Up@dawn 2.0

Friday, September 6, 2019

Quiz Sep 11/12

"The Monk and the Philosopher"; FL 7-8; Beerbohm, "Going Out for a Walk" (JW); ALSO RECOMMENDED: Mad Monk ManifestoSchool of Life videos on eastern philosophy... Matthieu Ricard (TED Talks & other videos)...

Post your own alternate quiz questions, discussion questions, comments, & links... Tell us what you talked about on your last peripatetic stroll (and what it had to do with the subject du jour). 

1. How are Revel and Ricard related, and what is their philosophical difference?

2. What's the ultimate goal of Tibetan Buddhism?

3. What does Ricard say is the cause of suffering?

4.  Pain and suffering provide what opportunity in Buddhism?

5. Buddhism's metaphysical understanding of consciousness indicates what position regarding the nature of reality?

6. What caused Stephen Batchelor to leave Tibetan Buddhism?

FL 7-8
7. What did the Holy Spirit produce in "respectable people," during the Great Awakening?

8. What "intense supernatural feeling" did George Whitefield implant in American Christianity?

9. Why, according to Alexander Hamilton, did the framers omit God from the Constitution?

10. What, according to Kant, is the motto of enlightenment?

11. Enlightenment thinkers were sure that what would win in the "marketplace of ideas?"

12. What kind of questions "burden" human thought, but cannot finally be answered?

Discussion Questions

  • Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?
  • Does nirvana have to be the same for everyone? What would be your personal definition/experience of nirvana?  
  • Matthieu Ricard has been called the happiest man in the world. Do you think eastern philosophies focused on the alleviation of suffering are a more promising route to happiness than its "pursuit" in the western/Jeffersonian tradition of individualism and personal liberty?
  • Is "Holy Spirit" something real and supernatural, or is it the name of a natural form of experience best studied and explicated by neuroscientists, and analyzed by philosophers?
  • Have you been "born again," or encouraged by faith leaders or peers to seek spiritual rebirth? Is that something real, metaphorical, or delusional?
  • Why did the founders omit reference to God in the Constitution, do you think?
  • Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?
  • Beerbohm notes the "drawbacks" of London's environment that keep him from having to walk. What drawbacks exist in your environment and how do or might you overcome them?
  • What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?
  • What do you think about Beerbohm's attribution of walking to some lower human faculty ("soul")? Where does your "mind go" while walking?

William James and Kitaro Nishida... Nishida Kitaro (SEP)... John Dewey in Japan... Dewey's trans-Pacific experience...

Aeon (@aeonmag)
If part of human flourishing is to ‘know thyself’, then self-deception undercuts the aims of the good life. On how Buddhist teaching can lessen the tendency for self-delusion. Last week’s most read Essay: ow.ly/onxa50kqQlbpic.twitter.com/cejw9qeBsI

25 Zen quotes -
"In western society, we tend to think that we’ll find happiness once we reach certain goals. However, Zen Buddhism says that happiness doesn’t come from any outside achievements. Instead, it believes that true inner peace comes from within.

The key, according to Zen, is to let go of attachments and embrace living fully in the present moment. It’s certainly an outlook on life that all could benefit from, no matter your religion or race..."  http://hackspirit.com/25-quotes-zen-buddism-will-open-mind-wide-open/
==
Stephen Batchelor's books on secular/atheistic Buddhism... Does Buddhism Give Us Answers or Questions? (w/John Horgan)...
...In Buddhism Without Beliefs, Batchelor advocated a bare-bones Buddhism, one that "strips away, layer by layer, the views that conceal the mystery of being here" and leaves us in a state of acute existential awareness.
He emphasized that this state is not always pleasant. When we truly confront reality, we "tremble on that fine line between exhilaration and dread." In fact, there is no better way to confront the "enormity of having been born," he contended, than to ponder our own mortality. Batchelor advocated sitting in silence while dwelling upon the following question: "Since death alone is certain and the time of death uncertain, what should I do?" Ideally, this meditation will "jolt us awake to the sensuality of existence."
Confession of a Buddhist Atheist (2010)Batchelor described himself as an "agnostic Buddhist." Agnosticism is often denigrated as a passive worldview, the philosophical equivalent of a shrug. But true agnosticism, Batchelor contended, consists of "an intense perplexity that vibrates through the body and leaves the mind that seeks certainty nowhere to rest." (continues)
Buddhism: A Very Short Introduction (ebook)Batchelor on On Being ("Stephen Batchelor’s secular Buddhism speaks to the mystery and vitality of spiritual life in every form. For him, secularism opens to doubt and questioning as a radical basis for spiritual life. Above all, he understands Buddhism without transcendent beliefs like karma or reincarnation to become something urgent to do, not to believe in.")

Buddhism: A Very Short Introduction... Tibetan Buddhism... Indian Philosophy... Confucianism... Some old posts on eastern philosophy... The Tao of Pooh 

the way

January 27, 2010
We’re talking about classic Chinese philosophers in Intro today, Confucius(the sage, not the biopic that bumped Avatar), Lao Tzu and many others whose names  can be harder than Greeks’ to keep straight.
But The Tao of Pooh should be simple enough… 
Owl of course is the opposite of Pooh, the Knowledge for the sake of Appearing Wise, the one who studies Knowledge for the sake of Knowledge, and who keeps what he learns to himself or to his own small group, rather than working for the enlightenment of others. That way, the scholars can appear Superior, and will not likely be suspected of Not Knowing Something. After all, from the scholarly point of view, it’s practically a crime not to know everything. But sometimes the knowledge of the scholar is a bit hard to understand because it doesn’t seem to match up with our own experience of things. Isn’t the knowledge that comes from experience more valuable than the knowledge that doesn’t?
Oh, yes. Ask any pragmatist. Or ask Bob Solomon: For the Confucian, the personal is the social. For the Taoist, the personal is the relation to nature. For both, the goal is harmony in human life and a larger sense of the “person” than the mere individual. Experience preferred.
Or ask Simon Critchley, who reports this Socratic jab from Confucius (aka Kongzi): “You do not understand even life. How can you understand death?” His rival Lao Tzu thought he understood his body to be the source of all his suffering. That’s blaming the victim, if you ask me. Both are now asteroids, nominally at least. Presumably their suffering (and understanding) is no more. Same for Chuang Tzu (Zhuangzi), who– like Freddie the Leaf— saw death as “just like the progression of the four seasons.”
“We all fear what we don’t know, Freddie. It’s natural,” Daniel reassured him. “Yet, you were not afraid when Summer became Fall. They were natural changes. Why should you be afraid of the season of death?”
“Does the tree die, too?” Freddie asked.
“Someday. But there is something stronger than the tree. It is Life. That lasts forever and we are all a part of Life.”
“Where will we go when we die?”
“No one knows for sure. That’s the great mystery!”
“Will we return in the Spring?”
“We may not, but Life will.”
“Then what has been the reason for all of this?” Freddie continued to question. “Why were we here at all if we only have to fall and die?”
Daniel answered in his matter-of-fact way, “It’s been about the sun and the moon. It’s been about happy times together. It’s been about the shade and the old people and the children. It’s been about colors in Fall. It’s been about seasons. Isn’t that enough?
The Japanese Zen  monk haiku masters (like Mabutsu) would say it is, if they said anything propositional at all. You never know just when the bottom will fall out. So true.
It was enough for Walt Whitman, too, who sang of “the beautiful uncut hair of graves” and would not be “contain’d between my hat and boots.”
Pooh, for a bear of very little brain, has sure made his mark amongst academics and intellectuals. In Pooh and the Philosophers John Williams says Whitehead got it wrong: all those post-Platonists were really annotating our ursine hero. In Pooh Perplex and Postmodern Pooh, Frederick Crews discovers a humanist role-model and skewers the pretensions of literary critics in the process: two acts of public service we can all be grateful for.




The School of Life's YouTube channel

Why so Many Love the Philosophy of the East – and so Few That of the West
Miranda Kerr is pretty, successful and very rich. She’s been named the sexiest woman alive. She’s also deeply interested in developing her mind. That means she’s into yoga, chanting, meditation and Japanese Buddhism. She recites Nam Myoho Renge Kyo twice a day – invoking the mystic law of the lotus flower which asserts that Miranda and the cosmos are two sides of the same coin.
Kerr has had some real difficulties with loneliness and loss. Her first boyfriend died in a car crash. A later lover turned out to be a crook. She married Orlando Bloom but it all fell apart pretty quickly. Her needs are real. And she’s turned for comfort and help to the East.
She might have looked elsewhere. She might have found that Plato or Tolstoy had things to teach her. Maybe she could have been touch..ed by Bach or medieval architecture. It’s not as if the West doesn’t also have a deep and long engagement with the sorrows of life. But, like so many spiritually curious people, she didn’t end up engaging with its culture. Instead she joined the Soka Gakkai Buddhist movement.

Miranda is deeply sincere in her longing to be educated and instructed. She’s a tireless advocate of an analysed life.
So how has it happened that Western culture largely passed Miranda by? It’s not her fault. She needed something and the West wouldn’t give it to her. So she went elsewhere. And her decision tells us something hugely important about how the Western world handles – or more accurately, mishandles – its culture... (SoL, continues)
Six Ideas from Eastern Philosophy
Eastern Philosophy has always had a very similar goal to Western philosophy: that of making us wiser, less agitated, more thoughtful and readier to appreciate our lives. However, the way it has gone about this has been intriguingly different. In the East, Philosophy has taught its lessons via tea drinking ceremonies, walks in bamboo forests, contemplations of rivers and ritualised flower arranging sessions. Here are a few ideas to offer us the distinctive wisdom of a continent and enrich our notions of what philosophy might really be... (SoL, continues)
==
The Monk and the Philosopher by Jean-François Revel & Matthieu Ricard
Lachlan Dale explores some of the philosophical implications of Tibetan Buddhism.

The Monk and the Philosopher is an exploration of Tibetan Buddhist belief and practise, and an attempt to understand the religion’s growing popularity in the West. The book is in the form of a series of conversations between Jean-François Revel, a French intellectual known for his defense of liberalism and wariness of the totalitarian tendencies of religion, and his son Matthieu Ricard, who in the early 1970s abandoned a promising career in molecular genetics to study Tibetan Buddhism in Darjeeling. For Revel, his son’s decision to choose Eastern wisdom over the fruits of Western liberalism must have come as a shock. So on top of his desire to understand the appeal of Tibetan Buddhism in the West, Revel also wanted to better understand his son. Moreover, the disagreements between father and son roughly mirror the split between Eastern and Western forms of knowledge, making this book an excellent critique of Tibetan Buddhism for the philosophically-minded Westerner.

In recent decades Buddhism has enjoyed considerable growth in Western countries, in part due to a growing body of research confirming the effectiveness of mindfulness and meditation. These techniques have been demonstrated to reduce stress and anxiety, improve memory, and enhance cognitive flexibility. Psychologists also report an increased capacity for empathy and compassion, while neuroscientists note the increased density of grey matter in the hippocampus of long-term meditators. As a result, these techniques are often transplanted into a secular context. This troubles purists like Ricard, who believe the practises must remain rooted in a Buddhist program of spiritual development. When combined with visualisation, repetition of mantras, and the study of sacred texts, these techniques are said to allow an individual to directly grasp the fundamental nature of reality, including the unity of all phenomena, the transitory nature of existence, and the illusion of the self.

The ultimate goal of Tibetan Buddhism is not merely to reduce anxiety, but to reach nirvana. Ricard denies that this is an alternate metaphysical realm, instead understanding it as a state ‘beyond suffering’ in which one can directly contemplate absolute truth and “experience an unchangeable state of bliss and perceive the infinite purity of all phenomena” (p.150). He argues that Buddhists do not seek to flee this world, but merely to no longer be enslaved by it: “Dissolving the mind’s attachment to the reality of a self does go hand in hand with annihilation, but what’s annihilated is pride, vanity, obsession, touchiness, and acrimony. As that attachment dissolves, the field is left clear for goodness, humility, and altruism. By no longer cherishing and protecting the self, you acquire a much wider and deeper view of the world” (p.156). On the surface this seems a perfectly noble, secular, aspiration. However some aspects of Tibetan Buddhist doctrine prove more problematic to Western thinking... (continues at Philosophy Now)



Ricard on Buddhism & Western Philosophy (3" video)... Ricard at TED... Revel on How Democracies Perish (2" video)



“If you want the shortest version of my answer to the question of why Buddhism is true, it's this: Because we are animals created by natural selection. Natural selection built into our brains the tendencies that early Buddhist thinkers did a pretty amazing job of sizing up, given the meager scientific resources at their disposal.

“As for where the mind wanders to: well, lots of places, obviously, but studies have shown that these places are usually in the past or the future; you may ponder recent events or distant, strong memories; you may dread upcoming events or eagerly anticipate them; you may strategize about how to head off some looming crisis or fantasize about romancing the attractive person in the cubicle next to yours. What you’re generally not doing when your mind is wandering is directly experiencing the present moment.” 

“Buddhist thought and modern psychology converge on this point: in human life as it’s ordinarily lived, there is no one self, no conscious CEO, that runs the show; rather, there seem to be a series of selves that take turns running the show—and, in a sense, seizing control of the show. If the way they seize control of the show is through feelings, it stands to reason that one way to change the show is to change the role feelings play in everyday life. I’m not aware of a better way to do that than mindfulness meditation.” 

“There’s no doubt that meditation training has allowed some people to become essentially indifferent to what otherwise would have been unbearable pain.”  g'reads

In order to have peace and joy, you must succeed in having peace within each of your steps. Your steps are the most important thing.



GOING OUT FOR A WALK
By: Max Beerbohm

It is a fact that not once in all my life have I gone out for a walk. I have been taken out for walks; but that is another matter. Even while I trotted prattling by my nurse’s side I regretted the good old days when I had, and wasn’t, a perambulator. When I grew up it seemed to me that the one advantage of living in London was that nobody ever wanted me to come out for a walk. London’s very drawbacks—its endless noise and bustle, its smoky air, the squalor ambushed everywhere in it—assured this one immunity. Whenever I was with friends in the country, I knew that at any moment, unless rain were actually falling, some man might suddenly say “Come out for a walk!” in that sharp imperative tone which he would not dream of using in any other connexion. People seem to think there is something inherently noble and virtuous in the desire to go for a walk. Any one thus desirous feels that he has a right to impose his will on whomever he sees comfortably settled in an arm-chair, reading. It is easy to say simply “No” to an old friend. In the case of a mere acquaintance one wants some excuse. “I wish I could, but”—nothing ever occurs to me except “I have some letters to write.” This formula is unsatisfactory in three ways. (1) It isn’t believed. (2) It compels you to rise from your chair, go to the writing-table, and sit improvising a letter to somebody until the walkmonger (just not daring to call you liar and hypocrite) shall have lumbered out of the room. (3) It won’t operate on Sunday mornings. “There’s no post out till this evening” clinches the matter; and you may as well go quietly.

