Archive for March, 2011


Book Selection

I plan to read the Tao of Pooh by Benjamin Hoff. I don’t know that much about Taoism except that it was founded by LaoTzi who had a positive outlook on life. I studied Taoism in a class I took last semester called Perspectives in Philosophy but we didn’t go over any of the basics or beliefs of Taoists. The only thing we went over in class is how LaoTzi was the most optimistic out of Confucious and Buddha, and that he believed that the world is made up of natrual cycles. I love Whinnie the Pooh and I am excited to see how Hoff makes the connection between a religion and a storybook.

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Out of all the religions we have studied in class and out of all of the presentations that we’re given throughout the first half of the semester, I have successfully come to one conclusion. Even with our differences in our beliefs, whether we believe in one God or multiple gods; we all can agree that there is one supreme being.

                The first religious sect that was studied was the Seventh Day Adventist whose first C of Christianity was Creation. He explained his belief in the book of Genesis found in the bible. This belief is widely accepted among Christians, for example the Presbyterians and the American Baptist Church. In the Native American Religion, there is a beautiful story on how the world was created by “The Great Spirit” based on a dream he had, and how enlisted the help of the four elements to create everything. In Hinduism, there are multiple gods that represent the personalities of a God who has no name but somehow exists in over three hundred gods. In Judaism God is a supreme being who is capable of having a relationship with his “earthly” children.

                I guess my major point as to why this all matters is because there has to be something out there that is greater than what is here. Religious beliefs might not agree in theology, or rituals or ways to truly find enlightenment or inner peace, but all of these religions can’t be wrong as to whether or not there is a supreme being. People who choose to believe in a religion may not be able to agree on Jesus Christ or controversial issues like homosexuality, abortion, clergy, organizations, or politics; but those of us who choose to have faith and believe can possibly agree that the God who is prevalent in all of these religions, could quite possibly be the same God under different names, thereby eventually uniting us as humanity, instead of focusing on the differences.

Webliography

1)  [http://www.religioustolerance.org/gl_b.htmReligious Glossary:  This is a tool that can be used to help identify religous terms. It also provides, depending on the religion religious passages from the religion’s holy books to provide useful information.

2) [http://www.mnsu.edu/emuseum/cultural/religion/] Religions of the World: This website provides a detailed description and background of Christianity, Jainism, Islam, Judaism and Hinduism. I am sure this religionwill provide further clarification on the religions we have studied in class.

3) [http://www.thearda.com/] The Association of Religion: This website shows the demographics for the different religions in the world depending on the country.

4) [http://religions.pewforum.org/reports] Statistics on Religion: This is a website that shows the different religions and their demographics in the United States. I figured this would be an interesting website because it could influence our politicalviews if most of the population is involved in some type of religion or if they choose not to participate. 

5) [http://www.pewforum.org/] Pew Forum on Religion: This website provides sites to contorversial issues and shows the opinion as well as offering news articles and facts of most believers who practice Christianity, Judaism and Islam.

6) [http://www.religionfacts.com/] Religion, World Religions, Comparitive Religion: This website offers a comparitive between certain religions of the world. It is supposed to provide the facts about different religions in an impartial setting.

7) [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religion_and_mythology] Religion & Myth: Even though this website is from Wikipedia, it gives the basic difference of religion and mythology and how they overlap. Basically, Wikipedia acknowledges that mythology is a part of religion and that religion refers to more than the beliefs and stories of a religion but the rituals, theology, morality and more; while mythology can simply refer to Ancient Greek myths & stories.

8) [http://www.italianfuturism.org/manifestos/art-and-religion/] Art & Religion: This website explores the nature of art and religion and there relationship to worship. I felt this was a good website to add because in some faiths Art is aprreciated but not excepted within religion: and I feel it to be just as important as music or being able to read the holy books, since I see it as a form of worship.

9) [http://www.allholybooks.com/] All Holy Books.com: These are  the holy books they provide for free online  [Christianity, Jainism, Islam, Confucianism, Taoism, Shinto, Bahai]. The website creator is hoping to add to the collection Judaism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Sikhism and Zoroadstrianism. I figured this would be useful.

