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Friday, June 5, 2009

Final video project.

Okay so my video is about a very specific experience one of my friends had with his religion. - his time spent in a Buddhist monastery in Nepal when he was 15. What i found most interesting was the different identities within what his life was like when he was in the monastery, and the identity when on a small American college campus. How can an very structured and symbolic lifestyle, even for an short period of time alter and shape the rest of your life and what they bring to another environment. The pictures within the video are there to help the viewer understand the drastic change in environment from a Nepal monastery to Appleton WI. 

Also another interesting aspect to look at is how someone with this sort of religion can feel very natural in one environment but not necessarily in another. (like Nepal versus Appleton, WI). I think what you have to take from this instead is how you can take values learned from this experience and apply them to another lifestyle, such as on a college campus. Its almost how if a religion was placed in a new environment, instead of just a single person, and how the values and skills get applied to new experiences and environment- sometimes even altering the religion itself eventually to fit within their new context. 

Monday, June 1, 2009

The Temple in Chicago

The Baha'i Temple in Chicago is one out of only 7 Baha'i Temples in the world. After the discussion in class today about some aspects of the Baha'i religion and then looking at the website for the temple in chicago a few things stood out to me that correlated within both sources of information, and some information from the website was slightly different then i had originally interpreted it from class. Some things that definitely correlated was the continual discussion with system of symbols within any religion. Talking about the symbols importance to the development of a religion in class then reading an active source site helped to clarify and round out my understanding of these symbol's significance. Such as the Nice-pointed Star, The Ringstone, and The Greatest Name. Another thing i found really interesting was the slogan for the home page of the Baha'i sight, "Baha'i Faith, Religion Renewed for a changing World". This concept has a large correlation with the discussion we had in class just today. We discussed how religions are social constructs and are evolved as our societies evolved. How much of the evolving of a religion is consistently evaluated by those within the religion though? Critics are made all the time by outsiders and rebels from the religion but its an interesting concept to completely believe in something yet know its only based on the social environment so if that changes then the beliefs are altered as well. It almost reminds me of Chuang Tzu's values and beliefs with the idea of honoring and excepting change. Not accepting change one is not excepting anything within life because everything is in constant motion and interaction within themselves.