Monday, January 12, 2015

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. 1-15-15 at 2:30p.m.)

29 comments:

Kathleen said...

This quotation seems quite true at first glance, though underneath the surface, I don't know if it completely holds true. As children, it is blatantly obvious that we are very curious. We cannot keep a single question to ourselves, bantering endlessly about why we don't float or what someone is wearing, but as we grow we develop a filter, and keep our pondering to ourselves. I don't so much think that we have stopped wondering about these things, I just think that we no longer vocalize them as we once did. There is just as much wonder underneath, sometimes we just push it away to think about at a different time.

lazyladybug21 said...

I think people lose their childlike curiosity as they get older. I compare it to the Bible and how Jesus encourages his followers to have a childlike faith. I think a big part of that faith is curiosity and the curiosity of who Jesus is and how he works. I think as we get older we start to narrow our perspective and we become more selfish caring more of our needs than others. I think we need that curiosity back in our lives. A curiosity that causes us to be more imaginative and helps us focus on the little things around us.

Dan Jones said...

When we are young we have a lot of curiosity. As we get older and we learn about things that we wonder, we learn what is important to us and what types of questions we should be asking. By the time that we reach our teens our minds are pretty made up on what is important and for a high school student that is trying to get good grades, apply for colleges and manage their lives away from school, asking questions such as how the sun works won't help you very much. This is the reason that we don't ask questions that we asked when we were younger. Not because we are all naive and we don't care. We just have priorities. Wondering and reading about stuff takes away from doing and experiencing (which we learn from anyway). Sometimes the best way to learn about the world we live in is not to read about it. Not to watch a movie about it, but to simply experience it.

Alec McCranie said...

I Believe that this quote is in some ways right but in most ways wrong. Carl Sagan in this quote believes that children are for the most part the only ones to ask the important questions. But in reality the children are not asking important questions at all. They ask meaningless questions such as, "why is she wearing that hat?" Although this is a valid question it is not a important question. However this quote is right in the fact that most people go through their lives not wondering about how the world was created. But there is also a lot of people who wonder about theoretical quantum mechanics, dark matter, or antimatter annihilation. I feel like the ratio of people who wonder about things to the ones that do not has decreased on the wondering side compared to ancient times, but only may a small amount.

Maggie Dowling said...

I think what this quote is trying to say is that it's much harder to have that boundless curiosity that we once had because we have been educated so nothing really seems like a mystery anymore because we have a lot more reason than we did when we were three or four. It's like how my little brother is in love with all kinds of work trucks. I never really bothered to look at them but whenever my brother sees one, he starts screaming with delight. Something that I took for granted was in my brothers eyes one of the seven wonders of the world. If only we had the curiosity that he does, then maybe this world could be a much better place.

LucyL2016 said...

People say that as we get older, we get wiser, but I think that we are the most wise as a child. In the Bible, Jesus says to become like little children. I can see the connection. As a child, we wonder at everything. No answer is good enough. As we grow up, we seem to acquire a 'filter', and as a result, we lose many opportunities to become wiser, and by doing so, we become more foolish as we age, afraid to look for answers, and risk look different. For example, when I was a kid, when I would overflow with questions about the books I read. But as I got older, I saw annotating as a chore, to actually think of questions, and write them. It felt odd. I'd been taught to reel in my curiosity, one that all humans have. Which, ironically, according to Greek Mythology, is how we got evil in the world anyway. So in reality, though we are said to become wiser with age, we are the wisest when we are the youngest, when our curiosity is unbridled and free.

MorganM said...

People say as we get older we also get wiser, we grow out of our childish ways and become more adapted to the ways of just doing something without thinking it. I compare this to the Bible, because Jesus always encouraged his followers to have faith like a child does. Curiosity is what make people wonder and ask questions. People down here on Earth I think need to have more curiosity in the lives to get them thinking outside of the bigger picture and pay more attention to the smaller things in life.

Kathryn C. said...

It amazes me that the brain is limitless, as far as we know. Like the quote says, few of us really wonder if there is a limit for how much we can learn. Isn't that sad, to wonder if there is an end? I believe we can keep learning because the brain is a wonderful thing that changes and evolves. To think about every cell that must work and each vein that carries the exact amount of oxygen exactly where is must go, there is too much that perfectly fits together for us to be an accident or a coincident.
Imagine what we would learn if more people simply wondered. Every great discovery began with a question. There are those who are content to let others decide what they learn, yet there is no ambition, no desire to grow. The world will continue to progress only as humanity continues to ask questions.

Samantha Mier y Teran said...

