Friday, July 1, 2011

Secularism and education

Irish Times columnist John Waters reflects on what teaching religion really does for children, and why the struggle in Ireland over whether to continue religious instruction in its national schools is a struggle over what education is really for. An excerpt:

"Properly understood, religion enables the opening up of the child’s natural understanding of his/her own structure and relationship with the totality of reality. True education involves the proffering of a tradition in its entirety, together with the freedom to interrogate it. Its fundamental objective is not the “inculcation” of anything, still less the indoctrination of values or beliefs. That Irish Catholicism has tended to misunderstand the meaning of the word “freedom” is insufficient reason to replace a stunted form of propaganda with an outrightly sinister one."

Read the full article here.

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