8 embarrassing signs I was a dumb baby

Yesterday I was thinking about what I was like as a baby and I came to a conclusion. 

When I was a baby I was extraordinarily dumb. It’s no surprise I had to wait until I was five years old until they finally let me into a school classroom.

I’m glad I lived in a nice home to make up for it. My parents are living legends who never once called me dumb, but they probably should have.

Just how dumb was baby Karol?

  1. I didn’t know how to speak. Like an idiot I used my “voice box” to mumble incoherent gibberish which nobody understood. (I was not on drugs or booze. I was too dumb to know what drugs or booze were anyway.)
  2. I didn’t know how to walk.
  3. I didn’t know how to read.
  4. I didn’t know how to write.
  5. I didn’t know how to play an instrument.
  6. I didn’t know simple addition. (Or any mathematics whatsoever!)
  7. I couldn’t count to ten if my life depended on it. (Thankfully, it didn’t.)
  8. If you’d have put a little honey on a $100 bill I’d have tried to eat it. (Unconfirmed.)

Name anything scholarly or skillful a semi-intelligent human can do and I couldn’t even do that when I was a baby. I know, I’m embarrassed too, but it feels good to finally get this out.

You’d agree a baby as dumb as I was couldn’t make a single rational decision, yes? You’d be crazy to think otherwise.

Yet, somehow, I was deemed intelligent enough to choose a religion and its corresponding belief system.

Or maybe  … ?

29 Responses to 8 embarrassing signs I was a dumb baby

  1. For humour: http://m.imgur.com/lvJmA

    “We are all atheists about most of the gods that humanity has ever believed in. Some of us just go one god further.” Richard Dawkins

    Thanks for the more controversial posts. I’m inspired at your goal to purify your subscriber list and your honesty.

  2. I asked my dear ones who are parents with babies, “Why don’t you just let your babies decide when they reach 15 years old their own religion?” They look at me confused but don’t dare to do it, it’s unfair to give someone a bunch of useless rules without the chance to choose one or none

  3. Fernando, a child will be guided by all sorts of influences up until the age of 15 and beyond, how can you suggest that the child’s parents, of all people, should relinquish their responsibility to guide them in the way they believe to be best? Doesn’t it make most sense for the parents to pass on all they believe to be true and good, whilst also encouraging independent thought and free choice? These are not mutually exclusive.

          • No, no I didn’t. Hence the question.

            Surely you understand my point. These practices/beliefs are almost exclusively religious and routinely imposed on children too young to choose for themselves.

            • Come on. :) “Shame on you” was based upon assumption.

              Sure, I understand your point: some religious beliefs that are imposed upon children are harmful and immoral. I agree. And if you would have simply shamed those people, I would not have commented, but instead you projected that onto Alastair, who was simply making the point that children need moral guidance.

              Indeed, I think that Fernando’s and Alastair’s disagreement was more a matter of definition (as these discussions often are). To Fernando, religion refers to largely irrelevant beliefs that a child can choose later in life, while to Alastair, religion refers to essential morals and healthy perspective on life.

  4. Much like your previous post, I can’t tell who or what this is in response to. Are there people who actually believe that babies choose their religion?

    • Why is it that you don’t have an issue with the rest of the writing, but you have an issue with the “babies choose their religion” part?

      EDIT: to clarify (I hope). Why is it that the rest of it make sense to you, but the penultimate sentence completely throws you off?

        • I never know how to react to misunderstandings of my writing. Either I’m a very poor writer (quite possible) or satire goes completely over the heads of certain people (also possible). Or maybe it’s a little bit of both (likely). Either way, I’m happy it at least gets people thinking and, if not questioning beliefs, at least questioning me. That’s a start.

          • Satire mocks a human vice or folly. What specific vice or folly are you responding to?

            Based upon your punchline, I would expect that you were mocking the belief that babies are “intelligent enough to choose a religion and its corresponding belief system”, but who actually believes that?

            It seems like you are satirizing strawmen.

        • I would have thought so, too! :-) But is he? I’m sorry if I’m serious-ifying the fun, but it is hard to tell what part I should write off as funny and what part I should take seriously. I’m just trying to understand the specific serious point behind Karol’s satire.

  5. Come on Kevin, you aren’t trying hard enough :-)

    Of course babies/young children don’t have an opinion on religion so why give them one? We wouldn’t label our children a Communist Child (or god forbid an Atheist!)would we?

    • I would expect that a “Communist Child” would be one raised to believe in Communist ideals, and an “Atheist Child” would be one raised to believe that there is no God, with the latter often being a subset of the former.

