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Paragraph Quoted From Parenting School Years Dec/Jan 2011 Issue Regarding Spirituality & Kids

What do you think of this paragraphs I'm copying from the Dec/Jan 2011 issue of Parenting School Years I received in the mail yesterday? It's in an article titled, "Beyond Belief; Raising a Spiritual Kid."
And that exploration is well worth the effort. Miller's research indicates that personal spirituality results in much more than just a nice warm, fuzzy feeling. She says kids who develop a sense of a loving higher power or a guiding force - whether they call it God, creator, Allah or simply "loving universe" - are 80% less likely to suffer major depression and 50% less likely to suffer from substance abuse as teens.

Similarly, a study from the University of British Columbia, in Canada, found that children who are spiritual (and researchers clearly separated "spirituality" from "attending church services" or "belonging to a church") tend to be significantly happier individuals overall. Having an understanding of something greater than themselves seems to enhance children's sense of personal meaning and purpose, and to reinforce their connections to their community and to other people.

It doesn't discuss the effect of 'religiousness' verses 'spirituality' on children, just discusses that a spiritual child is better off (as allegedly proven by statistics quoted above) than a child who is not spiritual. The article then focuses on tips to creating one's own spirituality.

What do you think of those paragraphs? Agree? Disagree?

Answer Question

Asked by flatlanderjenn at 9:44 PM on Nov. 23, 2010 in Religious Debate

Level 17 (4,354 Credits)
Answers (23)
  • That makes sense to me. I am "spiritual" and feel that my decisions to be good,to be honest, do be responsible and to not hurt people is because of being spiritual and connected to a God, a greater good, a standard of behavior.
    But I am not in favor of 'organized religion'.

    Answer by kerp1960 at 10:53 PM on Nov. 23, 2010

  • Well, that's kinda tough. I kind of agree. I think that in tough times, a lot of people turn to God, and sometimes it's the last resort and saves them. Spirituality can be very comforting, and makes one feel like there is more to the world than the here and now.

    That's not to say that people can't be happy without God, though.

    Answer by LovingSAHMommy at 11:18 PM on Nov. 23, 2010

  • It would be interesting to see more information on how they arrived at these conclusions. Who is in the control group, is family make up considered, amount of involvement. Any activity that brings families together for quality time will produce similair stats, consider the difference a family dinner time can make in a childs life.

    Answer by emptynstr at 12:42 AM on Nov. 24, 2010

  • I agree.  The teen years can be especially difficult and I think having some type of spiritual belief helps teens realize that no matter how hard the situation is now it will pass.   I think it can also help young people see the lessons during sad times  instead of only the heartache.


    Answer by RyansMom001 at 5:16 AM on Nov. 24, 2010

  • Correlation does not equal causation. What you posted seems like correlation not causation. I would have to see the original study in order to better assess.

    Answer by purpleducky at 9:07 AM on Nov. 24, 2010

  • I also read the article and I agree with it. When I look back on how I handled life as an adolescent (agnostic/athiest/etc.) compared to how I handle life now (Christian), there is a huge difference. Of course some of that is maturity, but when dealing with many losses and trials as an adult, my faith definately helps keep me from depression and helps get me out if I sink into it.

    Answer by kittieashy at 10:18 AM on Nov. 24, 2010

  • I agree. (my experience)


    Answer by sugahmamma at 10:27 AM on Nov. 24, 2010

  • I don't know, that sounds plausible. But, I'd think that the child's PARENTS would be the most relevant 'loving higher power & guiding force'.

    Answer by BubbaLuva at 11:02 AM on Nov. 24, 2010

  • I think it's BS. Many people were raised with some kind of religion, and there are plenty of them out there who are drug addicts and mental cases. I think it's actually the reverse. People forced to have religion while growing up are the ones who feel like failures in some way. They couldn't live up to what was expected of them. Also, drug dependence and mental illness is genetic.

    Answer by NightPhoenix at 11:10 AM on Nov. 24, 2010

  • I strongly agree. Having a higher power, whether it be God, Christ, your own Christ consciousness, Bhudda, Quan Yin or a Spirit guide helps make healthy and wise decisions. If they learn to meditate, go within, the answers are there. Learn to listen to the inner (higher) self. (What would Christ do?) Let them know that they are perfect just the way they are. Show them their best qualities (love of family & friends, love of nature, helpfulness, hard working, intelligence, crafty, etc.). Help them release anything that doesn't work for them (anger, jealousy, fear, etc.). That is Spiritual. Religion is structured, strict, follow the book. Spiritual is living to the best and highest good for all concerned.

    Answer by Kimimale at 11:22 AM on Nov. 24, 2010

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