By Harlton Fitzherbert —
The world is a big place, and it is our children who will inherit it from us. They will be the leaders, judges, and citizens of a future we have helped them shape into. With that in mind, what kind of world do we want create for them?
School can be said to be a microcosm for the real world. The aggressive exploit the passive. There is a division among students of different backgrounds. And misunderstandings arise between children who were taught about spirituality differently.
Experiences and knowledge gained in the early ages of life often have a major impact on how students interact with the world for the rest of their lives. This makes it a critical time for them to be educated about the various religions of the world. Schools have the ability to give students a better understanding of what is going on in the news, religious events held, as well as holidays. Having a firm understanding on the variety of world views that people have can assist in helping young students comprehend why people hold these beliefs that have shaped a nation, and even the world. A child equipped with knowledge about faith and religion can learn to not only be tolerant to those with differing views, but the knowledge allows them to make informed decisions that foster nonviolent solutions to personal, societal, and possibly even national conflicts that may occur in their lifetimes.
The world is at war—not just physically, but also socially, politically, and socio-economically. And many of them are grounded on religion. Even when countries claim it is not a religious war, they are often clashing because they cannot overcome their religious differences.
Within politics, religion plays a major role. People tend to vote for laws that match their religious beliefs. If that is the case, it serves the public for every individual to learn about different faiths and its beliefs.
Because knowledge is power, students should receive a well-rounded education on which to build their lives. If students are more acccepting and tolerant of others, then would it not even help stop the bullying and hating solely based on lack of understanding? Teaching religions in schools does not mean that students are forced to accept or practice a religion. The point of education is not to convert, but simply to educate. Giving students that religious foundation allows them be educated and make informed decisions for themselves.
By giving students access to a variety of belief systems, they can be more open-minded while learning about different cultures beyond what they know. It also gives them a better platform for sharing their ideas and beliefs with others. In the future, this will promote a generation of citizens who are well-informed about religions and how they impact society. The United States is a country of many faiths, and it is critical for an individual to manage relationships with people of different faiths, whether they are co-workers, friends, or family members.
Even if you don’t consider yourself to be spiritual, religion is something that affects everyone whether you hold such a belief or not.