6 People On The Faith Lesson They Learned From Their Parents

Photographed by Rochelle Brock.
We have our early and more formative conversations about faith with the people who raise us. They help us understand right from wrong, they expose us to different beliefs, and they're the ones who may or may not have dragged us to Sunday school every week.
Whether we grew up to have the same faith as our parents is a different story, but it's more than likely that something from those early years has stayed with us into adulthood. We took to Reddit to find out which faith lessons from childhood people still carry with them.
Read on to discover what spiritual values, the big and the small, people learned from their parents — and share your own in the comments.
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1 of 6

The existence of God is very personal.

"The existence of God is very personal, and you can't and shouldn't try to use logic to unravel it. It's like giving someone directions in a different language. It ain't workin'.

"Also: I still participate in Lent. I think it's a great practice to focus on gratitude, humility, and self-discipline. These things help me be happy, and help me continue to try to be a good citizen in the world."

-Reddit user latenightcake
2 of 6

Love is not exclusive to the religious.

"Love is not exclusive to the religious."

-Reddit user LongDistRider
3 of 6

The satisfaction gained from making a positive difference.

"A self-proclaimed Southern Baptist, my mom always taught my sister and I the importance of being kind, never judging, the joy in doing for others, and the satisfaction gained from making a positive difference in someone else's life. I am eternally grateful for those lessons, the fact I strive to be a generally good person and see the best in everyone is one of my favorite qualities."

-Reddit user poopcornkernels
4 of 6

People have different ways of being spiritual.

"I grew up with a Muslim father and agnostic mother (with a Baptist extended family).

"They always made it clear to me that people have different ways of being spiritual and understanding the world, and it's important to respect that. I went to the mosque regularly, but when friends or cousins invited me to their churches, my parents always let me attend. We celebrated the basic Christian holidays without the religious context (Easter meant candy baskets and a nice dinner, not church), as well as Ramadan and Eid. They left it entirely up to me to decide when and if I wanted to wear a hijab, and made sure I understood what the Quran says about modesty, and that standard coverings are just one way to interpret that.

"It worked out well for me. I understand and respect different faiths, and feel lucky that I was able to engage with more than one at a young age."

-Reddit user honeyfields
5 of 6

I could love the story of Jesus, the human.

"Something my parents got right: They both came from scary religious upbringings, so when it came time for me to learn, my dad simply said this.

'There are many religions. You may want to choose one someday. A lot of people in this country believe in a man called Jesus. Some people say he performed miracles, some even say he could float in the air. Whatever you want to say about him, there is one thing we can be almost sure of... As sure as we can be that a man called Hitler once existed, we also have evidence that a man called Jesus existed. And we do know that Jesus spoke out in the name of peace, love, and good will. And he was killed for that.'

"I am so grateful for this opportunity to make up my own mind/spirit. Also grateful I could love the story of Jesus, the human, without being made insane for it. I really took on his story, not the magical gibberish, but the rhyme and reason. Do good, despite the cost."

-Reddit user cycle_of_fists
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People can be more than their faith.

"My dad was never religious. At all. We as a family never really were. But they made me go to CCD (like a Sunday school) growing up so that I could choose for myself. I think it was really important. I'm not religious at all myself, but I think it opened my eyes to see people can be more than their faith."

-Reddit user GhostOnAComputer