UQx LEARN033 Philosophy class observation


TEACHER: So you want
to have a discussion in your pairs about
whether you think this is a religious thing or
a non-religious thing. So we’ll give you just a few minutes. Remember, justifying, we want to
make sure we have a good reason because we’re going to ask each other. [SIDE CONVERSATIONS] SPEAKER 2: I don’t know. It’s purity. So to you, it’s not
something – something related? [SIDE CONVERSATIONS] TEACHER: All right. All cards placed? OK. Now, I’m going to read through
where your classmates have positioned their card. I’m sure at some point
you’re going to feel the urge to want to contest, maybe. Under the religion column, we have
believing in a higher being or power; having faith; every living thing has
a spirit, for example, trees, nature, and so on forth; thunder
happens when Zeus is angry; the sun god; doing bad things, you
won’t get into heaven; no belief in God. Oops I did that twice. Huh, and you both put it in
the same column, that’s great. All right. No belief in God. So those are under the
concept of religion. Let’s go on to non-religion,
science gives us the answers in life, big-bang
created earth and, therefore, us, humans evolved from apes. Those are non-religion statements. And over here in the question mark, we
have the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, also known as
Pastafarians, and heaven is in the soul of my favorite shoe. Do we think at this time
there’s any of them that are placed in one category or
another that shouldn’t be there? We’ve got a few already. All right. So do you want to have a quick
think about it, guys, those of you who are not really sure or
do you want to just dive in? STUDENT: Let’s go for it. TEACHER: Just go for it? STUDENT: Yeah. TEACHER: All right. Let’s do it. OK. Bonnie, you had your hand up. Which one do you think? STUDENT: I don’t think
that having faith should be placed under religion because
having faith doesn’t actually specify it’s religious faith. I can have faith in Sarah
that she will do well. It’s not really clear that
it’s religion related. It’s just people have implied
that it was religion related. TEACHER: OK. STUDENT: When I was little
I had faith in Santa. Santa– STUDENT: Well, you were saying
you can have faith in Santa or someone like that. And you don’t worship Santa
or Santa isn’t a religion. It’s just a thing you have faith in
because you were told that’s right. So I believe that’s why it’s
not central to religion. You can really have faith in anything. STUDENT: The fact of having faith, it
has to come from somewhere because how do you just instinctively know that
believing or having faith in something is an actual thing to you? How do you know that you
actually believe in it? Is it derived from someone else? Does it come – like the Bible, is
that why people have belief in God or is it something within
yourself or anything like that? Where does it come from in whole? STUDENT: Well, faith doesn’t necessarily
have to be in a higher power. So your faith could be either
religion or non-religion. You can have faith in a
person, as in you just trust their ability
to do things, and you could have faith in a high
power, which is a religion. So it could be either, depending on
which way you’re looking at it from. STUDENT: And what
type of person you are cause if you’re a religious person,
like when you were saying before, then you’ll associate
faith with your religion. But if you’re non-religious,
you’ll associate it with more trust in other people. TEACHER: So do we want to move
faith out of the religion side? STUDENT: Can we put it in the middle? STUDENT: Yeah, I’m
reading the question. Because you could contest it either way. TEACHER: OK. So it goes in the question mark? And the original placers,
what do you guys think? How does that – because you
had mentioned that you wanted to maybe place
it in the question mark, but you had kind of gone with this. Is what everyone else
saying aligning with what you were trying to articulate? STUDENT: Yep. TEACHER: All right. Do you guys want to move it
into the question mark then? All right. Jake, what do you think? STUDENT: There’s the
Flying Spaghetti Monster one over there, which some
people could believe in it. It could seem ridiculous, but some
people could believe in that honestly. And first, to, like,
place that in a position, you have to define what a religion
is, and the general form is religion is a guideline or something
you believe in and you live by that. And The Flying Spaghetti one, so
I guess some people live by that, so it could be a religion. It’s a set of beliefs that they
follow throughout their life. STUDENT: Yep. STUDENT: Yes. STUDENT: I think that
the Flying Spaghetti Monster is as valid as God
and any other higher belief because there’s no proof of it and, yet,
it’s still – I would still class it – if people believe in it, then
it’s in the same category as God and other religions. STUDENT: But the thing about that
one is it was created as a mock religion by nonreligious people so they
don’t actually believe it. They’re just trying to
comment on religion. So if there are people that believe
in it, and I doubt that, but – STUDENT: It’s a way
to satire religions. STUDENT: Yeah, because they
don’t actually believe that. STUDENT: It was created for
that reason, to mock religion, like those other religions like
Last Thursdayism and all that stuff. STUDENT: Jediism. STUDENT: Jediism, yeah. STUDENT: So what makes
Jediism a religion and that not? Because when it – so Jedi – STUDENT: It’s like
[INAUDIBLE] religion. STUDENT: No, but the point
of – the reason why it was created is to show you that no
matter what you believe in, it’s all just a belief so it
should be treated equally, not necessarily one’s
more important than other because there are belief systems. So it should be weighed the same. STUDENT: I feel a different way. I feel it’s like degrading it, not
helping it to make it all equal. It’s just making it sound stupid. TEACHER: So let’s move past the
Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster. And, if we want, we can
always come back to it. But I do want us to get to
a little bit of a discussion where we discuss your questions. OK. Under non-religion, we have
things that pertain to what? What do you see a commonality
theme is amongst the stuff under the non-religion? GROUP ANSWER: Science. TEACHER: Science. STUDENT: But people have faith