Walking for walking’s sake may be as highly laudable and exemplary a thing as it is held to be by those who practise it. My objection to it is that it stops the brain. Many a man has professed to me that his brain never works so well as when he is swinging along the high road or over hill and dale. This boast is not confirmed by my memory of anybody who on a Sunday morning has forced me to partake of his adventure. The ideas that came so thick and fast to him in any room, where are they now? where that encyclopaedic knowledge which he bore so lightly? where the kindling fancy that played like summer lightning over any topic that was started? The man’s face that was so mobile is set now; gone is the light from his fine eyes. He says that A. (our host) is a thoroughly good fellow. Fifty yards further on, he adds that A. is one of the best fellows he has ever met. We tramp another furlong or so, and he says that Mrs. A. is a charming woman. Presently he adds that she is one of the most charming women he has ever known. We pass an inn. He reads vapidly aloud to me: “The King’s Arms. Licensed to sell Ales and Spirits.” I foresee that during the rest of the walk he will read aloud any inscription that occurs. We pass a milestone. He points at it with his stick, and says “Uxminster. 11 Miles.” We turn a sharp corner at the foot of a hill. He points at the wall, and says “Drive Slowly.” I see far ahead, on the other side of the hedge bordering the high road, a small notice-board. He sees it too. He keeps his eye on it. And in due course “Trespassers,” he says, “Will Be Prosecuted.” Poor man!—mentally a wreck.

Luncheon at the A.s, however, salves him and floats him in full sail. Behold him once more the life and soul of the party. Surely he will never, after the bitter lesson of this morning, go out for another walk. An hour later, I see him striding forth, with a new companion. I watch him out of sight. I know what he is saying. He is saying that I am rather a dull man to go a walk with. He will presently add that I am one of the dullest men he ever went a walk with. Then he will devote himself to reading out the inscriptions.

How comes it, this immediate deterioration in those who go walking for walking’s sake? Just what happens? I take it that not by his reasoning faculties is a man urged to this enterprise. He is urged, evidently, by something in him that transcends reason; by his soul, I presume. Yes, it must be the soul that raps out the “Quick march!” to the body. —“Halt! Stand at ease!” interposes the brain, and “To what destination,” it suavely asks the soul, “and on what errand, are you sending the body?” —“On no errand whatsoever,” the soul makes answer, “and to no destination at all. It is just like you to be always on the look-out for some subtle ulterior motive. The body is going out because the mere fact of its doing so is a sure indication of nobility, probity, and rugged grandeur of character.” —“Very well, Vagula, have your own wayula! But I,” says the brain, “flatly refuse to be mixed up in this tomfoolery. I shall go to sleep till it is over.” The brain then wraps itself up in its own convolutions, and falls into a dreamless slumber from which nothing can rouse it till the body has been safely deposited indoors again.

Even if you go to some definite place, for some definite purpose, the brain would rather you took a vehicle; but it does not make a point of this; it will serve you well enough unless you are going for a walk. It won’t, while your legs are vying with each other, do any deep thinking for you, nor even any close thinking; but it will do any number of small odd jobs for you willingly—provided that your legs, also, are making themselves useful, not merely bandying you about to gratify the pride of the soul. Such as it is, this essay was composed in the course of a walk, this morning. I am not one of those extremists who must have a vehicle to every destination. I never go out of my way, as it were, to avoid exercise. I take it as it comes, and take it in good part. That valetudinarians are always chattering about it, and indulging in it to excess, is no reason for despising it. I am inclined to think that in moderation it is rather good for one, physically. But, pending a time when no people wish me to go and see them, and I have no wish to go and see any one, and there is nothing whatever for me to do off my own premises, I never will go out for a walk.

Phil Oliver (@OSOPHER)
The Most Contrarian College in America nyti.ms/2MotEv4
LISTEN: Buddhism ("The Monk & the Philosopher," "Why Buddhism is True"...)... Sep12 @dawn-"Monk & Ph'er in the Anthropocene"... The Way (on Taoism, Buddhism, Pooh, Freddie the Leaf...)... East and west, yin and yang (and the Tao of Physics...)

282 comments:

  1. Cami Farr H-0311:06 AM CDT

    "The monk and philosopher" seems very interesting. I might pursue reading it in its entirety later on in the year when I have a bit of time.

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  2. Kamryn Fisher, H03
    What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?
    I believe walking has numerous benefits to your health. Walking increases blood flow and stimulates your mind and body. It can help you lose weight, strengthen your bones, and even help your mood improve as you watch your surroundings around you when you go on a walk. I definitely feel healthier and have more energy as I continue to walk around campus.

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    Replies
    1. Cardio like walking always helps me feel healthy, but I think my favorite part how clear my head is

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    2. Walking in the good weather can definitely be invigorating! Good points!

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    3. "Have more energy"

      I wholly agree that the motion of walking creates energy for myself. I think about that a lot when I am falling asleep in my classroom chair...

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    4. Walking has multiple benefits like you mentioned where it increases blood flow and this blood flow is what causes the brain to think more breezily.

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  3. Jonathan Wagner H0-35:25 PM CDT

    Matthieu Ricard has been called the happiest man in the world. Do you think eastern philosophies focused on the alleviation of suffering are a more promising route to happiness than its "pursuit" in the western/Jeffersonian tradition of individualism and personal liberty?

    I think that the best way to consistently achieve happiness is by creating something; satisfaction is more fulfilling than warding off suffering. If someone spends their time focused on staying in their state of Nirvana, they may miss out on the stepping stones of despair that lead to a real happiness- one that is earned.

    Why did the founders omit reference to God in the Constitution, do you think?

    The founders probably left God out of the Constitution because they respected the fact that America was to become a diverse place with no religious affiliation. Hamilton may have been right that they never mentioned it because it had little to do with the logistics of the laws. Also, the constitution itself guaranteed religious freedom.

    Beerbohm notes the "drawbacks" of London's environment that keep him from having to walk. What drawbacks exist in your environment and how do or might you overcome them?

    When I’m in Murfreesboro, the people, busses, bikes, skateboards, and golf carts are all obstacles that make walking stressful. Walking at home, at night, is the best time and place for me.

    What do you think about Beerbohm's attribution of walking to some lower human faculty ("soul")? Where does your "mind go" while walking?

    My mind goes to the people whose houses I pass, usually when they seem empty. It’s always been interesting to see hundreds of houses in a night, all enclosing sleeping people. Because I walk at 2 or 3 in the morning, the streets are empty and quiet; any evidence of people is gone, and it’s easier to see the neighborhood separate from its inhabitants. I think a lot about the reasons people build their homes with large yards separating their bedrooms from their neighbors’ bedroom.

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    1. H01
      Jonathan, when you talked about walking in the night, it reminds me so much of when I walked at night in China's night market. If you ever had a peripatetic walk in China, you would fail miserably. Why? Night time is when everyone comes out to socialize, dance, eat, shop, and walk.

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    2. That's very interesting!

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    3. H-03

      You mentioned walking at night and it made me think about how many people I have seen in the past week and all of summer going for a walk at night in my neighborhood. I don't think I could do that in quiet neighborhood at night, I'd probably be too overwhelmed by the silence and the strangeness of the night.

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    4. Interesting article:
      https://www.matthieuricard.org/en/articles

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  4. Have you been "born again," or encouraged by faith leaders or peers to seek spiritual rebirth? Is that something real, metaphorical, or delusional?

    Of course, there is no way to answer this for sure. Nothing we know is concrete truth. The only "truth" that we know is what we can observe in our current state. And in this state, I think the idea of physically being born again is delusional.

    However, if the idea of being born again is metaphorical, it does make sense. People change all the time; their views and philosophies change. So the way that they perceive their state or world changes. Therefore, there are "reborn."

    I have heard religious people talk about looking for rebirth. These people are the ones from last semester who were handing out pamphlets in the middle of campus and talking about not eating meat. They were pretty much talking about karma in terms of rebirth. They were saying that we should be good people so that we can born again in a pleasing form. Their idea of being a good person is good, but the idea of actual rebirth is delusional.

    Metaphorically being reborn affects all of us. As we grow up, we see the world in new ways and we change our view along with it. My views now are not nearly the same as what they were a few years ago. After being exposed to different kinds of thinking and different people, my view of the world change, and I was "reborn."

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    1. Erica Combs7:19 PM CDT

      H1-
      I agree with this. I am constantly changing and therefore view myself as constantly being "reborn". I have not had a spiritual awakening or anything of that elk, but my mind is continuously expanding and therefore changing how I view reality.

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    2. Erica Combs7:28 PM CDT

      *ilk

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    3. I agree that we change, but a rebirth, to me, is a complete change of heart or something that drastic. A person may go though a handful of rebirths over the course of a lifetime, but I would say we grow rather than say we are reborn.

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    4. Section 12
      I can see your stance and where you are coming from. However I feel that a simple change in opinion or lifestyle does not completely encompass the concept of being reborn. I cannot fully explain what being reborn actually feels like, because I can confidently say that I have never experienced it.

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  5. What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?

    Walking helps you clear your head and be with your own thoughts for a while. Thee fresh air and sounds of the world help you relax and think.

    Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?

    I don't know if "courage" is the right world for it. Usually, from a young age religion is drilled deep into people. They grow up believing that one reality, so it takes something to put that aside and think for yourself and decide what to believe in.

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    1. H01
      I agree with you, Nibraas. Even if we were given a choice to abandon the religion we have grown up to, we wouldn't want to because it is so much of what defines us.

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    2. I would say the courage aspect comes from allowing yourself to believe a different view, despite having been taught and expected to believe something, that now sounds illogical to you, your whole life.

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    3. 1030-003

      This is great. It takes courage not only to believe something different but to express your belief and stand up for your belief even when those around you are the ones who drilled different beliefs into your head.

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  6. Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?


    There is definitely a level of self discipline one has to achieve in order to be fine with thinking for him/herself. I say this with regard to my personal attributes and aspects of my personality that make it difficult for me to be comfortable with regarding my own thought processes solely. This is especially true when it comes to superstition, which is the component of the question I will be catering this argument towards.

    Growing up, I have always been open to other people’s thoughts and concerns about situations, and have always held them with semi-high importance. It all started with the adults that have surrounded me in my life, especially my dad. They all have wisdom and advice to share with me that I seldom argue against because I perceive myself to not know any better. It is also because I am a very trusting person and have a preconceived notion that most people I encounter have good intentions and valid opinions, just like my dad and other family members. Now, it is okay to hold other’s perspectives with an open mind, but the thing that gets me is that I end up changing my own opinion very quickly when I hear an opposing argument that sounds viable, like the ones I have been exposed to growing up. This puts me in a state of uncertainty about my own core beliefs at times.

    That being said, when I hear a superstition, or conspiracy that may make a tiny bit of sense, it is enough for me to subliminally fall for it. This has dramatically decreased within the last few years, but still, I find it difficult to shake off hysteria at times. I believe self discipline and willingness to conduct research is key to completely becoming confident in one’s ideals, and not let it become polluted by conspiracy that does not have hardcore evidence to support it.

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    1. I appreciate your comments about openness to conspiracy, and I can relate. I wonder what it is about us (people generally), besides what Andersen says in Fantasyland, that makes us so susceptible. Distrust of institutions, maybe?

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    2. Sky Strube H019:47 PM CDT

      I'm the same way with conspiracy theories. I hear one thing that makes sense and suddenly I'm questioning if flat-Earthers are on to something.

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  7. H01
    Why did the founders omit reference to God in the Constitution, do you think?

    I think the founders intentionally left out the reference to God becuase they believe it would bring conflict to a unified country. The omission of God is like dodging slavery so that the country is not caught up in conflict on whether slavery is morally right.

    What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?

    Walking for like ten minutes a day with your family, may bring a special bond to your relationship with your family that you may not experience at home. Today, whenever we sit down for dinner, there is always that one person who is on the phone. Walking gives people the opportunity to connect with one another without distractions.

    Beerbohm notes the "drawbacks" of London's environment that keep him from having to walk. What drawbacks exist in your environment and how do or might you overcome them?

    Tennessee tends to have a great weather with an exception to when it rains. Rather than an environmental drawback, finding time to walk is one of my drawbacks. As a freshman in college and a part time worker, I find it hard to find time for myself. Being busy all the time, I do not even have the time to talk a walk in the park. The closest I could get to walking is from my car to class and then from class back to the parking lot.

    Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?

    It definitely takes courage to think for myself and invoke reason against superstition because I come from a very traditional family. Our family practice Buddhism and there are so many weird traditions that we have to follow or else something really bad will happen. For example, my mom would scold me it I wear any kinds of white flowers in my hair. For us white symbolizes death and wearing the color white will bring bad luck or even worse death in the family. Growing up, I don't believe in these superstitions but I always want to play it safe.

    Matthieu Ricard has been called the happiest man in the world. Do you think eastern philosophies focused on the alleviation of suffering are a more promising route to happiness than its "pursuit" in the western/Jeffersonian tradition of individualism and personal liberty?

    I believe being called the "happiest man in the world" is based on a certain perspective. Some may agree "yeah Ricard is the happiest man in the world" but some may not. As a Buddhist, I don't believe eastern philosophies contain a more promising route to the happiness because I have some relatives who have converted to Christianity and they love it.

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    1. H-03

      That superstition you spoke about is very interesting. I'm not Buddhist, but some members of my family believed it was bad to clip your nails at night.

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    2. I like how you described leaving God out of the Constitution intentionally. I thought it just came down to separation of church and state, but your view is really interesting

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  8. Jacob Hamm H03

    [Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?]
    I share the same general beliefs as my parents, but we do not really discuss them. I think that the most important part to my answer to this question is that I think I could have a constructive conversation with my parents if we were to talk about philosophy, which I think is an excellent thing to have when discussing things with parents and peers.

    [Is "Holy Spirit" something real and supernatural, or is it the name of a natural form of experience best studied and explicated by neuroscientists, and analyzed by philosophers?]
    Although I think that everyone should be open to their own opinion, I think that the latter is true. I simply think that the term “holy spirit,” derived from what the religious think, is really just experience with a layer of religious coating, which is the same as what secular people do to philosophical concepts (only that this coating is non-religious).

