Personal Reflection Paper
Personal Reflection Paper
Personal Reflection Paper
Sophie’s World is a novel that has influenced my way of thinking concerning various aspects of life. The philosophical concepts in this literature piece have not only helped me understand the ideologies of several theorists but have also developed my rationality. This is through personal reflection of the book. This is mainly through the works of Socrates and Descartes. To start with, the author of this informative manuscript supports Socrates’ argument that human beings improve their intellectual capacity over time through experiences and learning from other individuals. In his book he writes, “”Wisest is she who knows she does not know,” I said previously. Socrates himself said, “One thing only I know, and that is that I know nothing”“.
While reading this part of the novel, I got a chance to reflect on Christianity. The description of Paul’s missionary work changes my view of this religious conviction. I now realize the intense struggle that Christians underwent in an effort to spread the gospel. It is through the hard work of these missionaries that this religion gained popularity all over the world. These facts made me question a number of aspects in my life. First, would I be willing to suffer for the sake of such a worthy course? Although I considered myself as caring and selfless, I could hardly count any situation that exhibited my self-sacrificing side.
This comprehension made me feel convicted by my actions. I always considered myself a Christian yet did not follow the teachings of Jesus, which dictates that we should love Him with all our soul, mind, and heart. I knew I had to change my perception of Christianity from being a preferential creed to a guide of my life. Moreover, this piece made me realize the importance of understanding my background. I concentrated so much on my present and future without considering my past and the influence it had on me. Like the children of Israel, it was vital for me to comprehend my ancestry.
This can only be possible by having an open mind in terms of knowledge acquisition. Philosophy is the center of this learning process, which occurs both inside and outside the classroom environment. However, our society and way of life are responsible for the deviation from this rational thinking. I now appreciate the need to decide on what is relevant to my life. Not everything in literature pieces is the gospel truth. This is in accordance to Descartes’ argument that all knowledge obtained from the Middle Ages was of no value. Through this personal reflection, I understand Socrates’ assertion that no individual knows everything, and we all learn at various stages of our lives.
The description of Descartes’ philosophy in this novel also leads to my personal reflection. He decided to formulate his own theories because of his disregard of information from the Middle Ages. In the book, the author asserts, “It was important for Descartes to rid himself of all handed down, or received, learning before beginning his own philosophical construction.” The statement made me remember the several instances when I was in a dilemma in terms of decision-making. With the society having various theories concerning certain issues, I did not know which principle to adopt.
For example, in matters of religion, I did not know whether to believe in the existence of God. Growing up, I believed in a supreme being who controlled the world. However, this changed during my teenage years. With technology advancing at a fast pace, people used the social media to advertise all forms of theories on this issue. Various religious convictions emerged with all manner of justifications. I did not want to turn away from the religion upon which my life gained foundation, but at the same time, I wanted to seem modernized. This made me follow principles that I was not sure about.
Nonetheless, Descartes’ philosophy made me change my way of thinking. I realized that we should not accept all forms of philosophies. Our choices should concur with the principles that guide us in life. This ensures that we do not lose track of our personality. Being skeptical of some unstable theories does not show our ignorance but rather demonstrates our mind’s vigor. It is essential to scrutinize all aspects in a supposition before accepting it. Consequently, I appreciated the importance of philosophy, not just as a crucial field of study, but also as an integral part of our lives.
Descartes’ hypothesis on the relationship between the body and mind also made me undergo a session of self-reflection. This renowned philosopher believed that our thoughts dictate our actions and personality as a whole. He argued that the human mind and body are sacred because of the existence of a supreme being that controls nature. It is through this assertion that I realized some aspects of life are beyond our understanding. For example, we cannot provide concrete facts about how God came to existence. Although human beings are free to expound on their thoughts, certain issues require us to limit our imaginations in order to avoid confusion.
In addition, Descartes’ argument made me recognize the need to base all our actions on rationality. I realized that, in my life, I engaged in certain activities without pondering about the repercussions. I remembered of a time in my life when I could engage in life-threatening activities thanks to peer pressure. However, I now have a different argument on this issue. I view my first argument as one that goes against the principle of rationale. Every individual is in command of his/her own thoughts. Although external influences can affect our decision-making processes, everyone is responsible for his or her last judgment.
Consequently, blaming others for our mistakes is senseless. The existing interaction between our body and mind ensures that we act according to our thoughts. Because of this, external factors only enhance the character in us, as opposed to people’s assertion that these features dictate our actions. For example, for one to become a nonbeliever of Christianity, he or she has to have doubted the concepts of this religious conviction. Although technology and the people around her or him may play a part in this skepticism, the individual’s mind is fully responsible for any actions she or he takes regarding this issue.
In conclusion, philosophy has a significant influence on our lives. For example, the works of Socrates and Descartes affect how we think and act. This is because the two philosophers base their arguments on the relationship between the human mind and body. Descartes argues that our mind is fully responsible for our actions. He also recommends careful choosing of theories and knowledge in order not to lose our personality. On the other hand, Socrates argues that no person is born with wisdom. He supports this theory by asserting that people acquire knowledge at different stages of their lives hence the need to be open-minded.
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