As we grow older we lose the curiosity we had as children. We lose our sense of imagination because science has provided us with answers to question like why we can see our reflection in water. Although each human does not have the answer to every question we lose the desire to ask because we know to expect a proper scientific answer. When everything is explainable we lose interest. And maybe in a way we don't question our surroundings because we enjoy the mystery. It gives us a sense of youth to not understand why we can hear our echos when we shout.Science can often times kill our imagination so we don't ask questions because we still want to believe in childhood fairy tales.

Anicia2277 said...

Although during this time we don't find ourselves asking these curious questions anymore, someone must have in order for us to have the scientific answers that we do. The only reason we know what we do as people is because there are individuals who sought to understand. Even if you aren't the one curious, is this a problem? Some enjoy just accepting what they see in front of them and don't have the need to pick it apart and "spoil" the childish sensation it gives them. He speaks of this as a bad thing, yet we all have the ability to think on a deeper level on certain matters. Some people would rather be the ones to accept rather than go out and find answers, the ones who do discover are just more well known.

MaggieH said...

I find this quotation very interesting, and true. I think that in today's modern society, we lose sight of the way the world works. Although I do think that maturity and aging affects our ability to ask simple questions, I think that technology and our busy society is more of the problem. If we wonder something we don't know the answer to, it takes us about two minutes to pull out our smart phone and google the answer. Once we find the answer we were looking for, we stop thinking and pondering about the topic, unlike children who don't have an immediate answer. Since children don't get quick feedback, they continue to process and think of more questions about the world, making them even more curious. Although technology is very useful, maybe if we didn't look at it so much, we'd be more creative and curious.

emoeller said...

This quotation has a lot of reality hidden inside. I think especially now a days people substitute gadgets and machinery for living breathing humans. I find people these days spend their time glued to a smartphone or computer. It would be a beautiful thing if people looked up to as I quote "smell the roses." If we could go back in time and act as joyful, full of life, curious, and creative as we were when we were children there would be more acceptance, compassion, and imagination in the world. And adding onto the way the world works, like why the sky's the color it is and why the world is round, I think quite a bit of it has to do with science. But some things are just the way they are because, well just because.

anime/M/1996 said...

The except for children quite I thought was awesome but I find its often children who make the most scene because they don't have the confinements that older people do.

anime/M/1996 said...

It leaves one thinking that there is a lot of thins people don't think about any more. But I think a lot of it has to with how much I hear about it in school. I spent time in class learning about it now I want nothing to do with it. Adults make thins to difficult to understand at times so we don't try to.

Corina said...

Curiosity is a privilege that can lead us to the most amazing revelations. It's remarkable that children have the curiosity and ability to create their own logic and acknowledge whats in front of them. When we were very young there is so much to learn, but the truth is there is always so much to learn no matter how old someone becomes. The problem is, when we become older we are distracted from the miracles and wonders happening in front of us everyday. After a certain time of day when we finish sitting in a classroom to learn we check out and turn off our learning or desire to learn, this is not the way learning is suppose to work. I think as people we just need to realize that there is so much more to learn about, to question about, and discover about. But we need to especially acknowledge a time when a child is curious because any one of them ultimately has the power to discover anything.

Tommy W said...

Carl Sagan in this quote is urging us to not become narrowed-minded about the world and to continue to question everything. We may lose sight of how amazing the little things in life are. He compares it to how everything to a child is incredible and baffling because they have an open mind to what the world can be. Children don’t simply accept what they are told to believe and they continue to ask questions going deeper and deeper into the minutest details until we ourselves say “I don’t know”. This quote challenges us to wonder how much deeper we can look into something and how much we, as the human race, still do not know and may never know about the universe.

TroyW said...

This quote takes a bit to think about but I think Carl Sagan is trying to say that the world has an infinite amount of wisdom that we can always learn from. But he is also saying that as we grow older we stop questioning and just accept whats happening. This gives us less of an opportunity to learn. He is saying that we need to keep open minded and continue asking questions to learn more.

Kaitlyn said...

I think it's sad to think that kids have more imagination and question more than adults. You would think as we get older we would try to discover as much as possible but we don't even look into or question the simple things in life. We just tend to just go through life without wondering why certain things happen the way we do. It would be crazy how much we could discover if every person questioned everything that a little kid does and solve it. We rely to much on technology to find our answers to things instead of using our own minds. When you think about it technology is more smart than us. Which is a scary thought. We go to technology to tell us instead of experiencing unlike little kids who want to explore and experience it.

MCornejo08011 said...

I believe that we all have asked a simple question about the sun or the world when we were younger, but now that we have been educated about the world, we do not ask these questions anymore. Carl Sagan says " few of us spend much time wondering why nature is the way it is" but I don't think this is accurate, because we have been taught many things about the world and so we no longer ask these question either because we roughly have an idea of how it is or that we simply know enough that we don't care to ask anymore.

