Emily Bibb's Archive

Blog 6: Third Force Psychology

2 Commentsby   |  04.23.13  |  Student Posts

There are many things I appreciate about the Third Force Psychology movement including the idea that humans are free to choose their own type of existence (Third Force Psychology does not assume determinism when explaining human behavior). From a Christian lens, I believe that God has given us free will with a choice to either live under the Law he gave to Moses and the Israelites or to live under the law of Christ. In Romans 9, Paul says that we are given this choice through God’s mercy. The message throughout Romans is that we are justified by grace through our faith in Jesus Christ and that it is open for anyone to accept. The key to this is that if we accept all of this as truth, in God’s eyes we are deemed “not guilty” of our sins because of Jesus’ redemptive action. The way I see it, this lines up with the idea in Third Force Psychology that humans may choose their own path regardless of what science says or determines.

Another idea from Third Force Psychology that resonates with me is Carl Rogers’ view that experience is the highest authority. My housemates and I periodically watch a show on MTV called “Guy Code” (apologies for bad video quality) and have had many laughs while watching it. This tv show is an example of how the media shapes society by presenting an authority backed up by experience. The show is pretty ridiculous and at times offensive; it covers every topic that necessitates a code for guys to follow. The premise is that all of the people interviewed for the show have gained their knowledge through their own experiences. Although I do not necessarily agree with the tactfulness, much of what is said is true to some degree and I believe that is what attracts people to watch the show.

Blog 5: Psychoanalytic Theory

4 Commentsby   |  04.11.13  |  Student Posts

Mean Girls Cafeteria Tribes

In this video clip from Mean Girls, the character named Janis introduces the new girl, Cady (Lindsay Lohan), to the different groups of people that sit in the cafeteria. While thinking about this movie and the archetypes used to categorize the different characters, I decided to see if anyone else had ever considered this movie from the Carl Jung psychoanalytic perspective. I found a blog post that discusses the different archetypes of the main characters, calling Regina George (the leader of the “mean girls”) the “Popular Queen Bee” and Ms. Norbury, the character of Tina Fey, the “trying to be hip and funny while trying to be a mentor teacher.”

Although these archetypes are made up, the characters also fit into the archetypes that Jung describes in his theory. For example, Lindsay Lohan’s character, Cady, represents “the self” and “the shadow.” “The shadow” part of her character and psyche becomes apparent when she gets caught up in her scheming against Regina George and begins to turn into an actual “mean girl.” In our everyday lives, we encounter this kind of psychoanalytical thinking when we categorize and view people as archetypes. It is not necessarily a bad thing because as rational beings, we are constantly trying to find patterns and to organize people into different categories in our minds – it is our way of making sense of out things. From my experience, when we follow this process of thought, we should take caution so that we do not put boundaries around someone that limit their ability to connect with us.

Blog 4: Behaviorism

4 Commentsby   |  04.02.13  |  Student Posts

Classical Conditioning as told by Frasier Crane

In this video clip from an episode of Frasier, Dr. Frasier Crane explains to Roz the prank that he is going to play on Bulldog in order to achieve revenge from a prank that Bulldog had played on Frasier. He shows Roz the diagram of his plan that involves classically conditioning Bulldog to feel an inexplicable sense of loss when he sees a red balloon attached to the antennae on his car. Although Frasier has an elaborate plan of how he will find revenge, Bulldog has no idea of Frasier’s preparation.

Before we talked about behaviorism in class, I did not really have any feelings toward this school of thought. But I really liked that there was evidence that it worked. The success rate is so high that parents use it when potty training their children. I found the video we watched in class about the Los Horcones community interesting. I appreciate the idea of living in an intentional community, but I think living in a community that regards itself as a “cultural laboratory” would be a different experience. When we solve problems every day, we are essentially experimenting to find what will work best, but I don’t necessarily have the mindset of an experimenter when I am solving a problem. I would love to be a fly on the wall in this community to see how it really works day-to-day.

Blog Post 3: Evolutionary Psychology

2 Commentsby   |  03.05.13  |  Student Posts

In class today while we were discussing the articles we read, I thought it was interesting that many of the authors addressed how evolutionary theory and psychology applied to “real life.” The author of the article I read, Joan Roughgarden, stated that “social behavior develops as individuals acquire experience with one another.” Later in the article, she criticized a theoretical biologist’s discussion of the evolutionary outcome of competition between “altruists” who interact with “selfish” individuals. This biologist, John Maynard Smith, believed that those traits were permanent characteristics, much like skin color or height. Personally, I do not really see the point in a study of characteristics that are ever-changing or circumstantial.

