10 December 2008

the last post.

the last two sentences in the Pojman book are as follows:
If we are to survive as a civilization and species, we must find new and better theories or revise the old ones that leads to the Truth, for only the truth will set us free. The pursuit is worth the effort.

When this class started, it was established that it technically would have no end, but the means to an eventual (and faraway) end was what we were searching for and discussing. I was instantly frustrated by the continual conversations that led to no end. There was nothing that we could set in stone. However, over the course of the course, I began to accept the inevitable. There was no end, but it was important for human nature to keep searching for possibilities. The truth will set us free. When the truth will be obtained, no one knows. Its the road there that makes it all worth it.

Love the people who treat you right. Forget about the ones who don't and believe that everything happens for a reason. If you get a chance, take it. If it changes your life, let it. Nobody said it would be easy, they just promised it would be worth it.

the future?

one of the questions that pojman raises in the last paragraph is: "Will the nature of our families change as we live longer so that there is less room on earth- and less need and desire- for children?

that question is something i have never thought about very much, but it raises a lot of interesting points and thoughts.

I have noticed that in my friend group, there is less desire for children. At least two of my close friends have no desire to have children, and would, at the most adopt. As for the rest of us, we are probably not going to have children for about another 10 years, 30 sounds like a good age. At my age, my mom already had me and my younger brother, AND was pregnant with my youngest brother. I think that there is less of a rush to have children nowadays, along with the lowered desire. Will there be tendencies for less kids per family since there is less room? Will more people just not have kids? Will another form of a type of abortion be discovered that is less tragic and more acceptable? That would also lower the child rate. Without a doubt, the population definitely will soar. We will have to become inventive to have enough resources, but i think the world can handle it.

how are the two sexes related?

i found the section about the relation between men and women in the conclusion very interesting. After reading it, based on my own personal experience, I agree with Aristotle and the Conservatists. Now, I believe that all women are not made for childbearing, like they said. However, i do believe emotionally, men and women are fundamentally different. Different enough to make a difference in our human natures. Although as a female I do believe that the androgynous feminists in that we have some of the same abilities to do the same jobs, I don't agree with them wholeheartedly because sometimes women can't do a job that a man can, and vice versa. I think that Aristotle had the right idea that there are fundamental differences that in turn, affect our human natures. Although men and women may equally have the same will to live, or were both born with the same blank slate, differences develop. Differences that are important to the way the world is. If men and women were incredibly the same, the world would be boring. It's the differences that make relationships and such interesting.

nietzche. again.

I don't know what it is about Friedrich Nietzche that I enjoy so much. Maybe because he was the rebellious bad-ass (which is my type) or maybe it's because he was just different.

First and foremost, his quote, "That which does not kill me, only makes me stronger" has been on a poster that a friend made me on my wall since freshman year, so about a year when this class started. I had no idea it was Nietzche. I will admit, shamefully, that I thought it was Kanye West, from his hit Stronger. (kind of ashamed)
Anyways, that quote has been instrumental to my life in college. I classify myself as an "awfulist". I usually think the worst is happening, or if I don't get an A my life will come crashing down around me. The truth is, nothing that horrible will happen. I won't actually die from bad grades. And since it doesn't kill me, it will actually make me stronger. Besides, I'm not really interested in graduate school, so as long as I pass through 2 and a half more years, I'm done. So what is there to really worry about?
I wholeheartedly without a doubt, love that quote. Everytime I think about it, it brings on new meaning. I guess that I should first thank Nietzche for actually coming up with it, and then thank Kanye West for resurrecting it into a hip-hop song aiding my discovery of it.

Another thing I enjoy about Nietzche is his thoughts on the meaning of life in the pojman book. He says, "My life has no aim and this is evident even from the accidental nature of its origin. That i can posit an aim for myself is another matter. But a state has no aim. We alone give it aim."

