The thread was interesting, in that the believers generally felt uneasy about the classroom exercise, and the unbelievers said there was no problem.If that reflects the reactions in a classroom, then the lesson is not "Why are we all so affected by symbols?" but "Why are those religious people so oversensitive?", which is different and not exactly evenhanded.If they wanted a universal symbol, why not use a US flag, which would keep religion out of schools, as seems to be the custom over there! But I suppose that might offend ...
Randal Rauser made the same suggestion about using a U.S. flag....Hmmm, he's Canadian, you're a Brit...is there a pattern here? Some subconscious anti-American hostility?
Some subconscious anti-American hostility? If there is, it's an indicator that such exercises aren't quite as pure and dispassionately academic as the educationalists pretend.But here's another consideration: names and symbols only have some kind of actual significance in a non-materialist worldview. In Christianity Jesus is "the Word" and it is his "name" which has power over demons and at which every knee will bow.To a materialist, "Darwin" is just a label and a flag, at most, an emotional association. So there is more substance to symbolism itself to the religious and hence it's a discriminatory exercise.As C S Lewis knew in the crucifix-trampling scene in "T^hat Hideous Strength".
Yes, I was reminded of that scene in Lewis's novel. I think I see your point that the exercise is more discriminatory to the non-materialist.
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