Cultivating Compassion: Developmentally Reframing the Religious Nurture of Young Children



The cover of religious education.
Decety et al. posited that family religiosity has a negative effect on children’s altruism. However, a constructive reading of developmental psychologists suggests that religious nurture can enhance young children’s moral development. Bloom and Harris offered evidence that infants and toddlers exhibit moral sensibilities and preschoolers engage the world through charitable epistemologies primed toward consensus and care. Engel provided insight into the role of curiosity in exploring difference in the world. Taken together, their findings suggest new ways that religious nurture might promote prosocial behaviors congruent with religious and social tolerance.


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