I took that as your life has no planned end. YOU make up the life for yourself, and along with a little help from fate, you shape it to your likings. It just makes me realize that the possibilities are endless. Adding to this is an element of new society as well. Back in the day my grandmother had to work in the fields, since she was a mexican immigrant. My mom grew up in a pretty bad area of Chicago, and basically just decided to be a housewife because she thought that she was not capable of something like higher education, because that is what her society around her told her. (although, since moving to massachusetts, she has gone to school in the past five years and became a chef.) Anyways, Advancements in society is letting me go to college, letting me choose my life. I am creating it. Right now, I chose to be a sports broadcaster and am studying towards that. If i change my mind, I change my mind. My life has no set plan, which is exciting.

truth and nietzsche

Nietzsche said "A belief, however necessary it may be for the preservation of a species, has nothing to do with truth"

So is Nietzsche saying that no matter what you believe in, if it helps you survive, and preserve the species, it could be false?
So the way I took this had to do with religion. There is always the concept in the back of your mind about, what if the world is going about this all wrong? Maybe Catholics chose the wrong religion and we're going to burn while the Buddhists reincarnate..

In the Simpsons and Philosophy book I read, it explains one episode entitled Homer and the Heretic, where Homer ponders the same things.
  • "What's the big deal about going to some building every Sunday, I mean, isn't God everywhere?"
  • "Don't you think the almighty has better things to worry about than where one little guy spends one measly hour of his week?"
  • "And what if we've picked the wrong religion? Every week we're just making God madder and madder?"
In the episode, Homer gives up church and decides to follow God in his own way: by watching the TV, slobbing about and dancing in his underpants. He justifies his actions with those three statements above.

Going back to Nietzsche, society may be only believing something that is entirely false, yet it is acceptable since this belief keeps society going. Although some are atheists or non-practicing, a lot of communities are held together by religion. Such a topic is hard for me to ponder since I enjoy fact, and I don't like not having all of the answers, but it is an important issue of human nature. It is in our nature to believe, despite not having any concrete evidence.

an interesting discussion on truth from my ethics of journalism class

Accuracy-conformity to fact. precision; exactness.
conformity to fact. a statement proven to be or accepted as true.

I believe that the two things are very similar in definition; however, you can be accurate without being truthful. If you are accurate with the facts, but your story, for example, does not lead people to the truth, the two things become completely different. You can be accurate, but lead to false pretenses; therefore you are misleading although the information is accurate. An accurate statement can be true to fact, but the truth means what it means, it is clear cut.
It took me a while to come up with how they were different.

09 December 2008

humanity's essence

What is the essence of all humanity? What is at the center, propelling us forward from the inside?
Some believe that Religion is the center of all reality. Plato, aristotle, and Kant all believe that reason is at the center of our essence. Schopenhauer, Kierkegaard and Nietzsche believe that our will is the center of our essence. Two completely separate views are that of Marx and Freud. Marx holds that economics are at the center, always changing our essences. Freud believed our essence was our sexuality. Sartre said that we had no essence, we had to create one.
I agree with each philosopher in some way. I believe that our essence is made up of each of those ideals, not just one. For example, right now, I have slight belielfs in religion, while each human has reason, will, and outside forces that influence us.

causal thesis

Causal Thesis is the thesis that every act and event in the universe is caused by antecedent events.
In normal speak, everything happens for a reason, or every effect has positive or negative cause. Understanding these cause and effects can help thinkers make more educated decisions. Weighing the effects, and consequential causes, can change ways of thinking. This one concept of philosophy is one that I wholeheartedly agree with. Everything does happen for a reason. The world would be depressed and chaotic if people decided that everything is decided in advance. This plays hand in hand with fate. Things happen for a reason, fate plays with the conditions, and this belief in an higher power that is controlling the main aspects of your life helps live a sane life. If you were worrying what each decision meant for your future, lives would be chaotic. Even if a person does not agree with a higher power, things still do happen by the planets, or whatever one person chooses.

reality in philosophy

A constant discussion that seemed to come up during conversation was about that poor tree outside of our classroom window. Is that tree really a tree?
Common knowledge is that physical objects do exist and are real. They exist in reality without any contemplation necessary. We may think that that is not a tree, maybe it looks like a tall bush to you. However, the object will not change regardless of our thoughts. This statement has always been "common sense" and a fact of life. However, when philosophy class started, other ideas poured in. Maybe the tree is not actually a tree, we just believe that it is a tree. One major thing I have learned over this semester is that things are not black and white. That fact was the hardest thing for me to accept. I like fact. It makes sense. To sit in a room and start thinking that maybe what I always thought was fact is not was hard to grasp. However, sitting and thinking more openly, instead of closed thought based on fact, helps philosophical thinking, along with other areas of learning.

