Aim To think about religious symbols… • Is displaying them a good thing or a bad thing? • Can displaying them cause conflict? • If it causes conflict, should people be allowed to display religious symbols? Warm up! Can you remember what religion these symbols are from & what the symbols are called? Burqa - Islam Star of David - Judaism Icthus - Christianity Cross - Christianity Dove - Christianity Communion - Christianity Star & Crescent moon - Islam ‘What would Jesus do?’ - Christianity 5 pillars of Islam - Islam Menorah - Judaism Kippah - Judaism
Discuss • Religious believers are often proud of their religious symbols. • But, sometimes religious symbols can cause or be a sign of conflict. • For this activity the class needs to be divided into 6 groups. • Each group is going to have a card to read about a situation of conflict – there are 3 cards to look at altogether. • Before you start, in your groups choose a… • Scribe – They will do the writing. • Reader – They will read out the cards. • Time keeper – They will keep a check on how long you have to discuss each card & get the group to hurry up if necessary. • Spokesperson – They will need to speak on behalf of the group at the end of the activity. • Everybody in the group needs to talk & listen (to each other!) • When you are given a card… • The reader reads the card out to the group. • The group discuss the card – everybody needs to have a chance to speak. • Then, the scribe answers the questions on the card by writing what the group thinks on the big paper.
What do you think? • As groups you have now discussed the 3 situations where religious symbols have caused conflict or have been a sign of conflict. Each group’s spokesperson needs to feedback to the class & tell us what your group would have done to resolve the conflict. • Case 1 – Aishah Azmi & wearing a face veil. • Case 2 – Nadia Eweida & wearing a cross necklace. • Case 3 – Jewish people in Nazi Germany & wearing a star of David. • This is what actually happened… • Case 1 – Aishah Azmi & wearing a face veil • The court ruled that Aishah had been discriminated against & she won £1100, but she still lost her job because the court also said that she should have removed her face veil because it had stopped the children getting a good standard of education. • Case 2 – Nadia Eweida & wearing a cross necklace • British Airways changed their policy & Nadia was allowed to wear her cross. British Airways also said that people could wear small badges of religious symbols. • Case 3 – Jews in World War 2 being forced to wear a Star of David • Jewish people were forced to wear the Star of David.
What do you think? As a class, think about the situations you’ve talked about today & discuss these questions from the start of the lesson? Is it a good or bad thing to display religious symbols? Can displaying religious symbols cause conflict? If displaying religious symbols can cause conflict, should people be allowed to display them? Some people say that we should be tolerant (what does ‘tolerant’ mean?) about religious symbols to avoid conflict. Read this quote from a Jewish woman who talks in schools about Judaism: ‘Perhaps one day one of those children that I speak to might meet someone who doesn’t do things quite the way they do things. Who wouldn’t eat the same food as they eat; or maybe who has their head covered. And perhaps they will understand why & tolerate it. And it might just make the world a little easier to live in.’