    [Why did the founders omit reference to God in the Constitution, do you think?]
    I think the framers of the constitution believed that the role of God, ultimately that of personal beliefs, did not have a place in the foundation to our government. The Bill of Rights even prohibits the government from making any law “respecting an establishment of religion” in the first amendment, keeping in line with the absence of god in the constitution, sidestepping the issue of promoting one religion or personal view over another.

    [Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?]
    I definitely think it takes courage to go against anything society deems as tradition. It is inherently “safe” to have a “normal,” whether it be superstitious or not, and “going against the grain” is sure to seem like an attack to those in the group who do not question their norms.

    [What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?]
    I really think the idea of being a peripatetic has proven itself to be useful for thinking and in conversation with others. This lends itself well to philosophy, where people are sharing their thoughts and views. The countless examples of famous philosophers and scientists who have used walking to think more clearly really proves that there is a connection with walking and the formation of new thoughts and better communication of those thoughts.

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    1. Camden H-0310:47 AM CDT

      I really wish I had that same common ground with my mom on topics of life and philosophies like you do with your parents. Unfortunately, I've had to hide my skeptical and atheistic beliefs from her for the latter half of my life out of fear she would see me as "lost". She is very grounded in her Christian beliefs and often comments on our good fortune being directly a result of those religious connections which I do not share in believing.

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    2. Sky Strube H019:54 PM CDT

      Camden, I went through the same thing when I was facing skeptical beliefs. I didn't want to let any one who because I didn't want to be lectured about something that I just didn't care about! Fortunately for me, my views have shifted and I'm much happier than I used to be, but I did it without ever really talking to my family about it. It really is tough not being on the same page as them!

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  9. Anastasia Hanes H-0312:43 AM CDT

    DQ-7
    I think it can be extremely difficult to break from tradition in cases where tradition has surrounded and been a part of someone’s life for any significant period of time. Stepping gently around the current socio-political climate, we live in a world (or perhaps just a nation) that simultaneously “frees” us to think whatever we want regardless of contrary evidence, and desperately tries to shape and sequester thought. This is not always as overt as our idea of “propaganda” or as malicious as a cult leader’s preaching. Sometimes tradition comes in something as simple as always saying grace every meal whether you believe it or not. Sometimes it comes in the form of someone casually laughing off a controversial topic to avoid conflict. Sometimes it comes as just not questioning why things stay the same. I have a biased opinion on the topic because I grew up rural North Carolina and then small town Eastern Tennessee, I have lived in the buckle of the bible belt my whole life and after the age of 11 decided that Christianity as I had always seen it was not my cup of tea. I am not courageous in this though because while I have received some mild opposition when discussing this fact in certain company, I have never naturalized the idea of it thanks to my mother’s policy on free thought. I follow a lot of traditions because they were naturalized in me. The stereotypical one is that I did dance and so have a fixed idea of what kind image I am supposed to project physically. I also learned to rag on my father and distrust promises after my parents divorced because that is what everyone around me did. There are dozens more that I may not even be aware of for the sheer fact of trying to pick apart my personality into what is “really me” and what is simply a piece of superstition I was taught is by far the most nerve-wracking and difficult introspection I have participated in. So yes, I think it is courageous to truly think for yourself and invoke reason against tradition and superstition because it is hard to separate one’s self from those traditions in many ways. I think it should be the norm to employ reason against rhetoric if only to draw conclusions yourself be they in alignment with tradition or opposing it.

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    1. Anastasia Hanes H-0312:44 AM CDT

      DQ-3
      Eastern and Western philosophies both have their flaws and grey areas. In my opinion, Tibetan Buddhism’s idea that suffering is earned is not in alignment with my personal ideas merely because it seems almost cruel to blame all suffering one the person’s self. I believe that the idea that suffering serves a purpose is more palatable. I am more of a Western-minded individual on this, though they may be due to my environment and upbringing. I think that pursuing happiness is as important as alliating one’s self from suffering. If you can commit yourself to being free from suffering through the contemplation of suffering that is noble but not something that I, as an outsider, can really understand from just one article. I admire those who can achieve happiness through that route but the process is just as important as the destination in my opinion causing me to side more with the western perspective. It is a self-centered view but our personal experience and learning process as we grow is a vital part of actualizing one’s self. I think we as individuals shape our own world to an extent and to put aside the idea of the self and the journey completely is not as fulfilling. I respect Eastern ideas about alleviating suffering for the very reason I dissent from them; it is their personal experience and journey to that end that makes it important.

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    2. Anastasia Hanes H-0312:46 AM CDT

      DQ-5
      My thoughts on the ideas of rebirth are purely subjective as I haven’t experienced it in the sense that it has always been described to me. I have been encouraged to seek spiritual rebirth by a small number of “faith leaders” in my life but the idea of being “born again” implies to me leaving behind a previous part of one’s self and starting new. I think ideas can change and be replaced over the course of one’s life but I don’t personally like the idea of willfully reinventing one’s self in the image of another. I don’t mean that all those that are born again are the same, they are as diverse as any social community, but they are “born again” into a set of ideas that are already created if ever evolving. Again, my personal experience clouds my view on this as I was “tricked” into the idea once by my youth pastor. They asked if any of us were curious about the way the church and it’s people came to believe as they did but when I went with the pastor to discuss things I was instead told that I had made a “noble choice” to be “born again into the light of the Lord” and that I should schedule my baptism so I may be “saved.” I don’t think this is everyone’s experience nor do I think it was normal but I certainly didn’t like the implication that my curiosity somehow had cemented a decision for me. I think people can be the most pious and strong believers without having to be “born again”. I think that for some the act of being “born again” is rather just an epiphany about one’s own ideas and feelings, it shouldn’t be something someone else can make you do but something that is done yourself. I think it is a metaphorical transformation of the mind and soul to this new perceptive of reality. The effects can be quite real on the person but it is not a physical or intrinsically “real” change to a person.

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    3. Camden H-0310:56 AM CDT

      I agree with you completely on the ideas of suffering and self enlightenment. The search for happiness and, as buddhists put, nirvana is an admirable voyage of one's self. Exploring yourself mentally, physically, and spiritually is extremely important in my opinion and will extract the inner truths of ourselves. It can be scary finding some things out about our own morality and ethical standing but I feel, as I feel you do, that recognizing these qualities about ourselves can only be beneficial to our own contentment.

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  10. H-03

    1. Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?

    - Absolutely, I think it takes a lot of courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition and traditional values especially if that is ingrained in your family's culture and they react very culturally to it.

    There are little superstitions I grew up with because of my mom, one being not clipping my nails at night. I'm sure I didn't stop caring about when I clipped my nails until I was in the 8th grade. For such a tiny superstition, it took a while to get rid of it.

    2. What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?
    - For me, it's always helped clear my mind. Over the summer on days where I was stressed, I would just go outside and go for a little stroll or just sit down on the front patio and just relax. I think taking the initiative to go walking in your free time is a good way to organize your thoughts, plans, and just give yourself some time to reflect.

    3. Why did the founders omit reference to God in the Constitution, do you think?

    - Well, the point of the Constitution was to establish a strong national government to replace what the Articles of Confederation couldn't properly do. America in the 18th century was already religiously diverse, so the founders must have acknowledged this reality.


    4. Have you been "born again," or encouraged by faith leaders or peers to seek spiritual rebirth? Is that something real, metaphorical, or delusional?

    - I haven't gone through that experience, but the way I see it is- if you are able to acknowledge what you've done wrong in your life and you truly feel sorry and guilt for what you've done, and you make strong-willed efforts to do better and be a better person, then essentially, you are "born again". Forget the spiritual stuff if that's not what you believe in. In that sense, yes, I think being "reborn" is real if it amounts to positive change in your life.

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    1. I like your response to the first question. I kind of think once you get used to it it's the easiest thing in the world to think for yourself, but to break from what you've been taught your whole life is really challenging.

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  11. George Sekeres(H-03)9:38 AM CDT

    I have a discussion question I kind of thought up on my own. How do you guys perceive the origin of morality. How do you know right from wrong. As an atheist I personally believe there is no set right or wrong, no divine justice or code of arms necessarily. Just laws and guidelines put into place by a community or society; a majority rules if you will. I start there and branch out or change my personal moral code based on how I want the world to function.

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    1. Good question, George, and I agree with your belief that there isn't some universal and necessary morality (pre-)determined apart from humanity. To a large degree, we set the rules. Of course, that's no excuse to be arbitrary, which you touch on with, "How I want the world to function." So, here are some questions in response: How do you want the world to function, George? And how do you decide that way of functioning is a good to be pursued? Is there any danger or benefit in starting with what a community or society has already put into place simply because "majority rules?" Just some thoughts!

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    2. Camden H-0311:12 AM CDT

      I also agree in saying there is no set division between right or wrong. I believe it was John Locke who said that "We are like chameleons, we take our hue and the color of our moral character, from those who are around us." Subsequently, we as people learn and shape our own morality from the people around us and in that sense, religion has also shaped a sort of moral code. However, as I am atheistic, these codes of morality are not adhered by a god fearing mentality for me. I agree with you in saying that our definitions of good and bad are products of our environment and should be used as a guide to our own morality from staying kindhearted and patient and keeping bias and ignorance to a minimum. And these examples are only valid in my eyes because of the positive effects they have on people that I have encountered in my life for, as Locke put it also, "No man's knowledge here can go beyond his experience".

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    3. I think morality somewhat comes from how you're raised. Beliefs are placed on you from the very moment you're born, so the sense of right and wrong kind of stems from there. As you grow up your experiences help shape what you believe is right and wrong as well. As someone that follows Judaism there are certain things that we believe, but we like to be open-minded as well.

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    4. I definitely believe there is a set right and wrong. Although more controversial topics can be influenced by the environment you are brought up in, basic morals are embedded into us. Even in other species, they protect the young and the weak. Although there are always exceptions, humans do not usually strive to bring harm to others.

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    5. Right and wrong are defined by what pushes the human race forward.

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    6. This is a very nice discussion question that crosses my mind a lot. It has been on my mind often recently because of this class actually. I believe that the universal code of right and wrong has been set by our human nature and emotions but that doesn't make it wrong. There has to be a set of universal ideas that everybody agrees upon.

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    7. @darren-grimes I'm still trying to figure out how I'd like the world to function, It's a complex bundle. I do know I'd like to live in a world where people can be loved and accepted and given equal opportunity to thrive. Unfortunately everyone seems to have a different idea of who "deserves" to live in this world, so it's hard to say my course of action is best, I suppose in the end it's just what I believe. I suppose there are always dangers to playing along to the "majority rules" idea, but I feel that as long as you keep an open mind it's a good place to start. Thanks for the questions, got me thinkin some deeps thoughts.

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    8. George Sekeres (H-03)6:26 PM CDT

      @Nic-Najjar, what do you believe pushes the human race forward?

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  12. In my opinion, walking has a level of value far deeper than just its exercise aspect. Human beings were meant to walk -- we survived through our most primitive stages by walking to scavenge, running to hunt, and staying on the move to evade predators. We are a walking species, built for endurance and stamina. In this sense, our minds formed around the action of walking. Humans evolved by thinking and walking. Walking lies somewhere in the balance of mindlessness and the brain stimulation that allows for creative, deep thoughts like nothing else can. Personally, I walk when I feel stressed or overwhelmed, or even when I need to contemplate a major decision. The simplicity and fundamental correctness of walking to a human being is, in my opinion, absolutely vital to a healthy life and a healthy mind. Obviously, as we have discussed in class, this realization of the value of walking is far from a new concept. The Greek philosophers used walking as a means for discussion and contemplation, and later philosophers, scientists, and writers even had their own "philosophers' walks". To ignore the value of walking to a true human experience would be simple ignorance to an action of great spiritual, mental, and, of course, physical value. The great poet William Woodsworth walked in estimated 180,000 recorded miles in his adult life, and he recognized the value of this activity in this passage from "Sweet was the Walk":
    "Now, too, on melancholy's idle dreams
    Musing, the lone spot with my soul agrees,
    Quiet and dark; for through the thick wove trees
    Scarce peeps the curious star till solemn gleams
    The clouded moon, and calls me forth to stray
    Thro' tall, green, silent woods and ruins gray."

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    1. I couldn't agree with you more on many levels of your paragraph. We wouldn't be what or who we are without walking and a lot of us take the symbol joy for granted.

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    2. https://www.consumerreports.org/exercise-fitness/benefits-of-walking/

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  13. H-03

    My parents and I have different views on religion, politics, and morality. I tend to be less “traditional” and more open minded with my view on life where they are very strict and rigid in their thinking. We usually avoid the topics but when they do come up my father gets heated and I tend to just let him rant or change the subject rather than create an argument

    I believe nirvana is just being at peace with where you are in that time and space but it’s not the same for everyone.

    In my opinion, the Holy Spirit is somewhat real. I believe it’s a feeling. It’s a way to give a name to that voice in your head telling you to do what’s right. It’s just the way we explain the way we think and feel in certain settings.

    I think it takes a lot of courage to think for yourself. To know that you are going to be challenged by others who oppose your way of thinking and will be prejudice against you for your personal belief and then to still choose that path takes courage.

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  14. What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?

    Walking allows you to clear your mind of distractions, help you gather your thoughts about a certain subject, and form a reasonable way to express your findings. Walking is beneficial to our physical health, but it can also be beneficial to our mental health in the sense that it allows us to think more clearly. (H01)

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    1. Phil 1030-009
      I totally agree. Walking frees our mind from stress and gives us an opportunity to think.

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    2. Phil 1030-009
      I totally agree. Walking frees our mind from stress and gives us an opportunity to think.

      Delete
  15. H01
    (Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?)

    My mom and I's morals and beliefs are pretty similar, especially since we follow the same religion. I know my father and I have some differences, but he also has a personality where he won't listen to other people's opinions. So, I can talk to both of them, but my dad's limited on some things.

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  16. Erica Combs4:54 PM CDT

    Does nirvana have to be the same for everyone? What would be your personal definition/experience of nirvana?

    H1-
    I do believe that reaching nirvana is a similar path for everyone because with my definition it means letting go of all physical needs and feeling a true bliss of being free from the material world.

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  17. H01
    (Does nirvana have to be the same for everyone? What would be your personal definition/experience of nirvana?)