24 November 2008

a second point on capitalism:: the lottery system

I recently read an article from the Chicago Reporter that I came across while browsing.
The article stated how the poorest Chicagoan's play the lottery the most. They spend a good chunk of their minuscule income in the hopes that they can finally hit it big.

“On average, I’d say [I spend] about $25 a day,” said Brown, now 36, a laid-off laborer. “But I don’t mind because I know, sooner or later, I’m going to hit something.”

According to the article, the low-income Chicago communities have generated the highest lottery sales in the state, predominately African-Americans and Hispanics. Residents in these communities spent a higher portion of their incomes on the lottery than people in richer areas. Also, despite the nation's recent economic downturn, lottery spending has increased.

Because people are bound to the system of capitalism, they are reduced to trying out their luck. Spending loads of money on a chance just doesn't make sense to me, but then again, why are casinos so successful? People are relying on hope and the chance that they can strike it big and solve their problems that capitalism cannot.

“Lotteries are, in essence, a form of regressive taxation that distributes wealth and resources away from those who can least afford to pay,” said Paul Street, vice-president for research and planning at the Chicago Urban League. “[Lotteries] especially extract wealth from communities of color, and most particularly from African Americans.”

Also, lottery consistently takes money from the poor and feeds it into the government. This is why I do not understand people's obsession with it and how they can legitimately "hope" to strike it big.

“Illinois deficits approached or even surpassed $1 billion this past year,” said Illinois Lottery Director Lori Montana. “Had the lottery not transferred $555 million to the state, the budget shortfall could have been significantly larger.”

The lottery’s public relations director, Anne Plohr Rayhill, said it is not the fault of the lottery that black and poor residents spend more.
“We try not to target anyone,” she said. “We’re visible to everybody. We don’t do the sort of thing where we put a lot of advertising in one area and not another.”

Of course they're not.

capitalism and violence

Marx argued that capitalism exploits workers into working their entire lives and never getting very far. The rich feed off of their poor workers, and the poor will become poorer and essentially always be poor.
This Marxist view has proven to be true, especially in today's world. Capitalism has made our society cut-throat. People do what they have to to survive, and hopefully raise through the ranks of the economic society.
Capitalism does instill a sense of violence in people. It is not enough to work hard anymore. It is necessary to cheat and steal and abandon values so you can prosper.
These are the reasons why insider trading and things like ENRON happen. By nature, humans are competitive, and capitalism has turned society into a group of individuals frantically clawing at money anyway they can get it.

President Obama has been criticized as having marxist views, due to his vow to close the gap between rich and poor. Although i have no idea how the redistribution of wealth works, it seems like a valid idea. Should Americans keep working and not get anywhere? Or can someone stop the insanity?

rousseau:: a dreamer?

Rousseau was mentioned on web site's as having views that appealed to the 'dreamer' in people. It is true that his views outlined a plan of sorts that could not and would not work, but people could dream, couldn't they?
Rousseau argued that civilization was corrupting humans. Urbanization, technology, science, was all contributing to the corruption of compassionate human beings. Those things were seen as starting to turn humans into cruel and selfish individuals. Rousseau also argued that government was robbing humans of a natural freedom that should be ours. Humanity was looking towards government for rules on how to live, and to society for how to be happy. The price of revolutionizing the world was individuality.
However, Rousseau wasn't totally against government or a governing system. He was just trying to talk through a way in his essays that individuals could be free, while still having order and obedience.
Rousseau's views are easy to agree with. He wants everything for the people, while also preserving life as everyone knows it.

The whole utopia movement reminds me of something cohesive with Rousseaus views. Folks in a utopia were looking for that freedom from a larger governmental society, while still having order within themselves. Utopian people wanted to pull their kids from public school, and teach them communally. Everyone in the utopia would educate the children and be responsible for their upbringing. This has always seemed like a valid point, because therefore children learn from many people and those people's life lessons, not just from one person in a stuffy public school. There was the argument that by breaking up the traditional ''family'' and letting everyone be responsible for everyone's children would ruin parent/child relationships, and this became true.

