Sometimes when I’m feeling blue or when I felt that I slept at the wrong side of the bed, I take a long walk in our block just to get some perspective. There is no place like home and being away for a long time drowns me in a sea of loneliness. At first, the idea of me living thousand miles from the people that I hold dear is very difficult to swallow but something that my grandfather told me gave me a nudge to step out the door. He always says that tomorrow holds a big basket filled with different goodies life may bequeath and so I went in search for my fair share of adventure.
Ever since I left home I have been staying in an apartment in the city. It has become my habit to take a stroll in the park every afternoon and watch people pass by. Sometimes, people learn more by mere observing. Every afternoon I see this old couple by the bench on the opposite side of the park. They just sit there talking and sharing stories. Watching them tickled my heart and made me think of my grandparents from home. The families I see in the park, eating together, enjoying each others company makes me think of taking a trip right down my very own memory lane. Living away from home is a heartbreaker for me especially because I grew up in a big closely-knit family.
I miss my family. My mother is a very great woman. She’s a breath of fresh air and for me she always will be. She is always there to support me every time I feel that the world is out to get me. She is also the best cook in the world. With just a taste of her specialty, I can feel my palates awaking and craving for more. My father always knows the right thing to say and the best time to say them. He is my east and my west; he is my compass (Said What, 2006). Every time I felt unsure of taking another step in life I always talk to him and like a cool sea breeze he calms me down. My heart skips a beat every time I think of every body at home. My little sister, the apple of everybody’s eye, jumps for joy every time I bring something for her from the places that I have been. My grandfather never fails to put a smile on my face with his wonderful stories and adventures from when he was younger. Even after so many years, I never grew weary of listening to old folk’s story. Every winter, it’s our family’s tradition that everybody must share a story or two. We used to gather around the fire place with hot coco and marsh mallows. My grandfather used to talk about how he and my grandmother met. He said that it was love at first sight and that he had been in love with other women before but when he met my grandmother, she stole the spotlight from the others and they have been together ever since. Every time he talks about love he says that love is a delicate flower anticipating the warmth of spring.
Every family has that special something they pass down to their children and grandchildren and for ours that would be our very strong bond and love for each other. Every time vacation ends and I have to leave, tears are always snow-balling down my cheeks but I’d stop and cheer up in the end because I have the next vacation to look forward to.
When the day comes that I have to share something to my own children I would have to borrow the words of Forrest Gump, I would have to say that life is a box of chocolates, you’ll never know what you’re going to get, but the good thing is that whatever it is, your family always got your back.
Critical Thinking is the practice of conceptualization, analysis and of examination of carefully evaluated information. Critical thinking is diversified subject which cannot be found universal and uniform in individuals. Every person’s critical thinking skills and capabilities may sometimes be influenced by other elements such as motive, inspiration, experience. It can be said that critical thinking has a couple of major elements: a group of data and belief forming and processing skills and the habitual use of those skills in order to channel the behavior (Scriven & Paul, 1987).
Critical thinking utilizes a high level use of logic and reason in a rational perspective. Individuals who use critical thinking live their lives with reason and rationality as compared to others who exercise different forms of thinking. Critical thinkers are people who are never content living a mediocre life. They strive hard to make the world they live in a better place, recognizing that critical thinking is a life-long process. In the words of Socrates, the unexamined life is one which is not worth living (Elder, 2007).
Language is a diversified field in itself. There are verbal and non-verbal communications. Language plays a significant role in the critical thinking process because creates a pattern which translates what the brain thinks and how it does. It enables people to interpret and put their thoughts together (Kirby & Goodpaster, 2002). Language is major tool in communicating with other people, without it, it would be extremely difficult to get messages across. With the different languages used around the globe, it would be difficult to convey critical thinking information. It is not only varied as a communication tool but also in the choice of words. Critical thinking comes in picking the right words to say at the right time.
Language empowers the thoughts of the mind because it gives confidence that a person can fully communicate using such language. Language is thought empowering in the sense that if the words come out as soft and encouraging words, the most usual response would also be the same. It can also limit the expression when a person gets lost in translation or is just simply at loss for words. Losing ones self in translation happens when individuals communicating are unfamiliar with or are using different languages. Talking to someone who speaks another language is useless and it thereby restricts and limits the thought. Non-verbal communication is as relevant and significant as verbal communication. A perfect example would be the loving mother’s touch. Without saying anything, love can clearly be felt in the air. An artist can reveal his soul and passion using his paintings and other art works. Deaf and mute people communicate using facial expressions and sign languages.
Even if there are communication barriers, it is a fact that people need to interact with other being and this need for interaction act as a catalyst that finds ways to get through those barriers of communication.
Persuasion is an art and not everybody has the talent to change another persons mind. Persuading a person is getting him to consider the alternative, to think the way the other person wants him to think. In the art of persuasion, all angles should be covered and the topic, well-thought of. Trying to persuade someone involves a smooth and subtle plan and this is where the key elements of critical thinking come in. Choosing the right language is another element important in persuasion. Sometimes, it not what a person says but how he says it. The presentation of idea should also vary depending on the audience. Persuading a group of investors to consider the project proposal is different from persuading a child to go to school. Critical thinking to relay the message together with the right words and the body language are all key components in the art of persuasion.
A Working Definition of critical thinking. 1987. The Critical Thinking Community. Retrieved May 13, 2009, from http://lonestar.texas.net/~mseifert/crit2.html
Elder, L. 2007. Another Brief Conceptualization of Critical Thinking. The Critical Thinking Community. Retrieved May 13, 2009, from http://www.criticalthinking.org/aboutCT/define_critical_thinking.cfm
Kirby, G.R. & Goodpaster, J.R. 2002. Thinking (2nd ed.), Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall
Said What?. 2006. Metaphors. Retrieved May 13, 2009 from http://www.saidwhat.co.uk/spoon/metaphors.php