    No, nirvana doesn't have to be the same for everyone, because everyone likes and finds comfort in different things. My personal definition is the simplest, which is peace, and I feel peace in different things. For example, I always feel at peace at the beach, but I know some people hate the beach.

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    1. Sky Strube H019:56 PM CDT

      I agree! I love the beach, my boyfriend loves the mountains. We have completely different ideas of what peace and tranquility feel like.

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  18. H01
    (Why did the founders omit reference to God in the Constitution, do you think?)

    Gotta go simple, separation of church and state, but maybe they really did just forget.

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    1. Sky Strube H019:50 PM CDT

      RIght! They sure did have a lot going on and they're only humans after all. There's always that possibility

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    2. Section 9

      As soon as they mention God, it would have been state-sanctioned. I agree

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  19. H01
    (Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?)

    I think if you've lived your life with others thinking for you for a good portion of your life then yes, but once you're used to thinking for yourself and breaking traditions and stereotypes then it can be one of the easiest things to do.

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    1. Erica Combs7:10 PM CDT

      Yes, once you get used to speaking your mind then the act just becomes like second nature. I had to learn this skill and still sometimes struggle with it.

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  20. H01
    (What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?)

    Well in a class where you're encouraged to be peripatetic, obviously there's validity in using walking as a way to think about important things or clear your mind. There's also the fact that it's a way to get around if the time allows it.

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  21. H-02
    Why did the founders omit reference to God in the Constitution, do you think?
    I would like to believe that the founding fathers did this to prevent a future with a government run by religion. The basis of European people in America was heavily inspired by religious prosecution. Additionally, the founding fathers were also able to view the effects of a religion based government by watching England at the time.

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  22. Erica Combs7:08 PM CDT

    What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?
    H1-
    Walking (especially outside) increases blood flow which in turn increases oxygen flow to the brain allowing for a clearer mindset. This may seem especially helpful when one is feeling stuck whether writing is involved or just a tough decision. So walking is a savior to those who may be struggling with a project.

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  23. Anonymous8:05 PM CDT

    KHADIJA MOHAMED (H01) Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?
    My parents and I have VERY different philosophical differences. As a first generation, I lean towards western views. However, my parents do not. I have discussed it with them because it was a barrier in our relationship. After sixteen years in America though my parents' have had assimilated and unconsciously live by western philosophy.

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  24. Anonymous8:18 PM CDT

    Have you been "born again," or encouraged by faith leaders or peers to seek spiritual rebirth? Is that something real, metaphorical, or delusional?
    I have never been "born again" but I believe its something within yourself. Saying rebirth is delusional seems ignorant to me because some peoples views on life is getting another chance. The meaning of being born again to me is opening yourself up and becoming a better person. It's not always necessarily a religious theme because you can rebirth in any aspect of life.

    The constitution doesn't use God because I believe the founders wanted the states to choose. It is very well known that the America was built on religious values specifically Christianity/Catholic views. My opinion on the constitution not having God is that simply each state had a different majority of branches of Christianity and didn't want to limit the state.

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  25. Marie Hussels H019:17 PM CDT

    "Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?"
    My parents and I do differ greatly on the subject of spirituality. I tend to hold more secular views while my parents and the rest of my family are all religious. They are not super religious but religious enough to disagree with me when I express an opinion that doesn't really like up with theirs. I usually don't like to discuss this with them because more often than not it leads to some hostilities and lectures even if I am respectful with my words. I would like to be able to discuss my secular philosophies with my parents but I would rather avoid the conflict it brings.

    "What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?"
    When I take walks its usually to clear my head and have some time to myself. I like to go hiking in Barfield park and just enjoy the plants and animals around me. I've always enjoyed being outside especially when the weather is nice. To me a good walk helps me to relax and re-oriente myself so I am able to get back to the world with a fresher outlook.
    "Why did the founders omit reference to God in the Constitution, do you think?"
    I think that a few of the founders did genuinely forget but I think most of them decided that religion doesn't really have a place in government. The founders came from a land where religion was used against them and turned into a way to control the people so I think they were fearful of the possible repercussions that the input of God could put in the Constitution. I think they feared that in future times a leader could be elected that could twist the meaning of God in the Constitution into another control mechanism such as that they faced in England.

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  26. Sky Strube H019:35 PM CDT

    What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?

    I'm someone who attracts problems into their life like a magnet. I usually think about these challenges when I'm in bed or in the shower, but not really when I'm walking. When I'm walking to class my mind can't hold a serious thought. My thoughts drift from what I'll eat for lunch to how much warmer it is than yesterday to how tired my legs are. Walking just gives me a few minutes to let my mind go blank.

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  27. Sky Strube H019:39 PM CDT

    Have you been "born again," or encouraged by faith leaders or peers to seek spiritual rebirth? Is that something real, metaphorical, or delusional?

    I have actually been spiritually born again. I went through a period where I thought the concept of God was the most ridiculous thing man could have ever created. However, after friends and family expressed concern for my spiritual health and well-being, I tried to not see it as ridiculous. I faked it until I made it, basically. Some people are so important in my life that I'll even convert religions for them.

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  28. Sky Strube H019:44 PM CDT

    Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?

    I don't have major philosophical differences with my parents actually. I do, however, have them with my sister. She's on the side where she thinks illegal immigrants should be kept out of the country at all costs, I'm on the side where I think that they wouldn't be coming to the country if they didn't need help, and if they need help it should be given. She also is the proud owner of 3 MAGA flags and I am the proud owner of a voter registration card.

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  29. H01
    Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?

    My parents and I shared the same views for a while until I began to age. I believe that as time passed I began to see things from a different perspective. It caused some confrontation in the beginning, but as time passed we slowly stopped discussing it. I believed that there was good in every individual and was quite optimistic. They on the other hand called themselves realest. They felt as if everyone was evil and had a motive. As I grow older I realize that there is no way to change their mind or even discuss the topic. Some of the greatest battles happen internally. Hopefully, they will see things from my perspective one day.

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  30. H01
    Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?

    From my own personal experience I do feel as if it is beneficial to be the one who "rebels." The only reason why I use that term is because that is how those who think alike see it. I was always the one who was different. My perspectives and thoughts never aligned with the rest of my family. For the longest, I kept to myself and avoided the confrontation that would follow mentioning something different. I think of everyone as my friend. I believe that all individuals are beneficial and deserve a chance to prove so. I believe that the people around us are put there for a specific reason, and it is good to experience negative situations to help us grow. These were strange thoughts and perspectives. I feel as if it did take great courage to continue with my thinking and values. It is not easy, and I have a great deal of respect for those who have undergone the same scenarios. Keep thinking for yourself. You're not wrong. No one is wrong.

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  31. H01
    What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?

    Walking is one of the most beneficial aids when it comes to stress, anxiety, or cloudiness of memory. It serves as an escape from everyday tasks or thoughts. This simple action allows a long or quick moment to embrace what is around us. When one finds themselves out on a walk, they tend to notice the smaller things. These things include how the leaves will bend to the wind, how a ladybug will attach itself to your shirt for dear life, and how that dog isn't all that intimidating. We find ourselves becoming distracted but for a particular reason. Nature is something that demands our attention. It will pull you closure without hesitation and make itself a force to be reckoned with. Walking allows us to see where and what we came from. It is more than just a simple for of exercise. It is an escape from what we worry about the most.

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  32. H01

    Have you ever found yourself backing away from your beliefs? If so, why? How did you feel after?

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  33. H01

    Who influenced your religious decisions the most? (If you do not have a religious background, why is that?) Do you still believe the same?

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    1. H02: My religious decisions were influenced mostly by the way I felt after studying what religion was. Not to say that growing up in church didn't influence me just as much, but this decision to follow religion ultimately came from my own decision after I realized how much my faith in God and religion filled me and made me whole.

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  34. On the idea of philisophical differences with your parents, I think it's always a bit difficult to argue. Among other things, my father is deeply invested into his own ideas of theology, and has heavily researched his side of all of the arguments we have. It almost doesn't seem worth the effort to put in more time researching his side and learning the apologetics necessary to try and dissuade him from his intolerances of worldly things sometimes because I think he may be so heavily rooted in his position that even if I had several valid counterpoints he wouldn't really try to consider them.

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  35. Rachel Winfrey9:20 AM CDT

    H01

    Why did the founders omit reference to God in the Constitution, do you think?

    As many of the others are saying, I think it is for the separation of church and state. I believe that the Founding Fathers’ did not want to force their religion on others. They had just come from countries where that was being done. They wanted people of different religions to feel safe to come to America without being oppressed or persecuted.

    Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?

    I do think that it takes courage to think for yourself and I think it is extremely important to do so. It’s important to sort through what you think is reasonable and what you can find significant.

    What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?

    For me, walking is a chance for alone time to decompress and reorganize my thoughts. It is time to think without distractions or interruptions.

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  36. Topher Kashif9:32 AM CDT

    H01

    • I do have some more significant philosophical differences with my parents, and we do discuss them occasionally. I do not mind talking about my beliefs or ideals to anyone, however I extremely dislike when others attempt to force their beliefs of ideals on other people. I believe that I am open in this manner because of the household I was raised in.
    • Nirvana doesn’t have to be the same for everyone, and that is completely fine. I am honestly not sure what my nirvana might be. It is still not defined in my mind; however, I am most relaxed and disconnected from the world when I am laying in the sun on the beach with the waves in the background, or when relaxing in a hammock on a nice fall/spring day.
    • I believe that it is the name of a natural form of experience best studied and explicated by neuroscientists and analyzed by philosophers.
    • I am honestly not completely sure. I do not have a set-in-stone belief about this. Part of me things that it is real, while the other half of me believes it is delusional. But if its delusional, then what happens after death, and if its real, then what do you become after death and who decides?
    • To encourage the diversity that America could bring one day?
    • Absolutely. It is so easy to just fall with the bandwagon and sit back so you do not have to stir the pot, however, it is, for the most part, beneficial for everyone to express their opinion. Something to keep in mind is that there is a line that does not need to be crossed when invoking your reason against an ideal or tradition.
    • Some drawbacks in my environment currently involve one roommate issue. The topic is about cleanliness and how there is a lack of that involving one of them. I am handling it by talking to that roommate about the issue at hand and just simply putting it out in the open.
    • It gives him the ability to be peripatetic. It helps the brain think of new ideas.
    • I do not think that it lowers any sort of mental or physical powers (or your soul). When I walk, my mind often wonders and thinks about many things at once which is stimulating mental activity while also continuing to walk.

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  37. answering Dq of "Does nirvana have to be the same for everyone? What would be your personal definition/experience of nirvana?"

    No and I Have not thought about the afterlife all that much, focused on here and now due to my age and being that I'm focusing on starting my life, not ending it.

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  38. responding DQ "What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?"

    Well walking has the ability to do a few things, depends on if you are in company. If you are in company nothing is better to start a conversation than walking. I don't know how to support the claim but if you have ever been on leisurely walk or hike it supports bonding and conversation. If you are alone walking allows a mental therapeutic session, for free.

    ReplyDelete
  39. responding to DQ "Matthieu Ricard has been called the happiest man in the world. Do you think eastern philosophies focused on the alleviation of suffering are a more promising route to happiness than its "pursuit" in the western/Jeffersonian tradition of individualism and personal liberty?"


    I have never experienced eastern philosophy so I cant say for sure. However the main difference in the philosophies of east and west, in my opinion is the importance of liberty. In Jefferson's writings he focuses on Liberty, freedom and the pursuit of happiness. The pursuit of happiness is important because he doesn't promise if you come to or live in the colonies at that time that you will achieve happiness but that you can try and maybe make it. I think that in that phrase he sums up what America is about and that is no guarantee of anything but the liberty to try everything you want. Unlike in the east, I'm not sure liberty is valued as highly but the guarantee of happiness is and not the value of having purpose before happiness. I have the point is purpose before happiness, because if you have no use how can you be happy. For example every student will probably have a purpose and that is to get a degree and improve themselves. So I think the Jeffersonian philosophy is more fruitful, people have varied away from it in recent history and that is one of the sources for unhappiness and depression in our country currently.

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  40. answering DQ "Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?"

    I'd want a specification on what tradition or superstition we are referring but I will give some examples. For example if someone tries to leave the Amish or Puritan faith they could be shunned for ever and declared an outsider or to be vanquished from the society. In the Muslim Sunni faith I believe, the more traditional ones could criminally prosecute someone who wants to leave the faith or isn't one of them. many religions are this way. For example the documentary "Jesus Camp" about Evangelical Christians having a summer camp for kids that made its claim to fame by being extremist in their practices, I'd feel a great pressure or fear if I was a child who wanted to tell my parents I did not want to attend the camp

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    Replies
    1. All in all, I'm inferring that you do indeed think it takes courage to 'invoke reason against superstition'. h2

      Delete
  41. responding to DQ "Beerbohm notes the "drawbacks" of London's environment that keep him from having to walk. What drawbacks exist in your environment and how do or might you overcome them?"


    Id have to specify my two main environments. the primary is my house and our property and I don't have any draw backs for walking there except that I am never out of sight of my house or the road and ideally id be completely in the wild. The second Is school and the campus is simply not for leisurely walking, if I am here I am working because this is school and I cant look at the science building for example and ignore the work I have to do and the content I have to master.

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  42. Anonymous10:33 AM CDT

    H2
    Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?
    I think it does take courage to input anything from our minds. No matter what the topic is, someone will always go against it. Letting those thoughts be known about superstition, tradition. etc is always going to be an interesting conversation, because no one has lived similar lives. Everyone has been through something different and that is mind blowing.

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  43. responding to DQ"Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?"

    I have to say yes, my parents are from a different time, different states and somewhat different religions. I don't know the philosophical differences between my parents and I but I am confident that there are differences Id like to find out.

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  44. Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?

    My parents and I have similar philosophical views. As a matter of fact, I got a good chunk of my existing philosophy from the many conversations I've had with my father over the years. h2

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    Replies
    1. H02: I have the same philosophical views as my parents as well. I do think many of my own also came from conversations with my parents, but for me it would mostly be from my mother.

      Delete
  45. Does nirvana have to be the same for everyone? What would be your personal definition/experience of nirvana?

    This is actually a pretty tricky question. On the one hand, one could say "Sure! Why couldn't everyone have their own specific definition of nirvana? Why can't we all have our own nirvana?" On the other hand, there is the argument of "Without an objective, accurate definition of philosophy, how could anyone ever wish to attain it? How could one scale the distance that needs to be covered in order to reach nirvana?"
    I guess my personal definition of nirvana is the continual peace I attain from my personalized religion. H2

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    1. Emily Caprio1:34 PM CDT

      H02

      I love the opposing question you put against finding nirvana. I believe I do have an answer to that question: People obtain it if they seek it and once they start to seek it, they have already covered the largest distance needed to reach nirvana.