Although utopias didn't survive, and so therefore there must be a distinct flaw with this setup, it is still good to dream, like Rousseau, of how much easier things could be for those who didn't agree with the world.

the ties that bind us

I know i haven't blogged in a while(over a month), but it's been a pretty hectic semester. I'm hoping to catch up, if that's alright.

When Marx said that religion was a threat to human progress and must be abolished, outrage ensued. However, despite one's religious views, Marx had a valid point. Religion, in some cases, doesn't make you a better person, sometimes, it stifles you.

"Religion is a flower on the ties that bind us."

Man is always trying to live up to the standards that religion instills in us. Supposedly, if man goes through life, living according to religious rules, he'll have a pleasant afterlife in "heaven". However, man sometimes gets swept up in trying to live virtuously and misses their life here on earth. Now does that make sense? Man should be able to live life according to what they think is right and ethical. They should be well learned enough to know right from wrong and secure a set of values that will give them eternal life in heaven, eventually.

Marx said that man is not abstract, but religion and heaven is. Man is in a human world, a state and society. Religion is a general theory and should not apply as 'gospel' (pun intended) to everyone, which is another reason why religion sometimes is criticized.

Although I personally believe religion is important to society due to my upbringing, I'm beginning to drift away from the "do this, do that, give us money" aspect of religion. I think that as long as someone has faith, and lives according to a society's idea of a good person, all will be well after all.

14 October 2008


Hobbes seems to understand that all people are in a war against all to live fulfilled lives, or get what they want in life.
Society is built upon competition. Business is competition. Jobs are competition. Love is sometimes a competition. Fighting for what you want is a social norm. When you get what you aimed for after this war, it makes it all worth it.
Human Nature has made people, and therefore society, competitive and willing to fight whatever is in the way for what they want.
I know that my thoughts always take me to movies, songs, or books, but I think they are some of the greatest teachers of philosophy and human nature. one song by the receiving end of sirens called "the war of all against all" triggered. I never thought about it in a hobbes view and thinking about it in that way has helped me understand the song more.

Look alive, gentlemen
Or fake your deaths; your wounds undressed beneath your costumes.
Some are so well rehearsed
For hearses it hurts, always the first to wave the white flag
And barricade themselves
In false pretenses, fox holed in trenches.
Forged casualties with casual pleas,
Dying to please the enemy
We die to stay alive, we kill to survive

We are the corp of corpses,
We are up in arms and armed
Bring all the king's horses and all the king's men

Push on, plod on, these legs like pistons pumping forward motion.
Convalescent men in uniform.
We have fallen to friendly fire, shrapnel freckles our spine.
Still our feet fall one by one.
Although it also has to do with war, it also reminds me a bit of Hobbes. People fight to stay alive, and kill to survive.

Rousseau's innate goodness

Rousseau also believed, like myself, that all people are born innately good. All people are born with a clean slate, and they choose what to do with it. Although, like all things, there are exceptions.

Nature vs. Nurture plays a big part in this in my mind. If you grow up in a hostile environment, it is possible that you will lead a negative, and possibly violent life. Ex: Hitler
HOWEVER, there are persons who pull themselves out of hostile environments to live extraordinary lives.

Now does this mean that some people may actually be born evil, regardless of the nurturing they receive? Some philosophists do believe this point, and it may be true in some cases. I know kids who have the nicest parents, but they are just pure evil. Did something else, like a bully, trigger this evil behavior? This may also be true.

