would you rather have an absense of religion or an open forum in school?

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kite

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i just read this page while using stumble (Bible Battle: Court Says Missionaries Don?t Belong In Mo. Public School | The Wall of Separation)
and they make a good point at the end. if religion and government are seperated then that's fine, but some religious organizations would like an 'open forum' of sorts. sad to say some of the right standing groups actually tried shutting out pagan and atheistic beliefs and leaflets that were being sent home.
so it makes me wonder: would you rather have religion in schools in an open forum format taking in all the world's beliefs without bias or would you rather have the seperation that is currently instated in most US states?
 

Takashi

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Seperation of church and state all the way.
 

Target

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I think School and religion are 2 separate things, like Government and religion;
but, since Religion had a lot of influence in the past and in modern days, it should be teached in school in a different way.
Instead of teaching Catholic religion, they should teach "history of religions", which could help students to understand why Religion has a such high influence in some Countries.
 

kite

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I think School and religion are 2 separate things, like Government and religion;
but, since Religion had a lot of influence in the past and in modern days, it should be teached in school in a different way.
Instead of teaching Catholic religion, they should teach "history of religions", which could help students to understand why Religion has a such high influence in some Countries.
i remember when i was in middle school (about 7th or 8th grade) we had a portion of class used to study greek and modern mythology including the bible reading passages as stories rather than teaching from it. it gave a better way of viewing it i thought.
 

Target

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Maybe mythology is a bit old (but always Interesting and Immortal), but studying the history of a religion, how it developed and how much a people feel it, will help you to understand that people better
 

kite

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they taught that in my college world history pre 1600's class. it was interesting when i kept my eyes open :p. it's amazing how governments would conquer areas and hijack their gods and goddesses. it made me wonder what the peasants thought. "heey, they renamed Dionysus into Be-ah-chus... hmm.. must be an upgrade!" lol
it's like modern day's i can't believe it's not butter.
 
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my first teacher was a christian so she tried to make us christians by showing us cartoons of bible stories, after about two years she quit(thank god! I hated her!) than after some years we learned about the big bang etc. then we got to learn in our history courses about different religions so it has never really been official that they try and teach christianity, it was just that teacher. but there has been some debate also here in Sweden if they should teach the christian belief instead of the evolution theory.

I think the best thing is as other has said, to separate school and church as much as church and government because everyone should have their rights to believe what they want in school and not be forced to believe in something they might think is BS.
Remember also that Sweden is the most atheistic country in the world! something Im proud of actually! ^^
 

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Instead of teaching Catholic religion, they should teach "history of religions", which could help students to understand why Religion has a such high influence in some Countries.
That's how they teach it in my school. In World History which you take in 10th grade you study the 5 mayjor world religions. Christianity, Jewdism, Budism, Hindewism and Muslum.
 
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I need to study Islam, to pwn your enemy, you must know them.

Church and state are supposed to be separate, but I don't mind a little mixing, Lets see, ALL US presidents were Protestant Christians? Separated all right.

What needs to be seperated is the discriminating Christianity namely God hates Gays. Which isn't true. :) :(
 
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would you rather have religion in schools in an open forum format taking in all the world's beliefs without bias or would you rather have the seperation that is currently instated in most US states?
I went to a Catholic High School.

I got a Catholic education.

But my HS was also an "Open Forum" one.

Throughout my time there, amidst learning about Christianity, I also learnt about Buddhism, Judaism, Islam, Atheism, Agnosticism, cults, tribal religions, Aboriginal religions and even the concepts of Evolution and Intelligent Design! Hell, at one stage we even did a topic in which we disproved the existence of any sort of God. Keep in mind, this is a Catholic school, with devout Catholic teachers teaching us about non-Catholic, yet religious topics. We even went on excursions to Mosques, Buddhist temples and had guest speakers from other religions.

I can honestly say that the benefits by far, greatly outweighed any negatives. Religious education is not the most interesting thing to a group of school kids (especially in times likes today), nor is it the most important thing in their life. To expand knowledge into other areas vastly improved any interest in the subject and made the students actually want to find out more about these other beliefs.

As non-religious as I am, one thing I enjoyed about this type of education system was that I wasn't being kept in the dark about some of the other beliefs out there. There is one school in my area that I know of that teaches Catholicism and only Catholicism. I feel students learn when you give them the opportunity to consider all options and alternatives. Only presenting one viewpoint is, in a subtle way, a method in which to "enslave" people into a certain ideal. People often go with the thing they are most knowledgeable in, but if you only know just one thing, then you aren't left with much of a choice unless you purposely seek to gain that other information. But why would you seek new information when you've been told all your life that there is only one right religion, and that you're following it already. Having an Open Forum class style allows the students to become involved and gain knowledge in more than one set of ideals.

On the other hand, I don't see much of a problem with the US keeping educational institutions separate from religion. That way, the students are given an unbiased approach in the way they are taught, particularly in the areas of science and mathematics and how these subjects explain the nature of the world. Using my school as an example, we applauded those student who excelled in mathematics, chemistry and physics. A religious school placing importance on science while still remaining objective - it is possible! Although I do feel that avoiding the subject of religion altogether keeps the students ignorant of religion itself and breeds intolerance. Religion shouldn't be taught in a way that defines "what is right and wrong", it should be taught objectively and in comparison to other systems of belief. Any sort of religion isn't about praying to a God, nor adhering to doctrine - it's about understanding the underlying values, morals and ethics that the religion has to offer to make you a better person.

