Another Halloween is gone. Peanut wasn't feeling up to par and had fits over his costume. We eventually convinced him to wear it and all went out for a little trick-or-treating fun.
When we got home, I noticed this in his bag:
Why do people feel the need to give this absolute crap to children? Why? I respect that some Christians feel obligated to spread the good word. I respect that some feel Halloween is a pagan holiday to be avoided. That's fine with me. Please, turn off your porch light and don't participate. Don't instead say "I"m out of candy, but I have a book instead." My child is already terrified that he is going to die. We've had horrible meltdowns about it. The knowledge of a happy afterlife where we'll all be together is of no comfort to him. All he knows is that someday we die and that's VERY SCARY. So please, do not put your hateful shit into his bag, telling him his dog will be euthanized if he doesn't pray.
Weirdly I had lunch with several friends the day before Halloween. Two are devout Christians and one is like me, she's not church-going but was raised with religion. One is a very good friend and practices what she preaches. She's not judgmental but talks about God and her beliefs out of love. The other is a bit judgmental so I usually let the two of them talk with an occasional comment. AS we were discussing something relating to afterlife she looked at me and said "selzach, we've never really talked about your beliefs, what do you believe?" Talk about being put on the spot. I was honest. I told them I was raised Protestant and that I'm not completely sure of my beliefs. I pray, but I'm not always certain I believe in God. I'm not certain of heaven - I'd love to believe there is one, but I feel that when we die our energy dissipates and rejoins the rest of the universe.
I'm really glad I didn't ask what I was thinking when they were talking about near-death experiences: what if the feeling of peace and the light seen during near-deaths are actually a biological function of dying and not a spiritual experience?
I'm sure the more judgmental friend feels bad for me that I don't fully believe. And it is kind of sad. I would love to be convinced in God and that a wondrous afterlife is waiting for me. But I can't force myself to believe. Nor do I want to force myself into belief out of fear of hell. I think God wants us to love Him fully, not out of fear of the alternative.