Thursday, June 8, 2017

One again a correction: this is the final connection Blog! As I did in the reflection blog post, I am going to discuss the book as a whole since I discussed the final chapter last time. The novel Sophie's World is full of connections to the real world and to class. Everything we read in the novel usually connected to our cirriculum exactly, including philosophical ideas, philosophers, philosophical systems and stories, and more. In regards to the real world, the novel talked about many things that relate to society and life on Earth. Some of these things include; fate versus freewill, the great religion debate, are we really real, life and death, seize the day, and much, much more. To pick one connection specifically, I will choose Seize the day! (Carpe Dium), since we discussed it in class this week.I don't entirely believe in this way of thinking, because I believe the future is just as important as the present. Sure, you don't want to suffer today just to be maybe be happy days from now, but I do think that you can't just relax and be happy today because then you won't tomorrow. I believe that a mixture of pleasure today and work today will lead to a prosperous and pleasurable tomorrow! This connects to the real world, because many people will work way too hard today in order for the better tomorrow. Some people will work there life away and miss many experiences. However on the other hand, some people don't work enough at all, which leads to never being able to truly be stress free or relaxed. I'd say the way to live is by the wise words of the greatest philosopher of all time.

"Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it!" - Ferris Buelher
In the end, a mixture of work for the future and fun today is what I believe is the key to happiness. All in all, our class and our novel had many connections to the real world throughout the year, and it has opened my eyes to many ideas that affect myself and the world.
Correction from my last reflection post: here it actually is, the last reflection blog post! Since I accidentally read ahead and discussed the final chapters in my last reflection post, I will reflect on the entire novel, now that I am finished. As a whole, I would say the book was... interesting. As you told us in the beggining, there were indeed many bizarre parts. From Sophie reading messages on bananas to  meeting character like Alladin. Very strange, but also very interesting. The novel taught me a lot about some of the most influential philosophers of all time and put many philosophical ideas into an interesting perspective. It helped me understand romanticism, the Renessaince, Berkeley, and much more. I guess I would say I enjoyed it to an extent; some chapters I loved and others were either too strange or too confusing, but as a whole it was pretty good and definitely helpful. My favorite moment was without a doubt when we discovered that Sophie was not real! It was a great chapter, because it just acted as if it was normal that we were now following Hilde. When I got my epiphany that Sophie was a literary character in hilde's father's book, I both laughed and was in awe. It was quite a twist and was also very entertaining. Plus, if led to some fun conversations in class the next day (but isn't Hilde also fake because we are reading about her in a book? Are we just character in a book? And so on.) As I said, when I reflect back, what comes to mind is interesting, entertaining, one of a kind, and definatley, one hundred percent bizarre! It was both a fun book and a fun class!

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

The final chapters of Sophie's World are slightly harder to relate to what we have learned or discussed in class, because they don't teach us about any philosopher or event (besides the Big Bang) directly. However I can work with a few things. The book seems to accept the Big Bang as the theory to how the universe began, but we have talked about other theories as well. Recently in class, we had lengthy discussions on creation versus evolution, which relates to this subject. Many people believe the scientific point of view in evolution, just as they believe in the Big Bang, where many people believe in the religious point of view of creation (God directly created everything and everyone: most of science is nonsense). Personally, though I do have some religious beliefs, I take the science point of view, with evolution and the Big Bang. Another thing in these chapters that connects to what we have been reading in class in separate worlds and reality. Is Sophie real? Is Hilde real? Are we real? These are all issues that are posed to llusbat the end of the novel, as well as issues that we often talk about in class. Personally I think we are in fact real, and Sophie and Hilde are just characters of literature, but we have learned about many different options of realities and countless different point of views from philosophers. Some say we can't trust our senses, some say we can. Some say that the world is real, some say it's not. Some have spiritual views, some have scientific. There is no way to know if one theory is right or to really understand our existence. I guess that's what philosophy is though, constantly questioning simple things of life, including our own existence. Because this is my final entry, I will give my final thoughts. I think we are all real. We can trust or senses and instincts. We think therefore we are. Our minds and bodies do exist. Science can explain so much, but not everything. There may or may not be a god beyond our world. And there's probably more that I'm forgetting. Those are the simple conclusions that I have come to through this class and our novel, though they may change, that's where I stand as of now. These are my thoughts, what are yours?
Here it is, the final reflection blog of Honors Philosophy. For my final entry, I am going to discuss the final chapters of Sophie's World. The final chapters were quite bizarre to say the least. Sophie and Alberto know they are a part of the book and that they are not real people, however they still try to live a real life. Though they escape harm through chaos, they go on an all out quest to become real, which results in failure. Though Sophie is sad that she is not real, she comes to understand that she and Alberto can still live in their world forever! And they can still somehow interfere with the real world. As all of this is going on in Sophie's world, Hilde and her father discuss the novel. Hilde feels that she had missed something because of the strange way in which it ended, but her father and her laugh it off. Then, her father explains how the Big Bang started everything and connects us all (the Big Bang is a common and widely accepted theory of the beginning of the universe). This is where Alberto gets the idea that they are in fact real, just in a different way, because the Big Bang creates and connects everything. Though they are in separate worlds, Sophie can still interfere with Hilde and Hilde still feels a connection to Sophie. Hilde hears sounds that Sophie and Alberto create, Sophie hits Hilde in the face with a wrench and Hilde feels a sharp stinging pain, and Sophie and Alberto let Hilde's rowboat loose (which is funny because Hilde's father jokingly blames Sophie!). Though all of these events were very strange and somewhat confusing to me, I found much of it interesting. If Sophie and Alberto are nothing but literary characters how can they connect and interfere with a Hilde? Maybe her father was a magical writer, maybe they are somehow real (like Alberto's idea) or maybe Hilde's world is fake as well. We know Hilde is a literary character but does she know? Are we nothing but characters? Who knows. All of this was bizarre, but I enjoyed to random and abnormal ending to Sophie's World.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