Does society cause evil? Can we blame society, like death metal and movies, for making kids evil? Or horribly depressed? One quote from a book reminds me of this fact. It's from High Fidelity, written by Nicholas Hornby.
What came first?
The music or the misery?
People worry about kids playing with guns or watching violent videos, that some sort of culture of violence will take them over. Nobody worries about kids listening to thousands, literally thousands, of songs about heartbreak, rejection, pain, misery and loss.
Did I listen to pop music because I was miserable, or am I miserable because I listen to pop music?
Although this is a good point, no one can actually pinpoint what makes serial killers, and what makes people so depressed that they don't want to live anymore.
Even though the situations and behaviors are various, I still believe, like Rousseau, that people are born good. They are born to be parts of society without causing trouble, and are 'forced' into a society built upon competition and values.

rousseau's forced to be free

Rousseau's theory of human nature was one I agreed most with. Rousseau's theory of being "forced to be free" made so much sense to me. Although we as Americans are essentially 'free' is freedom really free? There definintely are some social norms that free people are shoved into, although they might not see it as necessary. For example, the social norm has always been to go to school, get a career, get married, have kids, retire (hopefully). Now, although there are exceptions that find the strength to take a different path, most Americans take this course, regardless of happiness. So yes, essentially, we are free, but we are forced into situations that are 'normal'. Usually citizens who take a change of path, are judged or questioned for not following social norms. It's clear that Rousseau understood that people are free by force.

30 September 2008

aristotle:: a pompous jerk?

Aristotle believed that leadership was necessary to run a community, no matter the size. Humans need, according to their human nature, rules or laws and people to implement them. Although this may be true, I took Roselle Chartock's Utopian Visions class, and we studied Utopian communities who went against this social norm. They were able to flourish without leadership, all sharing responsibility. This just may be an exception to the rule, or do humans really need rules? Although those utopian nations ultimately failed, it worked for a while. Despite this fact, I still agree with Aristotle in that regardless of how much faith someone can put into the human nature of humans, laws and leaders are necessary to organize chaos.

Now should these leaders be the elitists? Is it unfair to believe that the labor class or women are unfit to lead? Back in the day, it was absurd to think that a woman could run a nation. ACTUALLY in some ways, in this day and age, it still is an issue, especially with this 08 election. Voters are doubting Palin and they obviously doubted Clinton in favor of Obama. Regardless of the times, Aristotle came off as a pompous sexist with his views. The term Elitist has become associated with a negative connotation and to try to say that human nature only allows a certain class of people to rule was a ridiculous idea to me, and made Aristotle's theory less legit.

24 September 2008

plato's theories on leadership and marraige

On page 50, Pojman explains Plato's beliefs of a Guardian Class, who would be responsible for leadership and law making, etc. This class would live in a communal area, so not to be influenced by money or material objects while making important decisions. In order to create worthy leaders to form a Guardian Class, Plato was a supporter of selective breeding. HOWEVER, in order to achieve selective breeding, marriage would have to be abolished. These views seemed incredibly radical to me, if not even a little crazy. I'm sure back in Plato's time, this may have been feasible and maybe a good concept, but to consider it in this day and age is insane. Plato believed that marriage was too influenced by emotion and chance (go figure). In his eyes, strategic marriage should be planned in order to create the best citizens. My question for the q&a had to do with this concept and if hints at the beginnings of a form of communism. Obviously Hitler was very interested in controlling breeding to create the prettiest and perfect of people. Also, communism was a communal thing, run by the government, with no chance of advancement. This is very similar to what Plato was philosophizing about.

BTW.. I believe that Plato was supposing himself into this 'guardian class' so of course it sounded like a good idea. He seems a little pompous and all knowing.

23 September 2008

the frustration of human nature

I should've written this earlier because now I don't really remember how this came up, but it was quoted about someone saying how much they don't know about human nature, and how this can be frustrating about the course or philosophy in general.
Of course, I think in terms of movie quotes and song lyrics, so this particular quote came to mind. It's from my all time favorite chick flick Say Anything:

A lot of [people] think they have to know, right? But inside they don't really know, so... I don't know, but I do know that I don't know.-- LLOYD DOBLER

In class there are a lot of unknowns, and for someone like me, a fact lover, it does get frustrating. Knowing that there's no end in sight can drive someone up a wall, but however, I do feel as if embracing that we know that we don't know can help during class.

17 September 2008

brand new lyrics that relate!?!

I am a huge fan of the long island band, brand new. Their last album The Devil and God is Raging Inside Me was based strongly on lead singer Jesse Lacey's tumultuous relationship with God and his questioning of the same questions we are discussing in class. A few songs stuck out while listening to this album today, and I thought I'd share a few verses.

