Theme: ‘The best that has been thought and said [in religion]’
Matthew Arnold described the curriculum with this phrase. RE should surely study the best that religions and beliefs offer to humanity. This issue of REtoday uses Arnold’s quotation as a theme, and we examine the best of religions and belief, not least through the articles on pages 75–79, where members of different faiths share their sense of what they most treasure in their religious tradition.
Has the world seen the best of religion? I hope not. When they are flourishing, religions of the world contribute the greatest architecture, music, poetry and literature to civilisation. They can also motivate millions in the causes of peace, justice and the integrity of creation. A plural future in terms of belief is the only future for the Earth, and so RE teachers contribute to that future wherever they highlight the potential greatness of religious visions (alongside the dark side).
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