We live in turbulent times. Politically, accusations of lies are thrown in both directions. A new term has entered our lexicon to capture this idea: Fake News. Everyone seems to bemoan the lack of truth in our conversation.
We want truth, from our politicians, from corporations, from family members. But can we recognize truth when we are exposed to it?
It has gotten to the point that two different people can observe the same event, and have different beliefs about what occurred. How can these two viewpoints be reconciled? Is one “true” and the other “false”? Or are they both some combination of true and false? And if so, how can you hope to convince each that the other is right, at least a little bit?
We live in a complicated world, and making sense of it with information coming from a variety of different sources is a new challenge, unique to this era. Before we are able to separate out a factual statement from a lie, we have to know what “truth” is, how to recognize and evaluate it, and how to store and share it with others.
Does truth depend on what you already believe? Is it relative, or absolute? What is truth?
Related questions: How do you know who to trust? When is a lie justified? How much of our thoughts are our own? What is necessary to change your mind? When is doubt helpful? What beliefs do you have that might be wrong?
Between instant-gratification and delayed-gratification, which do you prefer? Would you like something now, or save it until later?
Share why if you wish.
If just ten words could describe you, what would they be?
Share why if you wish.
The political discourse in the United States — and really, at many places all over the world — has gotten to be very negative. In times like this, to avoid becoming too depressed, it is important to remember the kindness that has been shown to you.
People can be kind in small ways or in large. Little things can help make your day a little better. And, of course, great acts of kindness can change the course of your entire life.
What is the kindest thing someone has done for you? How did you repay that kindness? What is the kindest thing you have done for someone else?
Related questions: What are our responsibilities to others? What does it mean to be thankful? What makes a community? How can we appreciate life more?
Friendship is something that everyone deals with. Even if you don’t have many — or any — friends, you probably have a pretty good idea of what you look for in a friend, even if only subconsciously.
There are many characteristics that someone might have in order to be considered a friend. Loyalty, perhaps. Being a good listener. Fun, thoughtful, networked, outgoing, goofy, shared interests, shared experiences, smart, a good conversationalist.
Of all the possible traits that a friend might have, which one is most important to you?
What makes a good friend?
To help uncover what’s important to you regarding friendship, think about these questions:
- If you think about the close friends you have, is there some trait that they have in common?
- What, if anything, does what you look for in a friend have to do with your experiences and your past?
- If you’ve had a friendship come to an end, was there something lacking that caused it to fail?
Related questions: Why do we care what strangers think of us? What makes a community? Who is the most important person in your life? Who inspires you?