Religious Studies

Keeping a Daily Journal on Module

You are required to keep a daily journal during the module. This journal will be collected by Dr. Otto each week and assigned a grade. This journal is not intended to be your “personal diary”. Instead, each daily entry must reflect all of the following elements:

  • Detailed account of your encounters throughout the day. Do not write about what you ate, how you slept or your current health status. Instead, focus on the types of interactions you experienced throughout the day. Focus on details. If you attended a lecture or other presentation, it would be most appropriate to include your notes in this section of your entry.
  • Analyze your detailed account of the day with the use of 1) Introduction to Tibetan Buddhism and 2) Religions of Northern India. Make explicit references to both texts, with a greater emphasis placed on Power’s book. By the end of the trip, your daily entries should convince me that you read both books in their entirety.
  • If the encounters of the day do not lend themselves to such analysis (such as the 37 hrs. of flying time to Delhi, days spend at the hotel, sick days or travel days), use this section to analyze one chapter of Introduction to Tibetan Buddhism. An analysis is not a book report. Elizabetta Le Jeune, Instructor on English at Southeastern Louisiana University, describes the steps of a critical analysis on her web site in the following manner:
  1. Identify the author's thesis and purpose
  2. Analyze the structure of the passage by identifying all main ideas
  3. Define unfamiliar terms
  4. Make an outline of the work or write a description of it
  5. Write a brief summary of the work
  6. Determine the purpose which could be
    1. To inform with factual material
    2. To persuade with appeal to reason or emotions
    3. To entertain (to affect people's emotions)
  7. Evaluate the means by which the author has accomplished his purpose
    1. If the purpose is to inform, has the material been presented clearly,accurately, with order and coherence?
    2. If the purpose is to persuade, look for evidence, logical reasoning,contrary evidence
    3. If the purpose was to entertain, determine how emotions are affected: does it make you laugh, cry, angry? Why did it affect you?
  8. Consider the following questions: How is the material organized? Who is the intended audience? What are the writer's assumptions about the audience? What kind of language and imagery does the author use?
    Critical Analysis
  • Write about two instances of “culture clash” you experienced during the day. What do I mean by this term? Simply put: two encounters or observations you had during the day when you became aware that your own cultural assumptions were not shared by persons in India. Be specific about your own assumption and what you perceived to be the assumptions of the other. You also should explore possible reasons why such differences appear. Other questions to consider in this section:
  1. In what ways is this culture distinct from mainstream United States society?
  2. In what ways is this culture similar to mainstream United States society?
  3. What insights into the target culture do you now have that you did not have before this experience?
  4. How did this interaction make you think critically about your own culture?

Upon returning home, you will be required to submit a completed “Intercultural Credit Reflection” form. You will notice the need to replicate this section of your daily entries.

You must successfully complete the Daily Journal assignment to pass the module. You must also submit a complete and acceptable “Intercultural Credit Reflection” form to receive Intercultural Credit for this module.

If you are doing the Service Learning component, on the days appropriate, respond to the following questions:

  1. Why did you chose to engage this component of the Module?
  2. Describe your Service Learning Experience.
  3. In what specific manner did your work enhance the lives of others?
  4. To what extent did your experience enhance or affect your own life?
  5. How did your work help your Learning Partner achieve their goal(s)?
  6. After this experience, how would you define "civic responsibility"?

When you return home, you will be required to fill out a Community Program Assessment; use your daily journal responses to assist you in completing this task. Remember: you must log at least 27 hours of service while on this module.