Tag Archives: education

All religious people don’t sound crazy— I promise

Why don’t educated religious people ever get a say?

As a person who has grown up in many churches, explored religion and theology in academic settings, and genuinely believes that religion should have a rightful place in society, I am always disappointed and appealed by stories and interviews like these.

I understand that this may be how some religious people feel and may be what some religious people believe but it is certainly not how or what every religious person (or religious-adjacent) person believes.

Why don’t educated, nuanced, social minded, and truly “Christ like” people ever get a headline. There are far more loving Christians and Jews and Muslims than there are hating and misguided ones. Moderation is one of Jesus’ greatest lessons and it characterizes a larger population of the religious than media seems to espouse.

There are deeper more complex ways to understand religion’s role in the public sphere and it’s role in guiding those who believe in it than the simple minded garbage that media showcases day after day. A Christian can believe that for their own life, God has ordained them to a traditional marriage and also believe that love is love is love, and that as long as two people come together in god’s love for each other, then they are doing just fine. Religious people can find fault with the ubiquitous portrayal of homosexuality in the media but love their brothers and sisters just the same.

There is so much more to the religious mindset, I fear that we lose a bit more every time miseducated people like these at this rally are allowed to spew their pseudo-religion-pseudo-science all over our screen. (I mean come on, homosexual relations do not create HIV!).

The people religious of the world need to stand up and start taking charge of their beliefs if we are to ever bring about the peace and compassion that all of our Gods implore us to foster.

Plus, they just sound dumb. It’s annoying. My ears hurt from listening and reading about them. But that’s just me.

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Ancient Rants and Female Roles

What does it mean to be a teacher? What does it mean to be a student?

I gather that these two labels are more similar than we like to believe them to be. In Ancient Greece the teacher was learned, experienced, and willing to spread that knowledge. This was done through lecture, through dialogue, through theater. Teaching was active. 

The student, eager to acquire that which he saw burning under the surface of his teacher, questioned, and answered, and was shot down, and answered again. While skills were obtained, the participation in this process provided an education we are hard pressed to find today. Learning how to think and what to think about rather than simply what to think. period. 

Before the advent of “relative” equality in mind and action, men were in the classroom and women at home. Putting the incorrectness of this set-up aside, it is prudent to understand what good this did have. Women’s role was a crucial aspect of society. Aristotle speaks of the role of running a household as an important and necessary role. Children learned societal norms and expectations through interaction with their mother and responsibilities in the home. While the classroom engenders certain behaviors, I am confident that the home life concerns another sphere of life that, without it, we would surely fail as a society. 

Today, the “home” life is so multiplicitous, we cannot be sure—except in failure—that everyone has access to these extra-curricular life lessons. Civic understanding comes not from participation in civil society, but rather, from textbooks stating what “civil society” is. A citizen by rote memorization is not a citizen at all. 

Women’s education is and should be in all areas of the world, not just home life, not just technical skill..but this should be the case for both Men and Women. Everyone should have these responsibilities to their children, especially now that having a sustainable household is something men and women have access to. Civic education is key to the success of society. Because home life is not homogenous, our schools must take up arms.

Public education is another key to liberal democracy, whether the “conservatives” believe so or not. Our founders required an educated electorate. They already knew that this would not and could not be achieved across all people, but I would like to think that they were hopeful. Though not everyone can be a philosopher king, everyone can and should have a taste of the infinite  A glimpse of the spiritual. A touch of what makes us human—the intellect.

Liberal education does this, but we no longer believe in it. Well-roundedness is frowned upon in exchange for “skills” and “technical knowledge.” Even worse, is the fact that we shun the correct acquisition of “technical” knowledge—practical application. Men and women do not learn to do by doing, they learn to do by reading, and memorizing, and watching online classes (smell the hint of disdain?)

This is part of a much larger conversation that I want to have. How do we bring back the intellectual in addition to the technical and the moral and the artistic and the true? Well, the latter requires a reverence for truth, and that seems way too mystical to expect today, so I will wait in vigilent prayer.

I want to be Diotima, I want all women to be and feel like and know that they have the capability to teach like Diotima. To teach love by loving is perhaps the most essential lesson one can learn as a human being. From it we learn to appreciate, to inquire, to learn. 

Love to learn and learn to love.

 

 

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Girls in Egypt: Education Necessary for Progress

As Egypt works towards a more robust democracy, their need for critical thinking and a literate electorate grows exponentially. Here, education plays a crucial role in the politics of a state, and exemplifies our need to bridge the gaps between girls and boys, literate and illiterate—creating a generation of leaders. 

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by | June 25, 2013 · 3:11 pm

Digital Aristotle….?

Digital Aristotle

So, I am really into classrooms, and universites, and education in general. This is EXACTLY the direction in which I fear we are moving.

“The internet can know students better than teachers ever could”

Since when can the internet look you in the eyes and respond to your inquisitve face? Since when can the internet foster community and togetherness in a way that sitting in a stuffy room with other students your age can and does?

Wow, mind blown, that someone who “values” education could desire this world. But, that is just me.

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by | June 17, 2013 · 8:47 pm