Thursday, June 14, 2007

Does Education Make You Lose Faith?

Apparently not...

http://insidehighered.com/news/2007/06/14/religion

This study shows that the more education a person has after high school, the more likely they are to continue attending church and consider religion an important part of their life. So much for those who are afraid of people gettin themselves some learnin' from we "liberal" educators.

7 comments:

Bill Barnwell said...

I get emails all the time from people who are angry about my criticisms of dispensational theology, or my positions on alcohol, women, or whatever, telling me that education has clouded my judgement. Especially on eschatology, most people who write to denounce me and even question my salvation are totally unaware of all the issues and no knowing outside of what they've always heard. After I made a sincere and time consuming effort to dialouge with a guy last weekhe writes me:

"Just what I thought. You put your bookish seminary 'knowlege' above the Holy Spirit."

Notice he puts knowlege in quotes. Basically being uneducated and ignorant is now a spirital virtue. Yes, it is possible to have a wholistic "head/heart knowledge" development (and I hate that false dichotomy). I certainly have a long way to go in all areas, but some Christians would do well to stop congratulating themselves for being uneducated.

Ken Schenck said...

I would not deny that there is such a thing as a militant fascist liberalism that is just as fundamentalist and closeminded as the most rabid fundamentalist conservative. However, I doubt that those who take this approach win over any converts among genuine believers.

On the other hand, I've long concluded that the best explanation for why education tends to make a person more open-minded and less rigidly tied to traditions is because the truth is almost always more complicated than our traditions as they are popularly understood--no matter what your tradition. If education tends to liberalize, it's because the truth tends to deconstruct the simplicity of our human paradigms. So if conservative means slow to accept critique of the current paradigm, then the truth will always tend to "liberalize" in relation to it.

Michael R. Cline said...

This is so encouraging to me. Thanks for the link. CPYU just put on a new resource about keeping the faith after high school (basically, keeping the faith after you go away and learn a lot and encounter new people with different ideas than your own). Should be a good read for all of us wanting to work with young adults and high schoolers. But this link throws a little more into the conversation as well.

Angie Van De Merwe said...

Thanks...Thanks...I just watched Gandhi the other night...and so resonated with his "cause of justice"...am reading "Confessions of an Economic Hit Man" and find myself resonating with the "cause of justice"...I am re-thinking my thesis to what I am passionate about...discrimination, human rights, dignity....justice...what this means for my life message, I don't know...but I have always had passion about it...it is really life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness (I hope that pursuit is kosher for those conservatives out there!)...Mediation is what all humanitarians are called to...does that mean all Christians are called to be humanitarians?

Education only enlightens one's mind to realities outside the realm of one's own experience and opens one's heart to "other" people, because personhood is not ideological (thus inhibiting or dismantling prejuidice).Therefore, get all the education you can...it can only "help"....

Angie Van De Merwe said...

An informed (educated) electorate is the only way democracy can "really" work. It is only when governments limit or control the information given to the people, that the people cease to be free. An educated mind is the only way a person is able to guard themselves against the control of any organization or person who would try to coercively over-ride their innate right to equality (social contract). Education is not an enemy to truth for the facts are the facts. It is only how we interpret those facts and how we put it inot a framework that determines what kind of faith we have and what we put our faith in. We all have faith in something or someone for man does not and cannot live without faith (even an atheist has faith). For too long Christians have been labeled as uneducated, uninformed, and naive. Let us change that image at IWU and elsewhere where the name of Christ is named.

Bill Barnwell said...

Ken, I think your comment above (truth being more complicated than tradition typically allows) is pretty profound and could warrant an entire post on the subject.

Ken Schenck said...

Bill, the thought would have to be careful, because a deconstructionist might say something similar.

Angie, I had not meant to post Sacrifice as Mediation but to save it and finish it some time this weekend. I can't believe how pressured my summer has been so far!!