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I. INSTRUCTIONS Note the due date! Feel free to turn this in early – but remembe

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I. INSTRUCTIONS Note the due date! Feel free to turn this in early – but remembe

I. INSTRUCTIONS Note the due date! Feel free to turn this in early – but remember that you need to turn one paper in before spring break (by March 8) unless you write on Buddhism, then you have until March 20. NOTE: You may also use this for Reflection Paper 2, but ONLY if you have also written on an Indigenous Religion or Hinduism by March 8. For your reflection paper, you will write 3 pages (but no less than 2 very full pages) or 750-1000 words, not counting the Works Cited. Choose one of the following topics. For any of the Buddhism topics, you need to demonstrate an understanding of the following sources of information: 1) any relevant material from the Lectures in the Buddhism unit that we studied, 2) Prothero’s chapter on Buddhism, 3) Ninian Smart’s framework for the Seven Dimensions of Religion (see the Works Cited below for bibliographic information), and 4) Flannery’s definition of religion. You might also choose to include 5) additional research on the topic, found through the ATLA database on the library website. (Note: you may or may not choose to do additional research – this is primarily an argumentative reflection paper and not a research paper). If a video is indicated below for a particular topic, be sure to include that as well, both in the essay and in the Works Cited. II. RESEARCH STEPS: a) First, you want a solid general grounding, so make sure you know the Buddhism lectures well and the Prothero book chapter on Buddhism fairly well (there will still probably be some sections that do not apply). b) Recall Ninian Smart’s Seven dimensions of religion (read to the end for more info on this): 1.Ritual 2.Narrative and Mythic 3.Experiential [Note: This does NOT say “experimental”! Think emotions, moods, experiences, even mystical experiences]. 4.Social 5.Ethical and Legal 6.Doctrinal and philosophical 7.Material (objects and places) c) Recall Flannery’s working definition for Religion: “Religion is a way of making sense of world, conceptually constructing the cosmos (this world as well as other worlds) and determining one’s proper relationship to that world.” Note that it is a working definition – a work in progress, as it is admittedly got deficiencies. It works in some situations, but doesn’t cover everything. For instance, it does not convey the idea that “all religion is local” or defined by particular smaller communities, it doesn’t capture whether this is individual or collective, etc. This is just a starting place! d) Choose a topic below. e) If you need an additional source, go here: (www.jmu.edu/library) then click Databases. Choose ATLA. This has 3 million articles on RELIGION and will be a far better use of your time than JSTOR, WorldCat, etc. (But JSTOR isn’t bad! Feel free to try it if you have no luck on ATLA). Note that you do NOT need an additional source. I’d rather you just concentrate on Prothero and my lectures and the sources listed under each topic. f) However, if you are examining a recent event for your paper and you want to use the internet to find a news source, you’ll need to use only reputable news sources. Follow these directions carefully: For this assignment, you must only rely on two kinds of resources from the internet: First Hand Sites (published by representatives of the community you are researching), or Reliable News Sources – meaning that they have a good reputation and have a middle of the road bias. See the AdFontes media chart (https://adfontesmedia.com/interactive-media-bias-chart/Links to an external site.) and enter your source. A middle of the road bias can “Skew Left” or “Skew Right,” but not skew “Strong Left” or “Strong Right,” or be Hyperpartisan, etc. Your news source must also score over a 35.0 in Reliability. SPECIAL NOTE: If you do use a News Source from the Internet, you must put the AdFontes location for it in the Works Cited, as in this fictional example that follows: Avigna, Sally. “Lahaina Residents Still Need Housing.” Honolulu Civil Beat, Issue 112, Sept. 27, 2023. (Reliability 48.12; Bias – 3.46). g) As you are going through these materials and taking notes, you’ll start to craft a working thesis – the main argument you think you’ll make. Research is a recursive process – it feeds back on itself repeatedly – and your continued research should generate a working thesis or angle on your topic that becomes more and more refined as you continue to write. III. CRAFTING THE THESIS PARAGRAPH The introductory or thesis paragraph – needs to tie together everything in the paper. Start with a working thesis. Then, you’ll refine the thesis over and over as your research deepens and as your argument becomes more refined. The thesis should be MESONIC (framework by Dr. Anathea