      (That's at least my opinion)

      Delete
  46. Matthieu Ricard has been called the happiest man in the world. Do you think eastern philosophies focused on the alleviation of suffering are a more promising route to happiness than its "pursuit" in the western/Jeffersonian tradition of individualism and personal liberty?

    Maybe.. I'm not too well versed in eastern civilization, but from what I have been able to understand leads me to believe that it could very well be a better path to ultimate happiness than what America and other western civilizations have to offer. The focus on spiritual rather than imperial transcendence is the main differing characteristic between these two species of philosophies. H2

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  47. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  48. Is "Holy Spirit" something real and supernatural, or is it the name of a natural form of experience best studied and explicated by neuroscientists, and analyzed by philosophers?

    The Holy Spirit is very real. For further inquiry, approach in person. H2

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  49. Have you been "born again," or encouraged by faith leaders or peers to seek spiritual rebirth? Is that something real, metaphorical, or delusional?

    I believe I have been born again. I do not claim to know how I was born. I do know that it is both metaphorical and real at the same time. It is hard to explain but I don't subscribe to the specific idea of reincarnation. H2

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  50. Why did the founders omit reference to God in the Constitution, do you think?

    I believe the founding fathers omitted reference to God in the Constitution to emphasize personal liberty. Not everyone in America at the time believed in God in the personal sense. Those who signed the Constitution were not all religious. I think the same reasoning could be seen in the 'separation of church and state' bit. H2

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  51. Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?

    Sure, in certain contexts. In another context, it takes tremendous ignorance and cowardice. H2

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  52. H01
    Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?

    Yes. Because my parents always pushed me to gain perspective from all types of people, I have been influenced by philosophies outside my family's norm. Our discussions about the differences in our philosophies and world views are some of the most interesting ones we have. In conversation, if both parties wholly agree on every argument, the conversation runs stale quickly. My relationship with my parents is unorthodox in that they do not push me to follow the paths and ideologies they chose. I am so grateful for that.

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  53. H01

    Does nirvana have to be the same for everyone? What would be your personal definition/experience of nirvana?

    The buddhist idea of nirvana will carry with it the same meaning for everyone: a state of being in which the self has been dissolved resulting in a the elimination of suffering and desire. The end goal is the same for everyone. The difference comes in the path people take to reach this state. Everyones road winds in different directions, but the wise people know that their destination is nirvana.

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  54. H01

    Matthieu Ricard has been called the happiest man in the world. Do you think eastern philosophies focused on the alleviation of suffering are a more promising route to happiness than its "pursuit" in the western/Jeffersonian tradition of individualism and personal liberty?

    The eastern philosophy is part of the western pursuit. The alleviation of suffering, given that suffering is one of the main obstacles between unhappiness and happiness, is part of the pursuit. There are other scientific aspects such as perceived progress and impact which cause a person to be truly happy, at peace, and fulfilled that the alleviation of suffering would not fulfill. To simply not suffer is only one side of the coin. One must have good feelings on the other side of the coin to be happy.

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  55. H01

    Is "Holy Spirit" something real and supernatural, or is it the name of a natural form of experience best studied and explicated by neuroscientists, and analyzed by philosophers?

    The Holy Spirit, to my understanding, is the connecting part of the trinity between Jesus and God. It is the force that fills up all living creation on Earth; the people, the trees, the mountains, and all other nature. I do not think it is a scientific matter, but science can help us better understand the motion of the universe which was put into motion by God, the Holy Spirit.

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  56. H01

    Have you been "born again," or encouraged by faith leaders or peers to seek spiritual rebirth? Is that something real, metaphorical, or delusional?

    I am currently being encouraged to seek spiritual rebirth. It is such a personal matter that an evangelical's role to me is to simply share what they believe, what they feel, and their spiritual journey. Anything pushing to join, is out of place to me and counter productive to the evangelical person's cause.

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    Replies
    1. H02- I agree that a persons place to state what they believe and why. I think they can give you all their opinions but ultimately not push anything on a person because that can all together make that person resist the ideas just because of the over pushing of one person.

      Delete
  57. H01

    Why did the founders omit reference to God in the Constitution, do you think?

    America was born on a basis of inclusion; inclusion of different races (albeit not all races), languages, and religious beliefs. To put God in the Constitution would be to pigeonhole the American religion to Christianity leaving no room for other religions.

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  58. This is reference to why the Founders left God out of the Constitution I think they understood that religion and state should be separate and they knew including God would make that impossible.

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  59. When it comes to having a different philosophy from my parents. My mom never really expressed a certain philosophy, yet I believe mine was amassed by watching her throughout my lifetime.

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  60. H01

    Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?

    Yes. Humans are wired to seek out groups and to be accepted by groups. This leads to a herd mentality that is driven by what is most popular rather than by what is based on truth. Unfortunately, what is most popular can oftentimes be driven by tradition and superstition. To think for oneself, is the main hurdle to be jumped by those aspiring to be free thinkers.

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    1. Phil 1030--009
      I totally agree with you.
      It is tough for people to think for themselves. Because of that, sometimes we seek others to think for us, and we adopt their ideas.

      Delete
  61. I believe it does take a certain amount of courage to go against the grain and declare your thoughts and facts against superstition because even some people consider religion to be superstition and look at what is said about them.

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  62. H01

    Beerbohm notes the "drawbacks" of London's environment that keep him from having to walk. What drawbacks exist in your environment and how do or might you overcome them?

    The drawback that I feel most profoundly within society is a person's tendency to always take the path of least resistance. Life is a matter of getting out what one puts in. The means that effort is necessary to live a fulfilled and interesting life. Unfortunately to give effort takes effort and to give consistent effort on a daily basis is not easy to do. People prefer to escape reality by watching Netflix or trolling social media. I do not believe that this will lead to happiness.

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  63. Samual Shapiro H0211:33 AM CDT

    (Philosophical differences with parents)
    My father and I differ significantly in terms of philosophy. To begin, he is quite conservative and claims to be religious, and I am both very liberal and very secular. He views immigrants as threats to the wellbeing of our nation, while I see them as fellow humans who did not choose to be born wherever they were, just as I did not choose to be born into America. I see my home here as a simple stroke of luck, and I dare not refuse anyone entry into this country simply because I was born lucky.

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  64. Samual Shapiro H0211:33 AM CDT

    (Omitting God in the Constitution)
    I believe that the founders omitted reference to God in the constitution because they knew how fanatical his followers were and that if God were mentioned, some Christians would use this to force all American laws to coincide with the Bible, rather than being a nation with separate Church and State. They likely did this to both preserve and encourage the exercise of the founder’s belief in freedom of religion.

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  65. Samual Shapiro H0211:34 AM CDT

    (Does it take courage to invoke reason?)
    Absolutely. When I was in the 7th grade, as I became confident in my atheist ideals, I was ashamed. My father is Christian, every teacher in school attended Sunday church, and I was under the impression that all of my friends were religious as well. I was afraid to be open about my atheism, like it was some horrible thing that needed to be kept secret. At least as a child, invoking reason in the face of a town of conformity is terrifying, and it took me years before I was able to feel proud about my disbeliefs.

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  66. H01

    What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?

    This question could not have come at a more relevant time for me. I went on a peripatetic stroll yesterday because I was feeling lost. Walking in nature, or the tiny parcel I was able to find in Stone Creek Park, was so revitalizing and clearing for me. I had time to think, observe, and feel without the presence of other humans. This is incredibly freeing and conducive to clarity. With all this in mind, walking is an exercise for the body as well as for the mind.

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  67. Ethan Young11:36 AM CDT

    (H02) Have you been "born again," or encouraged by faith leaders or peers to seek spiritual rebirth? Is that something real, metaphorical, or delusional?

    I have been in a few situations where one might say I have been "born again" or have experienced a spiritual rebirth, but defining such an experience is controversial. I would argue that it is primarily metaphorical. For someone of religion who has gained new knowledge or undergone a transformative experience, feeling a sense of revelation or awe can be astounding. Not only does such a feeling make it "real," but it can only be real if there is some choice and determination involved in turning a new leaf per say.

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  68. H01

    What do you think about Beerbohm's attribution of walking to some lower human faculty ("soul")? Where does your "mind go" while walking?

    I believe that walking is one of the great ways to get to know oneself, ones soul. It is mobile meditation, so my mind goes to a state similar to that of meditation. I am more conscious and 'at the wheel' so it is better for when I am wanting to tackle a specific topic of contention.

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  69. Ethan Young11:44 AM CDT

    (H02) Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?

    I definitely agree and think it does. Though it is a popular ideology today, going agains established traditions and forging your own thoughts, paths, etc. is not only frightening, but difficult. It takes great courage to hold yourself accountable and know yourself and what you think and believe about the world. Few people take the time or effort to discover themselves and be able to back up their stances and beliefs to the general public and consensus.

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  70. Ethan Young11:52 AM CDT

    (H02) What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?

    For me, it can be very useful in various ways. It gives me a chance to be alone with myself and my thoughts. It gives me a chance to explore the world and enjoy the beauty of nature. It gives me the chance to be active and a part of this world rather than a stagnant being. One of my favorite sayings/quotes (as it can be taken both literally and figuratively) is from the movie The Matrix: "Sooner or later you're gonna realize, just like I did...there's a difference between knowing the path and walking the path."

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    1. Emily Caprio1:29 PM CDT

      I can fully agree with how you explained this. I also really love the quote you used.

      Delete
  71. H01

    Proposed question: What kind of knowledge is more valuable: that of the world or that of the university? If the latter is true, why are you here?

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    1. Emily Caprio1:27 PM CDT

      First off, I just want to say how good of a question this is.

      Second, I don't believe you can choose just one side on this question. My reason being that depending on your definition of "the knowledge of the world" and "the knowledge of the university", both kinds of knowledge are important. I am assuming that what you mean by "world knowledge" is knowing how the world works and how people explain their own knowledge and that "university knowledge" is textbook/historical and accurate knowledge that does not stray from consistency. Based off of this, and like I have said: both are equally important.
      To know how the world works and to hear how people explain knowledge in their own words provides different viewpoints. There will be many things that overlap and repeat, causing the realization that people most likely believe in the same thing (even though it may not be exactly the same). On the other hand, as you listen to how people explain their knowledge, you get to hear the different sides of topics. As a result, this could lead to the very things that you believe in. If you had already believed and knew certain things, outside information can expand your own knowledge.
      Now as for "university knowledge", this provides a base line for the "world knowledge". A textbook can state a certain topic and give the general information and facts on it and you can retain it. Sometimes, you can take it even further and put it into your own words. Then, if you were to tell someone else about it, you would use the explanation you came up with in your own words. This relays back into my assumption of "world knowledge". You have your view on knowledge and you explain it to someone else, and they end up developing their own knowledge on it.

      Overall, (and I might have explained it a little confusingly) any type of knowledge is important.

      Delete
  72. H01

    Discussion question: What are your first thoughts when you open your eyes in the morning? How do these first thoughts shape your day?

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    1. Section 9

      In all seriousness, my first thought is food. My brain will start churning with all the "to-dos" of the day, but nothing happens until after breakfast.

      Delete
    2. section 06
      Not gonna lie, today I woke up (unhappily) at 5:55, which is 35 minutes before my alarm BUT I didn't have to be to campus today till 10 or 11, so I really wasn't sure what I was doing awake at 5:55...anywayyyy...my first thought today was "Is there snow outside?" To my disappointment, even though my house sits in front of a creek which tends to make things colder when it's below freezing outside, there was no snow...So I read a book until I needed to get ready for class.

      Delete
    3. when I wake up in the morning my first thoughts are ughh, Is this worth it? My answer is always yes. This shapes my day because for the rest of the day i am determined to try my best to make sure all of this is worth it.

      Delete
    4. Abby Pittman section 6
      My first thoughts in the morning always stem around my planning for the day. This includes checking the time, asking myself what I want to eat for breakfast, what time I should leave for school, making sure all of my homework is done, checking my agenda for upcoming due dates, and thinking about my plans for after school. Planning eases my anxiety and allows me to prepare for what is going to happen in the day.

      Delete
  73. "The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing."- Socrates
    Saw this while scrolling on facebook and would love to know if you agree or disagree?

    ReplyDelete
  74. Emily Caprio1:10 PM CDT

    Emily Caprio - #H02

    "Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parent? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?"

    I don’t believe I have actually ever discussed anything philosophical with my parents. So, therefore, I would believe that we have a few differences. However, now that the topic is brought up, I am actually very curious to know how they view the world and what their philosophical opinions are.

    "Does nirvana have to be the same for everyone? What would be your personal definition/experience of nirvana?"

    The actual definition is (but not limited to) “a transcendent state in which there is neither suffering, desire, nor sense of self, and the subject is released from the effects of karma and the cycle of death and rebirth.” Automatically, from reading this, it can be said that nirvana is definitely not the same for everybody. Everyone has their own different view points and own unique personality/interests, therefore, everyone will have their own version of nirvana. Some few people might have a few similar details within their nirvana, but they will never be the exact same.
    As for my personal definition of nirvana, I think of it simply as: the state of absolute happiness and peace (which is basically the same exact thing as the stated definition). I believe that once an individual reaches a point in their life were they sort of release themselves from the daily drama and conflict from reality and focus on what makes them absolutely happy.

    "Why did the founders omit reference to God in the Constitution, do you think?"

    I think they omitted the reference of God simply because not everyone believed in God. Thomas Paine, for example, supported the Constitution and helped modify it, and he was an atheist.

    "Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?"

    Yes, I believe it takes a HUGE amount of courage to reason against superstition, belief, and especially tradition. Tradition, for one, has been a very important factor for as long as we can remember. For some, that is all they know: tradition that has been passed down from generation to generation. For others, all they do is breathe and live tradition. They rely on it heavily to guide them through their lives and they feel very strongly towards it. If someone were to come up to them and tell them “Your traditions are useless and meaningless and here is why…” they would immediately feel threatened because that is the way they live.
    Now, if you yourself had a problem with a tradition, superstition, etc. and everyone around you was like the example above, you would have to have so much courage and determination to question against it. Their could be many consequences as a causation from doing so, and in some cases, if the opposed people feel like doing so, they could ban, exile, or shun that individual for wanting to go against beliefs.

    "What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?"

