Maria Kislo’s suicide sparks attacks from atheists saying ‘religion kills’ offering ‘misguided hope’
A 12-year-old’s suicide, or her note to be specific, has riled atheist attacks, claiming ‘religion kills’ and is dangerous.
Maria Kislo lost her father in 2009, dead from a heart attack, kept her anguish to herself until now.
The short suicide letter read: “Dear Mum. Please don’t be sad. I just miss daddy so much, I want to see him again.”
Now the story has become the target of atheists claiming the dangers of religion, the belief in heaven and a God.
The Friendly Atheist wrote that the girl’s suicide is confirmation that “the idea of heaven can be both comforting and toxic — make that deadly — at the same time.”
“If Maria’s head hadn’t been filled with nonsensical ideas about heaven, where it’s all about the posthumous family reunions, she’d probably be alive today.”
Continuing, Terry Firma wrote. “Her death is the somewhat prettier equivalent of the Islamic suicide bombers who think they’ll go on to great rewards in the hereafter.”
The blogger concluded that “religion kills.”
Michael Stone, penned a piece in the Examiner about the girl’s death in which he said faith can do “irreparable damage.”
“A great man once said ‘Religion poisons everything.’ The tragic and heartbreaking story of Maria Kislo only confirms such sentiment,” Stone wrote. “For one so young to throw their life away in some misguided hope for an afterlife is deeply disturbing, and a potent reminder of the irreparable damage caused by religious superstition.”
The Freethinker blog highlighted some recent thoughts published by Susan K. Perry, a psychologist who also believes that teaching children about heaven has some major pitfalls.
Perry believes that the book “Heaven for Kids” is problematic and poses dangers to children. She wrote in part:
What’s abusive about telling children about the wonders of their next life in heaven? Alcorn based this book on his bestselling book for adults, which I haven’t read, so I won’t label that one “adult-abuse.” But anytime a group extols the extraordinary rewards of death and what comes after, you’re skimming the edges of being a death cult. That’s how terrorists happen, if the timing and culture align a certain way.
I know. Strong words. But Alcorn makes heaven sound very cool to kids, and tries to answer all possible questions a child might ask (rather pathetically, in my opinion). He answers questions I myself have wondered about, in the sense of wondering how Christians conceive of the afterlife they’re counting on.