Sunday, September 23, 2012

Chesterton on education

I'm reading G K Chesterton's The Common Man at the moment.  It's a book of essays that were collected together quite some time after his death.  As always there is an abundance of wit, and sound thinking, of paradoxes and satire.  And dozens of sentences and paragraphs that could be quoted here.

For today, however, just one quote, from an essay called The New Case for Catholic Schools, in which Chesterton shows how foolish it is to think that well-rounded people are produced by schools who choose to cut religion out of their curricula.  

You can have an education that teaches atheism because atheism is true, and it can be, from its own point of view, a complete education.  But you cannot have an education claiming to teach all truth, and then refusing to discuss whether atheism is true. 

We're still having this argument put to us today almost a century after this was written.  We're asked to be tolerant of people's whose views aren't Christian, or aren't religious, but then we're asked to be intolerant of people who do have a religion.

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