Essay: When Evolution Collides With Religious Dogma

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Teaching History

Christine Counsell points out that being able to engage students into conversations about change and continuity should be incorporated into any well-planned lesson or a thoughtful week in a challenging curriculum. After all, no matter what career they choose, or who they decide to partner with, or what part of the country they will decide to live in, change will come. When change comes it may be swift and shocking. It could be psychologically devastating and it may also be catastrophic or demeaning to the individual. As hard as change is to accept, preparing for anything -- and everything -- when it comes to change is beneficial and if the instructor is successful, it shows creative depth and resourcefulness on the part of the instructor.

Accepting Science in the Face of Religious Dogma

Number two on the list of 20 strategies for helping students become more effective at handling topics of change and continuity -- including looking closely at views on "continuity in religious practice" -- will be presented in this paper.

Here's the scenario: a young woman was brought up in the home of evangelicals, who believe in "creationism," the belief that God created the universe about 10,000 years ago. Frankly, her parents have rejected science and injected their strict constructionist views into her during her formative years. Any turning away from the religious conservatism on her part would bring extreme tension into the home. In front of the church where her family worships is a marquee that gives the times of worship services; it also has these prominent words presented: "Jesus or Darwin: which will you choose"?

But now she is in college, and in a required science class the instructor is laying the groundwork for a unit on evolution. A peer-reviewed article in the journal Evolution offers suggestions and background in terms of how to persuade certain religious students to accept a change in thinking. Evolution is frequently seen as "contentious and 'troubling', the authors explain, because evolutionary biology " ... intersects and often challenges religious beliefs and values" (Chinsamy, et al., 2008). The authors point out that is isn't just religious evangelicals that are at odds… [END OF PREVIEW]

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"When Evolution Collides With Religious Dogma."  Essaytown.com.  December 8, 2015.  Accessed May 19, 2019.
https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/evolution-collides-religious-dogma/8577381.