in science, the same as people have faith in religion. STUDENT: But it’s a religious faith. STUDENT: But, also,
[INAUDIBLE] with science, it says that we’d say that just because
we have not proved it, then it is true. It’s kind of like
religion in that aspect. You cannot prove something. So we cannot prove that
there Is no aliens. Therefore, there is a
possibility of intelligent life. With religion, we cannot
prove that there is no God. Therefore, there is a
possibility of a God kind of thing. STUDENT: Yeah, but isn’t
that one of the [INAUDIBLE]? STUDENT: But saying
there’s a possibility of God is different to saying there is
God and this is what he says. [INTERPOSING VOICES] STUDENT: We’re not arguing that
there isn’t the possibility of God. We’re just saying we can’t say it
in – wasn’t there a fallacy about you can’t– what was it? STUDENT: Ignorant. TEACHER: Ignorance. STUDENT: Yeah, like
appeal to ignorance, there’s not- it’s not
there, therefore, it is. You can’t prove that it’s there. Therefore, it is. TEACHER: Though a lack of
evidence for something. STUDENT: You can’t prove
that God doesn’t exist. STUDENT: Therefore, God does exist. I think going off the proof thing. I think the people’s belief in God
or a religion kind of automatically proves its existence,
not physical existence, but I think more of a mental existence
and how it gives hope and faith. STUDENT: I think, like, science,
you have to believe in science, like you believe there’s
a Big Bang theory and that humans evolved from apes,
but you don’t really worship it because you’ve got the evidence there. You’ve got the proof so –
and there’s no guarantee that you’re going to go somewhere
after you live your physical life. Therefore, there’s no
point in worshipping. And I think that’s why it’s a
non-religion because like all the religions, like
Christianity, Catholicism, all that, they worship their god because
they believe they’re going somewhere after their life. STUDENT: I think we
need to establish what is a religion because we haven’t
really – there’s no real definition of what actually is a religion? Is it that if you have a religion,
you have to worship something? Or, if you have a religion,
it’s belief or it’s faith. We haven’t established what
actually is religion cause that’s what we’re arguing about
that spaghetti monster thing. So we need to establish
what is a religion. STUDENT: I think we were saying that
before that having faith and belief is what a religion thrives on. And if there’s not that faith and
belief, then it kind of goes dormant, I guess. STUDENT: So religion relies
on people like science relies on real factual
evidence kind of things? TEACHER: I feel like you guys are
moving towards the purpose of religion, right? Or, where it has its
foundation or why we have it. We want to figure out some
of the criteria for religion in order to be able to
determine – then we can talk about the role that religion plays. OK. And that was I think what Lindsey
was constantly going back to. OK. I’m going to stop us
somewhere around there. So I’ve added– from what I was
listening to in your discussions, I’ve added that and,
correct me if I’m wrong, but you agree that we don’t need
proof for religion, like hard proof, and maybe that’s something that makes
religion different from science? So some of the things
what we’ve come up with is faith, belief, worship,
and no need for proof. Is there any other criteria that you
think needs to be up there in order for us to define a religion? OK. Felicity. STUDENT: So with the worship,
I think you don’t need to just worship the religion itself. You need to worship the
higher power that is dictating that religion and your beliefs of it. TEACHER: So should we
add a higher power or – STUDENT: Or being, yeah. TEACHER: – a god? STUDENT: Yeah, in that sense. TEACHER Can we use the term
“God” loosely and everyone knows that it’s some sort of higher power? We’re not defining it. STUDENT: Sometimes, you don’t have
to believe in a higher being for it to be a religion. TEACHER: We could
continue talking about these and keep going deeper and
deeper and figuring out how one criteria that
we might have thought, we don’t actually think it actually
applies to all ideas of a religion. And so then we have to
try and re-evaluate. We can keep going with that. And, by all means, we’ll do that
over the course of this unit. But what I would like for
somebody to do for us is to help summarize what you think
we’ve accomplished today through our discussion. So what is– even if it’s just
one thing that you’ve taken away, I want you guys to reflect a little bit
on the discussion that we’ve had today. You can talk about the activity. You can talk about
something somebody said. But I want somebody to try to
give us a little bit of a summary. STUDENT: I think we
found out some differences between what’s considered a religion
and what’s not considered a religion. TEACHER: OK. Good. So we’ve figured out some things. But you’re not saying that
we figured out all things. STUDENT: Not all of them,
but definitely some big ones. TEACHER: Good. Yeah? STUDENT: I think that we
kind of like disregarded what the world says about
religion and what religions are and what type of religions there are. And we’ve actually like
printed out or like in category thought what is a religion and what we
can fit under the category of religion. TEACHER: Good. Anybody else want to – STUDENT: We also had this
idea that religion is more interpersonal, like it’s not
a constant throughout the universe. It’s within our brains itself. TEACHER: Any last final remarks? No? All right. You guys have come up with
some really great questions. We are going to take
some of these questions, and we’re going to build it into part
of our discussion for next– well, I’ll see you guys tomorrow so tomorrow’s
class, but these are your questions. I’ve just kind of taken
some of your statements and actually turned them into questions,
but this is what you guys came up with. And these are some of our
criteria that we’ve come up with. Good. Well, thank you guys. And I hope we’ve come to some sort
of – a little bit more clarity on this. Did you guys feel the conversation going
a little bit deeper when we got going? Was it a tangible thing
that you could feel? [LAUGHTER]

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