Religion doesn't have to be taught in schools, but their principles should be. Instead of avoiding the subject altogether, a better alternative would perhaps be to teach it objectively and focus on the those underlying concepts I outlined before. At least then it won't instigate complete ignorance to the idea of religion altogether, but more so, it'll enable the student to formulate their own beliefs based on their own ideals whilst also giving them a moral compass.
 
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Target

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That's how they teach it in my school. In World History which you take in 10th grade you study the 5 mayjor world religions. Christianity, Jewdism, Budism, Hindewism and Muslum.
Here is different.
Kids start to study Religion from Elementary school (in my case from Kindergarten) until the end of High school, and the subject is "Catholic religion".
Parents decide if their kids will follow that course or not.
It should change and become History of religions and kids must study it as any other subject.
 

kite

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lukie, i wish i had an education like yours. so jealous.
also, i don't know if yours was unique, but i doubt you would find catholic schools like that here.
 
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i don't know if yours was unique, but i doubt you would find catholic schools like that here.
There are quite a few schools like mine in the area.

Although, I should point out, it was a private school - not a government-run one. I don't think you'd find that type of education in a State-run school.
 

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I've been a Christian most of my life, barring a few years ago, for a period of maybe 2 years, where I decided I needed to find out why I believed certain things, and if there wasn't any substance to it, I'd drop my faith.

That being said, I am 100% for the separation of church and state. If it is taught, it should be taught objectively like any other academic subject. No "this is the definite truth" and no "this is a bunch of bologna." More a "this is a belief system that a certain group of people adheres to." It's good to expose kids to something that plays an absolutely massive part in some people's lives, and an undeniably massive part in history and the formation of various cultures. But special care needs to be taken to teach it as an academic subject, and not as a "sermon."
 

the0silent0alchemist

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i am fully with lukie, i went to a catholic school, an all boys as well, and i have no complaints, may have helped that my school's parton saint was one devoted to mary, al the ideals were those of compassion overall. religion was yeah pretty mandatory, just one of those subjects we had to do, like english. things were taught objectively, yet the teachers certainly didnt totally hide their experiences, but there was no pressure to conform to ideals, unless you count compulsory participation in more important catholic masses, like ash wedensday, the inaugeral mass at the start of the year, etc.

science and such was definately taught, and the senior subject studies of religion was very objective, looking at aboriginal traditions, chrisian traditions, an muslm traditions for me in the 1 unit course (2 unit had more content) if you didnt want to do that you did catholic studies, but that was like the bottom of the barrel generally.
 
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i am fully with lukie, i went to a catholic school, an all boys as well, and i have no complaints, may have helped that my school's parton saint was one devoted to mary, al the ideals were those of compassion overall. religion was yeah pretty mandatory, just one of those subjects we had to do, like english. things were taught objectively, yet the teachers certainly didnt totally hide their experiences, but there was no pressure to conform to ideals, unless you count compulsory participation in more important catholic masses, like ash wedensday, the inaugeral mass at the start of the year, etc.
Compulsory participation in masses on important Catholic dates was about the only Catholic thing they actually made you do at my school (*ahem* I should also probably point out my school was actually Augustinian. It's basically the same thing). Except this one teacher at my school - if you got to school early, he'd pull you into a morning mass. If you said no, he'd stand there a keep on annoying you until you said yes. XD

Other than that, I went to an all-boys school as well... well, high school anyway. My primary school was co-ed. But anyway, if they can manage to teach about different religions at an all-boys school AND actually have the students want to learn about it, then they must be doing something right.
 

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I'd rather have it be open forum. Anyway it seams like only Christians and Catholics get singled out on this separation of church and state.
 
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daria7483

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Maybe mythology is a bit old (but always Interesting and Immortal), but studying the history of a religion, how it developed and how much a people feel it, will help you to understand that people better
I think high schools need to have more classes like this, might encourage a little more understanding and help diminish some stereotypes like "all Muslims are terrorists." Unfortunately, I'm sure some parents would see this as an attempt to push other religions besides Christianity, even if the class wasn't mandatory.
 

Charlie

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I don't really understand this, but what I will say is that I loved how religion was taught at my school.
Religious Education (R.E) was one class, where you get taught about many different religions and what they believe. It's really quite interesting. I love Target's idea though, I think being taught about a religion's significance and impact would have been fascinating!
The R.E. course that gives you a qualification (although not much of one...) was a load of crap though. You only learnt about Christians and Muslims...
I took a real GCSE in Religious Studies (R.S.), which was interesting, it focused solely on Christianity but dealt more with the Philosophy and Ethics side of things. Plus it involved lots of essay writing. :D

So yeah, clearly having an absence of religion in schools is negative in my opinion because it furthers understanding of other people. And it's the closest we get to being taught philosophy in schools. Plus we got to see a Buddhist temple!

Open forum? Don't know what that means really. It sounds like you are talking about being taught certain religions, as opposed to being taught about certain religions. Schools shouldn't be spreading religious beliefs, full stop, that's just wrong.
 

kite

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well the link explains it better. it's basically just opening up schools to any information of religion out there. sad thing was is that it was set up by a conservative, right-wing, christian group that wanted nothing more than just an outlet for them being able to send bibles and religious pamphlets home to elementary school students while they were in class. they were really frustrated when an atheist and pagan also tried using this to spread their messages too.
 
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