Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Movie Night - Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman - The Tale Of Zatoichi



Song:  Montage Of Music From Naruto (Japanese Anime)




As Alex, and I, had a late dinner on Saturday...
and we were still very tired Sunday night from our Saturday ride...
and so, we watched our Movie Night movie, last night (Monday).

I pick films which carry a moral message for Alex, to not just watch...
but to critically think about...
to fully absorb...
and to incorporate into his life.

I question Alex as to what he thinks had happened and why...
on certain key segments of the movies we watch together.
If he misses a key concept...I explain it to him.

We watched "The Tale Of Zatoichi"...
which is the first of many Zatoichi films made...
and one of many we shall watch in the future.

The whole premise of the series is that of a technical outlaw...
 who is very moral.  Zatoichi is a wandering blind masseur, gambler...
and highly skilled swordsman.  

He often finds himself trapped in moral dilemmas...
where due to circumstances out of his control...
he must use his sword to protect his life...
and those of the good and innocent...
and to sometimes have to fight other moral men
due to an incorrectly prioritized set of values or ethics overriding morals...
on the other's part.



In this particular movie...
Zatoichi had met a moral...and highly skilled swordsman...
and due to circumstances... had to end
the fond relationship they had forged due to mutual respect...
in a final battle of mortal combat.

It was also a tale of a love of Zatoichi by a woman
who he knew he could not have suffer in life because of his lifestyle...
and so, out of caring, had to leave her so she could eventually 
find her happiness in life with another.

I was raised on such films as Zatoichi.
The moral messages in many of the Samurai films...
leave a lasting impression on young men...
especially when they are looking for answers to moral questions.

I have always loved the good triumphing over evil aspect of these films...
however, it is goes much deeper than this.

These stories also reflect some of the most honorable aspects in humans...
those of respect and love...
those of deep caring for others...
not so much in words...
but in actions...
of the unwillingness to compromise that which is right...
of the unswerving commitment to high morals...even in the face of death.

I have already taught Alex the difference among...
Morals...
Values...
and Ethics.

I stress that morals must be the overall guide in life...
and that they must reign supreme if there is any conflict among them.

That, although Alex must try to explain to others...
 the moral justification for his future actions...
he need not wait for their approval...
he must not sacrifice an action which would result
in a moral result, just to gain that approval.

I also stress that, in the end, it is the actions of a person
effecting a moral outcome, which is the most important.


It is important that Alex realizes that he never need compromise morals to live life...
that in fact...to truly live life...
he must live morally. 



Why live morally?

To truly know and love others...and life...
you must truly know and love yourself.

To truly know and love yourself...
you must have examined life.

To truly examine life...
you must know right and wrong.

To know right and wrong...
and to have the strength to choose that of right over wrong...
is to know freedom.

To know freedom is to own true beauty in life.

You will fully experience colors...
hear the purity of sounds...
feel and sense everything around you...
to a depth and clarity that is unknown to those without freedom.

Every sunrise...
every sunset...
every mountain you see...
becomes yours.



Life is merely existing without freedom.

There is no freedom where values or ethics override morals.


To bow to immoral societal values...
or the ethics of professions...
to the detriment of morals...
is to imprison yourself.

I also want Alex to know that just to have a moral heart...
is not enough.

He must develop the strength to, not only resist any 
negative pressure to capitulate to the immoral...
or to be lured from a moral path by temptation...
he must become strong enough to protect those in life 
who cannot protect themselves...
that he must do his utmost to ensure 
a moral outcome in the lives of those he loves.

Just as in everything else in life...
you must have a will...and a way.

The morals give the will...
strength gives the way.

To not prepare for a battle of good over evil...
is to desert all of whom are good...
to be preyed upon by evil.

While this sometimes may lead to temporary suffering...
it is this sweet suffering (suffering for that of good)
 that gives the scale upon 
which true beauty and happiness
may be measured...
where the quality of each...
is greatly magnified.


To be willing to risk yourself for that of good...
especially in the protection of the innocent...
is to live with honor.

Too many people forgive themselves far too easily.
They think that by merely forgetting something...
and "moving on"...
 it will fix anything.

Time erases nothing.
It is only through honorable acts...
that past transgressions may be erased...
and a person may once again...live and love life.

The Zatoichi films demonstrate these crucial principles in life...
over and over, throughout his movies.


Most of all...
I wish for Alex to live and love life...with a passion.

Living life morally...
is a key to this happiness.











Monday, July 29, 2013

Alex's Paper On "The Shortcuts Of Calculus: Two Methods Of Differentiation And Integration" - IV



Song:  Arirang

Orchestra:  KBS Symphony Orchestra



This is the final article on Alex's guide to shortcuts in Calculus.











Alex really enjoys writing up guides of all sorts.

It is his hope that other students will be able to make use of it.

Tonight, after Alex completes his studies...
and his exercise routine...
we are going to finish watching a movie we had started last night.

It is the first movie in the series of Zatoichi films.

We will then watch more segments of the Korean TV Drama...
Winter Sonata.


Alex's Paper On "The Shortcuts Of Calculus: Two Methods Of Differentiation And Integration" - III



Song:  Ju Hua Tai

Orchestra:  Raffles Alumni Chinese Orchestra


This is the third article on Alex's guide to shortcuts to Calculus.

















and...there is one more article :)




Alex's Paper On "The Shortcuts Of Calculus: Two Methods Of Differentiation And Integration" - II



Song:  Rain In Spring

Performed By:  Wong Hui Wen and Raffles Alumni Chinese Orchestra


This is the second article of Alex's instructional paper on 
some shortcuts for Calculus.
















This paper continues in the next article.




Alex's Paper On "The Shortcuts Of Calculus: Two Methods Of Differentiation And Integration" - I



Song:  Spring On River Qing

Instrument:  Yangqin

Artist:  Unknown


Just a week ago...
Alex decided that he wanted to write up a guide on Calculus.

He will be submitting this paper when school 
starts again in a couple of weeks.

He hopes to receive extra credit for it.

Writing papers on various topics is one of Alex's hobbies.

Alex just did this in his free time after all of his normal studies...
and all of our activities were done
(he still had time to enjoy other things everyday).

He said that he didn't want to write it all up in a day or so...
as it would have seemed to be work instead of just enjoyment.

Alex decided to write this guide when he said he noticed
that he could make some shortcuts in calculus that he has never seen before
(not to say that they do not already exist...just that Alex came up with these
independent of any source.  He said that he analyzed for patterns and realized
a shortcut using factorials. Alex's shortcuts are described in figures 2-1 and 2-3
(in the next article...Pages 16 and 18).

Alex thought that by describing his shortcuts...
as well as other known shortcuts... 
he could help others who are learning Calculus.

Alex is almost finished with his Calculus II course at home.

As this paper is 55 pages long...
I will be spreading it out over many articles.

Alex is especially taken with the idea of, one day...
writing his Masters' and Doctoral Theses at University.

He considers this as preparation for
the completion of some of his objectives toward his goals.

Alex has been researching Doctoral Theses, and he hopes to, one day...
make some valuable contributions to the field of Math or Science.
















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