On Saturday, an Italian song about the emptiness of Western consumer culture came sixth at Europe’s wildly popular song competition, Eurovision. Occidentali’s Karma, by Francesco Gabbani, was Italy’s entry to the contest, and while the song (which is flush with Buddhist references) didn’t win, it was a hit with critics. The song was the most watched music video of the contest and was chosen as a favourite by fans and the press.
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The role of Religious Education in schools is to help prepare and equip all pupils for life and citizenship in today’s diverse and plural Britain, through fostering in each pupil an increasing level of religious literacy. What does it mean to be ‘religiously literate’? A religiously literate person would have an established and growing knowledge and understanding of beliefs, practices, spiritual insights and secular world views. In the context of their own considered standpoint they would also be open to engaging with the views of others in a plural world.
Continue reading “UK: Staffordshire Agreed Syllabus in RE”
These days, Martin Luther King Jr.’s message of justice, equality, and peace seems more important than ever. Since your kids will probably be home for Martin Luther King Day, here are six books about the great man to share with them, no matter their age.
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Huston Smith, religious studies scholar and bestselling author of The World’s Religions (originally released, in 1958, as The Religions of Man) and Why Religion Matters, as well as Buddhism: A Concise Introduction, which Smith co-wrote with Philip Novak, died on December 30 at the age of 97.
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New South Wales public schools are struggling to keep up with demand for Buddhism scripture teachers. Buddhist Council of New South Wales chairman Brian White said there were more than 3,000 public school students across the state studying Buddhism, and the number was growing rapidly.
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Understanding Christianity’s goal is to support pupils in developing their understanding of Christianity, as a contribution to their understanding of the world and their own experience within it. It does this by integrating pupils’ developing understanding of significant theological concepts in Christianity with their own self-understanding and understanding of the world, as part of their wider religious literacy. Continue reading “Understanding Christianity”
Before looking at the detailed issues it is important to correct some misunderstandings. Many pupils will already have their own preconceptions. The media often gives a stereotypical view of scientists and Christians and an over-simplified and often distorted view of the relationship between science and Christianity. The first lesson should be concerned to set the debate between science and Christianity in its correct historical context. Continue reading “Science and Religion, A Christian Perspective”
Many attempts have been made to explore the relationship between what science and religion have to say about aspects of reality. Some Hindus want to see the Hindu scriptures anticipating developments in science. Some even look for parallels between the way these two ways of seeing the world talk about specific concepts such as time and energy. Other Hindu thinkers would say that religious and scientific views are in fact at loggerheads; if one is right, the other is wrong. Continue reading “Science and Religion – A Hindu Perspective”
This topic aims to present the ancient Jewish texts (Tenakh and Talmud) as being guides to life for Jews which engage in questions about God’s plans and life’s purpose. Scientific enquiry has a part in this and does not necessarily clash with it. Where they seem to clash Jewish writing has often been proactive in dealing with questions. Jewish thought can accommodate the creation/evolution, Big Bang/age of universe debate in different ways. There are different understandings of miracles in ancient and modern rabbinical interpretation. Continue reading “Science and Religion, A Jewish Perspective”
Buddhists have developed a very sophisticated analysis of the mind and mental processes, valuing introspective or ‘contemplative’ methods for understanding the mind, as well as using meditation to enhance positive states of mind. It is interesting to compare Buddhist psychology with its Western scientific equivalent. In Buddhism, mind and body are seen as influencing each other. The mind is described as a stream of mental events, with no separate controlling centre – ‘no-self’. Recent research by neuroscientists has imaged what happens in the brain while people are meditating. Continue reading “Science and Religion, A Buddhist Perspective”