Education is in a constant state of renewal internationally where it responds to a number of pressing social, political and cultural issues. Processes of globalization, a number of conflicts and acts of terror, economic and environmental crises have led to large waves of migration and asylum seekers arriving in countries with the hope of finding safer and more stable places to settle. This, in turn, has led to cultural and religious pluralism being a key characteristic of many societies with corresponding issues of belonging and identity.
As well, for many people, there has been a shifting influence of and allegiance away from traditional religious frameworks with the emergence of new religious movements, both peaceful and violent, and a rise in popularity of spirituality and non-religious worldviews which provide alternate frameworks for living healthy and ethical lives. In order to prepare today’s student for tomorrow’s world, one which is confronted by a range of risks and crises and which is being shaped by rapidly changing technologies, educators and researchers are investigating new ways of equipping students to deal with these challenges and opportunities, including the nurturing of spiritual wellbeing.
This book brings together the voices of many experienced educators to discuss ways to re-enchant education and re-enliven learning programs in response to these 21st century issues in an increasingly global and interconnected world. It examines a range of international contexts, including secular and religious educational settings, and provides an avenue for visionary voices that identify problems and offer solutions to help shape a more promising education system that will prepare children more constructively and beneficially to flourish in their future worlds.
Table of Contents
Globalization, Mediatization and (Post-)secular Societies
1. Introduction Marian de Souza and Anna Halafof
2. Spiritual Wellbeing in Education Marian de Souza and Anna Halafof
3. Beyond Faith? Recent Trends in Religion and Spirituality Among Teenagers Andrew Singleton
4. Spirituality in Australian Education: A Legacy of Confusion, Omission and Obstruction Terence Lovat
5. Building the Foundations of Global Citizenship in Young Children Tony Eaude
6. Worldview Education as a Viable Perspective for Educating Global Citizens Dzintra Iliško
Theoretical, psychological and philosophical approaches
7. Being Spiritually Educated R. Scott Webster
8. Life-Education and Religious Education in National, Prefectural and other Public Schools in Japan Fumiaki Iwata
9. Music and Spirit: Exploring a Creative Spiritual Pedagogy Ruth Wills
10. Seeing What is True and Holy in Others Rev. Dr. John Dupuch
Reflections on Policy, Pedagogy and Programs
11. Childhoods Past and Present: A Reflexive Approach to Enhancing Children’s Spiritual Wellbeing Kate Adam
12. Educational Reforms in Japan: Are they Contributing to a Sense of Wellbeing and Happiness among Young People? Dorothea Filus
13. Reflections on Gender Discrimination in the Spiritual Life of a Muslim Community: Gender in Elementary and Middle School Religion Textbooks in Turkey Mualla Yildiz
14. Yingadi Aboriginal Immersion: A Program to Nurture Spirituality Olga Buttigieg
15. Spiritual Wellbeing and the National Schools Chaplaincy Program in Australia Avril Howard
16. Fostering a Sense of Belonging and Identity through Sound and Spirituality Dawn Joseph
17. Nurturing the Spiritual Child: Recognising, Addressing and Nurturing Spirituality in Early Years’ Classrooms through a Dispositional Framework Brendan Hyde
Dr Marian de Souza has spent more than twenty years researching contemporary understandings of spirituality and the implications for education and wellbeing of children and young people. Her recent publications include Spirituality in Education in a Global, Pluralised World (Routledge).
Dr Anna Halafoff is a Senior Lecturer in Sociology of Religion at Deakin University and a Research Associate of the UNESCO Chair in Interreligious and Intercultural Relations – Asia Pacific at Monash University. Her most recent publications with Routledge are a co-edited book, Education about Religions and Worldviews: Promoting Intercultural and Interreligious Understanding in Secular Societies (with Elisabeth Arweck and Donald Boisvert), and a co-authored book, Religion and Development in the Asia-Pacific: Sacred Places as Development Spaces (with Matthew Clarke).
This book provides a very well grounded approach to the issues regarding religious education in schools. The sociological, psychological and philosophical underpinnings are not only impressive, but made in very helpful and approachable ways. The book moves well beyond ‘should there be education about/into religion’ to a consideration of what is the fundamentally critical aim of education and the role of ‘spirituality’, worldviews, even ‘religion’ in delivering on this aim. A major strength is the thorough care with which the themes are developed, exemplified and made real in practice.
Professor Gary D Bouma, UNESCO Chair in Interreligious and Intercultural Relations – Asia Pacific, Monash University
This book makes an explicit contribution to exploring the significance of spiritual wellbeing within the context of education. It is well organised and allows for the conceptualisation of spirituality and spiritual wellbeing to flow in the direction of spiritual education. It offers creative ways of fostering the inclusion of spiritual wellbeing within educational contexts. The writing style is straightforward and would be easily accessible to educators, academics, as well as parents and carers and those with a general interest in spiritual wellbeing in the context of education.
Michael T Buchanan, Associate Professor of Religious Education, Australian Catholic University, Australia