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Was reading Simon Cozen's blog, and commented on http://www.simon-cozens.org/content/about-general-revelation-thing

I was trying to remember just what I had been taught about Christianity.

I was brought up in an atheist household, but in those days in Western Australia you had to do Religious Education at school and you had to specify a religion.

We were nominally C of E, so I went to C of E classes. Unbelievebly drippy and boring... I can't recall if, in my exposure to bible stories (you didn't think they did anything more with 6-12 year olds?) I thought there was a God, I think I just tuned out. 5 years[1] of classes once a week and all I can remmember is the middle aged (so ancient to a primary school kid) woman saying that Holman Hunt's "Light of the World" was the idea at the heart of Christianity and me thinking "what is she on about? A boring picture of some bloke in a dressing gown?"

I also remember listening to the Methodists next door (who became the Uniting Church somewhere in the middle of all this) and really wanting to be one because they were having fun - singing fun songs and doing plays and things. So I tried to change my religion but apparently you can't do that...

I did get to go on their Easter camps a couple of times, which were lots of fun. We went canoeing one year, and bushwalking another. Sort of like the scouts with different songs and more prayers, but I was quite open about not doing religion and they were fine with that. I usually got the part of the skeptic or other baddy in the plays :)

Whenever I hear people howling about schools "indoctrinating" children about some moral evil I think of those RE classes and those camps. I think indoctrination is a lot more work than that!

[1] My parents tried to have me excused, but the school said no, as it was compulsory and anyway they didn't have anyone to supervise kids out of normal classes. Then a lad named Pradeep Jayasuria turned up who couldn't be put in any Christian RE class and spent that time in the library. By the end of the year there were quite a few of us in the library....


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September 2010

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