Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Raising an Atheist or Thor vs JC

Every once in a while I like to check in with my son (Will age 7) and see how I'm doing as Atheist-Dad.

I asked him what does he knows about Thor. I didn't ask him to differentiate between the Marvel superhero against the mythological deity (I think a lot of people would have difficulty with that task).

Will's responses in order...
1. He has a day named after him, Thursday.

This is true!

2. He's god of thunderclaps.

Two for two. Thor controlled both lightning and thunder.
3. He has gloves that protect his hands.

This is true for the deity but not for the superhero. Thor needed gloves (Jarngreipr from the Old Norse "Iron Gripper") to protect his hands. When he threw Mjolnir (Thor's magic hammer ) it would be white hot when it returned.

At which point Will remembered...

4. Thor has a magic hammer that returns to him when thrown.
People believed that when lightning occurred it was Thor throwing his hammer.

I asked a follow up question, "Do you know the name of the hammer?"

"No." He replied. I was okay with that. Hey, he knew the guy had magic gloves.

5. Thor has a helmet with wings on it.

This is true for the superhero. I have seen several depictions of the deity and he is sans hat.
At this point Will was more interested in the TV show we were watching (Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares). I thought I'd ask him some more followup questions.

"Where does Thor live?" I queried.

"Asgard" Will said without hesitation.

"How does Thor get to and from Asgard?" This is a kids, "Double Jeopardy Question."

"The rainbow path."

The actual answer is the rainbow bridge (Bifrost), but as the only judge I decided to give it to him.

I turned to Will, "Who is Jesus Christ?"

Will looked at me, "Who?"

Ahhhhh, job well done.


  1. I don't argue with atheists - everyone's entitled to their opinion. Jesus said, "better a millstone around your neck & thrown into the sea, than keep children from me"

  2. It's funny when people talk about their imaginary friends.

  3. Actually, Thor was also prominently featured in the movie, "Adventures in Babysitting." Which ironically relates to what Anonymous says about "keeping children from me." Which, in fact, referred not to Jesus but to Elizabeth Shue.

    Just thought I'd throw that in.

  4. A millstone around my neck and into the drink, eh? Bet you deal with unwanted kittens the same way. You don't strike me as the spayin' n' neutering type.

    Ah, anonymous poster, this is EXACTLY why I kept my child away from Christians like yourself. Why would I want him exposed, at a tender age, to stories of a person/deity so narcissistic that they advocated murder (or suicide? Not clear from your quote) of those who refused to brainwash their children.

    Brainwash their children to WORSHIP him, worship this crazed egotistical deity who advocates drowning of those who won't obey. Nice. Real nice. Can't imagine why we aren't all flocking in droves to sign up with what ever nasty little backwoods sect you're advocating.

    I shudder!

  5. Atheist anonymous here, (not the believer in fictional deities)

    Love your post Ellen, so refreshing to find an American with not only grammatical and spelling ability but also intelligence in keeping your kids away from religious nutters.

    Apologies if my assumption of your USA-ness is wrong.


Google+ Badge

Pageviews last month