Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Journal 5: Continuation/Circle of Life/Change

1) I see change as something that can become different. Change is natural to all people- it's life. It's part of the circle. Birth, live your life, death.... It is what every living thing goes through, and that is what can't be changed. Some things can be continued even after death. It's
what is left behind in other people that lets the deceased live on. This is something I believe.

2) "It's not contagious, you know. Death is as natural as life. It's part of the deal we make."

Morrie is saying that death is natural; it's as natural as life. They are part of a never-ceasing cycle. As each person dies, another person is born. Then that person dies, and another is born. Every animal and plant go through this. When he says, 'It's a part of the deal we make', I think he is referring to the deal we make with God when we are born. We promise that when He wants us to join Him, we will go willingly. He gave us life, and he can take it away. Life is a gift, but so is death. You can follow your religion, if you have one, and you will end up with a life after death, whatever it may be.

"As long as we can love each other, and remember the feeling of love we had, we can die without ever really going away. All the love you created is still there. All the memories are still there. You live on- in the hearts of everyone you have touched and nurtured while you were here."

He says that everything we had, everything we did, will be left in the ones you loved. In this way, you can die without ever leaving. You live on. By this, you should love everyone, make everyone know or remember you in some way so that, when you die, you will be carried on in the lives of those you loved. They won't forget you, and this will keep your spirit with them. Remember the people you know who have died, and keep their spirit alive.

3) Yes, I agree because what Morrie says is a lesson that we should understand. I agree that everything can be kept going by the people who remember you when you die. I agree and know that death is as natural as life and it goes on in a cycle. I know change is the one thing that can never be changed. I knew all of these things, even before reading the book, but I still enjoyed it.

4) What are changes you have experienced that YOU can or cannot change?

I always have the ability to change my grades, just by studying harder or getting help when needed. I can change what I eat-making the decision. I decided not to quit swimming when it got hard. When I made new friends or got rid of old ones. I decide how I live my life.....

I was unable to decide to stay at our old house when we moved. My grandmother moved in WITH my parents and I- she needed us. I can't ever change the final grade on a test or overall after it's over. I can't change the weather, no matter how much I want to. I can't change human nature. I can't stop wars and economic crises.... But that's just life. Some things you influence and can change the outcome, and others you can't.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Journal 4

Topic 4: Importance

1) Importance is something that is significant and meaningful in any person's life. It could be a material thing, or a value, or something else entirely.

2) "In this culture, it's so important to find a loving relationship with someone because so much of the culture does not give you that."

Here, Morrie is saying that it's important to find someone you love deeply because nothing else will give you that. This could be a spouse, a friend, or your children. It could mean any person that you know and care for. When he says that "so much of the culture does not give you that", I think he's trying to say that the manifestations of humans will never give you the comfort, care, and dependence that a loving relationship will give you. You have to rely on yourself to find this person, and you can't just hope time, as well as society, will do it for you.

"The little things, I can obey. But the big things- how we think, what we value- those you must choose yourself. You can't let anyone- or any society- determine those for you."

You should never let anyone control you, or tell you what to do. If you think racism should be ended, but everyone around you keeps beating up and segregating minorities, don't be influenced by them. If you are with your friends and they start stealing clothing from a store; you feel it's wrong, but they are pressuring you, go with what you think, not what they want you to do. No one should determine how you should live, how you should think, what you believe to be important. I think it's funny how, here in America, they tell us we are free, but, the truth is, we are far from it. They tell us how to live our lives; laws restrict us. Commercials influence what we should buy and do. The BIG guys control our lives. Don't completely give in to this. Do what you think is right, what you believe.

3) I agree with what the quotes are saying. Though they are few in millions of important things, they are important, at least for some. What is important for one person may not be important to another; this is what makes us all different. The book really just made me think about the topic; not really REthink it. I already know about importance and it's differences, but the book brought it back up. I enjoy how Tuesdays with Morrie makes me think and gives me new ideas. I think everyone should read it.

4) What comes up in your head when you think of the word importance?

