Balance of Values and Academic Freedom of Inquiry


Dear Mr. R. Kirby Godsey,
In the process of life we face many challenges and many
crossroads. We have many choices and many decisions to make.
In making these decisions we must keep in mind the moral
values our parents have taught us since we were born. Those
Christian values should guide our lives and the choices we
make. These same values should also guide at school as well. In
our pursuit of knowledge, we should keep these values in mind.
In our never-ending road of learning, we are granted with
many academic freedoms. We have the freedom to question and
try to learn new ideas. We also have the freedom to disagree
with the material presented to us. We can disagree and voice our
opinions, but in an orderly fashion.
In exercising those freedoms, we should do so with
maturity and responsibility. As students, we are responsible for
learning all the content of any course we study. We are free to
take exception to the views or information presented to us, and
we are free to reserve judgment about matters of opinions.
Sometimes, in our quest for knowledge, there becomes a
conflict between our beliefs we are accustomed to and the
material presented to us. When there is a difference, we should
not ignore the idea or block it out. We should feel free to learn
and question new ideas. Just because we learn something
doesn’t mean we have to accept it. We should leave ourselves
open to new ideas. When we do this we become very well
rounded individuals.
An example of this is the issue involving the debate
between evolution and creationism. As Christians, we naturally
believe in creationism, but we shouldn’t stop learning about
evolution because we don’t believe in it. This makes us very
close minded. We shouldn’t stop learning about a subject just
because we don’t believe in it. One of our freedoms is the
academic freedom of inquiry. This means we have freedom to
question. We have the freedom to learn. We can still search for
more answers, and we can learn different theories and still keep
our beliefs. The trick in doing this is to balance all of this. We
must be able to keep our beliefs and new ideas presented
separated. We must be able to draw a line between what you
learn and what you believe. In doing this we become open
minded individuals.
I believe if we can balance our values and our academic
freedom of inquiry we have reached a whole new level of
learning. Not many people can do this. It is hard to want to learn
material presented to us that you don’t particularly care for or
believe in. When we learn to do this we are open to a whole new
world of possibilities.
I feel I have learned how to keep my morals and beliefs,
while continuing my search for new ideas and information. I feel
I have learned to balance these. I have found the line between
the two , and I know when too far is too far. Since Mercer is a
place where I can feel free to open myself to new doors and
express my beliefs, I feel I would blend into the Mercer
environment very well. I am open to new ideas and want to
learn. I want to get the best education I can get and Mercer is the
place where I can get it. I am willing to learn as much as I can,
whether it is spiritually, academically, or intellectually.
Sincerely,
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Category: English