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ToK Presentation by Kaila Lariviere, Julia Engelien, and Jessica Cuttin

Pakistani girl shot for education

Kaila Lariviere

on 4 January 2014

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Transcript of ToK Presentation by Kaila Lariviere, Julia Engelien, and Jessica Cuttin

On October 9, 2012,
14 year old Malala Yousufzai
was shot by the Taliban for the right to an education

Real Life Situation
Background Information
How are personal beliefs impacted by human sciences and ethical reasoning?
Laws set up by authoritative figures heavily influence moral standards of society due to:
Malala Yousufzai was
shot in the head by the Taliban in northern Pakistan's Swat Valley on October 9, 2012. She was shot for promoting female educational rights.

According to USA Today, the Taliban have threatened to target her again for promoting "Western Thinking."

Though the doctors believe she will fully recover, Malala has become the poster child for women's rights throughout the world.
Personal Beliefs:
- Morals & Ethics
- Religion

Human Sciences
-Authoritative Figures
Morals and Ethics
The classic question of what is right and what is wrong comes into play when speaking about morals and ethics. What may seem morally ethic to one person may be completely frowned upon in a different culture.
Government and Social Status

Since government holds so much power, it is hard to overthrow their authoritative institutions

Their laws and structures become widely accepted

- Gender Superiority/Inferiority
- Women and Men

- Racial Superiority/Inferiority
- Slavery
- Scramble for Africa
- Aryan Race
Many children inherit their family's religion. Though some children in their adult years chose what religion they want to follow if any; many continue the practice of their family's religion.

*Influences ethical values

-Though some religions have their cons, religion can have positive effects on society (ie. community service, guidelines for what is right and wrong etc)
-"Catholic Guilt"
Basic Facts on Pakistani religion:
*97% Muslim (77%Sunni, 20%Shia)
*3% Christian/Hindi/Other

A country with a strong majority of a certain religion in effect, can play a part in how a country conducts business.

*Creates stratified views throughout the world
* A person's opinion can be easily destroyed

-People agreeing with authority or trusting authority
-This happens when individual ideas line up with those posed by authority
- When an individual believes that authority is correct even if they may not agree
Example 1:
I raise service dogs and I agree with the ideals and standards posed by the administration, so I fully commit myself to the organization.
Many deeply religious people may rely on their religion as the sole leader throughout the world...a leader that is always right and never wrong
If religion is the leader, than the followers become the religion's population

Religion can become an aspect of tradition in many cultures

Then it spirals into a mess (ie. loss of voice)

Therefore, religion in any shape or form can be detrimental to one's own beliefs that we form.
Authority Does Not Affect Personal Beliefs
Example 2:
In America, a majority of citizens share the same ideals as those promised in the constitution such as the freedom of speech or the right to bare arms.
- Successful fear tactics

-Fear is the best persuasion because people want to avoid harm or punishment.
Stalin and the NKVD (his secret police)- it conducted extrajudicial executions, suppressed underground resistance, and other various acts that scared many citizens into supporting Stalin.
Example 2:
Stanley Milgrim's experiment on obedience to authority showed that if someone perceived to have a high position of authority tells you to do something, despite beliefs, a majority of people will do it.
Laws set up by authoritative figures do not heavily influence moral standards of society because:
Spiritual vs Societal Authorities
And their Effects on Beliefs
Distance Decay

-Distance Decay refers to the decrease or loss of similarity between two observations as the distance between them increases

-Therefore, as somebody gets geographically further away from the source of authority, their beliefs are less influenced by them.

My parents are against texting while eating, so I refrain. Yet, when I go away without them, I will text and eat because the authoritative figure forbidding me is further away.
Individuals do not let the government dictate their beliefs and morals

- They are usually referred to as the "Radicals" or "Extremists" because they refuse to compromise their individual ideals for those of authority.
Our personal beliefs can be shaped by our cultures

*Malala's personal beliefs strayed from the norm causing external forces (Strict Islamic Followers) (Though authoritative ones) to stop her thinking from spreading through out the rest of the Islamic culture

*Thus, many people are influenced by their culture
Culture can be a source that people turn towards for justifying something as morally good, or morally bad


*A grounds for truth
Example 1:
The librarian and the boom box.
Example 2:
The Radical Republicans during the Civil War were the ones promoting emancipation from the beginning
Although you may try to avoid being influenced by society, you will be affected, to at least some extent, by
- religion
- family
- culture
- authority
and these will shape your beliefs, values, and behavior.
- One's loyalty to his or her own country
- If you are loyal to your country, you decide to obey the country's laws and structures
- These laws and structures you follow shape your beliefs and decisions
Spiritual Authority
Societal Authority
Authority Based on Wealth
- Since you will always be inferior to your spiritual leader, you obey their moral laws and adhere to their principles
- Ten Commandments
- Karma
Societal Authority
- The majority of society wins
- Revolution
-Class, wealth, power is materialistic
- Free will
- "The ultimate authority must always rest with the individual's reason and critical analysis." - Dalai Lama

- Spiritual authority and societal authorities may conflict, thus making your personal beliefs superior to both
- 21 Legal Drinking Age
- Martin Luther
Spiritual Authority
- There is no spiritual authority and humanity is the highest "authority" there is
-Atheism - the theory or belief that God does not exist

- The idea that nothing is known or can be known of the existence or nature of God
- Agnosticism
Authoritative Figure:
An authoritative figure is an individual cited or appealed to as an expert.

Presidents are regarded as experts in the political field

The Pope is regarded as an expert of biblical knowledge
Full transcript