Robert D said...

I believe that this quotation makes the reader think, but in the end is pointless. Even though it is true, as very few people spend their time contemplating the way gravity works, or how crazy it is that were all made up of smaller individual parts, it doesn't really matter. Their is nothing we can change about these things, only that they are facts that we have to accept. Why would a people like us spend time on such trivial thoughts, nature has certain laws. No matter how much we want pigs to fly, it is impossible for that to happen.

Savannah P said...

Curiosity is key to our imagination. As we get older we lose our sense of wonder but in that process we gain va filter. Many of us lose our sense of our wonder but some few still have curiosity and somehow that imagination make us better in some ways. Sometimes I ask myself where has the sense of wonder gone? Curiosity gives us a better outlook on life.

Nick P said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Nick P said...

I think that the quotation seems to be underlying the fact that, when we were in our early stages of youth curiosity makes the world seem bigger as well as more fascinating. This is one thing that is wonderful about the human condition, because it doesn't honestly matter your age you will still be fascinated by something or ponder things that you don't seem to understand. As said by Sagan "there are ultimate limits to what humans can know" I find this message to be contradictory towards how we are as the human race. There is actually no possible limit to what humans can know. I say this because as people we are adventurous and are a species that is in a never-ending look for answers weather it were to be from the youth, elderly, and everyone in-between. I don't think that we have ever stopped wondering about things, I just have the feeling that we are to afraid be the one to ask something we don't have a grasp of knowing. So I come to this conclusion that every new discovery started with question. we can take others advice brush off the idea, or we could have the desire to find the answer.

Kristion M said...

I think a lot of people do loose some of their childlike curiosity as they get older, but I don't think they loose it entirely. If people did loose it all together we would never been any to make any advancements or discoveries becasuse nobody would think there is anyhting else to do besides what we already knew. Without curiosity humans would know nothing.

JustinSouser said...

The reason that kids question tings and we don't is because we have boundaries, they have not been thought that yet. We have the right of mind not to ask questions like that and not to let things fall out of our mouths uncontrollably. We are around these things all the time, that we don't feel the need to question it, it is just there.

Trevor J said...

This quotation is very interesting to me. One thing that stood out to me was how it sort compared the sun to a machine. It was interesting because when I think of machinery, I think of the Industrial Revolution and the pollution that came with it, which is opposite of sunlight. However, I think this comparison was made to suggest that the sun is like a machine for how it is always working the same. My thoughts on the part where it argues that humans don't think enough about why things are the way they are, are in disagreement. I don't think that people don't think enough about it. I am not sure what would come from this thinking. When I am sitting and thinking, I think about things that are much more relevant to my life, instead of contemplating something that might not even have an answer. But then again, I am a math type of guy, meaning that I like having answers. -Trevor Johnson

FischerC2016 said...

I feel as if the human brain is not curious enough about what this earth has to offer. I believe we accept the boring reality that is given to us and don’t ask enough questions. I also feel that a when you are a child, you want to learn things about the world. You are not content with what is given to you and you want to know more about the world you live in. I wish this is how humans were all the time, curious about the world we live in. I believe that if we asked more questions we would learn more things and be fascinated by figuring out what we didn’t know. In the end, I believe that as a child, our minds are not mature enough to be content with what is given to us, and I believe that is how our minds should be our whole life.

ZWikle-0529-1 said...

Why I think everyone but kids don't really questions things for everyday life because we have been around a lot longer than kids and we are used to all these everyday things like "the machinery that generates the sunlight" or "the gravity that glues us to an Earth that would otherwise send us spinning off into space" it something that happens all the time and we are all used to it. It's and everyday habit and people have jobs, school, sports, after school activity's and just our lives to live we don't have time to stop and question all these things. Kids they don't really have to do anything to do except sit there and think about all these little things no one else questions. they're new to the world they really wander how all these things happen and how it all works, they're just curious how the world really works.

Shena G said...

Stephen Hawking always had a fascination with time and how it works - that's why he is such a great scientist. Scientists look to explain phenomena with mathematical equations and scientific observations. Bards of ancient Greece had the same ideals, but they used their imagination to explain events that were, at that time, unexplainable. They had a theory of how things work, just like Stephen Hawking has theorized concepts of time. But throughout history, not everyone had the familiarity with theories to make one that is plausible. Not everyone has the mind for theories, many have more pressing matters to worry about than why we have seasons or why we don't float off the earth - like where our next meal with come from, or even mundane things likes getting a good grade on a test or 20 likes on a Facebook post. It depends on individual fascination as to what each individual will accomplish.