Tag Archives: universe

40 Questions to help you wonder … about everything!

Values
1. Are you a fair or a just person?
2. How do you know who your friends are?
3. Should you be rewarded for your efforts in school?
4. Should you let little things bother you?
5. Is it your duty to give to charity?
6. Will having fun make you happier than studying?
7. Should you ever tell a lie?
8. Are there times when you should be violent?
9. Do you sometimes feel weird when you are with others?
10. Do we control technology or does technology control us?

Knowledge
11. How do you know for certain that things move?
12. What makes something you say true?
13. Can you doubt that you exist?
14. Does a tree make a sound if it falls in a forest with no one around?
15. Are you certain that the law of gravity is really a law?
16. How can you tell when you know something?
17. Can another person understand your feelings?
18. Can you lie to yourself?
19. Do you perceive things as they are or only as they seem to be?
20. Can computers think?

Reality
21. Can you think about nothing at all?
22. Does anything ever happen by chance?
23. What happens to numbers when you are not using them?
24. Are numbers and people equally real?
25. Is time what you see when you look at a clock?
26. If the universe came from the BIg Bang, where did the Big Bang come from?
27. Are you the same person you were five years ago?
28. Do you have free will?
29. Does anything depend on everything?
30. Are impossible things ever possible?

Critical Thinking
31. Is it important to speak and write so you can be understood?
32. Should you always listen to the opinions of others?
33. Should you criticize people or the opinions people have?
34. Why is “because” such an important word?
35. Is it easy to tell what causes things to happen?
36. If many people think something is true, is it true?
37. Do two wrongs balance out and make an action right?
38. “I am lying.” True or false?
39. Can something logical ever not make sense?
40. “I wonder … ” what it means to define something?

World Perspectives–The Social Experience

Once and for all you can know there’s a universe of people outside and you’re responsible to it. – A. Miller

One of the challenges highlighted in history and in literature is striking the balance between individual and societal rights and responsibilities; between personal goals and societal needs; between personal ambition and the common good; between personal values and social values.

Beyond Personal Goals–Individual, Group, and Societal Responsibility
What are our responsibilities to others?
Related Questions:

  • What is our place in society?
  • What are our responsibilities to self? To society? To future generations?
  • How do we balance self-preservation with concern for others?
  • What are our individual rights and responsibilities? What might be our responsibilities and rights as members of particular groups within society?
  • What are our societal rights and responsibilities? Does society count on us as individuals? If so how?
  • What actions are expected of individuals within a society?
  • How does society ensure there is respect for both individuals and for groups?

Dealing with Universal Issues, such as Truth and Justice
What is “truth” and what is “justice”?
Related Questions:

  • How do we define “truth” and “justice”?
  • What are the important truths in life?
  • How do we find truth? How do we tell right from wrong?
  • What are the rights of all?
  • Why is justice often hard to achieve? Is justice fair? Infallible?
  • Why does justice sometimes “sting”? How do we remedy injustice?
  • Are there situations in which it is more just to treat people differently than to treat them the same?

Ambition, Power, and the Common Good
What is the nature of ambition and power?
Related Questions:

  • What gives a person status? Is status achieved the same way in all societies? Within a society?
  • How do ambition and power drive us? How do they challenge us?
  • What is meant by “the common good”? Who decides what the common good is? Is the common good best for every individual in a society?
  • What is the appeal of being in the position of “ruling” other people? What disadvantages accompany being the authority figure?
  • How does lack of power affect particular individuals or groups?
  • What is the reality of being colonized or “ruled”?
  • What is the advantage in treating others as we wish they would treat us? Why is this often difficult?

Social Criticism–Conformity and Nonconformity/ Resistance
What is social criticism?
Related Questions:

  • What societal issues concern us?
  • What is the purpose of social criticism?
  • What is conformity? What is nonconformity? What is meant by “the status quo”? What is rebellion? Do different people define these differently? Are they manifested differently in different societies?
  • What is the role of the state in Canada? What is the role of the individual or groups within the state?
  • How should the state treat its citizens? Is this the same in every country?
  • What is the relationship between the individual and the state in Canada? In other countries?
  • What are the shortcomings of Canadian society? How can we, as citizens, address them?
  • Why do some individuals or groups challenge the system while others abide with it? What is political protest? How does Canadian society treat nonconformity? Rebellion? Is rebellion risky in Canada as compared to other countries? Why or why not?
  • How does Canadian society respond to challenges?

Addressing the Issues–Causes and Crusades
How can we make the world a better place?
Related Questions:

  • What matters most to us as individuals? As groups? As a society?
  • Do all people tackle causes in their lifetimes? Why or why not? What causes might our generation tackle?
  • What do people do when faced with a decision between advancing a cause and doing what they believe is right?
  • Are there situations in which individuals might challenge authority? What are some responsible ways of challenging authority?

Personal Universe Lexicon

To construct your Personal Universe Lexicon, start with a new post. You may wish to construct the list with pen and paper first and transfer it to your blog later. Begin by following these instructions:

Write down as many words as you can then sort the words into the categories outlined below. Complete each category. Write as quickly as you can.

Categories:

  • 16 words of each of the five senses (16 x 5 = 80 words). The words must mean, suggest: taste touch, sight, smell, and hearing. For instance, desiccated or frozen might suggest touch to you, or birdsong hearing.
  • 10 words of motion. The words must mean, suggest motion to you. They do not necessarily need to be verbs. Baby could be a motion word for someone, for example.
  • 3 abstractions. Such as love or freedom or truth.
  • 7 anything else. Any word with meaning to you that does not fit into the other categories.

All the words on the list must

  1. have significance to/for you
  2. be specific; that is the word must not be “bird” but “robin,” not “tree” but “aspen.”
  3. sound good to the ear.

Use no adverbs. Use no plurals.

Keep track of the words with your blog. Move them around each other in the list every day for a week. Choose one word at random from the list; write what the word(s) sparks, what the juxtaposition of words builds for you.

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