I straightaway think of the the book we're reading, Tuesdays with Morrie. The lessons Morrie teaches Mitch are things that I believe are the most important lessons we can have in life. These lessons can be put to use in the world around us. They can make it better. Love, forgiveness, trust..... every topic is important; it is important to think about them. The content of the book was left for us by Mitch, who was given it by Morrie. He left us these lessons so the world could be better and we could be better people.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Journal 3

Topic 3: Family

1) I think of family as a group of children, teens, and adults who join together and bond with one another. They love one another and do things for each other; they fight, but, in the end, everyone loves each other and there is peace. Some philosophies could include the following: Families support one another and are always there for each other.They care and love each other (love is important). Families share a bond that no other experience will give. They sacrifice things for each other. Family members can rely on one another (most of the time) for anything. Families always have a fun and a great time with one another, because that's what families do.

2) "If you don't have the support and love and caring and concern that you get from a family, you don't have much at all."

I think this means that, without everything that you get from a family, there will be a large emptiness inside you and life won't feel complete. To at least have a partner to share your life with, is important. Children teach the parents to learn to love and bond, as well responsibility. Morrie says he thinks that enduring this disease would be a whole lot harder if he had to do it alone, and without his loving wife and two sons. To have people who will stay and never leave; knowing someone has an eye on you, watching you the whole time. He had old colleges and students, patients and friends, but they had to leave eventually. His family would stay there, and they do. The only reason Morrie's son's weren't there with him for his last months alive is because he believes they should go on with their lives. Later on, Mitch wonders that if he were to die- without a family and children- would the emptiness be unbearable? I think it would be.

"Love each other or perish."

This probably means that, without love, this world would be filled with hatred, anger, war, and death. Loving each other means you have to act like everyone in the world around you is one of your family. It means supporting them in times of need and sacrificing things for them. It means bonding and loving and caring about them. It means to be concerned when they're in danger or dying. Otherwise, an endless war will rage. I think this is the reason why there are so many wars in the world, as well as simple conflicts among people. It's because many have never learned to truly love one another.

3) I agree with what the examples are saying: I agree that we should love each other and that, without family, we really wouldn't have anything. Sure, we might have minuscule possessions, but not the comfort of another living being actually there to talk to and to touch. It's important that we interact with everyone the same way we do with family because otherwise, everyone withdraws from the world. They make their own little bubble; trying to avoid other people and problems. As always, this book makes me reassess life and all the lessons in it. Some things I've thought of, or agree with, but have never really put into action.

4) Every day, how many people do you converse with and how many people to you help when they need it? (AKA do you treat them like family?)

For me, I usually say "good morning" to familiar faces in the hall, but I only actually TALK to my friends or people I know. Never strangers, or people I've seen only here and there. I help a person in need if I can, and if I'm needed. Sometimes I think people need to learn a lesson from needing something. ex) If a classmate forgets a pencil, I may not give them mine, because they need to learn to be prepared in the future; to learn from their mistakes.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Journal 2

Topic 2: Trust

1) Trust is when you can rely on another to do something for you. You know you can confide in this other being for anything and that they will always be there for you. Even when your eyes are closed, and you can only rely on your trust. I would classify trust into 2 parts: Self-trust and Trust in Others.

2) "You see," he says to the girl, "you closed your eyes. That was the difference. Sometimes you cannot believe what you see, you have to believe what you feel. And if you are ever going to have other people trust you, you must feel that you can trust them, too- even when you're in the dark. Even when you're falling."

You have to learn to trust a person before they can trust you. You have to know that they will catch you when you fall; that they are honest, benevolent, and good. If you can't learn to trust them, how can they trust you? When a person fails to be trustworthy, people start to dislike them and not be able to tell them anything or ask them for help. Trust can come in forms. Such as in school when a student asks a classmate for help or when a child lies or tells the truth to their parents. It's all about making the right decisions and being the independent person who can help others, and isn't afraid to ask for help themselves.

Mitch trusts himself to help Morrie and come every Tuesday to be with him.

Self-trust is just as important as having trust in others. It's knowing you have the power to do things like not eating the tub of ice cream in the freezer or going to practice. Once again, it's doing the right thing. It may be an internal conflict at times, but trusting yourself is important. Trusting you know what is true and what is just. You have to be willing to do (or not to do) something.

3) I agree with what the examples are saying because trust is important and it's important to do the right thing. I think trust as something between friends and family. Knowing that they can or will do something right. Once again, the book made me realize things I wouldn't even think about otherwise.

