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How can I teach tolerance when my son lies dead As relatives in Bali search for the lost members of their families, those left at home wait anxiously for news.
Through the intersecting webs of communication more and more people become aware of a particular loss, friends visit, letters of condolence and support arrive. It is this outpouring of love and affection that keeps away total despair as the message comes once again "no hope yet of getting the body out". These "golden lads and girls" are not coming home. Two international school teachers are known to have been killed in the Bali bomb blast, two more are still missing and assumed dead and it is possible that more may be involved. Only slowly is the real picture emerging, as many schools in the region are on half term holiday and the scheduled International Baccalaureate Regional Conference was cancelled so registration cannot official pandora jewelry website be checked. International teachers are part of a global family and as the e mails fly it is clear that it is a deeply wounded family. Teachers, parents, students all share the grief and as memorial assemblies are planned, questions are asked. The first is a practical and political concern. If the International Baccalaureate Organisation had known that Bali was on the list of possible sites for terrorist activities in the area, surely the conference would have been cancelled? So there is considerable anger as it emerges that the British and Australian governments did know, but failed to pass on the information. The second question is a philosophical one. How can we continue to teach our students tolerance and multi cultural understanding when the very teachers who pass on that message are blown up by terrorists? "Clearly", as one teacher from Vienna International School put it, "our work to wipe out sectarian bigotry and violence is not yet done". Indeed the Bali bombing becomes not just a clear symbol of the enormous size of the task but also, for many people, a reason to say that task has failed and furthermore to identify the enemy as Islamic fundamentalism. It is then but a short step, particularly for those who have no knowledge of the Islamic faith, to genuine pandora label all Muslims as terrorists. If we are to maintain a philosophy of shared humanity, difficult though it may be in the present climate of terrorism; if we are to celebrate diversity and have a belief in the power of service (part of the mission statements of every international school), then we must be willing to study the history and culture of Islam in order to make considered judgements not knee jerk reactions to events. And if we are asking Islam to reconsider its fundamentalism, then the West must reconsider how genuinely liberal is its liberalism. It is interesting in this context to consider the meaning of the word "jihad". Linked to a number of fundamentalist sects, some with a record of violence, the word has become almost synonymous with terrorism, yet its meaning where to sell pandora bracelet is neither crusade or war but "struggle". As Karen Armstrong points out in her book Muhammad, A Western Attempt to Understand Islam, jihad is much more than fighting a battle, or a political struggle; it is also a personal moral and spiritual commitment to conquer the forces of evil in oneself. An understanding of this word can thus illuminate how by extension it has brought some groups to believe that they have a mission to struggle, with whatever force necessary, against the forces of evil they perceive in many aspects of the West. Understanding is the start, for from it can come an ability to confirm our own rights and beliefs whilst respecting the rights and beliefs of others. Yet as we talk of tolerance, compassion and understanding the telephone still does not ring. How can discount pandora beads we make the theory match the reality when Deborah Snodgrass and Jon Ellwood lie in a blood stained morgue, and most probably their fellow International Baccalaureate teachers Shane Walsh Till and Jamie Wellington are with them, killed in Bali with maybe 200 others? Perhaps an answer can be found in the story of Pandora, who opened the fateful box and released a seething mass of beastly horrors on to humankind. The age of innocence was gone but as the whole world wept, imperial Zeus looked from the sky and gave his final gift. of hope. Dr Ellwood, a consultant on international education and editor of the European Council of International Schools magazine, has spent many years promoting understanding of the history and culture of Islam. Her son Jon was killed in the Bali bombings. He followed his mother into teaching and had been working as director of studies at the International School, Ho Chi Minh City. He had been attending a conference on the island of Bali with colleagues from across the world. His body is being brought home today. Click the Adblock/Adblock Plus icon, which is to the right of your address bar.
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