Literary Commentary, Philosophy, Psychology

Human Virtues and the Meaning of Life: Rousseau vs. Frankl

I’ve had “Discourse on the Arts and Sciences” by Jean-Jacques Rousseau on my “currently reading” shelf for the longest time, and just a few weeks ago I had a little reading inspiration so I decided to finish it. Turns out I only had several pages to go anyway. Then, I was recommended “Man’s Search for Meaning” by Viktor Frankl to read, and I did, and I loved it. Since I happened to read both these rather philosophical and psychological books (I label them as both because it seems that they have a bit of both in them) back-to-back, I noticed that they both discuss very similar topics: human virtue, the arts and sciences, and the purpose of life. However, interestingly, Rousseau and Frankl contradict on some concepts, which I want to discuss today, while also attempting to organize some of my thoughts about each. [Click to read more]

Philosophy, Religion

The Case for Non-Theism: The Strengths of Buddhism

There are two things all religions seem to know for certain: 1. God is Good. 2. We are all a part of God’s masterfully orchestrated plan. Everything that happens is meant to happen. I’ve always puzzled over the idea of destiny. Everything that we are, or will be - has already been predetermined by a supreme being. God is all-knowing. God is good. God has plans for us. Even though this is what all religions teach, I didn’t like the sound of it. By this principle, we have no freedom of choice or free will, because our destiny is fixed. [Click to read more]

Literary Commentary

The Backbone of “Blue Bouquet”: An Analysis of Literary Style

We read "Blue Bouquet" by Octavio Paz a while ago in my English class, and I wrote a response to the following assignment: Respond to any specific aspect of the story that you feel is an important part of the story (Character, setting, symbol, central metaphor, conflict) or a central idea (theme) in the text. Identify and explain examples in your paper to help develop your ideas. Use a structured, paragraphed approach to your discussion. I decided to tackle a more unconventional topic: the stylistic components of the text and how they develop the story from a story-engineering perspective. [Click to read more]