Your Life on Earth: Philosophizing Purpose and Place in the #21C
In this project, we explored all the different types of beliefs and tried to figure out which one(s) personally fit us the best. We had to take notes on the types of philosophies and we watched a few movies that had these ideas in them. I was mostly drawn to transcendentalism, the idea of submerging yourself into nature and being self reliant. I decided to write a poem about nature comparing it to a source of life. I wrote another poem about the importance of self reliance and how you can find yourself in nature. To go along with these poems, I made a collage to represent this whole idea of transcendentalism. What inspired me to focus on this ideas was that I feel like I haven't found my true self yet, I don't know what my purpose on this earth is. I hope that one day I will be able to go on a trip by myself and explore what nature has to offer. With this project, I was striving to answer the following essential questions: What is happiness and what makes you happy? What does it mean to live a meaningful life? And what gives your life meaning? To display what I learned, I made a collage and wrote a poem. The collage made up an outline of a persons side profile and my partner and I sectioned the outline into four panels. The goal was to represent the philosophy of transcendentalism. The first section represented nature, the second represented materialism, the third represented, individualism, and the fourth represented religion/morals. The idea of transcendentalism attracted me because nature and self-reliance are important to me. When you are in nature, one becomes really humble and they are able to connect to nature. Being a materialist, in my opinion, makes you bitter because you are only focused on your success and you are competing to have the best. Going into nature alone helps you connect back to your true self. Learning to rely on yourself is a trait that you could develop and you would also be able to see what your morals are.
Over the course of this project, I learned that I really need to depend on myself more rather than others. In the end, you really only have yourself. It is important to work on yourself first, find what you are passionate about, and improve yourself. You can't love others until you love yourself. Going into nature alone is a good place to find yourself because you don't have the distraction of technology or other people to influence your thoughts. Sometimes when you are by yourself, you get lost in deep topics that you would have never thought of if you were busy doing things or if you were with others. My philosophy goes against materialism as I have noticed that this world is getting worse. People are starting to become more selfish and more competitive for money. Money can buy you things that you think will make you happy but it doesn't last long, it just temporarily comforts you. When we watched "Into the Wild" I was inspired to go on a small trip someday by myself. I wouldn't go as extreme as the main character did. It was really amazing how he met all these different people then set out for an alone adventure. He was raised in a wealthy family but he chose to leave his whole college future and the comforts of his home to go into the wild with hardly any resources. Again, I wouldn't go as extreme but I would like to find myself in nature. Studying philosophy and ethics was a little weird for me because there are so many things people believe and just studying this topic made me question everything. It was a weird feeling because it made me wonder if anything that I did, any of the choices that I made were meaningful or if they were just pointless. It did help me define a little bit more in what I believe in.
Further Questions and Intellectual Work Left to Do
From here, I would like to embrace my beliefs more and not think too much about if my life matters or what my purpose is here. I was gifted with life and I would like to simply enjoy it instead of worrying about every little thing. This project made me wonder about so many things that I've never thought of before. It opened my mind to all the different philosophies that people believe in. This project also made me come up with theories for why we are here. One of them made me think that nothing that I do on this earth is not important. I felt like maybe I'm just by myself and everything around me is just a simulation. Nothing is real. Thinking about this made me feel really weird and I wouldn't have really been lost in this idea. I still don't know how to answer the following questions about myself: What's my purpose? What is real? Do my actions matter? Does everything happen for a reason?