Re: Should religious texts be taught in schools?
I went to a high school where religion courses were required the same way foreign languages and mathematics were required. Having fulfilled the requirement with one course on Islam and one on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of South Africa, I think that such religion courses should be required everywhere. I am a Christian who had the opportunity to get a glimpse of the rich and multifaceted history of Islam because of that requirement, and I now study Arabic and Islamic Civilization at my university. Studying religious texts allows us to better understand the religio-philosophical orientations of others. It also challenges our beliefs by inviting us to critically evaluate them in light of what we are learning. Empathy, understanding and self-awareness can be taught in other ways as well, of course. However, in a world where religious fundamentalism holds ever more sway, it behooves us to inform our young minds to the greatest degree possible about as many religions as possible.