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Middle aged heterosexual, WASP male. Semi retired, semi-sane and semi-serious. And endangered species and I'm not going quietly!!!!

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Teach the Bible in Schools…Please!

Since this issue hasn’t gone away yet, I just wanted to register my opinion that the Bible should be taught in public schools.

I’d love that.

In fact, just to help facilitate this, I thought I’d do a favor to any local school board weighing the issue and come up with a course curriculum for them.

The History of the Bible - Course Curriculum:

First quarter: Students will study the historic context of the old testament, including slavery, the inferiority of women, etc., and develop an understanding of how these social attitudes are mirrored by the main character, God, in his rules regarding exactly how slaves should be treated and how best to own your women. Exercises will include female students shutting up and baking pies for the male students, while male students create a deity and decide whether or not that deity approves of the pre-established pie-baking and shutting-up system.

Second quarter: Students will study the historic context of the new testament, including reviewing the history of the gospels; namely the men who wrote them and how they could have done so having never knew Jesus. Discussion will include an exercise known as the “telephone game”.

Third quarter: Students will study the creation of the modern-day bible by the Roman Empire. Topics will include the merging of Christian holidays with Pagan traditions and other marketing techniques employed in the selling of Christianity to the empire’s subjects, as well as a lesson on the books that the Romans omitted from the bible because they didn’t fit with the rest. Discussion will include students presenting ideas on how the Romans might have decided for God which books were His word and which were fiction, as well as ideas on what the Roman’s previous god Saturn might have thought about this process.

Fourth quarter: Students will study the various translations of the bible and learn to draw relationships between the results of translation and the goals of the translators. Discussion will include a review of substantial differences in various translations and students will compare key passages and how they appear in the Hebrew, King James, Good News, Esperanto and Klingon versions of the bible.

Goal: Students will come away from this class with the understanding that the Bible was never handed down to man from the ether, but rather a collection of books written by men, edited by other men, translated by more men and interpreted by even more men, with vastly divergent results and agenda's.

For their final exam they will be asked to write three page essay on why a flawless and perfect being might choose such a retarded method for communicating such important ideas when such direct methods as sky-writing and speaking through flaming shrubbery would be readily available.
(Of course we can also extend the same religious instructions to the followers of the Koran, and especially to the Madrasa of Pakistan and other parts of the Middle-East!

Madrasas provide free religious education, boarding and lodging and are essentially schools for the poor. Over one and a half million children attend madrasas.

These seminaries run on public philanthropy and produce indoctrinated clergymen of various Muslim sects. Some sections of the more orthodox Muslim sects have been radicalised by state sponsored exposure to jihad, first in Afghanistan, then in Kashmir.

However, the Madrasa problem goes beyond militancy. Students at more than 10,000 seminaries are being trained in theory, for service in the religious sector. But their constrained worldview, lack of modern civic education and poverty make them a destabilising factor in Pakistani society.

For all these reasons, they are also susceptible to romantic notions of sectarian and international jihads, which promise instant salvation.)

Allan W Janssen is the author of the book The Plain Truth About God (What the mainstream religions don't want you to know!) and is available at the web site www.God-101.com

Visit the blog "Perspective" at http://God-101.blogspot.com

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't know if schools will ever begin to teach the BIBLE in school but they had better begin to teach the ten commandments, or at least the ideals behind such words or we are in very big trouble.
Roger Kiser

Monday, January 14, 2008 11:44:00 a.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

God bless you Allan, for as Jesus would say, forgive them Lord they know NOT !!!!

Monday, January 14, 2008 11:46:00 a.m.  
Anonymous Kathleen K said...

Couldn't agree more with these two previous comments. My prayers go out to you. What spiritual docterine or teachings do not come from someone writing them?

Monday, January 14, 2008 11:47:00 a.m.  
Anonymous Peter C. Frank said...

The Bible is a great work of literature and should be studied, as that. It also serves as a dramaticized account of history, and can also be taught in that aspect.
In my high school, one of our English teachers was able to get away with assign the Book of Esther to us for study (it's from the Bible), as it doesn't mention G_D or religion. Pretty clever guy, this English teacher of ours.... ;)

Monday, January 14, 2008 11:48:00 a.m.  
Anonymous Sylvie M said...

If the schools do as good a job of teaching the bible as they do American history or world history, it won't accomplish much.

I think I'm getting pretty sick of that cliche about the bible being a great work of literature. It's familiar because it's familiar, so it's referred to constantly. That doesn't make it great. Just which translation would we be talking about, and how true are any of them to the original? Without that knowledge it can't even be judged as literature.

Monday, January 14, 2008 11:49:00 a.m.  
Blogger Allan said...

Sylvie, I will leave you this comment by Dr. Mack from my book, "The Plain Truth About God!"

By Dr. Burton L. Mack
Those who have studied American popular culture tell us that the Bible has profoundly influenced the way we tell our stories, look for meanings, quest for transformations, imagine our futures, and hope for apocalyptic solutions to our problems.

If the Bible is that important to our culture, is it not strange that we have not questioned the reasons why?
The list of issues currently under discussion includes the place of creationism in public schools, the role of women in our society, social attitudes towards various sexual orientations, Jewish-Christian relations, theories of white supremacy, patriarchal institutions, the use of natural resources, the definition of family values, understanding violence, how best to relate to other cultures, and what responsibility we have for maintaining human rights around the world.
Most of these issues could be discussed without referring to the biblical heritage, but the Bible is always lurking in the background, and positions have been taken on all of them that ultimately appeal to the Bible as the final word.
When that happens, thinking and reasonable discussion stop. We do not know how to proceed after the Bible has been invoked. We are all complicit in letting an appeal to the Bible count as an argument.
One of the reasons for our silence when confronted with a proof text from the Bible is that we simply do not know what to make of the Bible and its contents .Thus we do not know what to say in response to those who use the Bible as an authority for their views.
Despite the enormous investment in biblical studies in our society, there is actually very little public knowledge about the Bible.
I have also been impressed with the authority we grant the Bible when discussing issues of social consequences. Here we are with the Bible on our hands and we do not know how we got it, how it works, and what to make of it in public forum. An acquiescence that pertains whether one is a Christian, or not.
That is the stimulus for this book.

Monday, January 14, 2008 12:05:00 p.m.  

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