Parenthood Elevated to Transcendency
[Teaching children] the fundamental principles of a moral life is important whether there is a god or not, but especially if not. If this is all there is, and if there is no one out there keeping score, then parenthood is elevated to transcendency.
~Michael Shermer, PhD
I try to reassure my children - regardless of the existence of the unknown - what is most important in life is what they do NOW - while they're HERE, living in the present. And, if the unreal becomes real, there will be nothing to worry about when they've acted with love and compassion throughout their lives.
I am okay with not knowing.
I encourage my children to act and react with kindness and empathy to the people and animals around them; to love the earth and tread lightly on it. I try every day to be a bit better than I was the day before, to act always from love (and hope they follow my lead). I help them to have presence; to be present. I want them to feel comfortable with a goal in life of improving their surroundings, for themselves and others with whom they share the world so that when leave this life, they can feel confident in knowing they've left it better than they arrived in it.
And I want them to do these things --- only because they are the right things to do. Not to please me or anyone else. Not because of promised or hoped for reward. But simply because acting from love - doing and being these things - empathetic, improving, kind - are the right things to do. And when you do right, it feels right, inside. I want them to trust that feeling of rightness that comes from acting out of love - it comes from inside, not out.
Regardless of belief, shouldn't we all inspire our children to keep living and improving in their present moment? Because the rest - the past we can't change and the future we don't know - it is all beyond our control.
We can only TRULY know what we can do NOW. And we can do so much.
Unknowing - it isn't frightening; it's amazing. Because we can HAVE peace with presence. Heaven on earth.