If all of the time spent studying the outcome of competition in “permanent” characteristics was focused on something that (I think) matters more, like research to cure cancer or ways of preventing malnutrition in third-world countries, the work and outcomes would be beneficial and have a lasting impact. I do believe that many of the theories and findings from evolutionary biology are significant. I think it is a stretch to ask evolutionary science to explain things like morality or spirituality when those features of human behavior exist and thrive without explanations. Why not put that time and energy and money into something that really matters and will change lives?

Blog 2: Averroes, Middle-Eastern Philosophers

5 Commentsby   |  01.31.13  |  Student Posts

In the 12th century, middle-eastern philosophers like Averroes (Ibn Rushd) dealt with the struggles of science in relation to faith. Averroes himself was a Muslim and worked to prove the compatibility of faith and reason. After his death, he was suspected of heresy and blasphemy. But all of the work he put forth in his writings has continued to impact contemporary thinking.

Last semester I was a peer leader for a freshman Cornerstone class. Each Monday, the freshman class gathered in Cullen Auditorium to hear speakers from all over campus in many different academic fields. I remember one part of the lecture series toward the end of the semester. It comprised of four different professors presenting on the topic “Why Do I Do What I Do?” One of the four professors was Dr. Rusty Towell, an engineering and physics professor at ACU. He spoke about how he looked for and discovered God each day in the research he does. I was surprised to hear what he said because I had never actually heard someone say they found God in science.

I think this was part of the work that Averroes was trying to accomplish. Faith and reason are autonomous, but never contradicting one another. They are separate entities that point toward one truth. This is still one of the big questions that is discussed today, especially among Christians. Although we have come a long way from the past there are still schools of thought that fight against the compatibility of faith and reason. I think it is important for us to look for instances in our lives where faith and science match up and point to one truth.

Blog 1: “The Good Life”

3 Commentsby   |  01.20.13  |  Student Posts

When I first think of “the good life” I think of a couple of things. First, I think of the movie “It’s a Wonderful Life.” George Bailey, the main character, has a life that is full of family, full of sacrifices for the sake of others, and full of hope for what the future will bring. Second, I think of the “Life is Good” company. I think their marketing is pretty ingenious because isn’t everyone searching for a good life? They make stuff from t-shirts, to water bottles, to tire covers that all say pretty much the same thing – “Life is Good.”

My own personal definition is a little different, but has some of the same characteristics. The good life is a life lived with purpose and with joy. This kind of life seeks relationships diligently. This life is also filled with self-abandon and desire to serve. It is not a life that is all about materialism. The good life is about having awareness of self and being able to act upon that self-reflection. This awareness is beneficial in a way that works to improve the self and do good for others. My definition of the good life is taking advantage of every opportunity and making the best of every mishap. It is by no means a perfect life; it is good because of a choice to make it good.

Emily Bibb's Comment Archive

  1. Emily Bibb on Blog Post #6
    11:52 pm, 04.23.13


    First of all, great movie choice. What About Bob is one of my favorites. I also like how you tied in Rogers’ theory with the movie. Bob comes to find Dr. Marvin while he is on a family vacation and ends up staying for the duration of the trip. In his time spent with Dr. Marvin’s family, Bob progresses further than he had previously in his sessions with Dr. Marvin. In this we come to find out, like you said, that Bob really just needed someone to show him a constant presence of love and acceptance for him to move forward and eventually to do something he would have never done without that support.
    Great post, thanks for your thoughts!

  2. Emily Bibb on Blog #6
    11:30 pm, 04.23.13


    I like that you addressed how Third Force Psychology has built upon theories from the past, rather than it just being another theory that contradicts the other theories we have learned about. Knowing this is helpful for me to more fully understand everything this theory entails. I also like the point at the end of your post. Although God wants us to be in relationship with him, he has given us free will to be in charge of our own lives and to even decide whether or not we want to have a relationship with him. I really like knowing that my choices and decisions do matter and affect my life and everything is not predetermined. Thank you for your thoughts!

  3. Emily Bibb on Blog Post #4: Behaviorism
    2:25 pm, 04.03.13

    I had never thought of this before, but I think you are on to something, Lincoln! I keep my phone on silent most of the time, but sometimes I think I hear a vibration or feel my phone vibrate if it is in my pocket, and immediately check to see if I have a new message on my phone. This device has become our primary source of communication with our friends and family and it truly is a reward when we receive a message after hearing that certain text tone or feeling the selected vibration pattern.

