"We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness."
~ Thomas Jefferson [The Declaration of Independence, July 4, 1776]
I do not know of a single person who had the fortune to be taught in school that God exists and that this 'thing' (God) deserves attention. It has always remained to me one of those little mysteries of life whose answers can not be found very easily. I have always contented myself with the fact that human cultures are capable of demonstrating incredible examples of interesting hypocrisies.
Seriously speaking, I feel that it is hypocritical not to instruct our children about God ~ if we really feel (and think) that 'God' is a reality of some sort ~ and that 'It' really exists and this is the 'thing' whom they would have to meet again, once their life expires somewhere less than a century afterwards.
If you think about it this way: Children starting school this year ~ would not exist in 2114. They would all be in the company of 'God' in the spiritual dimension. If this is all true ~ then it becomes an urgent necessity that we give them that information right now and help them prepare their life accordingly.
The most 'working' (valid) reason that people provide for the phenomenon (of not teaching about God in schools) ~ is this: that 'God' is something which has not yet been proven in such a way that everyone can accept Its existence wholeheartedly, with full assurance, and doubtlessly.
Where is the scientist who has won a Nobel Prize by discovering 'the adobe of God' ~ telling us how God spends His day and what He loves to do during the hot summer afternoons?
But then ~ there are many other such 'things' ~ like God ~ that we teach in schools which have never been shown to exist. Who has witnessed with his/her own eyes one species transforming into another? Who have seen that a bacterium somehow managed itself to become the human being who is writing this now? You might argue that we teach 'evolution' not as a fact but as a theory. Well, we can do the same thing about God and elaborate to young children worldwide why God is such a valid possibility as 'evolution'. But right now, we do not. There is a very subtle discrimination among teachers and educators to make 'evolution' the most obvious reason behind the origin of life on earth ~ while subconsciously discrediting 'God' as being a superstitious, unscientific, primitive belief system.
All these could be tolerated had we not credited God so much outside of our schools. Almost every human culture have invested a tremendous amount of faith and activity on and around God. In every culture they have built institutions where we can assemble and connect, in some way or the other, with our Creator. Our presidents mention God whenever they are challenged with adversity. You would find them mentioning 'God' if you investigate every major political speeches ever delivered. Almost every constitution of the world point to the 'Almighty Creator' when they proclaim their 'absolute right' to control the social, and political life of the individuals in their respective societies.
The amount of money invested and the amount of time and effort spent for 'god' is mind-boggling. If you compare the total human activity generated by the idea of 'God' ~ with FIFA World Cup or the Olympics ~ the latter ones seem like a sandcastle compared to a real castle.
And yet, this 'idea' isn't taken as seriously as we consider to let our children know about it so that they might get benefited.
If it isn't hypocrisy, what is it?
The problem with teaching God in school is we wouldn't know whose God to teach. The best place for the discussion is in the home, if the parents deem it appropriate. I would never support tax payer dollars and valuable school time to be dedicated to teaching about God. I do not want someone I don't know pushing ideas on my child in an environment specifically designed to embed ideas into their impressionable brains.
Well, parents can arrange it so that school-teachers teach about the God that they (parents) feel fits best their child.
And the taxpayer should foot the bill? At what point do you see that parents should take the responsibility of teaching their children anything? Should we rely on the state to do it all?
Well, the parents (taxpayers) should pay the teachers for the specific God that they (the tax-paying parent) have designated the teachers to teach their children.
There would be no point to dispute if each parent pay for their own God in schools.
Right, private schools not public school, I personally do not want to be paying for my child's education when the teacher has to meet individually with each child for a half hour to discuss their religion. Imagine a Christian teacher teaching a Muslim student about his faith. Think first.
I'm talking about public school and not private school. And my contention isn't primarily about religion (though that eventually pops up into the picture), but it is about 'the reality of God'.
"The reality of God" is about religion and nothing else. Would you expect a Baptist to teach an Atheist about Atheism? I think parents are capable of teaching their children what they need to know about religion.
This is really a very silly un-thougtout proposal. Do you really want a teaching teaching things to children he/she doesn't believe themselves? Is she going to teach little Johnny about Hinduism? Should he/she talk to the class openly about God? Little Johnny will be wondering which one he/she is referring to, he has thousands.
'the reality of God' and 'religion' are two separate issues.
I might agree with that. Unfortunately the verbalization of ideas on the subject of God usually boil down to religion.
The reality of which Gods, the Hindu Gods? Sorry but you can't pretend separate any Gods from religion. Do you think we should teach the God Joseph Smith?
There is only one 'God' that every religion points to ~ and they publicly confess that fact. They differ when they interpret that entity or Its intentions.
