The Principles and Basics of Religious Training

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The Principles and Basics of Religious Training

In addition to the general principles of education, also every aspect of education and training needs special principles.
The following are the principles and basics of religious training:

1- Procuring the base of actual abilities

Religious training means letting the talents become actual abilities, It means that the main task of an instructor is to make the inner talent of children developed.
Instructors should procure the base for children to change their talents into actual abilities. Training is not only a series of educations, imitations and useless facts in the memory.
We apply education as a means of training, this is why education and training both applied together.
A successful education is supposed to make the inner talents of children developed, in order to change to actual abilities. This education should be considered in religious training.
The lessons should not be kept in the memory as useless information; learning should be practical.
Education and training should be offered accurately and logically. At the end of the school years students are expected to comprehend their lessons practically; for example if they study topics on monotheism, they should be able to know God well at their own extent.

2- Considering the cognitive and emotional aspects of children and teenagers’ growth

What is definitely proved is that most of the abstract concepts will be comprehended at advanced ages. What is important in religious training is to consider the cognitive and emotional aspects of each age; for example on emotional growth, it is supposed to consider the relationship between mother and child and also child’s attachment to mother.
Gradually by the social growth, children build relationship with the social groups and also others of the same age.
If their feeling of attachment is developed accurately, they will be able to apply this feeling for making a relationship with God as the main source of power and emotion.
Another example is about the concept of causality; at the end of childhood (from 7 – 12) children get a purposeful curiosity. They are able to easily understand the specific concepts, such as: causality.
Teachers should be able to explain children’s relationship with God, by using their own language.

3- Considering the intellectual growth of children and the role of intellect in religious training

An accurate training is the most important factor of developing children’s divine nature and inner talents. Training should not be extravagant; they should be persuaded to think.

4- The role of model in religious training

Identification and socialism, as the two important topics in psychology and sociology, indicate that children and especially teenagers try to imitate others’ behaviour.
According to identification, they follow a behavioural model, in order to form their personality. In religious training parents and teachers are the first models children and teenagers.
Children and teenagers compare their teachers’ speech with their behavoiur.
Having a pattern is also mentioned in the Koran: “In God’s messenger you have a fine model” [The Coalition (Ahzaab) / 21].

Related topics:
* The principles of training in Islam according to the Koranic verses and traditions
* Relationship between religion and training
* Education and training and man’s expect from religion

References:
* Education and training in Islam (by Morteza Motahhari)
* Ma’refat Quarterly (No. 33)
* American English translation of the Koran (by T.B. Irving)

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