Philosophy Critical Thinking Assignment
Complete this assignment by first reading the passage below; and secondly, by responding to each prompt below the passage with one to two well-developed paragraphs. (Longer well-thought answers tend to be better answers).
Use complete sentences to express complete thoughts (giving reasons and explanations) to demonstrate your understanding of the lesson material. Your response to each is worth from 0-5 points.
For what is time? Who can easily and briefly explain it? Who even in thought can comprehend it, even to the pronouncing of a word concerning it? But what in speaking do we refer to more familiarly and knowingly than time? And certainly we understand when we speak of it; we understand also when we hear it spoken of by another. What, then, is time? If no one ask of me, I know; if I wish to explain to him who asks, I know not. Yet I say with confidence, that I know that if nothing passed away, there would not be past time; and if nothing were coming, there would not be future time; and if nothing were, there would not be present time. Those two times, therefore, past and future, how are they, when even the past now is not; and the future is not as yet? But should the present be always present, and should it not pass into time past, time truly it could not be, but eternity. If, then, time present — if it be time — only comes into existence because it passes into time past, how do we say that even this is, whose cause of being is that it shall not be — namely, so that we cannot truly say that time is, unless because it tends not to be?
–Augustine of Hippo, Confessiones lib xi, cap xiv, sec 17 (ca. 400 CE)
1. Analysis: Select one idea/position/argument from the passage above, then explain it in your own words.
2. Evaluation: Concerning the selected idea/position/argument in #1, what do want to challenge or agree with? Explain your reasons.
3. Apply: Relate (compare/contrast/apply) the selected idea/position/argument in #1 to a real or hypothetical situation in life?
4. Create: Illustrate the selected idea/position/argument in #1 by creating one of the following: a ‘thought experiment’; an original idea for a movie, TV series, video game, performance, book, a story for children, or by any other creative means. Have some fun but stick to the idea. You may also propose and argue for a new understanding, theory, or concept regarding the author’s topic of the nature of time.
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