I personally have no objection if Jeseph Smith's God is taught in schools. But Joseph Smith doesn't make up the majority of humanity. And the majority of humanity might want to bring their Gods into the schools and let their children acquaint with the God that they adhere to with heartfelt conviction and for whom they have invest that such time and effort.
It's actually a question of integrity between what people believe and how they act (which should be a harmonious process).
That is your opinion. Not necessarily shared by those within multiple religions. Would the school systems then acquiesce to your belief?
That's a well-researched opinion. And people can always talk to the education ministry of each country and confirm about these issues and let their suitable 'Gods' come to their schools.
Well, you may want to explain that to the people who follow,
Buddhism and Shinto
I have objections to all gods being taught in schools. This is genuine integrity.
Thank goodness we do not have to bow down to the ignorant majority.
About all a teacher could say is that there IS no known "reality of God". Lots of people THINK there is, but we've never found it, so believe as you wish.
Of course, they could then go into astrology, UFO's, ghosts, Nessie, Bigfoot and all the other quaint beliefs man has come up with over the years. After all, the kids might meet up with Bigfoot one day...
People do not spend their time and money for Bigfoot.
Really? Perhaps those who find that unwise should contact their Ministry of Education. I wonder what type of reception they'd get. Probably the same as anyone attempting to push this lame idea.
They already get widely different receptions on that issue from different authorities. And that creates one of the most hypocritical systems of human interactions in societies.
The amusing part is that they are not aware of any of this.
What is more amusing is that you think that. And, your answer to it is to allow the government to determine what is taught and how. That should result in a very harmonious society. We'd be the Borg. Sounds divine.
It simply is a matter of integrity between what people believe and what people practice.
And governments ought to be an agent to implement that.
The government has no place in this conversation. The government, here at least, has a problem of its own with hypocrisy. That would be the blind leading the blind.
And we have no idea where does that 'governmental hypocrisy' really arise from.
Actually, we have a pretty good idea. It's the downside of positions of power. But, hey, let's give them more power in the struggle for the hearts and minds of the populace. That will make it all better.
The meaning of 'integrity' is defined largely using the word "honest".
We all practice dealing with the one reality we all share, the reality we can test and measure with pretty good accuracy, the one dominated by the physical forces that govern the universe.
It is the lack of honesty, hence integrity of those who would have us believe reality is something completely different; undetectable, undefinable and unknowable, yet swirling all around us in all it's divine and satanic glory, our very existence and paths we tread through life and beyond, a direct byproduct of that so-called reality.
It then becomes a comedy routine with a slapstick theme. We have folks who attempt to make life decisions based on divine realities they've created for themselves, often leading to disastrous outcomes as the false reality they've created comes tumbling down in the path of the oncoming reality we all share.
Of course, it's no longer a comedy routine when those misplaced life decisions begin to influence societies, and then eventually affect us with the very same disastrous outcomes.
It is this lack of integrity and honesty that must be exposed, for it is the progenitor of things to come in terms of the decisions being made that govern us all. And, that is why we are here to expose it.
We are currently witnessing such a phenomenon with gay marriage. It was not very long ago the Christian Right vehemently and unequivocally denounced it, yet one state at a time begins to reason the outcome rather than base it on their archaic and barbaric belief systems.
Reason is once again supplanting belief, and there's nothing anyone can do about it other than cheer.
That's how integrity works.
With all due respect, there is not one single aspect of public education that would be improved or better served by adding education about "God." The primary problem is that while many may believe there is only one capital "G" god to rule us all, the understanding of who that is or what he does differs literally from person to person. Even if every person was teaching a Christian creator, for example, the variances from denomination to denomination are large enough to create problems, not to mention the huge variances between faith families, such as Judaism and Islam.
To be forced to have my child educated by someone who teaches them differently about God than I would is an affront to me as a parent. I personally would refuse to allow public schools to usurp my parental authority in such a way.
Agreed. But you might get a teacher that you trust or just like his/her talent in that he/she can bring the same God that you yourself have faith in, to your children, and to all of us as a society.
My point is that if we take our God seriously ~ we need to teach about it with full confidence in public, just as we pray in public. That is a sincere system. And it might profit our children in such a way that we are not perceiving it right now.
The chances of that are remote and would be in contradiction to the rest of the class. Do we cast out the wants of Atheists, Muslims, Catholics, Hindus…
Utter rubbish, I suspect you know it's rubbish and are simple pulling chains.
I'm not playing any games and please take it seriously. And I have already given you my answer (a couple of times now) to that query of yours regarding 'other believers'.
