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What Do You Believe? (Big Questions) Hardcover – March 21, 2011
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"The graphically bold format — which mixes photographs, cartoons, and sidebars — will keep kids' attention, whether they are seeking truth, knowledge, or more to ponder." – Publishers Weekly
"As an introduction to myriad ways people around the world choose to live and think, it's worthy reading material for any age." – Tribune Newspapers
"This slim book goes beyond the standard comparative religion format to address questions of philosophy and belief that readers, both those with and without religious identification, will find thought-provoking." – School Library Journal
Top Customer Reviews
I like the way differences and similarities between the religions are shown with charts and pictures and even a couple comics. There's a section on "Hair do's and don'ts" and "Why do you wear that?". I thought these were good to have since the first way many kids encounter another religion is through distinctive hairstyles or clothes.
I highly recommend this book, especially for kids who have suddenly "discovered" religion or who have general questions.
- The book almost exclusively presents positive aspects, practices and consequences of belief systems. The history of issues and dangers of religions are not included: the negative is only superficially mentioned and sugar coated in this book, from subtle justifications of detrimental religious practices to a brief "..why is everyone fighting". If you want a child to develop a balanced and factual understanding about religion, omitting important historical facts and failing to expose the negative side is surely not the way to do it.
- The book asserts god exists. There is a chapter (What is god?) dedicated to the 'fact' that "...God is unlimited - far greater than anything humans can truly understand or describe". The contents also often presents the assumptions from each religion as 'truths', and not as what they are, assumptions.
- It presents atheism and agnosticism as 'belief systems'. Requiring evidence to justify extraordinary claims is not a 'belief system', much less a religion.
In fact, most religious individuals are atheists when it comes down to someone else's religions - except their own. This is a poor way to teach kids about intellectual honesty and critical thinking.
In summary, although this book is an illustrated overview of various religions, it presents a biased and false rosy picture of the subject for kids and adults.
Warning: when we first gave it to him, he would just open to a random page, read a box and assume that it was fact (since it is in a book). So, I highly reccommend reading it together at first.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very disappointed in this book. We purchased it for our 7 year old hoping that it was give a balanced view on ALL belief systems whether religious or non-religious. Read morePublished 15 days ago by Kathryn C.
Although a little advanced for my 10 year old, this book is GREAT! We read together a few pages here and there so I could help clarify many of the words and give examples. Read morePublished 3 months ago by gizzychico3
My children have been really interested in religion since I explained to them that not everyone believes in Christianity. Read morePublished 3 months ago by TEDandJESS
I got this book for my six year old son, to help with discussions. I was hoping for a book that introduced him to different ways of thinking and beliefs, and it did that. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Smkoko
The BEST book with descriptions of each religion and what people believe, includes athiests, agnostic, and other obsecure religions,...... Read morePublished 4 months ago by BeachBabe
This was a great book to read through with my 11 y/o! It was challenging enough to spark conversation and questions while still being appropriate for older kids. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Jennifer Smith
This is the best book I've found that explains not only the different religions of the world but also WHY there is religion. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Amazon Customer
I really like how this book breaks down the differences in the various religions. I thought it was going to be little kid-friendly, but it's probably better for kids 10 and up. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Jamie B.
I've been reading this book a little bit each night with my third grade. It's been great for both of us! Some fantastic questions and conversations have come from it.Published 11 months ago by Jenica C