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  1. It is with sincere regret and reluctance, that I must inform you of my decision to drop my World religion class, from the Spring 2011 schedule. I arrived at this decision, after in-depth consideration of what I perceive versus possible benefits by remaining.

    The nature of this action stems from multiple issues. First, there is a distinct absence of enrollees as the class proceeds, Beginning at around 20, it dropped precipitously to only 4 as of the most recent class date.

    In speculating why this is occurring, I believe that it is multi factorial. First, the class had not related to the catalog description. What was implied to be a lecture format, had from the beginning altered into a restrictive discussion. Second, using a specific text (which described by the instructor as deep and difficult to interpret) the class attempts to answer and relate to 10 questions (from an ancillary study guide of the text). The questions correlate to a paragraph, sentence or word specified by page number, within the text.
    Third, the attempt at discussion is encumbered by rigid criteria set forth by the instructor at the initial class meeting. Discussion, as such, needs to relate to the instructor’s preconceived interpretations what is being conveyed by the author. Being a critical reader, and using critical interpretation of what I read, to formulate a relationship with what I perceive to be conveyed, I find it increasingly painful to offer an opinion which may not conform to what the instructor had previously considered. Therefore, what should be free and open which by the very nature of the topic must vary by individuals, is narrowed and confined to conform to the instructor’s preferences.

    I cannot directly fault the instructor, for who does not cherish agreement on one’s interpretation or stance on a topic. Yet, this hardly allows stimulating discussion. Indeed, is it not the nature of religion (and politics) to being unique to the whims, beliefs and views of every person. And so, rather than remain in an environment of stress adding upon a topic by it;s very nature as difficult to discuss without disagreement, I had made my decision to drop. To validate my feelings, I finally asked the instructor to simply related just one point however, great or small whereupon he disagrees or differs from the author. His response was “I cannot disagree with any of what he said”. Discussion closed!


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