Thursday, November 17, 2016

Why Do Mothers Kill Their Children?

Although it is very rare, some mothers do commit the unthinkable act of killing their own children. According to Berman, "If there is indeed no suicidal behavior on her part, then typically it's homicidal behavior associated with a psychotic break or postpartum depression." Studies and experts agree on one common factor when mothers commit such an unthinkable crime: extreme mental illness. There are very few mothers in the world that do not have some type of mental illness that would kill their own children. According to the article, British law allows mothers to be charged with manslaughter rather than murder if they have a mental disorder. According to Phillip Resnick, an expert in maternal fillicide and co-author of a 2007 World Psychiatryy study, women who are convicted of infaticide in Britain often receive probation and mental health treatment referrals rather than incarceration. Following the Newton case, Caffese said "Unless there's a really unusual circumstance, a mother doesn't kill her children. I bet there were signs all along that were just missed." In conclusion, after researching why a mother would ever kill her own child, it was found that it would be unheard of to find a case where the mother did not have some type of mental illness.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Taoism and Early Chinese Civilization

The article from the New York Times, called Reconstruction Taoism's Transformation in China, helps advocate the basic rules and information about Taoism. This knowledge I have gained about Taoism can help me understand more about early Chinese civilizations. Taoism is a philosophy that is associated with the common expression, "go with the flow." However, not many people follow the philosophy. Historians have pieced together ancient China primarily with texts. The Taoist religious texts are found in a huge collection called the Taoist canon. However, up until a fairly recent date, it has just been considered a big mess. It was unable to date, so you couldn't truly use it to supply knowledge about ancient China. Now, this has changed. We have the rock of Kristofer Schipper and Francsiscus Verellen that gives a date for every document. The Taoist Canon provides an aspect  of what the ancient Chinese society was like. The search for deepening our knowledge about ancient China is similar to the search that was done to find out more about early Christianity. In both cases, there are very little amounts of physical evidence. We know that the Chinese never had any other form of a political leader other than an emperor. However, the early history of Taoism shows something different. It was a theocracy based around "tianishi", which means celestial matters. The goal of the celestial matters was to achieve "great peace" which would include each individual being treated justly. However, the founder, Zhang Daoling never took the title of an emperor.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Could our world be fiction?

After reading the article Are We Livng In a Computer Similuation? I agree that it is very possible that this is true. Moderator Neil deGrasse Tyson, director of the museum's Hayden Planetarium believes that our entire existence is just a program on someone else's hard drive. Over time we discover more and more scientific facts about the laws of the earth and human behaviors. This is similar to what it would be like if we were simply characters in a game. This theory was posed by Max Tegmark, a cosmologist at MIT. A question that has arisen is if we are truly just part of a simulation, could we possibly by shut down by the simulator? This made me wonder about something that has been a common thread throughout the human race. It has been found that humans have something that nobody has ever had before called the human insanity. It is the desire to venture out into unknown places and discover new things. After reading this section of the article that questions being shut down by a simulator, I then questioned if this is why humans have the drive to discover, or the human insanity. In conclusion, after reading the article it makes me think about what our world is really like beyond our knowledge. Many people think humans on earth are superior but, is it possible that there is an even more powerful species that we don't even know about, and we are just a part of something they control?

Friday, October 7, 2016

Holocaust Survivors: Moshe Yosef Daum & Fela Nussbaum

The story of Moshe Yosef Daum & Fela Nussbaum is similar to The Book of Job. In both, the people are questioned about their faith in God. Moshe and Fela have different perspectives of God. Fela believes that God was wrong for letting the Holocaust happen. She said "if God did so many miracles during biblical times, then why hadn't she seen any such miracles during the holocaust?" However, Moshe has a different opinion. Moshe would respond to her question by saying "We humans, with our limited minds, cannot expect to understand God's ways. We must live with faith despite our an answered questions." Moshe believed that not losing faith in God would protect him and his family. In The Book of Job, Job is a man who worships God and lives a very nice, happy life. God and Satan get into a argument about whether Job only loves God because he has a nice life or if he really & truly loves God. To decide who is right, they decide to turn Job's amazing life into complete torture. They kill his family, and his cattle and sheep to see if he will still remain faithful to God. Job remains faithful to God until he just can't take it anymore. He curses the day he was born and wishes that his life had never existed. Something that differs between The Book of Job and the story of Moshe and Fela is that in The Book of Job, although God made Job's life awful, he is only one person. Six million Jews died during the Holocaust. Both Job and Moshe & Fela have a reason to resent God for what he did. However, the Jewish people have even more of a reason. They can't help but question- Why did God do this to us? Unfortunately, there is no answer to this question and it is something that is still asked today.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