    I believe walking has many benefits. Yes it does provide exercise, but from my personal experience, I’ve noticed a few more useful qualities. I’ve been focusing on walking since school started, mainly for the sake of getting some exercise into my day, but that was when I noticed when I started walking more and more, my mood changed greatly. I became a lot happier and calm with stressful situations. I felt a lot healthier, with my body and my mind. I was able to think a lot clearer and worried a lot less. Then recently, (and I’m not sure if I’ve gotten used to the amount I’ve been walking or if I’ve been slacking) but I am starting to relapse into my anxious state I was in before I started walking a lot.

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  75. H-02: What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?
    I think that walking is good for many things. Besides exercise, walking helps to clear your mind. If I am having a busy or stressful day, I like to take a long walk. On these walks I find myself becoming less stressed and better able to make decisions. Taking walks with friends is fun, but I enjoy my walks best alone. Being alone on a walk ables me to focus on my thoughts. My favorite walks are on paths where I can enjoy the nature and views of the outdoors. Walks in the country help me to appreciate the world around me more.While walking I find myself feeling more free and unattached from the busy world around me. Walking also helps me to look at the bigger pictures in life. Walking changes my moods often as well. I might be in a bad mood but I find that when i come back from a good walk that I am in a better mood. If I am in a tough position and need to make a decision I like to take a long walk to help make my decision. Walking helps to get your life in perspective that no matter what is going on you can take a break and go on a walk to free yourself from the world. Walking has many uses beyond exercising. If i thought of my walks when i go to think as exercise it might change my idea and enjoyment of them.

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  76. Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?

    It is always viewed as if someone who has traditions is submissive to them. I disagree with that idea. I actually think it takes courage to understand tradition and decide to follow it and not be forced into it.

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    Replies
    1. Section 9
      The notion of becoming a monk or nun and forfeiting all the luxuries in life because of your dedication to a lifestyle/tradition is admirable in my view

      Delete
  77. 1030-003

    1) Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?

    I have never discussed philosophical things with my parents. I believe It would be a very interesting conversation. I would like to see what they think and what they have to say.

    2) Why did the founders omit reference to God in the Constitution, do you think?

    I wonder if the reason the founders omitted God in the constitution was not because they simply forgot. The reason they did this was, I believe, was to separate church and state. This topic that is so big in our society today was hidden under a tiny lie. God was not forgotten in the Constitution but separated. That's what I think anyway.

    3) Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?

    I think it takes a lot of courage to stand up in what you believe in. It is hard to stand alone. It takes courage to be different and weird. I admire different. To not only believe something different but to stand up and fight for something different even in the face of punishment.

    I am attaching this link to a quick blip of the 2018 march for life (I attended) because these aren't just parents and adults but kids and young adults who are standing up for this cause and some of them are the only one in their family who believes in this cause.
    https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/time-lapse-video-shows-massive-turnout-for-2018-march-for-life

    4) What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?

    Walking is useful to clear the mind, think deeply, gather thoughts, and make good decisions. It is the best alone time. A way to step back and assess the world and situations to really see whats happening.

    Im attaching a link with a short video to express the power of thought. https://www.philosophytalk.org/shows/power-thought

    5) Is "Holy Spirit" something real and supernatural, or is it the name of a natural form of experience best studied and explicated by neuroscientists, and analyzed by philosophers?

    I think the Holy Spirit is something real. The Holy Spirit is in all of the Earth. There are a lot of debated on God, the trinity, and really all things religious. Science is used against religion which in reality they are a perfect pair. Science is a way to understand religion. The Holy Spirit is a part of the trinity and the trinity seems like a way to further understand our religion and its meaning.

    ReplyDelete
  78. Alternative Fantasyland Questions:
    1. Who came to America in the eighteenth century?
    2. What is our national mission statement and operating manual?
    3. What did Jonathan Edwards discuss in "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God?
    4. How was Edwards similar to Anne Hutchinson?
    5. How did Edwards feel about Whitefield's sermon?
    6. What is the "anything-goes relativism that protects every passionate belief?
    7. What "extraordinary act of revisionism" did Thomas Jefferson commit in the White House?
    H6

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    Replies
    1. Anonymous11:38 PM CST

      1.George Whitefield
      2.national mission= the Declaration of Independence, operating manual= Constitution

      Delete
  79. Owen Martin3:25 PM CST

    Alternate quiz questions:
    1. Who preached the famous sermon "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God" and what did it repetitively preach? How was it different from the majority of his sermons?
    A: Jonathan Edwards, the sermon was about repenting to save oneself from Hell. Edwards preached much more often about the salvation of Heaven than the torment of Hell.
    2. Who cut up two copies of the New Testament to remove all miracles and rename this work "The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth?"
    A: Thomas Jefferson
    3. According to Ben Franklin who "could bring men to tears by pronouncing 'Mesopotamia?'"
    A: George Whitefield
    4. What did Jonathan Edwards wife note about the way that Edwards taught and preached?
    A: "He makes less of the doctrines than our American preachers generally do, and aims more at affecting the heart."

    Response to DQ: "Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?"
    I do tend to have philosophical differences of all types with my family, centered generally around theology and morality. Unless regarding politics or something that does not affect me or them directly I try to avoid discussion with them on topics that we disagree on. It becomes highly uncomfortable and is unnecessary because neither of us will change our viewpoints.

    Short essay response to DQ: "Have you been 'born again,' or encouraged by faith leaders or peers to seek spiritual rebirth? Is that something real, metaphorical, or delusional?"
    I have definitely had “born again” kinds of experiences. Growing up in the South, especially in a highly Christian home, experiences like this happen all the time. Whether you are the one getting saved or you are “helping someone along on their journey,” if you live in a heavily Christian community with a strong faith center the idea of being “born again” and the actual act come up a lot.
    I do not particularly buy into this theology anymore. I have spent enough time inside and outside of the mindset of a born again Christian that I think I could speak on both sides of the fence. What is clear to me from all of my experience is that being born again is 100 percent real.
    This should be clarified, however, because I am not saying that the new Christian is “getting saved” or “accepting Jesus.” This experience, while it may be metaphorical or even being nothing but the recitation of a prayer to a non-existent God, has power over the new believer’s life and often does change it drastically. Because of the outcome of a “born again” salvation event, the act of being born again must be real because it truly does change people who actually want to change.
    While this may bake down to circular reasoning, a person who wants to change badly enough and gets saved to do it has already made up their mind to change. The “born again” aspect of this experience is simply a way to enhance the change and make the person stronger in their belief that they can and will change. While this may be all that being “born again” is, it is most definitely real, even if only to the individual who is “born again.”

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  80. Section 9

    Regarding philosophical differences with parents: yes, I have many differences (and a few similarities). They think everything happens for a reason, and nothing is just chance. They see God's will in everything, while I do not. They use religion to shape how they navigate and deal with struggles in the world, while I struggle finding my own way (I think their philosophy is the easier to follow).

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    1. Jacob Weast8:38 AM CST

      I'm with you on parents using their faith as something to fall back on or explain everything with. I think religion can be used for philosophical reasons such as doing good by others, but religion being the answer to everything is where I have to disagree. Having your own philosophical thoughts and debating them with my parents often creates new questions to ponder on and I highly recommend you doing the same.

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  81. Section 9

    Alternate question about Buddhism:

    Buddhist teachings focus on acceptance as a way to alleviate suffering. This could be summarized as "let it go." Have you experienced any effectiveness in utilizing the strategy of accepting difficult circumstances in your life (things you can't change)?

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  82. 006
    Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?
    I have a few philosophical differences with my parents. For example, I have a philosophy in which I must listen to others even if their opinions are different. My parents are rather the opposite. They may listen, but they also must win. Their opinion must be better. When I was younger, I may have attempted to argue with them, but as I have matured, I have simply let them believe in what they wish to.

    Does nirvana have to be the same for everyone? What would be your personal definition/experience of nirvana?
    My definition of nirvana is quite similar to Ricard's definition. I believe that nirvana is achieved when we have understood everything in the world that is to be understood and have attained personal peace within ourselves. When we no longer have cause to feel suffering and simply live day by day with no anxiety and pain, we have reached nirvana.

    Matthieu Ricard has been called the happiest man in the world. Do you think eastern philosophies focused on the alleviation of suffering are a more promising route to happiness than its "pursuit" in the western/Jeffersonian tradition of individualism and personal liberty?
    I think that the two are promising routes. Personally, I feel as though the alleviation of personal suffering is better. Individualism and personal liberty is a good pursuit, but we will still suffer. We will naturally see how others are coping in their everyday lives and feel motivated to attempt to help them even if it is not our place to say so. We will inevitably attempt to "help" and change others to what we want them to be.

    Have you been "born again," or encouraged by faith leaders or peers to seek spiritual rebirth? Is that something real, metaphorical, or delusional?
    I have been baptized and been "born again." I believe that it is a mixture of something real and metaphorical. We are metaphorically born again as no longer are we drowning in sin every day, but we are living as Jesus has. We strive to be like Jesus, pure and whole. However, I do believe that it is real in the sense that when we die, we are "born again" in Christ and will live in His Kingdom.

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    1. Some alternate DQ's:
      1. Do you think that nirvana is achievable in this climate? How would you go about achieving it?
      2. Ricard believed in reincarnation. If you believe in an afterlife, what do you believe in? Heaven, Hell, Purgatory, or Rebirth? Is it none of the above?
      3. Do you think that there is an "Anne Hutchinson" right now at the moment? If so, who?

      Alternate Quiz Question: Which evangelical did Benjamin Franklin follow?

      Delete
  83. section 06
    What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?
    Personally, walking has many health benefits; from improving cardiovascular health to increasing the feeling of happiness within a person. I know today while I was walking across campus to my car I paused and contemplated just taking the bus instead because my car was so far away and it was so cold. Instead I chose to walk, while I did feel cold on the outside, I felt better mentally as I trekked across the sidewalks alongside many other students. I know I only had one class today, but the mental relaxation I felt as I just let some of my stress from my previous lab class roll off my shoulders felt great. Perhaps it was also the realization that I was done for the day that also felt great, but I'd like to think my mental health improves while I'm walking. Theres so many different things to think about while walking; you can choose to stress about things (which I highly don't recommend), or maybe you can choose to think about a new recipe you may want to try, or a new character to add in you fiction novel, or maybe while walking in your mind you believe you're somewhere else (something like the Avatar movie with Sam Worthington?) <<< lol I live with two little boys so my imagination tends to be pretty wild at times. Or even better, I often catch myself having a total mental drain where I try to not think of anything and just exist in the moment with what's happening around me (that leads me into having a serious case of RBF but what can I say, we're not all perfect :} )

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  84. Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?
    I don’t necessarily think that it takes a lot of courage to think for yourself. There are a lot of superstitions out there that I don’t necessarily believe in. So, thinking for myself is basically an opinion, which I feel does not take courage at all. For example, I don’t believe that bad luck comes in three. I’ve had bad luck hit me five times in a row, or one time and then had good luck. it’s always different. I also don’t believe in beginner’s luck because most beginners have to fail to learn and be good. A superstition that I do support but not believe in is “find a penny pick it up…” but only if its heads up, obviously. I always pick up a penny if it is heads up, not because I believe in the superstition that I will have good luck but because I am hoping for good luck. Not once in my life have I received good luck from picking up a penny, yet I still do it.

    What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?
    I do feel that walking is great exercise, especially power walking. But in other circumstances, walking helps me de-stress. Every time I feel stressed I go outside and I go for a walk. Walking helps me mentally and physically feel better. It helps to clear my mind when I go for a walk because that is when I do the most thinking, free walking. I don’t usually go anywhere special to walk, I walk around my house or my yard, sometimes even campus. If I have an important exam, I might walk around campus the hour before to calm down my nerves.

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  85. Do you have any philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?

    Yes. Me and my mom are both Christians but I believe in predestination and she believes in free will. we do discuss them but its usually me showing her a verse and then her saying ok I will look into it then getting back to it about a month later and then I explain why I am right and then show her a new verse then the process is repeated. So far there has been no end to this cycle. I enjoy it though. I like talking to her about it and we never really fight or anything so it hasn't hurt our relationship in anyway. there is just no end.

    Other questions:
    1) what is nirvana?
    Absolute truth
    2) what is dualism?
    there is both physical and spiritual
    3) what did Ricard turn down for budhism?
    molecular genetics

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  86. Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?

    My mom and I have very different religious views. She was raised in a Methodist Christian household going to church every Sunday and Wednesday and wanted the same for me. I grew up always going to church with her until one day I realized that organized religion is not at all for me. I opened up and told her about my change of heart and she did not understand. Because it is such a big part of her life, she couldn’t see where I was coming from and this caused a lot of arguments. To me, religion doesn’t feel like an aspect of life that I’m missing. I find comfort in reading, writing, or talking things through with others, allowing me to clear my mind and have faith in the world around me rather than an unknown supernatural being. The more I learned about the foundations of many major religions and read more about atrocities committed in the name of God, I felt the need to disassociate myself from such organizations. My mother and I are extremely close, but we have agreed not to talk religion anymore due to our majorly differing opinions. In our bickering, I began to understand the comfort it gave her. Though terrible things have happened in the name of god, religion can shed so much positive light in the world. It gives people a sense that someone is always listening and caring for them.

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  87. Walking is very beneficial for me. Especially with me being in college and having to walk just about everywhere. When I walk I have a lot of time to think to myself. During that time I attempt to solve problems that are challenging for me. While doing this a vast majority of the time my problems are solved or I figure out a way to improve my situation at the time. While in college I walk to so much and have so much time to think and improve on situations. While sitting down or having my phone near i can be easily distracted and not interested in any improvement. When I do solve my problems before class I focus better on class work and things that are beneficial to me. Overall walking can affect my day only in positive ways. After walking and thinking I always feel better about a situation. I also discovered, because i clear my head often with walking anxiety is no longer a problem. I have walked more alone with myself than previous years. Being that I walk more I am not down about small problems I can easily solve like how I used to be. I didn't realize that before until I started to consider the question and how walking can affect me positively. I honestly don't see how walking can have negative affects on people. If we didn't walk or we stopped walking the world wouldn't be the same. We should value that, value walking and all that we accomplish when walking no matter how simple it may seem.

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    1. I didn't realize how therapeutic and beneficial simply walking could be until I walked on a trail almost every day during the summer! It gives you so much time to take in the environment and think about things!

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  88. 006
    Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?

