Those without a religious education miss out on something essential to our species
Our esteemed Education Minister, Ruairi Quinn – he's a decent old cove, since he hails from Sandymount, Dublin 4 – has suggested that school pupils nowadays should be taught more maths and less religion in schools. And there are some parents who agree.
I certainly agree that maths should be taught properly – and more inspirationally, too. It was only many years after I left school that I came to understand that mathematics involved beauty, philosophy and music – people who are clever at maths are likely to be musical.
And maths is an unfailing guide to braininess, though not necessarily to emotional intelligence and common sense, as the mystical mindset of that brilliant mathematician Eamon de Valera demonstrated. Pure maths is abstract, and keeps your head in the clouds, which is not always a bad place to be.