Wednesday, February 10, 2016

“Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.”

A quote that never really had much value to me until having a discussion with a bunch of fourth grade students. Who would have thought that kids at that age actually understand the concept of having to grow up? It seems that kids already know what is ahead of them and what they have to do in order to live a good life. When I was in the fourth grade I didn’t know anything about being an adult. We had a discussion on the question “ What if everyone was rich?”

So what if everyone was rich? Yeah, of course we could get whatever we want, do whatever we please, etc. but then we dug deeper. We came to the point where we realized that if everyone was rich, no one would have to go to school or go to work because once you are born you are rich. Eventually, we have to come to a point where we need to get things we need like food, medicine, clothing, and so on. If everyone is well off no one is going to step up to the plate and work if they know they already have enough money to support themselves. 

A lot of the students mentioned that there would be no stores because there would be no workers and it had reminded me of the past. In the past, people had to trade things in order to get what they need. For example, if I had a corn field and a friend of mine knew how to sew clothing, I would trade corn in order to get clothes. I feel like we would just repeat history if all of a sudden we became rich.

Repeating history, it sounds a bit strange but think about it for a second. We would become idiots if we became rich because we would have kids and they wouldn’t be going to school, without educated people there are no jobs being done. In order for jobs to be done, their parents would have to teach them their talents in order to carry on their business and to have them provide for themselves. Eventually, a system will be created and trading won’t be necessary. Hmm… sound familiar?

Becoming rich with materialistic things does not matter to me, but being rich in love and happiness matters to me the most. I value people, the people in my life and everyone who surrounds me matters to me. I was so caught up in the idea that performing a surgery that could save someone’s life was the only way I could help someone, but I was wrong. I have learned that I can make an impact on someone’s life by simply talking to them and if it’s meaningful to them, you have changed their life. My senior year has been quite a ride but it is not over yet, there is little time left to make decisions. I regret being such a close-minded person because if I knew that my passion wasn’t to cut a person open or draw blood from a patient it would’ve made making decisions a little easier. So maybe becoming a surgeon who makes over two hundred grand isn’t for me. I would rather have a job that I love and feel like it isn’t even work. I don’t need to be a cardiothoracic surgeon to move child’s heart, my words should be able to do the work and let their own bodies’ heal.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Why do we realize the value in something when it is gone?

My last visit at Maunawili Elementary School was not one of the discussions that I come back to class on Wednesdays saying how great it was, but it was one that left me with some type of feeling. This feeling that I had was not extremely horrible but it wasn’t the greatest feeling either. I was left with the feeling that you get when the power goes out and suddenly you realize how much you took electricity for granted during those few hours without it. It was simply the feeling of acceptance. During a power outage you eventually accept that it happens, and that’s what I did, I accepted the fact that sometimes we forget the value in something. In this situation that “something” that lost value was p4c.

The saying “ you only realize what you have until it’s gone” came to my mind instantly as I was writing this. Why is it then that it is only when something is taken away from us that we realize how much it is actually worth? I am dreading these last months of high school and maybe it is because I have a bad case of “senioritis” but until I walk that line and my diploma is handed to me, high school will soon be lessons and a memory to me. I’ll be saying things like “those WERE the best years of my life” or “ I can’t believe it’s all OVER.” A common theme with those phrases are using words that refer to the past. What does it take for us to realize what we have besides losing it?

Reflections, that is how we will realize the value of something. You could reflect on your life, what you read, or what you just discussed. For example, during a discussion you might forget something super deep that someone just said, that’s why we take notes and have a… reflection! Giving ourselves time to reflect allows us to think about things and what we can change or keep the same.

I will not be a philoSURFER forever and neither will Logan and Colby, but I realize now that I only have a few months left with them. Sometimes when I leave each campus I think about how knowledgeable they will be of p4c and what value they’ll find in it. During our discussions I try and think about what is going through a student’s mind. I love to hear about what p4c means to them and how it affected their lives. I guess hearing these little things reminds me how much value p4c has.

After so much thinking and having many realizations, I am now left with a different mindset. I have to accept that sometimes there will be bumps in the road, but I shouldn’t let that stop me. I also shouldn’t forget about the journey along with taking that road to wherever it will lead me. Lastly, don’t forget to stop and smell the flowers. I know this all might sound dorky and I probably stole those sayings from a couple of scenes in different movies which I don’t recall, but after every movie you have to go and tell a friend how terrible or how awesome it was. I guess my journey/movie of being a philoSURFER will soon come to an end but at least I will have a story to tell.

Monday, February 1, 2016

Age is just a number

"What are the reason that age defines a person's knowledge?" I've been thinking about this so much lately because this is one of the main reasons people think p4c is meant for adults or people who are capable of thinking intellectually. My kindergarten class at Maunawilli has been blowing my mind lately with what they have to say bout things and my last visit left me with my jaw left hanging. This was also the first time that Colby would join me in kindergarden and by the end of the discussion I could tell he was a little dumbfounded by what was said. I started the discussion by posing the question "What are the reasons that even though we have enough we still want more?" I could tell that at first the kids couldn't really understand, but it took one person to answer and eventually everyone else understood the question, too. I guess it's kind of like a "monkey see monkey do" concept. At first the kids started talking about the same thing, but then Peter said something totally different, then the kids started to understand the question and how to answer and at that point I could tell that the discussion was on a good track. 

The student that confused Colby and I the most was Lisandro. Her answer to the first question was "well we want more because people feel empty inside so we buy things to make it full but then deep inside they're still empty." This was an astounding answer that no one saw coming and it makes our visits worthwhile. Actually, this is what keeps us coming back; their sense of wonderment shows they all have the mark of the philosopher. I'm definitely looking forward to our next visit to kindergarten.

Giving Never Ages

"What are the reasons that even though we have enough, we still want more?"  This question came a few days ago from my fellow philoSURFER Logan and it has been making me think ever since.  As humans, enough is definitely not enough.  We are constantly living in fear that we are never satisfied with what we have, so instead of being thankful, we usually turn greedy.  Thomas, a child in our kindergarten class at Maunawili placed his thoughts on it and said "when we are overflowing with toys, we can just give it away to other kids who don't have enough toys to play with at all." When I heard that, it struck me as an unorthodox answer.  People in this generation today sometimes lack humility with replacing "ours" to "mine." Those who share what they have and give from the bottom of their hearts had either felt like what it is like to have little to nothing, or are kind hearted people.

With that being said, I was still wondering "how many people are willing to sacrifice a peice of what they have, without being hurt of loss?"  Lisandro's answer shocked me; "I would give my favorite (object) away to someone who doesn't have it because they need it to be happy."

As you may infer, kindergarten classes have been going well, but it's like a tornado; you will not know what will land right in front of you.  It could be the best discussion or a brainstorm of pure ideas.  Logan and I have been racking our brains having our own discussions on our way back to our school and it makes us keep thinking that, giving something, anything for that matter, never comes with an age requirement.