    I have a lot of philosophical differences with my parents. Originally, I never shared mine because they're very old fashioned/set in their ways. Eventually, my spiritual philosophies began appearing in conversations, and it always leads to them trying to argue with me. I typically just try to steer the conversation elsewhere. It's not really anyone's business what anyone else believes, so I don't feel inclined to "defend" myself to them.

    Does nirvana have to be the same for everyone? What would be your personal definition/experience of nirvana?

    I don't think nirvana would have to be the same for everyone. The way I've always pictured it is honestly just being asleep. Sometimes, you don't know you're asleep until you wake up, but you know if your sleep was pleasant/cozy/comforting. That's how I imagine nirvana.

    Is "Holy Spirit" something real and supernatural, or is it the name of a natural form of experience best studied and explicated by neuroscientists, and analyzed by philosophers?

    I've often found it amusing to see people "experiencing the Holy Spirit," but it's obvious that feeling is something real to them. Who are we to try and materialize their spiritual and religious experience? I don't really care to know whether it's "real" or something we can measure.

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    1. I'm sorry you have to avoid sharing with your parents. As I got older and started doing my own things and veering off in strange directions my parents just sort of queued up and learned from me.

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  89. Jacob Weast8:30 AM CST

    Why did the founders omit reference to God in the Constitution?

    I think the founders omitted reference to God because not all of the founders were of the same faith. They could have also had opposing philosophical views on who or what God is. Coming to this conclusion amongst the other founders, they decided to omit reference to God all together.

    Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?

    I do believe it takes courage to think for yourself because nobody else can think like you do. Each person's thoughts and thought processes are different. I think because everyone is different it makes it easier to think for yourself if you already do, but the initial breaking of your tradition you were raised to follow takes courage.

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  90. 06
    Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?
    I think children are meant to have different philosophical viewpoints from their parents. My mother and I are always talking about different topics, sharing our opinions and seeing where we might share similarities in opinions.

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  91. PHIL 1030-010
    "Does nirvana have to be the same for everyone? What would be your personal definition/experience of nirvana?"

    No - I don't think that there should be one certain definition as to what nirvana is for every individual. However, in trying to make a statement such as that, I will have to create my own definition for what I believe nirvana to be, so I suppose I'm hypocritical from the start!

    I believe that nirvana is really a state of mind, and not in the same way that happiness is or isn't, but in a way where everything in your life lines up, both physically and mentally. I think it is a place where after we have truly learned to live as ourselves without fear and begun to believe in ourselves and our journey through life as we see it and as we feel we should, we place emphasis on our personal happiness and well-being. I think it is a time where we are at our very best and where we are also alleviated of worry and do not fear living our best life.

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  92. PHIL 1030-010
    "Why did the founders omit references to God in the Constitution?"

    My short-and-sweet answer is that they simply wanted to try and establish an early form of separation of church and state, as they didn't want the church intervening with problems that concerned the government and the government alone. It is also very possible that not everyone who worked for or alongside the upbringing of the Constitution believed in a God or gods, so this was a way to show them that they mattered in the process or that their opinions were valued!

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  93. PHIL 1030-010
    "What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?"

    I think walking has a plethora of uses outside of exercise! For instance, I like to write and writing stories and poetry and all that jazz is one of my bigger hobbies; walking has always helped me move ideas along that may have gotten stuck in the process. I've always seen it as something that helps promote idea growth and nurtures a sense of creativity by waking up your brain and letting you think freely on the way to wherever you are headed.

    I also think walking is great for just letting your brain decompress. While you are walking, you pretty much have to do just that - walk. It allows you to move and take in your surroundings and the world around you, and lets you escape for a couple brief moments, if that's what you need!

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  94. PHIL 1030-010
    "Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc. ?"

    Definitely, and in a lot of ways. Growing up, our families and the people around us heavily influence our ways of life and the ways we think and act, and oftentimes, trying to challenge those implanted behaviors - for better or for worse - require a lot of courage to simply state that you want to change.

    Some behaviors or attitudes, outlooks or superstitions, are ingrained in us from a young age, as we are impressionable and our families are often the ones we look up to see these ideals in play. We notice, we imitate, we inherit - trying to break out of those traditions or what you've been led to believe and think for yourself takes real courage.

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  95. PHIL 1030-010
    "Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?"

    I'm sure that my dad and I wouldn't see eye-to-eye on a lot of things, philosophically speaking. We've both grown up in incredibly different situations and have our different views and outlooks, and his tends to be more head-strong - that's not to say that my dad is inherently unreasonable or rude, but more to say that his situation has led him to a different point in his life...

    ...philosophically speaking.

    While I wouldn't mind discussing philosophical happenings with my dad, I also believe that sometimes it is best to just hold onto them for a better time. He's experienced much more of life then I have, and I would like to at least have a good portion of my own stuff figured out before I even begin to engage philosophically with the person who has been through it around the clock!

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  96. Phil 1030-009
    What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?

    For me, walking clears my head and re-amps my energy. If there are so many things on my mind that it feels heavy, a good walk helps lighten that. The fresh air, my legs moving and feet hitting the ground, it helps to isolate the important thoughts.

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  97. Phil 1030-009
    "Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?"

    I don't actually. And every time something like that comes up, I'm surprised we're on the same page. I shouldn't be after all these years, yet I am. We are pretty different as far as our interests go, but that's understandable as different circumstances have effected our lives.

    The more I think about the meaning of the word philosophy to answer this question, the more I think that maybe we do have our differences. My parents have been and always are so supportive and opened-minded about what my siblings and I want out of life that arguments and discrepancies just never arise. I would like to know if we do have any differences.

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  98. PHIL 1030-010

    Here are some alternate quiz questions that I came up with:

    1) What is the proclaimed "credo of Fantasyland." ?
    2) Franklin and other founders followed what vain of religious thinking, mostly?
    3) What did Edmund Burke warn about that was the "X factor" driving the colonial rebellion?

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  99. Phil 1030-009
    (Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?)

    Sometimes. I think if you don't know how, or were raised in an environment where that was discouraged. I also think that women especially have a hard of doing this but I also think that its getting easier for them(us).

    What I think is the difficult part in this day and age is caring to or just figuring out which battles to fight.

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  100. "Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?"



    No not really, although my family and I do talk philosophically a lot, we don't really differ that much from each other, especially between my Dad and brothers. Everyone now and then we have few different viewpoints, but it is essentially the same, the differences only sprouting from different childhoods and environments. I love talking to my family about stuff like that, we are generally always, for the most part, respectful to one another's viewpoints. That makes it so much easier to talk to each other and give our perspective on certain things.



    "Does nirvana have to be the same for everyone? What would be your personal definition/experience of nirvana?"



    No of course not! To me it is all in the eye of the beholder, to some it may be attaining true peace or escaping the cycle of life and death. To me it is just being at peace with yourself, your actions and your life. Come to accept what you have done and will do, and make amends for all the wrong doings, but do not let the pain of rebuttal shy you away. Nirvana is just coming to terms with your life and being grateful for the things you have and in turn, helping those gain their "nirvana".



    "Matthieu Ricard has been called the happiest man in the world. Do you think eastern philosophies focused on the alleviation of suffering are a more promising route to happiness than its "pursuit" in the western/Jeffersonian tradition of individualism and personal liberty?"



    Not necessarily, I always hold true that everyone is built and thinks differently, to some the pursuit of happiness through achievements and effort is admirable and the right path for them. For some however, coming to term with your current state of being is an overall better choice, because you do not have to necessarily do anything stressful to come to terms with your situation in life. In western's, the pursuit towards those goals, one must work hard. Working hard will of course have the stress of life and its daily toll on the mind and body, but if you persevere in the face of turmoil, that achievement will feel much greater to the extent on how hard you worked. Of course, through the eastern way, coming to peace may take who knows how longs, days, months, or even years. To forgive oneself, or to come to terms with your life takes a great deal of effort and focus, spiritually it may be harder to do and less rewarding in terms of physical and social recognition, but with that comes less stress and anxiety.

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  101. "Is "Holy Spirit" something real and supernatural, or is it the name of a natural form of experience best studied and explicated by neuroscientists, and analyzed by philosophers?"



    To me it is the form of a generalized experience felt by people. Although it is true its origins may come from religious texts, some scientists speculate even the "voice of god" in their head may have been some form of mental disorder, and thus they believe it is "god". So, who is to say that the holy spirit is an entity, but an actual biological process in our bodies from certain chemicals that can be observed in our neurons and explained by bright minds? It is easier to have physical evidence of a notion, then presuming it to be something it may well not be.



    "Have you been "born again," or encouraged by faith leaders or peers to seek spiritual rebirth? Is that something real, metaphorical, or delusional?"



    I have not been born again. I think it is delusional to assume we are reborn, and the people who say we are able and will be reborn have no way of truly showing it. Maybe faith is just pretending something exists and acts according to the entity "existing". I believe that notion of rebirth is crazy, and some may find it metaphorical as in to become a "new" person, or turn over a new leaf, but if they mean in an actual way to be reborn, there is no evidence. At this point it is just all speculation. However, there is no saying it doesn't exist! But wasting so much effort on something so unsure, so unanswerable seems delusional, and instead should focus on the greater things in your current life, and not working in this life for your next life...



    "Why did the founders omit reference to God in the Constitution, do you think?"



    I actually think they forgot, I mean after all they have been through and fought for, maybe they were so caught up in the moment that they were focused on what it was for. It was for them, enacted by them, and created by them, this freedom they attained. I doubt they stopped and prayed to god to save their country. No, the blood they paid was by their fellow men. I think they wanted to focus on the liberation and freedom of mortal men and wanted our ancestors who fought for our freedom to be remembered, and so it could be eternal. If god had been included, to me it would feel like my freedoms and happiness were granted by him, by his hand and might we be freed from colonial oppression, however it was by the founding fathers and their brothers in arms. This way, to us humans, we can more focus on the achievements of man, not the achievements of god, because we can't always rely on a supernatural being for what we desire... we must attain ourselves, through what we are willingly to sacrifice.



    "Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?"



    Yes, I believe it takes real courage to go against the gradient of human belief. Humans are social creatures, we try to fit in as best as we can so we can produce offspring and carry on our genes, I believe through all the complex biological and chemical processes in our bodies, that is our core and basic purpose, to prolong our human race through improving genes and offspring. So, by accustoming to the norm, and going with the crowd would give you a better chance to find a mate. However, if you do use logic and reasoning against what most of humans believe, you are isolating yourself from a potential mate, and in turn increasing your chances of not carrying on your genes to a new generation. Therefore, I think it takes courage to potentially risk your lineage for the enlightenment of the mind and to do what you feel like you should.

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  102. "Beerbohm notes the "drawbacks" of London's environment that keep him from having to walk. What drawbacks exist in your environment and how do or might you overcome them?"



    Some drawbacks include it being dangerously cold, especially for me because I'm so skinny! So, the cold eats through my like knifes, of course I don't want to walk through that... but I can overcome that obstacle by using warmer clothes and staying dry. Another one is that it could be dangerous walking by myself. Now I am an adult male, but you never know! There could be criminals out there just itching to kill, so I am always paranoid about that, but I always carry a knife and mace in my pockets and car just in case if someone wants to try something.



    "What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?"



    I think it has good benefits for the mind as well. Everyone needs a break, it is proven that having a break give psychological benefits, so taking a break, or in this case walking. Can help you clear your mind, relax and recuperate for the next stressful event. Yes, there is the health benefit, but people tend to ignore the state of the mind. Having even a small break can boost your mind and let it recover from overuse, it may even balance the chemical agents in your body responsible for emotions! Or at the very least raising your dopamine levels to feel happy and relaxed.



    "What do you think about Beerbohm's attribution of walking to some lower human faculty ("soul")? Where does your "mind go" while walking?"



    I think that's around the true point of walking. I think walking relaxes you biologically by enacting certain chemicals to be released from your body, which beforehand are triggered from the senses your eyes, nose, ears, etc pick up that are attributed to a "relaxing" tone. And from there, you enter a kind of zoned-out phase, or I like to think just deep thought! Kind of like REM sleep, which is deep sleep, you don't know you are sleeping but you are resting, likewise when I zone out when doing something, that means I'm tired and I am just resting, by not focusing on the senses in front of me, I go to my subconsciousness where I am alone and I can get lost in my thoughts, like a dream-like state. Thus, I am resting, while still being awake, just not wasting energy to focus on the senses in front of me. That's why I think you zone out and just ignore sights and sounds. And from walking, it helps enable that stage of zoned out relaxation.

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  103. Jacob Weast12:41 PM CST

    What usefulness, besides exercise, does walking have?

    Walking, for me, has always been an easy way of "resetting the mental clock". Something about walking creates a simple peace and, if there are no distractions, a sense of consciousness. Also, now that we've touched on peripatetics, I see it's a way to get the inner mechanics of the mind to start turning, more so than if you were sitting at a desk.

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    1. When I compare thinking at a desk to think while walking, it looks like one form of thinking is static, while the other is fluent. Both to match their surroundings.

      Delete
  104. Phil 1030-009
    Is "Holy Spirit" something real and supernatural, or is it the name of a natural form of experience best studied and explicated by neuroscientists, and analyzed by philosophers?

    I really don't care to think what the 'holy spirit' is. I'm not religious, and my feeling towards those that are is live and let live.

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  105. Phil 1030-009
    Does nirvana have to be the same for everyone? What would be your personal definition/experience of nirvana?

    I have put no thought on Nirvana. My thoughts are in the here and now, and the future of our planet and the state it will be in when I am dead. Maybe its because I'm young and I expect to live for many, many more years, but I don't care to waste time on what happens after death. Or, if we're looking at Nirvana as a state of mind, I don't care to reach that state of mind. I'm happy now, happiness for me is a choice that I've already made and will continue to make.

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    1. Phil 1030-009
      Good question! I do not think nirvana is the same for everyone. I think it depends on how each person defines it.

