“If people must not be taught religion, they might be taught reason, philosophy. If the State must not teach them to pray it might teach them to think. And when I say that children should be taught to think I do not mean (like many moderns) that they should be taught to doubt; for the two processes are not only not the same, but are in many ways opposite. To doubt is only to destroy; to think is to create.“
Daily News, June 22, 1997 (I found it in The Complete Thinker by Dale Ahlquist)
I‘ve been thinking about the difference between learning to think and learning to doubt. I have a feeling that what Chesterton says here- “to doubt is only to destroy; to think is to create” may have implications for teaching middle-school age students. The logic stage seems ripe with opportunities to either teach a child to doubt (whether we intend to or not) or to think.
It seems to me that the questions we ask about what we read (and that we teach our kids to ask) are formative toward one end or the other. We want them to become thinkers, not doubters.
These are the kinds of things I think about while I pack furiously, spackle walls, and wipe down baseboards (we’re moving this week!) What are you thinking about this weekend?
You can add commentary or photos if you’d like (you know I can’t ever resist adding a photo, myself!), but all you need is a snippet. Let’s keep this thing simple! Reading even a few lines of Chesterton every week is bound to be profitable.