Saturday, 1 July 2017

The Grinch is stealing

not just Christmas but our culture - or so it would seem.
I have no problem with state schools being "secular". I do have a problem when they acknowledge the traditions of religious minorities and fail to acknowledge the traditions of the majority. 
The Census showed that a majority of people in Downunder still see themselves as Christian. So why am I now reading that schools could be put into the position where Christmas carols will be banned? Why are they being put in that position when a local school which has just eight Muslim children recently had a fairly lengthy exploration of Ramadan and Eid al Fitr? 
When I was a kitten we had something called "Religious Instruction" at school. It was one lesson a week. It was, for the most part, taught by people who came in from the community. Some of them were priests  or parsons, pastors or ministers. Others were simply people who had taken on the job of trying to instill some Bible knowledge into our heads. 
Discipline was often pretty poor in these lessons. I suspect it was because the people who volunteered were well meaning but lacking in any knowledge about how to control an unruly group of children not much interested in the subject matter. (Most of the Catholic children were at the local parish schools but, from memory, the nun who came to teach the remainder had no such problem.) I know the Senior Cat, and all other heads of schools, used to worry over the RI lesson. But, we still had it. I suppose I managed to learn something. I know I behaved. I would not have dared do otherwise. The people who came in to teach me would have known my father and my paternal grandfather well. 
Now, no such lessons occur. Children are supposedly taught about "religion" in the course of other things. Christianity gets little mention. Come Christmas or Easter and it is just a holiday from school with presents at Christmas and eggs at Easter. What it is really all about is a mystery to most children. 
I am not suggesting that children should be indoctrinated. That would be equally wrong. But, if we are to have an exploration of what  one group believes, one which is still less than 3% of the overall population, then surely we should have an exploration of what another group, a majority, believes? 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Even a slight knowledge of,say, the Christian religion ties in with understanding other behaviours, times, and places and even figures of speech. For example,"The Scarlett letter", and "the writing on the wall". And "The Troubles" in Northern Ireland.