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Atheism to be taught in Ireland

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Up to 16,000 primary-school pupils in non-denominational sector will get tuition in atheism, while the rest will be offered courses on the internet and on smartphone apps.

In a historic move that will cheer Richard Dawkins, atheists in Ireland have secured the right to teach the republic's primary schoolchildren that God doesn't exist.

The first ever atheist curriculum for thousands of primary-school pupils in Ireland has been drawn up by Atheist Ireland in an education system that the Catholic church hierarchy has traditionally dominated.

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This begs the question: What is there to teach? The whole thing is one sentence. Are they going to loaf around the whole semester repeating the same sentence? Or is atheism now a religion in itself with articles of faith that have to be learned?

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Drayno

This begs the question: What is there to teach? The whole thing is one sentence. Are they going to loaf around the whole semester repeating the same sentence? Or is atheism now a religion in itself with articles of faith that have to be learned?

I'm curious too, questionmark.

I didn't know there were any doctrines of atheism to learn other than "God is dead"..

Would the curriculum expose the hypocrisy of the church?

Or would it center around science?

Edited by Hatake Kakashi

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Rlyeh

Maybe the history of atheism? Besides that there really isn't much to teach.

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Michelle

I no longer want to be associated with Atheists...I'm officially now just a non-believer.

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HerNibs

This begs the question: What is there to teach? The whole thing is one sentence. Are they going to loaf around the whole semester repeating the same sentence? Or is atheism now a religion in itself with articles of faith that have to be learned?

I'd rather there were intensive critical thinking courses. EVERYWHERE.

Nibs

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Sweetpumper

I no longer want to be associated with Atheists...I'm officially now just a non-believer.

Ditto. They're almost worse than the religious when it comes to preaching.

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J. K.

My guess would be they will focus on debunking the Bible and creationism.

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questionmark

I'd rather there were intensive critical thinking courses. EVERYWHERE.

Nibs

If you keep on saying that they will accuse you of trying to torture children :innocent:

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CRYSiiSx2

IMO All religion should not be taught in any school. But growing up we cross our hearts and looked to the American flag every morning. The kids who were taught at home not to participate didn't. It should come back.

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Mikko-kun

I dont see how this is teaching, unless teaching equates telling someone what to do or how things are. I call it force-feeding 'knowledge'. They should teach philosophy instead, and parallel thinking or symbolism, so they'd see how similiar this is to the way religions put themselves out. I guess the definition of teaching depends on who you ask, but in my mind it's about giving your students something to think about, challenging them, allowing them to understand. And then letting them draw their conclusions.

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Star of the Sea

But but........ 'Atheism, is not a 'belief system' :whistle:

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Odin11

This begs the question: What is there to teach? The whole thing is one sentence. Are they going to loaf around the whole semester repeating the same sentence? Or is atheism now a religion in itself with articles of faith that have to be learned?

From the link "We see our course as a chance for young Irish children to get an alternative view on how the world works." As opposed to creationism.

They also say the kids will read Dawkins' The Magic of Reality which is not a book on atheism but on reality.

I think they are just using atheism as a broad term for science and reality.

Edited by Odin11
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Kaa-Tzik

In atheist states, like Soviet Union, "atheism" was not taught, there was no need, there was simply an abscence of religion in school, which is as it should be, imo.

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Michelle

From the link "We see our course as a chance for young Irish children to get an alternative view on how the world works." As opposed to creationism.

They also say the kids will read Dawkins' The Magic of Reality which is not a book on atheism but on reality.

I think they are just using atheism as a broad term for science and reality.

Religion, or the lack thereof, does not belong in the same category as science. Religion and science are not incompatible.

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Leonardo
"Richard Dawkins' The Magic of Reality is a key text in the first ever atheist curriculum for Irish schoolchildren."

I'm sure this move will cheer Richard Dawkins enormou$ly.

As with others here, though, I question what is there to teach? I could understand a curriculum of comparative religion, including atheism as an "alternate belief system", but the study of the natural world (if that is what this is) is not "Religious Education".

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Leonardo

Religion, or the lack thereof, does not belong in the same category as science. Religion and science are not incompatible.

This is a good point, Michelle. The Irish curriculum appears to be equating atheism with science. But atheism isn't 'pro-science' just as theism isn't 'anti-science', they are just two different positions regarding the existence of divinity. Teaching this to young kids as it appears to be will cement prejudices in their minds regarding what atheism and theism are.

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questionmark

This is a good point, Michelle. The Irish curriculum appears to be equating atheism with science. But atheism isn't 'pro-science' just as theism isn't 'anti-science', they are just two different positions regarding the existence of divinity. Teaching this to young kids as it appears to be will cement prejudices in their minds regarding what atheism and theism are.

Well, you have to give the Irish that as good Catholics they have just learned to think for themselves since Vatican II.... before that the Bishop used to do it for them... :innocent:

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Kaa-Tzik

Well, you have to give the Irish that as good Catholics they have just learned to think for themselves since Vatican II.... before that the Bishop used to do it for them... :innocent:

Did you make an error in your post?, I'm thinking should the second "for" be a "to" ....

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Leonardo

Now, now Kaa-Tzik - that was a bit naughty....

...what makes you think they've stopped? :whistle:

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GreatFenris

"Schools tach that God exists, Jesus was totally real and all that"-No one cares.

"Schools teach that maybe there's other views"-HERESY! OHmygaaaawd, they're like...totally worse than the guys persecuting others with violence.

*chuckles*Yep, the Internet is it usual ol' self.

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questionmark

"Schools tach that God exists, Jesus was totally real and all that"-No one cares.

"Schools teach that maybe there's other views"-HERESY! OHmygaaaawd, they're like...totally worse than the guys persecuting others with violence.

*chuckles*Yep, the Internet is it usual ol' self.

There is nothing to teach there except one sentence: "There is no God".

They are going to keep repeating that all semester?

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HerNibs

If you keep on saying that they will accuse you of trying to torture children :innocent:

eh, my children already accused me. Nothing stuck. :P

but they ARE critical thinkers.

Nibs

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Michelle

There is nothing to teach there except one sentence: "There is no God".

They are going to keep repeating that all semester?

If they go any farther than that they will inadvertently be teaching about religion anyway, because I have a feeling they will be teaching ways to debunk religious beliefs. In order to debunk something you have to study it.

I'm constantly amazed at how much time some Atheists spend studying religion just so they can argue against it.

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questionmark

If they go any farther than that they will inadvertently be teaching about religion anyway, because I have a feeling they will be teaching ways to debunk religious beliefs. In order to debunk something you have to study it.

I'm constantly amazed at how much time some Atheists spend studying religion just so they can argue against it.

Well, I guess they already have something like the "gospel of the atheist"... whatever good that might be...

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HerNibs

Don't know if it would be a "gospel"...maybe more like a one page flyer.

"There is no god/s."

Probably in a large font...

Nibs

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