Monday, January 20, 2014

Metacognition?

“We go about our daily lives understanding almost nothing of the world. We give little thought to the machinery that generates the sunlight that makes life possible, to the gravity that glues us to an Earth that would otherwise send us spinning off into space, or to the atoms of which we are made and on whose stability we fundamentally depend. Except for children (who don’t know enough not to ask the important questions), few of us spend much time wondering why nature is the way it is; where the cosmos came from, or whether it is always here; if time will one day flow backward and effects precede causes; or whether there are ultimate limits to what humans can know.”
-Carl Sagan from an introduction to A Brief History of Time By Stephen Hawking

After hearing and reading your peer's reactions during class about the listed quotation, what new insight can you add to this quotation analysis? Please respond. (Blog Response Due By Thurs. 1-23-14 at 2:30p.m.)

24 comments:

KateG said...

I think that we take less time to think about the sciences around us or the sciences that bring us to school, work, etc., than we think about finishing homework or hanging out with friends. It is interesting to think that children do not know as much as high schoolers know, but they do ask meaningful questions. They may want to know the why of simple things, but it is what brings the creativity out of them. I know one child who actually asked why the lights turned on the way they did. Then the son asked where water went down a sink and where the pipes went. He asked about where the light got its source of power in the house and his mother could not answer the question so his mother asked about the ideas about what the son thought so he gave an answer. Ever since he has been making his own creations so I think some children do know about some sciences that we know and I disagree with the quote.

KimberlyM2014 said...

Actually I disagree somewhate with this quote. Obviously people do not spend every minute of every day pondering nature, gravity and the heat from the sun. I think we would be better off if we did spend some time understand in the world around us. It is the other half that I disagree with. There are people who don't ask those types of questions because they already have an answer. Wether it is religious or scientific, some people understand why they are on this earth and why nature works the way it does. The people who do not know these things are the ones who need to ask these question. But they tend to sit back in a world of darkness rather than search for the light.

Megan T. said...

I think that this quote has some valid points but overall I disagree. Children are the ones who ask the questions that make people think because of their innocence and their lack of "knowledge". We, as teenagers and adults are taught so much on a daily basis about things that don't apply to things we think about regularly. Science and religion have already answered these questions for some of us, maybe we don't wonder about why we are here or why nature is the way it is because we already have the answer.

Matthew W said...

I think that, i personally don't think about things like why we have the sun in the sky to light the world or why the stars align into different shapes. Of course their is a reason why these things happen and i believe that they are fully worthy of inspiring awe in our eyes and thoughts. People tend to feel they need to know everything, i am content with not knowing how everything works, or why we are here. Instead of critiquing and analyzing the things around us, enjoy them.

Victor P said...

I agree with the majority of what Carl Sagan's quote embodies. It is within the facets of nature that our westernized way of living is even possible. Acknowledging that nature has continually supported man since the beginning of time is astronomically fascinating; and though, with the system of beliefs one tends to, they may not be able to explain nature in its totality, (and that's okay) we don't need to explain what we appreciate. When was the last time, you actually considered the source of your food, the myriad of natural resources that have preserved man and beast for thousands of years; rather Mr. Sagan is "right" or "wrong" is beyond the point, the fact is that we take for granted nine times out of ten, the joy and astonishment that we are simply able to be here. I’d much rather have a squabble with someone dear to me, then to concern myself about finding a suitable shelter to keep me warm, a food source that will preserve and nourish my body. It is through natures abundant supply we can live comfortably and concern ourselves with the modern problems we so easily wrap ourselves up in it. There needs to come a day that we all just take a moment out of our busy lives and acknowledge the miracle of or existence.

Jack R said...

While reading this quote even though it is only a couple days into the semester I can already relate it to what little knowledge I have about mythology. Mythology is what people used to try to explain the seemingly unexplainable things in life. They used it and a way we still do today to explain nature and the beginning of the world. Even if you take a look at basically every religion they all try to explain some of these things and of course where we all came from. Another way that we try to learn about these things is modern science which if you look at our definition of mythology it has the phrase "early science" in it, so it makes sense that we are still trying to answer the same type of questions through our forms of science. Going back to the quote I guess it does seem that we as individuals don't take enough time to think about these but as a group, as humans it seems to me that there are people thinking about those types of unexplainable questions.

nicolek331 said...

I believe that this quote is true in some aspects and false in others. Yes we should take into account all the things and forces of nature in our lives that are of great importance. And yes we should sometimes ask the questions that no one bothers to ask, but many people already have answers. I don't think that everyone has answers to some of life's most confusing questions, but I believe that some people do whether it is (as stated below)because of their religious views or a scientific point of view. On the other hand I do think that people should every now and then remember and appreciate little things we take for granted. Gravity is a good example in the passage because it is true that without it we would be hurled into space and man would cease to exist (or so we think). Overall my analysis of this quote is balancing on a thin wire that tilts one way to agree and another to disagree. Mankind will always question and always ponder; it's whether we understand or choose to understand that is the problem.

Abbie G said...

I disagree somewhat with this quote because I do find myself pondering on why things are the way they are like gravity, nature, etc.. In the end though, my questions are either answered by religion or I simply just accept the fact that things are the way they are. Children ask so many questions simply because they're curious. A lot of the time, those questions do not lack 'knowledge'. My little cousin has asked me plenty of questions that have left me stumped and wondering about it later. Usually, however, I end up forgetting about the question and don't even bother coming up with an answer. I do wish, not just for myself but for everyone, that we would take the time to come up with an answer. We would all have a better understanding of the world.

Meghan L.B. said...