As I alluded to in my last post, we have been discussing Marxism in class recently, which has many connection to today's world. Although not many, if any at all, nations are Marxist country's, almost every society has some piece of Marxism within it. For example; since Marx released his ideas, we have been witness to communist nations (famously Russia, China, North Korea, and Cuba), socialist nations (Sweden and other Scandavian countries, as well as other countries), and even capitalist countries that have some fragments of Marxism. The idea of Marxism, is a social and economic system that is primarily known for its lack of classes. Sounds similar to both Communism and Socialism. Obviously, nations that use these religions two systems take a lot from Marxism, but nations who follow capitalism (which is the system that sparked the rebellion of Marxism) also have take some ideas from the system. For example, there are many groups in our country that argue that more Marxist ideas should be implemented and there are some Liberal ideas, like affordable health care, better public education, raising the minimum wage, and trying to lower the wealth gap, that, in my opinion, relate to Marxism directly. As I said in my last post, I'm not sure if Marxism could work (there are some examples of socialism being successful and some examples of communism being totel failures), but the idea is quite interesting to me. In our country specifically, there are many people who would stand behind Marxism, and say that if it were to be implemented properly, it would work successfully... and there are many people who believe that it is utter balogna. I think it is pretty obvious that the topic of Marxism is both interesting and intriguing to me, and I believe that it has a multitude of connection to the real world today.
I debated with myself for quite some time on what I would write this reflection on, because I couldn't decide on whether to discuss the absolutely mind boggling portions of this story (the inclusion of Alice in Wonderland and other bizarre stuff) or to discuss the philosophical/ philosopher lessons that it has recently taught. I decided to choose the later, and I am going to talk about the 19th century English Philosopher, Karl Marx. Karl Marx, a famous materialist philosopher, believed that everything, every issue and just the way society worked, revolved around economics. He saw that the way the economy ran was not the best or most fair way. Classes were always clashing, and he thought that workers and the capitalists were always in disagreements because the workers did not have a proper insentive. He thought that to improve this system, a workers revolution was needed, and if it was successful, Marxism could be implemented. Ultimately, he thought that if improvement was possible, the switch from the current, capitalist society, to a classless, socialist society was necessary. Many people believe that this system, or a system similar to it, would work well in a perfect world, or if it was just executed properly. I somewhat agree with this; socialism can work (ex. Sweden). A place where unemployment is virtually unheard of, where healthcare, education, and other social programs are affordable and affective, and where there is not a feeling of constant competition or stress between classes, mental standard of living should go up. Obviously, it isn't possible to just change our societies way of life, but maybe slightly implementing some of these ideas into capitalism could be great! Honestly, I don't know if Marxism would work, but I do think it is an interesting idea. I enjoyed this chapter and our discussion today in class, because it opened my eyes up to a different economic way of living and made me ponder how it would work in our world today.

Monday, May 8, 2017

Once again, much of the recent lessons we have learned in class and chapters we have read in the book connect to the real world in many ways. Specifically, I would say the movie "Inception", that we recently watched in class, contains many real world connections. Inception handles many philosophical ideas, what is reality?, how do we obtain our ideas?, is it appropriate for people to try to "play God"?, etc. The movie answers. Or furthers,  all of these real world questions in a pretty interesting way. On the issue of reality, the movie gave us multiple layers. The real world, multiple layers of dreams, and limbo all were forms of reality. As we saw, each layer had an effect on the person's life and some people had different perceptions of what the "real world" was. I believe the movie pretty clearly shows what the real reality is, but it does leave room to wonder. The movie also showed a way to explain knowledge or perception. Di Caprio's team in the film both planted and extracted ideas from others minds, that could shape the ways lives play out. Obviously this isn't possible in real life, but I do wonder if some of our ideas do come from dreams. The idea of playing God came up on multiple occasions throughout the movie. Di Caprio plays God by keeping the dream Mal locked up in his subconscious, the architects play God by designing full worlds in a dream state, and Di Caprio's team plays God by extracting and planting ideas. Each of these ideas seem slightly immoral because they can hurt somebody in one way or another, but it keeps you wondering if this is ethical or even possible. All in all, the movie was both very entertaining and educational on philosophy, and it contained many relations to the real world. Plus, it left us on quite the cliff hanger!