Which version of God are you proposing they teach, any version of God would contradict 20% of the population. Your version? What do you do for the Atheists? Sending a child to a public school is supposed to be inclusive of all people that's why we call them public school. Are you saying we should ignore certain groups of the public.
You are not gaining much respect with this line of thinking.
Again, another glaring flaw. But, it is most likely the individual belief system embraced by the author of this childish scheme that will be taught in schools, and no other shall precede it.
Parents would get the same 'God' to teach their children by the teachers that they select themselves.
I have repeated this more than twice on this thread that atheists would have adequate peace of mind under this system because their children will not be taught about 'God' in schools.
Their children would get no 'God' in school because their parents don't have one.
Oh, I see. So when it's time to teach religion, the 28 kids in the class get divided into 28 groups and then the teacher comes around and spends half an hour with each group. That will only take 14 hours. What a great idea, did you come up with that all on your own?
You see, that is arrangeable. We can have such classes once a week to reduce the load on teachers.
If only 2 'God'-teachers are to teach 28 children about God, in one school - then within 6 months they would have provided at least one class to every child there. By the time those children get to be adult citizens of the nation ~ they would have 'God'-knowledge right in their bones.
See...this post is a perfect illustration of the problem. You mention that we should teach our children about God in public as we pray in public. My God says not to pray in public, but in private...so for me, teaching him is a private matter as well...and therefore should not take place in a public school setting. The only people with any right to teach my children about God are me and their father.
And that's one tiny example of HUGE problems that stem from this idea.
You are absolutely correct about that, you've hit the proverbial nail right on the head. The very glaring flaw contained in this absurd idea is the fact it's author failed to acknowledge those very reasons. Well said, Mo.
First off on one is dragging anyone's children for this.
As for your query: you are free to make your children quit from enrolling in this.
We don't pray in schools now, either. The problem with this is that children feel compelled to go with the crowd. Basically, you are advocating we create an environment where they have little other choice.
If parents who believe do not have the time or compulsion to teach their kids about their god then it is not up to the state to provide this service. It is not up to the state to advocate any particular belief. Honestly, belief is not any business of the government.
"My point is that if we take our God seriously ~ we need to teach about it with full confidence in public, just as we pray in public (with the same confidence that we pray)."
It's not about what a government thinks right. It's about what we think is right, and what we consider is best for our children. If we love our God so much and consider this 'thing' to be a reality - then we have the responsibility to inform our children about this 'thing' beforehand.
And what best place is there for the fulfillment of this purpose - on a societal scale - than a school?
"And what best place is there for the fulfillment of this purpose - on a societal scale - than a school?"
Are you suggesting that parents are incapable of teaching children about religion? Are you suggesting we should make experts of teachers about every religion and then tell her to spend half her week teaching children about religion one on one?
Give it up dude. I'm un-following because this is rather embarrassing.
Parents seem to be incapable of teaching anything to their children, for the very fact that they need to send them to school at all.
If the parents do not want to teach religious specifics that is also their right. It does not mean someone else should step in to indoctrinate their kids in some religion.
As for teachers ~ they would collaborate with parents to get the knowledge of the exact 'God' that they (parents) love and cherish ~ the 'one' that they are willing to teach their children about.
Parents might even provide a (rough) written-outline of their 'God' if they are not willing to invest time for any interview with the teachers.
It will then depend on the teacher's talent to expand that specific 'God' from there.
Have you got the talent to expand your specific 'god' here, rationally? After all, schools are here not to teach nonsense.
You have come back with a reply within 2 seconds. Impressive.
I dont see how that's possible when the reply is time stamped 5 minutes after yours.
But good job avoiding Jomie's point to talk about the speed of the reply, which is slower than the speed of your own replies.
A completely ridiculous and unworkable idea. But, thanks for sharing.
The ridicule lies somewhere inside an unnoticed corner of the idea.
So, are you now showing ridicule for your idea? Are you so easily swayed?
Well, irony isn't always as easily detected as a religious idea.
I got that you were attempting irony. I also got that you missed it by a rather long shot.
I don't have anything against people sharing ideas. I just think this particular one is not well thought out.
The idea the worked when everyone was the same faith.
....in a public school, your logic borders on insanity.
If you want god to be taught to your child, send them to a private school that supports that. Better yet, get a private tutor or teach them yourself.
I am not entirely sure if you are thinking these things through. With your logic, more time and money is being spent on religious teachings than anything else.
Perhaps you should think out your thoughts a little first. Do you think we should educated every teacher on how to teach every religion to children as fact individually?
I was taught that the Catholic version of God exist in school and had no reason to feel otherwise. If you want your child taught that a particular version of God exists then you should consider a private school. As it turns out where I live Catholic school are publicly funded, but that will eventually change.