I think that we accept the reality with which we are presented; we do not ask questions or ponder existence, the cosmos, gravity and so on so forth because it's all we have ever known. We feel as though because it's so constant, it needs no further explanation - we feel as though all of our questions of or relating to existence have already been answered. Some people are more compelled than others to ask such questions, either because they have a genuine interest or because, as Kimberly said, they already know the answer.

kayleighT said...

I believe that this quote is wrong because people don't spend every second thinking about nature and what goes on in the world. When we do something we don't really think about how it was first discovered or why we do it it just goes naturally. People may believe things happen the way they do based off of religious beliefs or just because that's what they have always believed. Sure there are the people who do think about why nature and other things happen the way they do but not everyone who does something thinks about why it happens that way.

KevinK2015 said...

I think that not allowing are self's to ask the simple qusetions makes it that we look past the ovious and never get past the first step and just keep triping on our our selfs. If we never allow the ovies to be questioned we will be stuck in the past.

Amy said...

I think that at some parts of this quote the truth is being said. I think that many people across the world don't think about why anything is the way it is, but I also believe that many others do wonder about our world. But I don't think that we can count children out for not wondering, because they are one of the most curious generations of our kind. Even though some of our world could care less about where things come from.. The ones that do care will be the ones that do something about it.

Elijah Hughes said...

I believe we really do go about our daily lives understanding almost nothing of the world. I believe this because even though we might understand very important concepts from activities or events learned in science class we probably only covered a very small piece of what the world has to offer. Even though we might have knowledge about some of the bigger ideas, the world is huge on it's own. Therefore, what we really know is only a portion of what is discovered. Is it really possible for us to know every element on every item in our generation? How many of us actually know what a cell phone is made of or how it works? In Addition, the technology and other pieces in the world are advancing way to fast to keep up with for the majority of people.

JACKW said...

After thinking about this quote for a while i came to realize that although the author seems to speak about our apparent lack of appreciation of these built in sciences,by just letting them be on the edge of our thoughts we honor them. By understanding them even a little bit, and then living our lives safe in the knowledge that such things are constant we give them constant credence.

SophiaF2015 said...

I agree with the majority of what Carl Sagan said in this quote, even though it seems like other people don't. I think people are far too happy to skate by in life without asking any profound question. They see only the ground underneath their feet and simply see it as a place to walk. People rarely bother to ask why it is there, or why they are there either. I liked what he said about children asking profound questions. Even though a lot of their questions may seem dumb to us now that we are "older," they are the ones who are seeing the world with fresh eyes. Questioning the obvious isn't always a bad thing.

Matt Aragon said...

After thinking about what keeps us alive and what not, we realize it's life, and humans have been slowing changing it in some way. We accept how it changes, except if its catastrophic or harms us, thats when we really notice whats going on and take action, and know whats happening. Other than that, we know that we can't change gravity or completely take away atoms or all that, so we accept it and live.

TrevorB said...

I agree with this quote. It seems as we get older we don't question what we don't know, but accept what we do know. Also sometimes it is easier to accept that we don't know, rather figure out the truth to a question. I think Carl Sagan is trying to tell us to keep questioning as we get older to better understand the world we live in.

Hannah P :) said...

I think we should all ask more questions so we as individuals can have a better understanding of the universe. If you want to know about how the sun and the stars came to be, then it dosent hurt at all to ask questions. I think all kids have a sense of wonder and they want to know how the stars got there and what they are, but for the most part they are just kids and they have an appreciation for them. Overall I think its good to wonder and want to know these things, but for the most part we should just appreciate that they are there so we can enjoy them.

KatieS said...

Children ask questions because of ignorance, and in a sense, ignorance truly is bliss. When one is ignorant, as the quote says, they don't know enough to not ask the important questions. Children just love to ask questions because they don't know any better and there is nothing at all wrong with them doing what they love. As we get older, we stop asking questions because we have lost our innocence and we have lost the love of asking, “Why?” or “How?”

david m said...

Our society in general does not care about facts unless it some how benefits us. We don't take time to slow down and realize what we have all around us. Everyday we take for granted how much food we have or how beneficial technology is. Obviously it is impossible to ponder everything in this world for a whole day. But it would be very good for all of us to just slow down and realize the world around us.

Maddi Rowley said...

I don't agree. Kids are the ones who ask the amazing, heartfelt, deep questions. They are the ones that ponder now the earth works. Although we aren't constantly pondering about how everything works, I feel that we all stop and think about it every once and a while. While we are hiking, skiing, or driving home and see the amazing sunset, we do think about how all works. We can take advantage of his great the world is but truly we are greatful.

Marissa M. said...

Thinking about thinking is such a simple but cosmic process. If we thought about the essential tasks that take place without our doing everyday, our brains would probably implode. The world has two different spectrums if you think about it. We have our ecosystem that incorporates our entire planet together, each and every thing relying on the other. Then, if you look at a single leaf, we still have the entirety of an ecosystem compact into one organism. As we grow older, we gain more knowledge, but often lose the lust for curiosity or thirst for the unexplained. I believe once we get past a certain point in our lives humans tend to become settled with knowledge and we don’t let curiosity permeate through.

“You need to let the little things that would ordinarily bore you suddenly thrill you.”- Andy Warhol

DillanL said...

Thinking of all these processes can be a tricky subject to talk or even think about without further wondering how the universe works. But going into thought about this can be easy for some and others it may be difficult, for me it is a very difficult subject because i live everyday of my life thinking about whats going to happen next I cannot think about the distant future because life hold surprises that may make the future completely different than how I think it will turn out. And yet also it is easy to think about like what if this happened and then that is how I decided to make my future. I don't know if I'm going to get into the college that I wanted to get into because i may make a mistake that requires me to think of other colleges to go to

IsaiahR2015 said...

I agree with this because it's really true. No one questions a thing or bats an eye. Because this quote goes really deep and could get people to have a different idea\look on reality.