      Children have actually been raised in ways that those labels would apply. Indeed, there have been entire nations of communist children.

      Certainly I would disagree with some of the tenets of Communism (I am libertarian), but it is important to teach children morality, and morality is the essence of religion.

      • I would expect that a “Communist Child” would be one raised to believe in Communist ideals, and an “Atheist Child” would be one raised to believe that there is no God, with the latter often being a subset of the former.

        No child should be labelled as Communist, Atheist, Theist etc etc.

        I don’t follow, how is Atheism a subset of Communism?

        “Morality is the essence of religion.”

        Then why not just teach morality and drop the god bit. Please don’t say that without god we can’t have morality ;-)

        • The label simply indicates what the children were taught to believe and probably do believe and behave, not that they are mature enough to have freely chosen it.

          Communist states regularly promoted atheism. Of course, communism doesn’t absolutely require atheism, but religion often forms a competing power structure against government, which is a no no under communism.

          You can have morality without God, but it is hard to remove God pervasively from Christian morality. He’s interwoven in the narratives and lessons, He’s essential to the prayers which engender attitudes of gratefulness and encourage reflection for petitions, He’s the focus of communal fellowship, providing a focus outside each other, He’s the embodiment of all good including that there’s a purpose and plan for you, etc. Even that simple belief in a higher power is useful sometimes, such as in some 12 step programs.

          Some Atheists do their best to mimic this even without God, particularly the singing and community, which is good, but it tends to end up more generic and less incisive because not believing in God is a fairly narrow moral to have in common.

      • re: morality.

        “And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war.”

        “Therefore shall her plagues come in one day, death, and mourning, and famine; and she shall be utterly burned with fire: for strong is the Lord God who judgeth her.”

        That is Biblical morality (from Revelations) and I want none of it. No rational or sane person would, nor would they subject their children to such vile ideas.

        Biblical Jesus was a scary, bad man. You would not want to cross him:

        Matthew 13:41-42
        41 The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity;
        42 And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.

        Is religion necessary for morality? It would have to be moral in the first place to make such a claim.

        • Depending upon your definition of religion, no, religion is not necessary for morality. You don’t have to be Christian or believe in God to have morals, if that is your question. However, morality involves prediction of future outcomes, which is inherently uncertain and entails using principles to make decisions.

          I try to avoid discussing scripture with people whose beliefs are bolstered by opposing it since they are drawn to ignore context and misinterpret it, but I’ll at least give you a different perspective to consider.

          To begin, the Bible was written in different languages by different authors scattered thousands of years ago in entirely different contexts than we now live, much of it was passed on orally before it was written, and all of it was written and rewritten by scribes over time with all the variation that would naturally entail. It has poetry, parables, accounts of history, laws of the time, narratives, etc. and various interpretations of those are possible through critical analysis, often in the original language.

          You quote Revelation. Revelation is a very symbolic book that’s supposed to be a sort of prophecy, but it plays out like a bizarre dream that I don’t quite understand and I doubt most people do. You can observe this dream-like symbolism yourself in your first quote and it continues even more abstractly. Your second quote refers to the destruction of an evil city that is symbolized by Babylon. There really aren’t any morals described in the verses you quote, and it is a little odd for you to look to Revelation for Christian morals.

          In Matthew, you picked verses that are again prophetic and which describe the final judgement. The idea is that the evil will be permanently separated from the good. The furnace of fire is symbolic of the destruction of evil. Some Christians believe that the Bible describes eternal torment. I do not.

          A good rule of thumb that you might want to consider in honest biblical interpretation is that if God sounds evil or advocates something immoral, then you are probably misinterpreting it.

  6. It is a question which everyone thinks about when pondering over life’s bigger questions. Though the overwhelming majority of population is still classified as theistic, the majority of people that I encounter (educated middle-class, Indian) are either not very clear about the role of religion in their lives, or classify them as agnostic, or for the majority part, don’t give a fuck about expressing their opinion on this as they don’t consider religion as a part of their core identity; they always remain on the peripheries of their religion’s set-up. In a way, they adopt things from their religion in accordance with their own convenience. It depends on the fanaticism of the environment though, to a very large extent and all comes down to fitting-in and not being the odd one out.

  7. Came across this today, upsetting to watch. This is why children should not be indoctrinated.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O50jl-nLYVU

    You can be almost certain they have not chosen their beliefs but merely inherited them from their parents or guardian. But of course it’s the right god, says the Christian child, the Muslim child, the Hindu child…

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