4) If you had a partner, and had to fall into the arms of your partner, and then catch them, would you be able to absolutely trust them to catch you as well as be able to catch him/her?

Thinking about it right now, I don't think I could let go and definitely think they would catch me. I would have the feeling that they wouldn't be able to or something like that (even though the thought of not being caught and not being able to catch a person is ridiculous). With my friends and family, I think I could definitely trust them, but with acquaintances and strangers, probably not. I just don't KNOW them well enough, I suppose. Trust is what makes any relationship grow and I believe everyone should be able to trust anyone at any time.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Journal 1

Topic 1: Dependence

1) Dependency can mean many things to many different people, but to me it personally means that one thing needs another thing to do things that are not feasible without assistance of another. I wouldn't categorize then into types, but the relationship of weakness and strength comes in many forms. I will show some examples in the next category.

2) When Morrie was diagnosed, he tried to drive and could hardly push the brakes when he backed out of the garage; this was the end of his driving. He kept tripping and had to rely on a cane, and, eventually, a walker then a wheelchair. He couldn't dress himself when he went to swim at the YMCA and had to hire a home care worker to dress and undress him.

This summary shows that Morrie needed help to do certain things. This example of dependence is reliance on a physical object, which is the most typical. When someone or something is injured, they need help to stand up and help to do physical tasks. Some need mental help because of brain damage in an accident. A student who was absent a day in school would depend on friends and teachers to give them what was lost. This is the case of most. To recover or rehabilitate what was lost. This is only physically, and Morrie did need help physically, but, mentally, he was strong.

"Ted," he said, "when all this started, I asked myself, 'Am I going to withdraw from the world, like most people do, or am I going to live?' I decided I'm going to live- or at least try to live- the way I want, with dignity, with courage, with humor, with composure."

In this quote, Morrie is saying he wants to keep going; to keep trying. As you know, the brain tells the mouth what to say, so this is what I got from this statement: Morrie depended on himself to keep going, even though he would die from a disease that horribly disabled him. Though his physical body was weak, and relied on the help of other people, his mind, heart, and soul were much stronger. These are the things he relied on most. He was still himself mentally; not physically, but did this truly change anything? Yes, it certainly did, but in the sense that was more important? We all die; Morrie would leave the world with great knowledge and wisdom that he has given to much of the youth. This strong side heaves the weak side back up to keep holding on, to keep trying. They survive together and become balanced equally. Eventually the strong side must allow the weakness to leave, because, isn't that what we all have to do someday? Say good-bye and let go? This quote, which Morrie said, is a good example of internal/self-dependence.

I believe that:

PHYSICALLY Morrie needed help from other people.
MENTALLY he was able to help himself as well as others.

3) I definitely agree with what they are saying, as I explained above because everyone needs to rely on something for another thing, whether it be money from a job or your hungry and need food. There's a reason behind every action and word of a person and everyone definitely relies on something to get another. Dependence, in my opinion, is important. It's what keeps our community together. It's why people talk to one another and become friends or why people are able to live. Even the snotty rich people of the world have to rely on something: MONEY. They get that money from a dead relative or from becoming famous for one reason or another. It doesn't matter the reason. Dependence brings us together and helps us survive. Reading the book definitely made me think more about this and realize a great many things; I'm not even that far into the book!

4) What do you think makes the world go 'round and why might this relate to dependence?

I personally think plants make the world go 'round. Why? Is it because I'm a vegetarian and a "tree-hugger"? No. Well, yes, sort of, but, mostly, no.

What do you breathe? Air. Where does air come from? Plants. What else are plants- more specifically trees- good for? MONEY What is money used for? buying goods, clothing, etc.- the list goes on and on. So if we breathe air that keeps us alive, and we use money that allows us to get the things we need, then we can conclude that plants, including trees, keep us alive. How does this relate to dependence, you ask? Well, we DEPEND on AIR and MONEY to survive; this all comes from plants/trees! We physically NEED air as well as the things we can BUY from money. People feel the need to survive; this comes from their mind, heart, and soul. That internal strength and positivity also keeps us alive! That is what keeps us going when our life, or another thing, is at risk. We depend not only on others, but on ourselves as well. This is what I believe is the answer to the question I created.


Tuesdays with Morrie:

Journal Entries

By: Carly T. (pd. 2)