It strikes me that, increasingly, the West is becoming less and less religious, in varying degrees. Materialism seems to be replacing the call of church and chapel, with the crowds nowadays flocking to the cathedrals of today - the shopping malls. And perhaps Accountants, with their litany of "the bottom line", are replacing the priests of old.
And how does this change affect the traditional family unit and the development of its members? It's been widely held that a religious faith is a firm cohesive for family unity and "values". That's based on a moralistic set of values which owe their origins to Christian (and/or Muslim and other) "rule systems" and codes of "acceptable" practice. But, faced with the increasing dilution of those former ingredients in family life etc., how are parents and relatives within families coping, in general? Is it enough for the former religious ethics and values to be replaced in the family by a comparatively loosely held set of morals and humanistic values?
The typical Western family faces pressures today, whose intensity has not been seen since the Dark Ages and before. (I am of course indicating that the pressures then came from different causes, but also put the family unit under comparative strain). How does such a changing family environment affect children's development? And, are parental emotive, yet secular, instincts enough on their own?
Many questions, I know, and, I hope - thought provoking. :)