      Delete
  106. 1030-10
    1)Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?
    I do have a separate philosophy from my parents. They believe that God and Humans are two separate entities and that God is responsible for our every move. I, on the other hand, believe that God is just a form of positive energy that cannot be defined and that God is not responsible for our every single move. I personally don’t like to discuss this with them because whenever I have tried in the past it has only ended with a heated argument.
    2)Does nirvana have to be the same for everyone? What would be your personal definition/experience of nirvana?
    No, nirvana doesn’t have to be the same for everyone. One can achieve true salvation by following God and religion or one can achieve nirvana by being true to themselves and making sure they are happy. Each one’s salvation can be attained in a different way.
    3)Matthieu Ricard has been called the happiest man in the world. Do you think eastern philosophies focused on the alleviation of suffering are a more promising route to happiness than its "pursuit" in the western/Jeffersonian tradition of individualism and personal liberty?
    I think the Eastern philosophies mainly focus on renouncing everything and being true to oneself or God for the most part. So, when one gets rid of all personal and material wants in their lives they’ll have nothing to worry about except their basic needs. Although there is no proven theory that states following Eastern philosophies are an easy way to be happy, I think that it depends on us giving up what worries us.
    4)Why did the founders omit reference to God in the Constitution, do you think?
    I think the founders omitted the reference to God in the Constitution because of the first amendment that states citizens of America have a right to follow any religion they want.
    5)Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?
    Yes, since traditions have been around for a long time with people and when someone questions it people who follow those traditions are usually offended by those questions. To not offend them and question those traditions takes a great deal of courage.

    Alt. DQ
    1) What is your idea of nirvana?

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  107. PHIL 1030-009

    Discussion Questions
    1. Is "Holy Spirit" something real and supernatural, or is it the name of a natural form of experience best studied and explicated by neuroscientists, and analyzed by philosophers?

    - I believe the "Holy Spirit" is the name of a natural form of experience best studied and explicated by neuroscientists and analyzed by philosophers. The "Holy Spirit" means different things to different people. Some people think the "Holy Spirit" is something real and some think the "Holy Spirit" is something supernatural. Therefore, I feel like the "Holy Spirit" is something like an entity that makes people question their morals and beliefs, as well as propose insightful questions about what is happening in the universe. That is why I think it is a natural form of experience that should be studied.

    2. Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?

    - I do not think it takes courage to think for yourself, however invoking your thoughts/reason against superstition and tradition does take courage. People's self-concept is influenced by the environment in which they live. Although it claims to be accepting, today's society is very critical of ideas that don't agree with the majority. This affects people's self-concept and makes it hard for people to invoke their thoughts and reason about parts of our culture and environment.

    3. Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?

    - I think my mother and I have very similar philosophical beliefs. We very often discuss our philosophical beliefs. Although our beliefs are very similar, she does teach me about new philosophical ideas all of the time. So, yes I like discussing philosophical beliefs/ideas with her, because I do like to learn and think insightfully.

    4. What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?

    - I think that walking allows you to open your mind and allows you quiet time to think and relax.

    Quiz Questions
    1. What is Agnosticism in Buddhism?

    2. Why in recent decades has Buddhism enjoyed considerable growth in Western countries?

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  108. 1. What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?

    - I think that walking can be used to change someones mood, such as if someone is getting very angry or upset. If they walk away from the situation and walk around for a minute or so to calm down and clear their heads, they can change their mood in about a minute or so.

    2.Have you been "born again," or encouraged by faith leaders or peers to seek spiritual rebirth? Is that something real, metaphorical, or delusional?

    - When i was younger i was a follower of christ and i was reborn in a sense of a spiritual rebirth, but now that i'm older i feel as if it was just metaphorical. I do feel like you can have a sense of a rebirth if you really want to feel that way.

    3.Why did the founders omit reference to God in the Constitution, do you think?

    - I believe it was because not everyone believes in God, so if they put it in there than maybe people who don't believe in god may not think the rules apply to them because they don't follow god.

    Quiz Questions

    -Depending on your balance of good deeds versus evil deeds, what may you reincarnate to?

    -When asked what Buddhism recommends for someone in great pain at the end of their life, how does Ricard respond?

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  109. Elizabeth Coram section 10
    I was brought up as christian my parents, grandparents and beyond are christian. when i got older i started following the path of wiccan or pagan religion to this day my parents still have no idea. One would say that i am afraid of being rejected by my own family and you are correct so no we do not talk about our philosophical beliefs.

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  110. Ethan Hall section 10

    Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?
    Me and me parents agree on most philosophical ideas. This is likely because of the influence my parents had on my ideas growing up. Things we do disagree on I generally try to avoid talking about. There isn’t much of a point in arguing with my parents. The only thing accomplished when I voice my disagreement is resentment on each side.

    Have you been "born again," or encouraged by faith leaders or peers to seek spiritual rebirth? Is that something real, metaphorical, or delusional?
    I have not been “born again” or encouraged by faith leaders or eers to seek spiritual rebirth. I think delusional is a strong word to describe this practice. I think it isn’t delusional, because whether it is placebo or not, for most people I believe it does have a positive effect on their life. I don’t care what you do. If it’s for the purpose of bettering yourself and your mental state, then I would never think you are delusional for trying it.

    Why did the founders omit reference to God in the Constitution, do you think?
    I think the founders omitted reference to God in the constitution, because the constitution also includes an article about the separation of church and state. I think the founders were right in separating religion from government. Most people would agree it’s not right to force any religion upon anyone. However, most people would also agree its necessary for everyone to be forced to comply with the authority of the government. Therefore it is essential for us to maintain the separation of church and state to ensure a just government.

    Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?
    I think it takes exceptional courage to invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc. Having recently moved back into the bible belt, I have noticed the emphasis people place on religion in their lives, and others. Many people I have encountered here are not only religious, but expect others to be religious. Whether they do it consciously or not, I notice many people who judge, look at, or treat people who don't cherish the same religious values. Even when joining certain organizations it can be beneficial to claim a certain religious belief. I think this is one fault of southern culture that I hoe fades away. When I say that I don’t mean for people to stop being religious. I mean people should learn to separate their own beliefs from their judgment of the character and intelligence of another person.

    Link to why the NFL has always been political:
    https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/nfl-football-political_us_59c91815e4b06ddf45f9b002

    Link to Jackie Robinson Sports science:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3JMqrfNUJdM

    Have you ever felt that someone looked at you different or saw you in a different light after you told them your philosophy for religion?

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  111. My parents' philosophies are more spiritual instead o materialistic beliefs, such as: cosmic perspectives. I discuss with them about this and then we talk about God, our identity, and how we don't have a soul but we are the soul. Just trying to figure out how to understand the way we are.

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  112. Nirvana isn't conformed as one for everyone, it's 7 billion, and counting, times different. I think my personal experience/ definition of nirvana is walking miles around mountains and canyons where later at night, the galaxy can be seen.

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  113. Phil- 10
    The usefulness that walking gives is great stimulant for challenging times. To create ideas and think/ question thoughts of important tasks or about life and it's mysteries.

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  114. Phil- 10
    It takes courage to think for yourself and invoke against traditions and the supernatural because that means you are developing your interests further.

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  115. 010

    What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?

    Walking has always allowed me to focus on my thoughts without giving much mind to my surroundings. They often allow me to unravel problems or think in depth about things I otherwise wouldn’t be able to.

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  116. Dean Cheevers Section 10
    Does nirvana have to be the same for everyone? What would be your personal definition/experience of nirvana?
    Nirvana doesn’t have to be the same for everyone, but I think the general idea is shared amoungst everyone. My defintion would be understanding and being satisfied with the Universe around me.

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  117. Dean Cheevers Section 10

    Why did the founders omit reference to God in the Constitution, do you think?

    I think they ommited to set in stone the idea that the U.S.A. Should be free from religiin and enhance the idea that seperation between church and state is vital.

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  118. Dean Cheevers Section 10
    Do you think it takes courage to think for yourself and invoke reason against superstition, tradition, etc.?

    I think it takes a fair amount of courage to think for oneself. I think it’s important to have reason behind the rebellion rather than doing it just for the sake of doing it.

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  119. Dean Cheevers Section 10
    What usefulness, besides exercise, do you think walking has?

    Walking is a good balance between having a nice physical activity that doesn’t clog the thoughts with worrying about how hard the activity is or how strenuous it is.

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  120. Dean Cheevers Section 10
    Is "Holy Spirit" something real and supernatural, or is it the name of a natural form of experience best studied and explicated by neuroscientists, and analyzed by philosophers?

    I think the belief of what the Holy Spirit is depends on the origin of the belief. Whether its a being or an overall set of consciences, the idea of the Holy Spirit seems to be the same.

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  121. Dean Cheevers Section 10
    Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?

    I have very few philosophical differences with my parents. We do talk about them and often have fair friendly debates about them.

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  122. Dean Cheevers Section 10

    What do you think about Beerbohm's attribution of walking to some lower human faculty ("soul")? Where does your "mind go" while walking?

    While walking, the level of depth of my thoughts puley depends on the mindset that I have. Most of the time, I keep a good balance of day dreaming but also just taking the World in while walking.

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  123. Dean Cheevers Section 10
    Have you been "born again," or encouraged by faith leaders or peers to seek spiritual rebirth? Is that something real, metaphorical, or delusional?

    I have not been “born again”. I think it is representation of a new set of outlooks on the World and beliefs.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Section 12
      I believe that a "rebirth" is something more significant than just new outlooks. I feel that it is a complete change in lifestyle, like you are a whole new person.

      Delete
  124. Abby Pittman section 6

    “Does nirvana have to be the same for everyone? What would be your personal definition/experience of nirvana?”

    Personally, I think nirvana is just inner peace. Because of this, I’m sure we all have different types of suffering. Tibetan Buddhism beliefs describe suffering to be sin, which is primarily caused by ourselves. We create our suffering. Therefore, all of us have different sin and different suffering, causing us to have different views of what nirvana is to us personally. But, on the other hand, if you view nirvana as being inner peace within yourself with a detachment from material possessions, you could say nirvana is the same for most people.

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  125. “Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?”

    As many others have commented, my parents and I do differ within our philosophical beliefs. I don’t have the typical traditional views that many in my parent’s generation believe in. I’m open to many ideas that my parents are not. We don’t discuss these things a lot unless I’m particularly offended by something that my dad says. It’s really difficult to have these conversations with parents because I often worry that it’s disrespectful to have these arguments with them. I try to refrain from these discussions, and I don’t really have a desire to speak with them on it. I know they are very certain of their beliefs, and so am I. There’s no point in arguing or debating with those who aren’t open to seeing other viewpoints. It’s just wasted energy.

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  126. Abby Pittman section 6
    “Why did the founders omit reference to God in the Constitution?”

    I truly think they didn’t actually forget but rather used that as an excuse. I think they actually just wanted a separation of church and state. They also understood that America had a large number of people all following different faiths, and it’s better to not exclude any one group of people to keep the country united. Pretty simple.

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  127. Abby Pittman section 6

    Comment on Eastern vs. Western Philosophy video:
    I found it interesting how they argued that Western philosophy doesn’t provide for its current culture, but they focus more on discovering more information about their historical philosophers. They argue that Eastern philosophy is always attempting to provide for others and help them reach enlightenment. This is the reasoning for so many getting involved in Buddhist philosophy because it’s willing to provide were Western philosophy does not.

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  128. Dean Cheevers Section 10

    Do you think it does a disservice to anyone to identify him/her in terms of those whom they precede or follow? If your mother is famous and accomplished, for instance, does it in any way harm you to be known as X's son or daughter?

    I think it does a disservice to identity someone because of their parents. A person shouldn’t be identified because of their parent’s actions. Someone should only be identified because of their actions.

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  129. Dean Cheevers Section 10

    What do you think of Ronald Reagan's re-telling of the Declaration legend? (58) Was it a harmless & charming anecdote vindicated by its patriotic intent, or a disturbing foreshadowing of the current"fake news" environment of our time?

    I think it’s an interesting story. Although, it seems far fetched, it could symbolize a deeper significance to what the feelings and pressures were at the time of the signing.

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  130. Dean Cheevers Section 10

    "What is most interesting about Joseph Smith is that people believed him." 71 Why does anyone ever believe someone else's first-person account of an extraordinary event, in the absence of extraordinary supportive evidence?

    I think people believe stories with no proof because of the way the person delivers the story. If a person makes the story seem credible by the way he tells it, people can allow themselves to be gullible and believe it.

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  131. Dean Cheevers Section 10

    Dickens describes an important kind of learning that happened through his late-night walks. Have you experienced anything similar? What might be learned about life through walking and encountering/observing others?

    I have experienced similar types of learning by walking. I think it’s very possible to learn important aspects about your life through a type of reflection that occurs by walking. The simple repetitive action of walking allows your mind to think freely and focus on ecceteric ideas.

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  132. Dean Cheevers Section 10

    When Dickens talks about "dry rot," what do you think he means? Is this description true to life or is it his creative invention?

    I think Dickens is speaking of a medical and mental illness. The horrible physical action of our bodies decaying seems to be the physical idea, whereas, the idea of dry rot may signify the mind’s failure to be creative or think of philosophical ideas.

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  133. Dean Cheevers Section 10

    Do we risk distorting our understanding of either Socrates or his predecessors and successors by using his name as a milestone? If I'm a post-Jamesian, does that then imply that I'm necessarily concerned with the same questions and motivated by the same interests that James was?

    I think we do risk our understanding of Socrates by using his name as a milestone, because his name used as a term for a Socratic philospher. Using the term, we seem to assume what Socrates’ ideas were, but we don’t know the full depth. Another Socratic or post-Jamesian philosopher may fall into the respective categories because of similar ideas, but they may have a different idea to Socrates or James.

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  134. Dean Cheevers Section 10

    Do you find anything resonant or relevant about Dickens' mentioning of poverty-related imprisonment? How do you think poor people are treated by today's legal systems?

    I find Dicken’s mentioning of poverty-related imprisonment quite alarming, but I don’t find it similar to today’s system. I think the legal system could be improved a bit for those in poverty, but I think the system is fair and the poor aren’t treated any differently in the U.S. system.

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  135. Section 12
    Do you have any significant philosophical differences with your parents? Do you discuss them? Do you want to?
    Both of my parents are very diverse philosophically. I tend to side with the parent that believes in God and all of the more logical explanations in why we are here based on the Bible. However, I disagree with my other parent that takes an approach that consists more of an "I don't know why we are here, and I don't want to think about it". Nothing is wrong with either of these approaches, but I have just always been more intrigued in finding more of a purpose here.

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    Replies
    1. Madona Kozman8:21 PM CDT

      I like how you see both philosophical believes. I wonder if you have tried to sit with them both and talk more about that topic to see if you can change their way or even come up with a third believe.

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  136. Madona Kozman8:16 PM CDT

    Section 13
    Is "Holy Spirit" something real and supernatural, or is it the name of a natural form of experience best studied and explicated by neuroscientists, and analyzed by philosophers?
    I believe that the Holy spirit is something real and supernatural and cannot be looked by science. It is something that only the person can feel working inside of him/her. Plus, since i'm a christian and I believe in the story of the presence of the Holy Spirit inside the 12 disciples.

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