  4. Emily Bibb on Behaviorism
    2:11 pm, 04.03.13

    I agree with you that using behaviorist techniques to control our own behavior could be really valuable. Your examples of goals that could be achieved through self-conditioning are all things that I struggle with, so I am sure that many people would find it beneficial! I am interested to find out if there is research behind how possible something like this would be, but I think it is a great idea.

  5. Emily Bibb on Blog Post #3
    6:25 pm, 03.06.13


    I like your post and that you addressed the fact that there is a past full of dissension between Christians and Evolutionists. I have wondered why the Christian belief and the belief held by Evolutionists cannot co-exist as well. I also come from a Church of Christ background and despite the extreme bias that was presented to me against evolution in the church, my parents encouraged me and my siblings to form our own opinions. I think many individuals in our generation had similar experiences whatever their background and that is why we are looking toward a synthesized view of both perspectives of creation and evolution. Thank you for your thoughts!

  6. Emily Bibb on Raymond Lowe: Blog #3 - EP
    6:13 pm, 03.06.13


    I like how your article explained the current status of Evolutionary Psychology. It is not a perfect theory; but it does have some positive regard, in that the study of evolution is an important part of the advancement of science. I agree that knowing the capacity and functions of the brain, for example, is important, but that EP is not effective in explaining the principles and beliefs that our brains contain. I like that you approached this theory in a constructive, yet criticizing way.

  7. Emily Bibb on Blog #2
    4:01 pm, 02.01.13


    I like that you addressed Peter Abelard’s idea of reason and faith – that faith is not purely emotional, but is employed by logic and reason, too. I appreciate your personal comments and can relate to some of your experiences. I also tend to be a logical person. I have found that I find my faith in the recesses of theology and studying the Bible. I relish in learning about the context of the stories found in the Bible and what the authors of the Bible originally meant. This knowledge combined with experiences I have had help to make my faith what it is today.

    The question you brought up about the Christian belief in one man, Jesus, being the Messiah when hundreds of men claimed to be the son of God is crazy. Like you said, if someone came up to me today and claimed to be God’s son, I would not believe them for a second. And yet, I believe that a man who lived 2000 years ago is the Messiah he claimed to be and I never actually set my eyes on him? Faith in the sense that I think of it today is not merely emotions and feelings or only ration and logic, but a combination of the two. We have faith because we believe and are justified by God’s mercy. I think the emotions we feel and the rationales we use help to feed and support that faith.

  8. Avia,

    I appreciate your views on the scholastic influence. I especially like what you had to say about perceptions of truth. Everyone has a different perception of truth and as we grow and mature, that view changes. Because we are always in forward motion, we are always learning and our perceptions are ever-changing. But that does not make the truth we perceive un-true. I’ve heard said that: “People only see what they want to see.” I think the Scholastics were on point in their approaches to learning. To learn from a variety of different viewpoints and disciplines makes for an individual who is able to consider an idea or subject fully. This process of learning is much like a liberal arts education. As a part of our education, we are required to take a variety of different classes in different concentrations. These classes help to shape us and broaden our worldview so that we can approach an idea and consider all sides of the concept. Thank you for the post!

  9. Emily Bibb on Blog Post 1: The Good Life
    5:38 pm, 01.21.13


    Thank you for identifying two very opposite views of “the good life.” We are bombarded with “the good lives” of celebrities almost every time we turn on our TVs. But their “happiness” is often short-lived. And yet, the story about your grandfather’s homemade scooter seems to bring him “happiness” just in his recollections of the memory many years later. I also liked your reasoning on how it would not be possible to enjoy unlimited wealth and no worries without anyone to share it with. But even with so much money and no worries, I feel like life would be a bit boring. Isn’t the “bad stuff” that happens to us what makes our relationships stronger? However, I appreciate that your definition of “the good life” is your willingness and desire to help others.

    And yes, I couldn’t get past thinking of Frank Sinatra songs for a while when I was thinking about this assignment.

  10. Paige,

    I appreciate your thoughts about your definition of the good life and its focus on relationships and community. How incredible would it be to live a life where everyone took care of each other? As you said in your post, a life like that is near impossible. But we have hope that a life like that is coming where the entire world will participate! I agree that for now, we must live with a selflessness that reveals love and compassion for our neighbors. This kind of selflessness comes about through actions rather than thoughts. Thanks for the post!