Friday, December 3, 2010

Weekly Summary 11/26/10 - 12/2/10, and Maybe Some Good News

I'm getting back on track! This week I managed to complete chapter thirteen of Good Calories, Bad Calories, completing a total of eight conceptual exercises for it; the final two chapters for The Journals of Ayn Rand, and only a portion of the fourth chapter of The Logical Leap since I simply ran out of time. I'm kind of proud of myself for having pushed ahead to complete Journals a little bit earlier, as it leaves vacant now a spot in my study curriculum. I did not get to transferring my recipes to a system of note cards as of yet, however, since I purchased the notecards too late in the week to allow time for it, so I'll do it next week. Overall, I'm proud of the effort I made this week. I think doing writing earlier in the day to relieve stress did help; I should continue it.

Now that I've completed Journals that would mean that a book review is coming up for it, but since reviewing chocolate is my specialty I think I'll backpedal on that goal and instead limit my thoughts to my weekly summaries. Overall, it's a very good book that details a lot of Rand's meticulously written notes to herself on various subjects, from things like ethics to writing outlines. This vast amount of variety, however, works against it in that if you hunger to deeply indulge n any one particular subject you'll be forced to adjust to the constant transitions between subjects. In hindsight this was a terrible thing for me to pick up and try to study, as the great variety of topics makes not for an integrated system of thought on any one thing. Probably the best thing you can pick up from it, which I have, is how to most effectively take notes. I really like how she uses the question method to tease out her thoughts.

Furthermore, this book has really helped me identify a significant error in my study methods, namely how I pick out my subjects. Previously I thought virtually everything was worthy of study, so if I were to choose something to read I automatically planned on meticulously studying it. This has not only led to wasted effort, but also to a lack of motivation, a slowing down of pace, and disdain for my studies. While some books may be good for one's thinking process it's not always the case that it'll make for good studying. Journals offers great insight on a wide array of things, but the variety itself eliminates any intimate integration between subjects and so leaves you with only so much to chew on at a time; hardly anything that could fill up a page of notes. I need to be a lot more careful in deciding which subjects to pick out for study and to make room for reading that isn't for formal study at all. I think the essential thing I've learned is to differentiate between educational and informative reading. Educational reading is systematic and integrated in what it tries to present and teach, whereas informative reading either merely relays information or else tries to teach in a non-systematic/non-integrated way. Journals qualifies as informative reading since it's non-systematic (but is integrated within its individual subjects). I may find this to be a false dichotomy later on, but I think it's good for now. This will help me decide whether I just want to read and think about a book's content or to bring out a pencil and paper and do a hard study of it.

So what will take the place of Journals now? I know I said that I'm eager to get back into my culinary studies, but given some uncertain aspects of my project I'd like to hold that off for a bit. The most recent edition of The Objective Standard is sitting on my coffee table right now, so I think I'll complete that first -- as an informative reading subject -- before I firmly commit myself to anything. Beyond that, I think I might take to Cyrano De Bergerac, as I haven't read any serious literature in a while and crave it. I know it'll be a little frustrating to continue putting off my culinary studies like this, but I don't know how well I could perform at such studies given the current situation I'm in, where my culinary endeavors are partially hindered. More thinking needs to be done.

Now -- what's that good news I mentioned in the title? Well, from someone's suggestion I have learned that it may not only be possible to complete my Project within the confines of my original aim, rather than compromise, but I may also be able to complete it with greater results and achieve multiple goals at once. It's ambitious, but I think the end result would be overwhelmingly valuable and joyous. I'm not sure yet if it's totally feasible, but if it is, then it's absolutely worth pursuing, even if it makes my Project take a little bit longer. It would advance me *greatly* in life and put me in a much healthier situation all the the same time. That I could get rid of the Circumstance and achieve multiple goals at the same time is like being showered with prizes. Oh the ecstasy might be unbearable!

Everything's still in the research and thinking phase; I haven't taken any actual steps towards pursuing this course, and it's possible it may not be feasible at all. I should talk to some people as well. We'll have to wait and see.

For this week I'll pursue to complete a section of every study subject, including reading at least one article from The Objective Standard; set up my recipe system, and reach a definitive decision as to whether or not I should pursue the means which would advance my Project in a better way.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comment Etiquette

1.) Do not use vulgar swear words that denote sexual activities or bodily excretions.

2.) Employ common sense manners when addressing the author or other commenters.

Additionally, you're welcome to present contrary and challenging positions within these guidelines, but please do not assume that my lack of response, even if I commented before, is evidence of my endorsement of your position.