Portier-Young of Duke University). If a Meson is a sub-atomic particle in an atom that binds everything together, then the MESONIC thesis: Makes a claim, is Evidence based, is Specific, shows Originality (in the way you put everything together), is Not obvious, is Interesting (to you!! start there!!), and is Contestable by someone intelligent (VERY IMPORTANT). Once you have your thesis paragraph, each subsequent paragraph develops or proves that thesis step by step. In a three page paper you’ll probably have at least three paragraphs in the body, maybe more. An additional, important note on structure: In this kind of argumentative reflection paper, you should make the first sentence of each paragraph the topic sentence, a mini-thesis that explains what step of the argument you are on and that ties together the whole paragraph. Regardless of what you were taught before, avoid making this a quote, because it should be the summative statement on the contents of the whole paragraph, and the topic sentence should also relate back to the thesis. Next, every sentence in the paragraph should develop that topic sentence, with evidence. The Evidence comes from the sources mentioned above. You’ll need to include a CITATION in parentheses for every specific piece of information drawn from the source. The Conclusion is not a word for word restatement of the thesis. Rather, it is the final paragraph that wraps up the essay by gesturing back to the thesis and exploring further implications of the argument you’ve made. Discuss the “so what?” here. Why did this even matter? This section is probably the one that requires the most experience and artistry, so feel free to see me. Finally, do not forget the Works Cited! Use MLA or Chicago format, and don’t forget to include all the sources I indicated above! IV. THE TOPICS NOW – Choose one of the following topics to reflect upon more deeply. Using TWO dimensions drawn from Ninian Smart’s Seven Dimensions of Religion (for instance, myth and ritual, or experiential and social) as well as Flannery’s Definition of Religion, choose one of the following topics to reflect upon more deeply: On the JMU LIBRARY website (www.jmu.edu/library), watch the rest of the film Unmistaken Child, about the process for selecting a tulku in the Vajrayana tradition. Analyze this film and relate it to what you learned in this unit, forming your own thesis or claim. Be sure to bring Flannery’s Definition of Religion and two dimensions of religion (from Smart’s framework) into your essay. Listen to a particular sermon / interview with Thich Nhat Han, a Vietnamese monk who represents both the Theravadan and Zen traditions, called “Healing is Possible at Every Moment.” Search youtube for “Healing is Possible at Every Moment / Thich Nhat Hanh 2013.03.10” or try this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yzCWBpS67jg. (Should be fine – I checked it!). You might also want to go to the website of the monastic community in France that he founded: https://plumvillage.org/about/thich-nhat-hanh. Analyze this talk “Healing is Possible at Every Moment” and relate it to what you learned in this unit, forming your own thesis or claim. Be sure to bring Flannery’s Definition of Religion and two dimensions of religion (from Smart’s framework) into your essay. V. ADDITIONAL NOTES ON MECHANICS: Double space the paper, use 12 point Times New Roman font, and include a standard Works Cited and in text parenthetical citations in MLA or Chicago style notation. Also be sure to include the textbook and lectures! You can simply put (Flannery lecture 10/1/24) in the text and then: Flannery, Frances. Lectures for REL 101: Introduction to Religions of the World. Spring Term 2024, James Madison University, Harrisonburg, Virginia. Note the class rule about Chat GPT and other AI aids (Find this under Files). Anything beyond spellcheck is considered plagiarism! Note that our system detects Chat GPT and other AI apps. (Plus, it will generate a horrible paper, because those apps haven’t had this course). Remember – for research, go to the Library website and the Databases tab, and go to ATLA. This is likely to have more than the first tab, which are the library holdings, but try both. I would highly recommend combing ATLA and not other databases not focused on Religion. For Smart’s Seven Dimensions of Religion, cite the following: Smart, Ninian. 2nd ed. 1998 [1992]. The World’s Religions. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 14-22. Our Library has the book, but unfortunately not online. With just one copy available for check-out, I can’t require the reading. If you want to read it, however, we are very fortunate that Google Books provides an excerpt and it includes these pages! Go to books.google.com and search for it or try this link: https://books.google.com/books?id=alR2yK-4WdQC&printsec=frontcover#v=onepage&q&f=falseLinks to an external site..

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