Archive | TREK in ‘Creative Living’

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A new offshoot of TREK is growing in the Upper Fourth’s ‘Creative Living’ course, in which students are given an insight into the type of things we’d be doing in the Lower Fifth year. Students are encouraged to develop their questioning skills and apply these to a variety of stimulus material as a prelude to further discussion. One key element in this process is to shape from within the group dynamic a spirit of enquiry that is non-adversarial, mutually respectful, sensitive to others’ beliefs and supportive.

What is the nature of reality?

reality

Thursday 13th March 2014 This question was inspired by the ‘Question of the Month’ for March/April 2014 on the Philosophy Now website.  Some of the responses from contributors are fascinating and may inspire equally fascinating with some comments on this post. Common sense tells us that reality is somehow a sum of all the things we experience […]

When should we trust our intuitions? (Part 2)

moral intuitions

Thursday 3rd April 2014 This is a merged post based on the Creative Living enquiry we had earlier in the day and the lunchtime Philosophy discussion. In the first discussion, students presented the well known ‘trolley problem’ (see the clip above) scenario to elicit responses as to what individuals thought was the right thing to […]

Are we born with morals?

moral compass

Thursday 20th March 2014 This high powered, energetically argued rejection of the common sense response that we’re born with a ‘moral centre’ is based on the evidence of the experiences of Shin Dong-hyuk who is the subject of a biography, Escape from Camp 14 – a story about his escape from a North Korean detention […]

Why do we have emotions?

caring hands

Thursday 27th February 2014 Two students showed to the rest of the group a pair of emoticons: one a smiley face and the other a sad face and both were represented in different colours.  The original question, the students explained, was ‘To what extent and why does colour effect our emotions?’ Students began, by expressing […]

What is justice?

what-is-justice-1

Thursday 23rd January 2014 This Japanese manga story called Death Note (click on the picture and watch from 2:43 to 3:56) raised the crucial question we discussed in today’s session and was based around the key character’s own reflection on ‘righteous judgment’ and his own question, ‘Do I have the right to pass judgment on […]

To what extent do we have free will? (Part 3)

templeton-freewill

Approach 3: Libertarianism Libertarians do not believe in determinism at all; we are completely free agents and as such fully responsible for all actions relating to morality. Their argument can be summarised like this: we are more than simply material objects; we are soul substances whose unique purpose is to make choices and decisions.  This […]

In what ways does superstition affect behaviour?

BlackCat2

Thursday 14th November 2013 In this last discussion with the first Creative Living group, after initially listing the various day to day ‘harmless’ superstitions people have, the enquiry finally got to grips with a what ‘superstitious thinking’ involves (note: a dictionary definition of ‘superstition’ is ‘excessively credulous belief in and reverence for the supernatural’): the […]

How far do you agree that homosexuality is immoral?

same love

Thursday 7th November 2013 This enquiry emerged from a student’s reflection on a recently released song: “Same Love” by Ryan Lewis. A range of arguments and counter arguments were explored: Verses from both the Old and New Testament were read out (from Leviticus, Romans and Corinthians) as evidence to support the argument that homosexuality was immoral from […]

To what extent can women be successful (role models) without sexualising themselves?

fame

Thursday 26 September 2013 This discussion question emerged from two videos shown of a young female pop celebrity who, within the space of a few months, had transformed her public persona from innocent young teenager to a streetwise rapper confident enough to strut around with hardly any clothes on.  Once the students got through their […]

How far can racism be eradicated?

imagesCA2JWHH4

Thursday 12 September 2013 This first TREK enquiry with Upper Fourth year students began when the class were shown a picture depicting an extreme case of poverty: an emaciated black hand resting on a healthy white hand (not the ones in the above picture!)  The philosophical questions raised in relation to the image amalgamated into the one that initiated […]