Wednesday, November 12, 2008

It would also be interesting to teach more than one theory of creation. The dominant one in this culture happens to be the Jewish creation myth, which is taken over from the Babylonian creation myth. There are, of course, lots and lots of others, and perhaps they should all be given equal time (except that wouldn't leave much time for studying anything else). I understand that there are Hindus who believe that the world was created in a cosmic butter churn and Nigerian peoples who believe that the world was created by God from the excrement of ants. Surely these stories have as much right to equal time as the Judeo-Christian myth of Adam and Eve.

Richard Dawkins "Is Science a Religion", 1997

I replied that, horribly as sexual abuse no doubt was, the damage was arguably less than the long-term psychological damage inflicted by bringing up the child Catholic in the first place.

Richard Dawkins, The God Delusion, p 317

It is evil to describe a child as a Muslim child or a Christian child. I think labelling children is child abuse and I think there is a very heavy issue, for example, about teaching about hell and torturing their minds with hell. It's a form of child abuse, even worse than physical child abuse.

Richard Dawkins, quoted in the Daily Telegraph, Oct 23rd.

Prof Dawkins said he wanted to look at the effects of "bringing children up to believe in spells and wizards". "I think it is anti-scientific – whether that has a pernicious effect, I don't know," he told More4 News. "I think looking back to my own childhood, the fact that so many of the stories I read allowed the possibility of frogs turning into princes, whether that has a sort of insidious affect on rationality, I'm not sure. Perhaps it's something for research."