Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance.
PLAIN LANGUAGE VERSION:
You have the right to profess your religion freely, to change it, and to practise it either on your own or with other people.
Countries are made of many different kinds of people from many different places. But sometimes countries have an official religion, or a national political party. If you are different from the majority, you still have the right to your own religion and your own opinions, and have the right to practise your religion and express your opinions in public and in private.
tolerance is acceptance of others with mutual respect and understanding. The UNs Declaration of Principles on Tolerance defines tolerance as an active attitude and a responsibility that upholds human rights, pluralism (including cultural pluralism), democracy and the rule of law. It commits the member States to support and implement programmes of social science research and education for tolerance, human rights and non-violence and to educating caring and responsible citizens open to other cultures, able to appreciate the value of freedom, respectful of human dignity and differences, and able to prevent conflicts or resolve them by non-violent means.
Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Intolerance and of Discrimination Based on Religion or Belief (UN General Assembly Resolution 36/55 of 25 November 1981)
Report from the Special Rapporteur on Religious Intolerance, appointed by the Commission on Human Rights in 1986
Create a table with two columns. Name one column Tolerance and the other Intolerance. Ask students to brainstorm definitions and examples to write under each. Do this as a class activity. Then ask them to examine and compare the two columns. What can they observe? (Hint: one of the things that often happens is that all the definitions and examples under Tolerance end up being passive rather than active. If this is the case, point it out.) Now ask students to describe an incident of intolerance that they might have witnessed. How could that have been contained or avoided?
Organize a multicultural event in the classroom. Ask each student to represent a member of a different religious or spiritual group. Ask them to give a presentation about the different customs associated with each of the religious cultures they are representing. Ask them to create paintings, sculptures or other exhibits that would demonstrate the customs and beliefs of those religions and cultures.