Exploring the Questions

We live in a world that thrives on and values answers. Our formal school systems often promote the idea that success has to do with
"getting the right answers." We are rewarded for arriving at the right answer; we are penalized for getting the wrong answer.

While there are many times when answers are very desirable and
important to have, they tend to end discussions rather than open
them up and deepen them.

The art of thoughtful and reflective questioning is part of what philosophical
inquiry is all about. It's what this CoP is all about. Join us as we tackle some
of the big questions of life.

The questions posed here will ideally be open-ended and will challenge us
to consider our perspectives, our assumptions and the life experiences that
we bring.

As an introduction and, hopefully, an inspiration, here is one of my favourite
poets on the value of questioning:

I would like to beg you dear Sir, as well as I can, to have patience with
everything unresolved in your heart and to try to love the questions themselves
as if they were locked rooms or books written in a very foreign language.

Don't search for the answers, which could not be given to you now, because
you would not be able to live them. And the point is to live everything.

Live the questions now.

Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it,
live your way into the answer.

Rainer Maria Rilke, 1903
in Letters to a Young Poet
Resources

Society for Philosophical Inquiry (Christopher Phillips)
The Three Questions by Leo Tolstoy

Blogs of CoP Members

Stephen Hurley: http://www.teachingoutloud.org
About Your Guide: Stephen Hurley

I haven't always been a good questioner. In fact, in my own growing up, I remember
being encouraged to accept the answers that were given--without question! Well, that
part of my life has changed and now I find that it's really all about the questions!

As a parent, I encourage my two young children to explore their world and ask as many
questions as they want. Although they are still quite young, we're starting to engage in
"question games" around the dinner table, the "winner" being the one who can come up
with the best question about something that we see.

As a teacher, I have attempted to organize my classroom around critical questions, alternative perspectives and new ways of seeing things.

Like so many that have taken this route, I believe that, without the questions, we have no
compass.
Without a compass...well, you know the rest!


Joining the Exploring the Questions CoP

If you are interested in possibly joining this CoP please contact me at the following email address.

stephen.hurley@teachingoutloud.org