I will die all alone
And when I arrive I won’t know anyone

Well, Jesus Christ, I’m alone again
So what did you do those three days you were dead?
Because this problem's gonna last
More than the weekend

Well, Jesus Christ I’m not scared to die
I’m a little bit scared of what comes after
Do I get the gold chariot
Do I float through the ceiling

Do I divide and fall apart
Cause my bright is too slight to hold back all my dark
This ship went down in sight of land
And at the gates does Thomas ask to see my hands?

I know you'll come in the night like a thief
But I’ve had some time alone to hone my lying technique
I know you think that I’m someone you can trust
But I’m scared I’ll get scared and I swear I’ll try to nail you back up
So do you think that we could work out a sign
So I’ll know it's you and that it's over so I won't even try
I know you'll come for the people like me
But we all got wood and nails,
Turned into a hate factory

Untitled 2- BRAND NEW

If there's any justice in heaven,
Than God won't let me in.
He'll lock the gates and take my weekend pass away.
With a sympathetic wave they'll see me off.
Reserve my golden crown while I am cursed to walk the earth for a millenia.
I know I deserve worse but it terrifies me and I can't take it anymore.

And so three cheers for my morose and grieving pals.
And now let's hear it for the tears that I've welled up.
We've come too far to have to give it all up now.
We live lives that are rich and blessed,
And we'll burn for how we transgress.


16 September 2008

another point..

As I re-read my last blog, another point made in class triggered in my mind. My last post seems to read almost like I'm worried I will be judged on these things when judgment day eventually rolls around. Someone stated that Catholicism seems to be about always worrying about the end. You are born, and then shoved into these rules about how to live so you can die and go to heaven. Now, I definitely don't spend everyday pondering and wringing my wrists over if God is gonna accept me into heaven after last weekend's events, or because I told my mom I would go to church if I had time, but I slept in and went to brunch instead. But when I do go to Church, or have some quiet time, these 'worries' or concerns, rather, definitely take precedence in my thoughts. So I guess this does brings us back to the original Q&A question.. Are we able to live up to God's radical rules? Or has everyone, except for maybe a few saintly people, gone to hell because of the World's current morals? What will happen on this judgment day?
**My blogs always seem to end with these wildly unanswerable questions that I wish I knew how to answer. I guess this is what being a philosophy student is all about.

the inevitable judgment by god.

One of the questions I raised in my Q & A was something to the fact of is there one way to god? As previously blogged about, Hindu's believe they will be reincarnated, while Catholics believe if they are good, they shoot right up to heaven, with maybe a brief layover in purgatory, or if they were bad, they go to hell. I've often wondered, who's right? Will whatever we believe in happen? Obviously there is no way to actually answer this, which as a lover of fact, really bugs me sometimes, especially when I was younger. The only answer I've been given by theologists and my parents is have faith. God will take care of it.
But that brings me to another side of this for Catholics, who believe they will be judged by God in the end. I don't know much about other religions, but I'm sure there's elements of this idea in other belief systems. Now, who is God to judge? Has he loosened his criteria since the World has gotten worse in moral standards? I'm sure that there were a lot more virgins until marriage back in the day, and the number who wait has significantly dropped. Will God still hold me to this?
Raised hardcore Catholic, I went to church every Sunday with my entire family, and once on a weekday with my entire school when I attended a catholic elementary school. Since I've gone to college, I only go when I absolutely have to to please my parents, like Easter and Christmas. Like someone stated in class, I got burned out too. Too much forced church, not enough personal thought into if I really wanted to actually be a practicing Catholic. Is this something God is going to judge me on?

