Thursday, June 8, 2017

Personal Application #7

Now that the entire book is done, I can apply many of the elements to my real life. A lot of what was discussed in the book lead to really interesting discussions in class about all sorts of real world issues. Things ranging from religion, how to live life properly, and fate vs. freewill. These are all things that I think about in my late-night wonderings about life, and I’ve been exposed to a lot of new ideas through the discussions we’ve been having throughout the trimester. Being able to be open about each other’s ideas and opinions without attacking someone as a person has been incredibly beneficial, I really enjoy having discussions where we can all take different positions and still remain civil, even if we don’t come to a resolution or concrete answer at the end of the class.
I do feel like most of my ideas have remained stable throughout the trimester. I’ve always been fairly firm in my beliefs, and though this class may not have revolutionized the way I see my own life, I’m proud to say my eyes have been opened up to lots of different ways of thinking. For example, as someone who has never been big on religion or the idea of it, it was very beneficial for me to listen to people who practice a religion about their perspective on things. A lot of times, I feel as if religion can be demonized, so I appreciated getting a look into something I was unfamiliar with at first. Even if my beliefs haven’t changed, I find myself being more thoughtful about other’s ideas now.

Sophie's World Reflection #7

The book as a whole, now that we’ve finished, seemed a bit unsatisfying to me. The ending didn’t really do as much for me as I was hoping it would. With all the action of the last few chapters (Sophie and Alberto universe jumping straight out of the book they were in into some sort of limbo where they could find Hilde and her father, etc), I was expecting more from the ending. I thought that there would be some sort of epic meeting between Sophie and Hilde through one way or another, and leaving only the small action of Sophie’s to be noticed by Hilde left it on a flat note that I wasn’t expecting.
I do feel like the entire book could’ve come to a more solid resolution, though maybe that was the point, to leave it open to interpretation and different thoughts. It leaves it up to the reader to decide what could happen from there. I wish there had been some sort of more direct confrontation between Hilde and Sophie, though it does seem that there would be no real way to achieve that, given their “separate worlds” they live in.
I like the way that the author brought together their two worlds rather than just leaving it at the fact that Sophie and Alberto are in a book. It brought me closer to satisfaction with the ending to know that they are even in the same plane of existence, leaving room for them to at least acknowledge each other’s existence (even if it’s only through speculation and actions that mimic those from the book written for Hilde).

Friday, May 26, 2017

Personal Application #6

Much of what we have read about in the previous three chapters relates to my life on a personal level. With Darwin, the well-known concepts of natural selection and survival of the fittest were mentioned. They are ideas that most people have been exposed to from a young age, and it was nice to get a fuller explanation of the concepts than the passing mentions throughout life. The quick run through of modern philosophy was nice too, since it applies directly to us in modern times, though this book is a little outdated to be entirely modern.
For me, the most important personal connection comes from Freud. Not only did we learn extensively about him in AP psychology, but also his ideas apply to me in a more personal, more direct way. I attend therapy, and it is mainly relying on his ideas of psychoanalysis. I spend 45 minutes once a week talking about anything and everything on my mind. No idea is a stupid one and it doesn’t matter how big or small, bad or good, the thing I’m saying is. They all seem to end up converging into a conversation about whatever was bothering me most that week. Most of the time what bothers me isn’t something I was even aware of, until it was pried out of me through free association and discussion with someone who knows what to look for and the right questions to ask. Though there are elements of other therapy within mine, it is mostly based on Freud’s ideas, and that makes his chapter extremely relevant to my life. Without him, I’d be in a different kind of therapy or perhaps none at all, and maybe be in a very different position to where I find myself now.

Sophie's World Reflection #6

Things continually get weirder and weirder (as if that seemed possible to me before reading the most recent chapters). It is getting harder to distinguish between what is real and what is not, while I begin hating Hilde’s father more each moment. I want so badly for Sophie and Alberto to be real, so to think that the major is messing with them the way he appears to be is not my most pleasant thought. It is hard to fathom how they could possibly be real, when they respond to every little thing the major does and are so acutely aware of their situation. It makes no sense but I want it to be true at the same time, I would hate to have invested my time into characters that I assumed had so much freewill, only to find out they had none. However, it appears that they do have some amount of freewill, shown by Alberto’s attempts to investigate the major and what he is doing when his attention is on Sophie (like when the goose came to take her out of the tree she’d gotten stuck in).
Things only got weirder to me when Alberto showed Sophie a physical copy of the book that we are currently reading. It made me wonder how he knew about the book, and how there can be a book when it is still seemingly being written. Things in the book are being discussed that, at this point, have not actually happened. So how is there a version of the book published when this is the case? It grows too confusing to try and answer, but hopefully as we finish the book my question will be answered anyways.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Personal Application #5

Our discussions of Marxism in class have sparked some interesting discussions. It makes me wonder a lot of things. The idea of Marxism is one that has played a role in history for many years now, and I doubt that it’s going to go away anytime soon. Even if it’s never successfully been implemented anywhere and likely never will, the thought is looming above people’s heads when things begin to gear towards this style of nation. I tend to agree that it likely will never work, especially given the lack of motivation. People work for their own benefit, we are naturally selfish. There is nothing wrong with this, it can be a very good thing. It motivates people to do what they need to take care of themselves and their families, fueling society in their actions to stay afloat. Without this selfish motivation, people will not work for anything, or at least not as hard. With everyone putting in the minimum effort, society will fall apart as everything goes to the “greater good”. Most people don’t care about the greater good, they care about what is good for them. Although class struggle is an issue, social classes will most likely exist in our country specifically no matter what efforts are done to erase that. It seems ingrained in our society at this point, and it is what pushes our society forward.

Although there may be elements of Marxism that could be beneficial to a society, the idea as a whole is a recipe for disaster in the end. It would have to be dissected and taken apart into individual ideas that are most vital to a nation.