see. And if we did that and looked at religious indoctrination as something it’s not then surely it’s reasonable to pretend it is mostly fine and dandy… like the inevitability of learning any part of culture in which one is immersed.

            The scope necessary to repaint religious indoctrination into being synonymous with whatever it isn’t in order to make excuses for its ‘inevitability’ and therefore acceptability is a remarkable piece of mental gymnastics. This is a clue about its truth value…

          • The video more or less claims that all religious education is indoctrination. By giving you a concrete example of things actually learned in a particular religious classroom (as opposed to an imaginary abstract one that the video uses) and then you conceding that some of these particular parts do constitute teaching I’m suggesting there are some problems here with the original claim that all parts of religious education is indoctrination. That’s all.

            I suspect some of the reason we’re talking around each other has to do with the way Jews conceptualize religion/culture. Most Jews in the U. S. think of Judaism as a culture. (link.) You might try reading this link for the historical reasons why this might be.

            When I claim I plan to teach my child those cultural values. Here is what I mean:

            – I want her to get a chance to celebrate the Jewish Holidays.

            – I want her to have a cultural sense of her Jewish identity

            – I want her to understand what the symbols involved in those holidays mean

            – I want her to value caring for others and understand the importance of empathy.

            – I want her to consider other people’s perspectives other than her own and understand people can view the same issue/problem/situation from many different angles and sometimes draw very different conclusions because of this.

            – I want her to learn to think for herself

            – I want her to learn critical thinking skills.

            – I want her to value education

            – I want her to question, question, question!

            – I want her to be independent and self-reliant.

            I could care less if she ends up believing in God or not. If she does that is fine; if she doesn’t that is fine with me too.

            • See? Religious indoctrination isn’t indoctrination when it’s religious education. And what’s wrong with religious education? Why, nothing at all… as long as it isn’t religious indoctrination, which was the whole point of the post you sort of missed in your haste to redefine the topic.

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