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Parenting Beyond Belief, 2nd Edition by Dale McGowan

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SPARE THE ROD—AND SPARE ME THE REST

DALE McGOWAN

Secular parenting should not be motivated primarily by disbelief in God. My religious doubts sprang from thinking for myself, not the other way around. So it’s freethought down at the roots of my parenting, not atheism. When someone asks for the foundations of my parenting, I paraphrase the Bertrand Russell quote that begins this book: Good parenting is inspired by love and guided by knowledge. Next to the love of my children, my parenting philosophy is motivated primarily by confidence in reason—and there’s no reason this should apply any less to discipline and moral development than any other aspect of parenting.

I don’t spank my kids. Many religious fundamentalists spank in earnest, convinced ...

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