Saturday, May 7, 2011
Discussing Diversity: Religion
We had our last Discussing Diversity session with Dr. Pamela Taylor, Associate Professor at . For those who were unable to attend, here were some of the highlights:
1. Given the dominant in the United States and the current deep fear of Islam, Dr. Taylor started the session with an exercise with facts and quotations from holy books and we had to decide which applied to Judaism, Christianity and/or Islam. This exercise made clear the deep commonalities between these three , which are surprising even to those well versed in their own religious tradition. We also viewed a trailer for the documentary, "Three Faiths, : Judaism, Christianity, Islam" which Dr. Taylor recommends for those interested in learning more this. Here's a link.
2. We then had a far ranging discussion touching on atheism, Buddhism, Hinduism and our own personal stories. Noted was the challenge of respecting the traditions of our families and of others without being silent about the unfairness in the practice of religion towards the LGBTQ community and other religious traditions, for example.
Dr. Taylor's advice boils down to things we have already learned to be true about an ideal:
a. Know your own traditions and beliefs and celebrate them with your children (Knowledge of self and group identity.)
b. Be knowledgeable about other people and groups. Read about and experience different traditions. (Empathic engagement with difference.)
c. Be mindful of your language and speak out against jokes and slurs and harmful myths and stereotypes. Silence sends a message that you are in agreement. (Ability for critical thinking and taking action.)
3. Some children's books that I have found helpful are: (click on links to take you to Amazon if you like)
Hinduism: How Ganesh Got His Elephant Head
Christianity: The Children's Illustrated Bible
Posted by Josie at 10:55 AM