10) [http://www.cftech.com/BrainBank/OTHERREFERENCE/RELIGION/SigDatesInRelHis.html] Important Dates in the History of Religion: A basic website that provides dates to important events in western history.

11) [http://smiley963.tripod.com/motivational.html] Motivational Quotes: I try to surround myself with positive things, so my outlook on life will remain positive. Keeping myself motivated will help me reach my goals as a music major.

12) [http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/140227/10_things_every_independent_musician.html] Ten Things Every Independent Musician Should Know : It’s a great article to keep the dream in mind after I graduate college. It gives step by step instruction to make me a better musician and following it’s tips increase my chances of being better. Even if the advice seems pointless and corny, improvement is everything.

13) [http://www.classicalworks.com/html/glossary.html] Musical Glossary: Here is a glossary of common musical words ever music major should know. It will most likely come in handy on tests and quizzes for music theory.

14) [http://www.yiruma.com/] Yiruma: Yiruma is an exceptional pianst from South Korea. He is my favorite composer and his music has the ability to change my entire mood to make me calm and relaxed. He was very useful during finals. Here is one of his songs, just in case you want to listen (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XSNUeCM78do).

15) [http://www.collegeboard.com/csearch/majors_careers/profiles/careers/106440.html] College Board (Musicians & Singers): Provides a realistic outlook on the life of a musician and singer, with possible career options for those choosing set path.

16) [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3g4ekwTd6Ig] Defying Gravity: This is my ultimate dream, to be the first African American to play the role of Elphaba a.k.a The Wicked Witch of the West. This show changed my entire outlook on life and influenced my choice not to change my major from Music.

17) [http://www.lvc.edu/music/so-you-want-to-be-a-music-major.aspx] So You Want to be a Music Major: This website provides tools and tips to students wishing or who have already enrolled as a music major.

18) [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZKW3zREFA00] You Gotta Be by Desree: In my years in college I need to prepare for the competitiveness that is in the entertainment industry, therefore this song will play as a constant reminder.

19) [http://ezinearticles.com/?Want-to-Play-the-Violin-Better?-Top-5-Tips-to-Improve-Your-Playing!&id=2392658] Want to Play the Violin Better?: This website provides five tips to imrove violin playing. I’m looking forward to trying these out.

20) [http://www.musictheory.net/] Ricci Adams’ Music Theory: Provides a basic instruction and explanation of Music Theory. It is almost guarenteed that this will be useful.

                I am not sure if Wiesenthal did the right thing or not. Deep down I truly believe that Wiesenthal should forgive the dying Nazi soldier, but I’m not sure if it was possible at that time.

                The Nazi soldier made his mistake by placing his guilt on one man whom he never actually committed the offense too instead of trying to make a difference before his last breath. I think it is almost impossible for someone to forgive someone else for crimes against an entire race or large group of people, unless you are Jesus Christ. I probably would have felt sorry for the Nazi soldier if he had been honest with his reasons as to why he acted out on these orders, and if he had not been on his last breath. I think his apology would have been more sincere if he had confessed not on his death bed, but had been able to receive a punishment. I guess I would have been happier if Karl Seidl had completed harsh works compared to Hercules and his twelve labors in order to obtain reparation for what he had done. I feel that Seidl’s confession might not have been as genuine as it could have been; but that he was prompted by the looming fear of hell to seek the forgiveness of someone who could pardon the wrongdoings he made against more than one hundred and fifty Jewish people.

                The fact that Wiesenthal was able to walk away from a dying man’s plea makes me agree even more with his decision to remain quiet. I don’t think there is a correct answer to what this Seidl asked Wiesenthal to do. My Christian belief tells me repeatedly in order to receive forgiveness from God you must give forgiveness to those who have harmed you. I know it is the right thing to forgive Karl Seidl but I’m not sure if I could do it personally. I don’t think I would have the authority to forgive him for what he did to over one hundred and fifty people. I think that is too much to ask of one person. I agree with Wiesenthal when he suggests justice instead of vengeance. I don’t think it was right of him to make this his dying wish, I think he should have died with the burden of what he had done instead of dying with relief. Karl Seidl had done nothing to adjust his guilt before his death (that we know of). He obviously felt guilty about what he did, therefore he should have confessed in order to receive some kind of punishment, instead of dying peacefully in his sleep guilt free.