How true am I to my views?
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12-10-2012, 03:16 PM
RE: How true am I to my views?
I can't see a situation where I, as a hypothetical school worker, would need or want to bring up my belief or lack thereof in a primary school environment. It just invites too many problems.

As far as "selling out", I think atheism does a good enough job by itself appealing to people who are genuinely interested in the search for truth.
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12-10-2012, 04:49 PM
RE: How true am I to my views?
I don't see how you would be selling out by not answering.

I'm curious, what would you do if one of the children spoke to you about Santa, the Easter bunny or the tooth fairy? and asked if you believed in them.

Would you ignore the question, Or would you just go with it? And if you did, would you feel like you were being a sell out by going along with it?

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12-10-2012, 07:36 PM
RE: How true am I to my views?
(12-10-2012 09:40 AM)Aseptic Skeptic Wrote:  I'm an atheist and so are my children. It bothers me when they go to school and some teacher starts blathering about religion. I think that's wrong. But to be fair, I accept that this is a two-way street; I think it would be just as wrong for an atheist teacher to start blathering about atheism in a school - the fact that I find this particular blathering to be in accordance with my atheism does not justify it as appropriate behavior on the part of the teacher.

Kids are there to learn about the 3 Rs, reading, riting, and rithmatic. The 4th R, religion, doesn't belong in schools, and neither does the counterpoint of atheism.

Leave that to the parents.

I agree 100%, but Hughsie is being asked his belief....that is a bit trickier. Hmm if they asked you straight out, I think it would be okay to say something along the lines of "I don't personally believe that, but you should follow what you believe." The answer "I'd prefer not to say" is also equally okay. Just do what you feel is best for your situation, know one knows your thoughts or situation better than you. Good luck...

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01-12-2012, 10:43 PM
RE: How true am I to my views?
I would deflect things by saying that school policy does not allow me to answer that question or that the question doesn't apply to whatever is going on at school at that time. I'm assuming that it isn't a religious school.
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02-12-2012, 12:32 AM
RE: How true am I to my views?
When all else fails, how about the truth!

"No, I don't believe in God, but there are many people who do"

If you work in a religious school, they shouldn't have employed an atheist teacher.
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02-12-2012, 06:10 AM
RE: How true am I to my views?
I work with kids part time too and if any of them asked me about it I would be honest with them, I think to do otherwise is a disservice to them rather than to yourself. Obviously be diplomatic about it and don't try to convert them, but there is nothing wrong with answering their questions.

As long as it's not in lesson time when they should be working of course.
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02-12-2012, 06:18 AM
 
RE: How true am I to my views?
Personally, I think you should STAND UP for your atheism and tell the little ankle-biters that there is no God and it's foolish to think there is.

I mean, are you going to be true to your view or not!
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02-12-2012, 06:22 AM
RE: How true am I to my views?
I think people have covered pretty much everything, so I won't repeat stuff. Only wanted to say - not sharing everything you feel, think and believe with everybody else (esp. kids) is not selling out. Not everybody needs to know everything about you.

My advice - find a pretty neutral statement (so that you do not feel like you're giving them a downright lie) and stick with it, without feeling guilty about it. (You most probably won't discuss your sex life with your granny, right? There are certain situations in which certain things are better not gone into in too much detail.)

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02-12-2012, 06:32 AM
RE: How true am I to my views?
Fucking Egor - he has risen! But I'm thinking more vampire than Christ... Dodgy

...anyhoo, big reason why I don't work no morez is cause I couldn't keep my yap shut on the job. So ask yerself, are you a nutbag like hoc or can you keep it compartmentalized? Besides, the indoctrination of children is one of the things that blows wind up our collective skirts, so why would you do it? And if you felt like you had to convince children of something, you'd be more like Egor up there. Tongue

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02-12-2012, 07:13 AM
RE: How true am I to my views?
(11-10-2012 10:36 PM)Hughsie Wrote:  This is a question I've been musing over for probably a year or two now and it refers to a very specific situation I occasionally find myself in.

As most of you know I work part time in my local primary school, I work with 3-11 year olds. I've worked there for about four years now and in that time I've been asked three times, by three different children, whether I believe in God. All three times I have chosen to not answer.

There are two main reasons that I don't answer. Firstly, and less importantly, I would not want to reflect badly on the business. Whether I like it or not, it's possible that a parent may be unimpressed by me getting into a religious discussion with their child, especially if it leads to a shift in opinion. If we lose children, and it impacts on the business, the belief that I haven't done anything wrong would be of little comfort to me. Secondly, and far more importantly, as religion isn't an important topic in most people's lives around here I strongly suspect that a lot of the children who believe in God may do so because their parents have used the existence of heaven as a tool to help them cope with bereavement. This presents an obvious problem in denying the existence of God and heaven.

Despite having two good reasons not to answer I always feel like I'm selling out my views on religion whenever I do so. This is not helped by the fact that most of the other staff do believe in God and I've heard two of them mentioning God to the children on occasion, not in a promotion of religion kinda way but when it's been relevant to a particular conversation. However they have spoken of him as though he does exist, not as though there is any doubt. This makes me think that surely it must be acceptable for me to do the same but from the other side of the debate. The thing that plays on my mind the most though, is that I've asked myself if I would refrain from answering if I was a Christian and I know the answer. I wouldn't have any qualms answering if I did believe.

I'm not looking for a definitive answer on how I should act in future but I would like to hear other people's views on the situation. If anyone can help me feel easier about the situation or make it clearer for me it will be you guys.

I think you're being professionally appropriate, and considerate of the sensitivities of the children and their parents in that context. If it was just neighborhood kids, no biggee, but this is the workplace.

I, too, would have had no trouble replying if I was still a Christian, but I attribute this to that "Christian pride" I had--I was called to be a witness to Christ and to believe almost filled me with a smugness; plus, we were admonished in the Bible not to deny Christ, etc and so forth. I wouldn't have cared about being professionally appropriate--maybe that rule didn't apply to Jesus-freaks?

A no-answer is acceptable and in no way dishonors your beliefs.

~Valerie

Drinking Beverage Grab a cuppa' joe; sit-n-read my blog for a spell: www.vaweber.wordpress.com
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