August 20, 2015

A Re-blog: My Problem with Filipino Teaching

Category: Blogging

Estelea from Estelea Blog wrote something that is close to my heart. We should be having endless discussions with our kids about life and religion(s), teaching them how to respect the differences and the people around them for who they are.

Most of all, even if you don’t believe in religion, you’d have to respect other people’s belief and not impose your beliefs on others.  Here’s a re-blog for such a wonderful post:



My kids are Jewish by their Mum and Protestant by their Dad. Mr Attila was born in a Buddhist country and his sister in a totally secular one. We worked in Muslim and Hindu places and we are currently living on a Catholic island. How could we possibly educate our children in a single religion? if there is one thing I learnt from all those years working in war affected countries, is that education is paramount to prevent violence. Teach your children how to respect each other and the people around them for who they are and to honour all religions – as each is a pathway to the One God.

schoolbookThe Philippines are a Catholic country, even though not formally anymore. But you’ll always be asked “are you a Catholic?”. My natural answer would be “why do you care? does it make any difference to you whether I am Catholic, Hindu, Buddhist or a worshiper of the Sun?“. It is cultural. In any document – even the kids subscription to their sports classes, you ll have to answer their obsessing question “what is your religion?“. It was the same in Thailand and it already used to drive me crazy. I never answered, and I must admit no one insisted on me filling the blank. Asian don’t make fuss. Under any circumstance are you allowed to lose face. Let the foreigners be. They are not here to stay anyway.

This cartoon of a girl praying in a church comes from my daughter’s school book. This is the reading material of a “private and non religious school that respects all faiths“. Wait another month and I know that my son will learn that “G is like God” and God is Christ. Period.
My toddlers, like all kids of their age are constantly asking questions. They wonders why we don’t go to church, why her friends’yaya are pregnant again, why so many of her classmates’ fathers are “living abroad“, why there are so many kids barely dressed in the streets and sleeping on carton sheets. All those questions are a chance to talk about respect and understanding. What each of us can do to help, at our own little level.

Read more of Estelea’s post here.

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