But please put your thinking cap on.
It is better to teach children why humans believe 'god exists'.
25 different gods to teach about?
Who will teach these teachers about all these gods?
Voters might begin with their ministry of education.
Voters have already spoken here in America. You are in a very small minority.
Then voters lack awareness on this issue ~ among many other 'issues' as well.
Yeh. OK. The blind trying to herd the blind. That's what your argument is boiling down to. Those with the gift of sight should pretend they don't have it.
Well, there are many other subjects where people still have left space for serious disharmony, and possible reconsiderations thereof. You might begin with education, among many of them. It's something very practical.
The disconnection between what we believe to be true and how we live our lives, which should have adequate connection between them.
I'm sorry. You are, basically; judging, weighing and finding lacking. Except for you. You have the answers and if we all followed your advice you could judge us, weigh us and not find us lacking. I don't think things work out well when the majority bows to the will of the one. And, that is what you are. One.
I am sorry if you do not follow basic reasoning. I do not think you are incapable of reasoning ~ given the efficiency of your arguments.
Fortunately, how we live our lives is based on the one reality we all share. Unfortunately, many believers have yet to grasp reality or have completely lost touch with it, hence the disconnect.
No, you mean that voters lack your awareness on the issue, they also lack the muslim awareness of Sharia law, good thing eh?
Really? Lets us hope that never happens. As usual your "ideas" are as useful as they are workable.
So, it's not enough societies continue to indoctrinate their children in churches and at home, you want us to further corrupt their minds in school, too?
And, if it is not true? Then, we've corrupted our children's minds for nothing.
Interestingly enough, you probably don't know this, but schools are places to learn things about the world around us, things that actually exist in our world that everyone can agree.
There is no such scientist because there is no such God.
It would appear you don't understand that evolution occurs over vast periods of time, that is why we cannot witness those changes happening in front of our eyes, they take many millions of years to occur. If you had attended school and learned these things, you probably wouldn't be asking such silly, childish questions.
Evolution is taught as theory and as fact. Had you attended school, you would know this fact.
The only difference is that evolution has massive amounts of hard evidence to support it across a wide range of sciences, God has no evidence whatsoever.
Had you attended school, you would have learned that evolution has nothing to do with our origins, that is another topic altogether. Yes, your religion is indeed a superstitious, unscientific, primitive belief system.
Your quote, "--by their creator--", seems to be a problem. How do 'they' define their creator and who is their creator is not a definition left left to the state or to you. For the Jew it will be different and too, the Muslim, the Hindu, the Deist, the agnostic and the Atheist. As an Atheist my creator is an evolutionary process that started billions of years ago culminating in the persons of my father and mother.
Your quest to provide a truth through the manipulation of these great documents does not serve your cause or you well.
Who's God? Yours or mine, or his, or hers?
You can't prove the existence of your God, nor prove the non-existence of mine(because you can't prove a negative). Why would we try to teach such logical fallacies to our children who are to inherit the future? Seems detrimental to me.
You can provide evidence of evolution, yet the only evidence of God is your lack of understanding a phenomenon. That's not evidence of God.
But religion is still apart of lifethat the children need to know.
They need to know it is divisive nonsense - yes.
I would agree with you.
Children need to know that religions require them to accept from a huge array of beliefs and claims to the supernatural, without critique or question, a limited, personal version sliced wafer thin from that array, to hold important and unequivocally as the ultimate truth above all else, including ones own family members, the very purpose of their existence to reject all forms of fact and information that would jeopardize their religion and the false reality they've sliced out for themselves.
Of course, for an adult to tell a child of such things is very easy, children would be fascinated with such magic and mystery.
The really hard part, though, is to try and teach them anything about the world around them once you've convinced them of following a religion.
by winter11 11 years ago
I have a son who recently turned four and every night before we start his bedtime stories I show him how to bless himself and i read to him from his prayer book for children and then I read to him from his bible. I also take him to church and when we go I dress up and I have him wear dress...
by Ramilyn 9 years ago
How would you address a student question about the topic of god/s?If you are an elementary teacher and an atheist.
by dragonrider32 12 years ago
1. There is no way on earth that all the kids in public schools now could be placed in private schools/homes. There are no where near enough places for them. If you don't provide for all of them...what are you setting the American future up for? Disaster.2. Private schools have waiting lists. If a...
by tlm70 10 years ago
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by Genna East 7 years ago
What steps do you think we should take to improve our education system?I'd like to see more courses in our high schools that embrace the arts and the humanities, and performance-based assessments as opposed to "teaching to the test."
by Genna East 21 months ago
If you were a teacher, what subject would you like to teach?I would have to say English Literature.
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