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Journal Entry #1

Due 1.15

My Philosophical Framework

Hopefully the discussion on the parts of belief-systems we are here calling Philosophical Frameworks makes some sense to you. If so, you have some beliefs that can be described this way. One of the objectives in InterQuest is to guide you to ways of thinking about and studying your own beliefs. In years of school training you have become skills at studying other people's beliefs. For some folks it is a remarkable realization that our own beliefs can also be the subject of study. That is, we are not merely held within a set of beliefs that filter our experiences and understandings. If I am right about all of this (and I admit that I could be wrong), then we also have the capacity to detect alter our own filters! That seems to me to be knowledge worth having; self-knowledge and personal power.

Well, this first Journal entry is based on your initial exploration into this study of your own beliefs. Remember that the Journals are informal and open-ended writing. I do expect you to do some genuine development of ideas in writing. Stock and formulaic answers won't do. Here are two matters I'd like you to address in this first Journal entry:

1) What leads you to choose the philosophical framework that you selected? Describe your genuine philosophical beliefs and why they are important to you. Under what conditions would you be willing to give those beliefs up? Why or why not? I am very interested to know where you think these beliefs came from; how did you acquire these particular beliefs?

2) Having read The Fixation of Belief you have aquaintance with Pierce's ideas of Methods of Fixation. Recall that Fixation is the process of keeping our beliefs stable or fixated. Peirce is interested in both why and how we fixate our beliefs. The first two methods he considers are:
                    -- The Method of Tenacity
                    -- The Method of Authority
Please discuss whether and how these methods are at work in your own belief system. Try to think of examples from your own life. Do you see these methods at work in the belief-system of anyone that know? Do you think that the operation of these methods is a matter of conscious choice or some other mechanism?

Write about these ideas using your word processor. Save the results, then post to the Journal area when that is available to you. I understand that it takes time to get the technical peices of this puzzle together. Please be confident that I am fully aware of the technical challenges and will not allow mere technology issues to affect your success in the course. If you have the work done and it takes a bit over the due date to get the work online, then we will adjust for that.

Enjoy your writing!

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