Do you think books that contain Christian theologies should be taught in American public high schools?

Do you think books that contain Christian theologies should be taught in American/Canadian public high schools?

In my English Literature class, we're learning Genesis, Paradise Lost and poems that discuss God and Christianity in detail. Coming from an Atheist viewpoint, the ideas about God and Satan are all new to me. We have to write essays to explain why God is so powerful and almighty. I feel like we are being told to believe and accept Christian thinking as truth because of the ideas in the poetry and books we read.

Do you think that learning this material at school is acceptable?

19 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    It is completely ok and it should be done.

    Like it or not a lot of literature is based in theology. In order to really study it and understand the author you need to get into the themes of the stories/poems and fully explore what it is saying.

    Analyzing literature might just mean going outside of ones beliefs system. Oh no. Its not pushing anyones religion on anothers. Its exploring literature and the themes of literature and why certain pieces of literature are considered classics.

    Do atheists care if you study Greek mythology and classic mythological stories? Does it make you upset when you explore why the Gods in those stories did what they did and what the stories were trying to teach their societies?

    Then why does it bother anyone if you read a story written a few hundred years ago with a Christian God theme? Why is it wrong to explore the themes of a story if its teaching the society a Christian lesson????

    That is what you do in any lit class. You explore the themes of the stories and what the author was trying to say and how that relates to the societies it was written in and how it might apply to our society today.


    I am getting thumbs down for supporting a well rounded and open minded approach to analytically studying classic stories in any lit class.

    Imagine if you could never teach any piece of literature in school that mentioned any kind of higher power.

    Might as well start burning the books now!

    It is really pathetic that if a novel has graphic cussing or sex in it and a person tries to ban that book then so many people will scream censorship but if classic pieces of literature that have stood the test of time and are considered true classics have any mention of God or Christianity then it should be thrown out of the schools.

    Do some of you people even get what it is you are saying here when you declare they shouldnt be taught?

    Did any of you take any literature classes in high school or college?

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  • Kaci
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago

    Well, I do believe that's a wonderful idea. Would you believe the Bible was the only "text" book in the one-room class room in small towns? Our forefathers were grandly taught from the scriptures and most grew up to be mighty smart people like George Washington, Abraham Lincoln and many other presidents.

    The people who learned biblical principals were strong community members and leaders and took pride in their country.

    The Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and Gettysburg Address were penned by men who were taught from the Bible in those one-room classrooms and their faith is majestically evident in those documents. Now I ask you, why is this so alarming to you?

    Unfortunately, your school isn't trying to convert you but rather using the Bible as an article of literature. If you learn about Satan and God, you won't be psychologically damaged in any way but you just might learn something.

    So write your essays, pass the course and maybe next time you'll learn about Hinduism. I wonder if your argument would be the same?

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  • Minnow
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    It depends on the level of the kids. If they're idiots, then no, it shouldn't be taught. If they're intelligent, I have a hard time believing that studying things of that nature is going to indoctrinate them or change them. I read books on Buddhism, Existentialism, and many MANY different theories and beliefs that I didn't believe in.

    Is this public school though? Can you approach someone about it? If it's making you uncomfortable you should have the right to opt out of it. For no other reason than you feel uncomfortable with it and would prefer reading/studying other books. If you can't, you can always do things like point out the Pagan and Roman influences of Paradise Lost, write essays about why God is so powerful, comparing Him to Zeus, and other such things. I'm Christian, but I don't believe in forcing people to do things they're uncomfortable with like that.

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  • Eiliat
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    It's a literature class. In the western world, there is not a single more influential book than the Bible. Western literature as a whole is pervaded by religious themes, pretty much above all else. Understanding our society and understanding our art requires an understanding of Christianity, even if only a basic one.

    Yes, the essay question you have been given is bull, but if you think that the Bible is anything less than the most important book in the history of the western word you are sorely mistaken. This doesn't mean that it's true, it just means that it pervades everything that makes us who we are.

    Source(s): atheist and book lover
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  • 1 decade ago

    Public schools are teaching all kinds of religions already, why should they leave out Christianity? If we are learning about life, ourselves and others, with whom most of us will have some dealings throughout our lives, then wouldn't it be better to understand what motivates them? Perhaps you will learn about yourself as well. For instance, why do you feel a certain way when you consider certain questions. It is usually a good thing to know yourself, especially in relation to God. Additionally, many of the Founders of our Country claimed the God of the Bible as their motivation, so this might be a deeper history lesson, where you can really get inside the heads of people who have gone before you. People who envisioned a better country than many others. It might be interesting to compare the foundations of those people, with the political decision makers today that are rapidly changing our Country. Additionally, when you get into philosophy, you will have a greater grasp of what the philosophers were advocating or opposing.

    There are many things we learn in school that we never apply in our lives, but are we better educated because we experienced that? You will have to ultimately answer the question for yourself, but some things are easier answered in hindsight, if you know what I mean.

    Best wishes in your endeavors.


    Source(s): My life, I am nearly 60 years old.
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  • 4 years ago

    Scott, you appear to have such a poor value toward the tithe. No to what you ask but this is one of the greatest practices that a Christian can perform in expressing his faith in and to God. I can only explain it to Christian who have experienced the phenomenon as I. It is not that God needs the tithe but it is we need the discipline and the giving. It creates a very special bond between follower and leader of spiritual affairs. When done properly--the giver learns the discipline of obedience in his financial affairs---all of them. Being debt free is one of the highs of the Christian walk for then you are no longer slave to the one(s) you owe. Another experience is you realize you can never out give God--he always blesses you beyond your meager tithe amount. If you tithe for that purpose you fail always. Even outside of Church--Christians are generally the ones giving more financially, and time and energy of all other groups. They show up on the scene long before even the sponsor at times--the Red Cross--they see the need and respond---that too is part of their sharing--called an offering.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    I do and I don't.

    Although you don't BELIEVE in something, or have different beliefs doesn't mean that you shouldn't learn about it.

    You should want to learn about others' beliefs so you don't come off as ignorant and you can actually have reasons for believing what you believe in.

    You don't want someone to just hate your beliefs because they don't know about them, right? You want them to know about it before they judge you and your beliefs.

    What I don't like about it being taught in schools is we're not really given a point to express our opinions because it's such a controversial topic and it can get quite offensive to others but there is no problem with learning about stuff just because you DON'T believe in it.

    You should want to learn all you can learn, no matter what it is.

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  • 1 decade ago

    Religions are fine to be taught in school as long one sticks to history and facts. The same way you learn about Greek/Roman Gods. Religion is a big part of world history, and studying them makes you well rounded.

    Now, BELIEF in those theologies should not be taught. The founding fathers would turn in their graves. Because Christianity is such a widely held belief in America, it's probably best to learn in the privacy of your home. And religious studies certainly don't belong anywhere near a science class.

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  • 1 decade ago

    No, it should not unless of course you are studying world religions. But theology is not an objective study, so that is very much unacceptable for a public school. You can sue for that s**t

    Theology is "faith seeking understanding", you need to actually be a christian to do christian theology; that is imposing christianity in a public setting

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Essays to explain why God is so powerful and almighty?

    You should be thankful, that sounds like the easiest essay topic ever, because there are no correct answers!

    You could probably write: "God is almighty because the bible says so and I believe it" and you could probably pass with flying colors.

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