The Book of Job

The book of Job along with the other stories we read in the Old Testament have indirect characterization about God. Something that I have noticed is a continuous theme is that God is very insecure and selfish. In The Book of Job, God and Satan are arguing about whether or not Jobe is loyal and loving towards God because he has such a good life, or if he truly loves God. To settle the argument, they decide to turn Job's great life into a horrible experience for him. They kill his children, and all his farm animals and give him sores on his body from head to toe. This insecurity is also shown in The Sacrafice of Isaac. In that story, God tells Abraham, Isaac's father, that he must kill Isaac to prove that he loves him. This shows that God needs someone to tell him that he is loved in order to feel good about himself. If God was so knowledgeable, he shouldve already known that he is loved by Abraham, so this test would be unnecessary. That is something that makes God selfish. In both stories, God presents a bad situation to good people to benefit his own needs. However, I did notice that compared to The Tower of Babel, in The Book of Jobe, God shows a mighty and powerful side. God wants to show Satan he is correct so he does what is needed to prove it. In The Tower of Babel, God shows a side of fear. In this story, the people of Babel are building a tower. The people have created a language to help them communicate and get the job done. When God sees they are unified by a language, he fears that they are getting too strong so he confuses them by making each person speak a different language. However, the people are so determined to finish the tower that they keep working. When God sees he has not stopped them, he scatters all the people in different locations across the world. In conclusion, I have linked the Old Testament stories together with a common characteristic of God, which is selfishness.

Friday, September 30, 2016

Congratulations to myself... I've completed 1/8 of freshman year!

It is scary to think that one eighth of the year is already complete! I have enjoy high school so much more than middle school so far. I realized that even though it is a lot more work, it is also a lot more fun! My favorite thing about high school so far are my classes. Something I have noticed is that in middle school I truly dreaded school. However, now I actually find myself enjoying some of my classes (English being one of those classes). Another thing I enjoy about high school is that it gives the students a lot more freedom. The worst thing about high school so far is the amount of work. I find myself spending at least 3 or 4 hours a night on homework and then possibly an additional 1-2 hours on studying. This is a BIG adjustment from middle school. In middle school, I was really used to every class coming easily to me and this definitely is not the case in the high school. I find myself being challenged in all of my classes. However, I also think that the fact that the classes are more challenging gives me more motivation to do better. Overall, I have really enjoyed the first month of high school and I am looking forward to not only the rest of freshman year, but the next four years!

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

My viewpoint of the character of God

Over the past few days, we have been reading the epic of Gilgamesh, Noah's Ark, and Genesis. After reading these things I am now looking at God as a character, rather than a religious figure. I think looking at God this way helps me understand more personality traits. Also, looking at God in this way eliminates some bias ideas I had when I saw God as a religious figure. Some things I now noticed I thought before was that I viewed God as this big mighty power who never makes mistakes and is never selfish. However, this is not the case. In Genesis, God told Adam and Eve that they couldn't drink from the tree in the center of the garden because if they did, they would die from it. However, this is not true. God did not want them to eat from the tree because it would give them knowledge that God did not want them having. This gave me the thought that yes, God has done many wonderful things, but he also can do things that result in issues. Also, when reading Noah's Ark, I realize that God doesn't only do nice things. In the story of Noah's Ark, God sends down a flood that kills all living creatures. This was a selfish at because the reasoning for sending the flood was that the people stopped caring for God and began to worship other things. After reading these three stories and looking at God more as a character, I have found other personality traits of God that I had not expected before.