14 September 2008


When I think about reincarnation, crazy stories usually pop into my head. Those people on bad daytime TV that believe they used to be a cow, or they were a rainbow trout and remember being caught. On the surface, it seems a ridiculous concept.
Although I was raised Catholic, and do not believe in reincarnation, I do believe in it as a integral part of Hinduism. I believe that everyone has their own beliefs and when the end comes, whatever they believe will happen to them will happen. Catholics go to heaven or hell for eternal life, and as outlined in the chapter, Hindus are reincarnated.
When you insert karma into the situation, reincarnation is very interesting. The belief is that if you live a life of lust, greed, or hatred and then die, you will be reincarnated into a lower animal. Us westerners (and justin timberlake) put it as 'what goes around, comes around'. On the flip side, if you live a fufilling and just life, you break the wheel of karma and achieve nirvana, the last step.
I think such beliefs is more incentive than heaven and hell. Not to be blasphemous but it almost seems as if it's an easier concept than heaven and hell. If you live badly, you drop down the chain and have to work harder to live a better life until you achieve nirvana. If you behave properly in life from the get-go, you achieve nirvana sooner. This part of Hinduism is very interesting. And there has been cases of people able to describe details of a place they've never been to. Do you chalk it up to psychics or reincarnation?
A Side Note::Karma, outside of the realm of reincarnation, has become a sort of more recognizable Western term. I do believe in it, even if I don't believe in reincarnation. It hearkens back to the golden rule:treat others how you would like to be treated.

12 September 2008

destiny.. a little late.

I know that this is from a few classes back, but as I was flipping through bad cable one night in my townhouse this week, Back to the Future was on some channel, and I was too tired to find something else. What triggered me to randomly think about class was the classic McFly line, “You are my density. I mean, destiny.”

This got me thinking. Do we have destinies at all? And if we do, can someone be our destiny? The first question was easy for me. Yes, I do believe we have a destiny, or purpose. The word purpose is easier to dwell on, easier to grasp, but to me, they mean basically the same thing. I’m the product of very young, very optimistic parents. They play the lottery every day because “Somebody’s gotta win. Why not us?” My dad’s favorite line is “Everything happens for a reason.” And that statement I believe wholeheartedly. Maybe it’s because of the way I was raised, but it just seems to me that eventually everything falls into place. When I got denied sufficient enough financial aid from the upper-echelon colleges I applied to, it felt like my world was crashing around me. However, now, in retrospect, going to MCLA has been a lifesaver. I don’t have loans the size of some mortgages, and I think I’m getting a better experience then those old friends of mine at Emerson and Syracuse. Not to sound corny, but MCLA is evidently part of my life plan, or destiny.

Another question is am I shaping in my head as I write this is, is my own destiny forming in my subconscious, or am I living out one that was chosen for me by a higher being, like God? Being a product of nine years of catholic school, we learned we had plans, and God made our plans. It was our job to live good lives so that we stayed on track. In retrospect, is this ridiculous? I’m not really sure at this point.

Now back to the original idea… can someone be our destiny? Right now, at this stage of my life, some one person is not my destiny. However, my grandparents and my parents have both had long marriages. They’ve experienced the push from their significant others to change their lives for the better. Were my mom and dad destined for each other? Again, not to sound weird, but I believe they were. They help each other everyday to be better people and live more fulfilling lives. They worked well together to raise my brothers and I to be normal kids and to live valued lives. Maybe one day I will have that, but in the meantime I believe my friends could be written in as substantial parts of my destiny. I’ve changed a lot since high school, and evidently for the better. They’ve made me a better person, and oddly, more myself.

Destiny may be a fuzzy concept to most, yet for me, it’s a concrete one, one I believe in, and one I will continue to build upon.

09 September 2008

random beginning thoughts on the questioning of human nature

The intro listed such questions as:
- what we are (origins)
- where we come from (nature)
- where we're going (destiny)

I believe that such questions can be debated, like in class, for an endless amount of time. I also believe thinking about these questions and questioning potential possible answers can make us stronger people and more in tune with human nature concepts.
However, a part of me is reluctant to agree that they can eventually have concrete "correct" answers. I consider these questions opinion questions. Countless variables, such as how you were raised, your stance on religion, your social and economic standings, all contribute to how you believe these questions should be answered. Who's to eventually say "YES! I've figured out human nature!"
HOWEVER, a good point brought up in class was something to the fact that maybe future generations will have a larger brain capacity and the know how to answer these seemingly unanswerable questions. I have to say that that is a possibility because who knows? But for the sake of the now, I stand that these questions are strictly opinion and open to debate based on many variables, which are different for each person.