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In literature, there is a concept known as a “suspension of disbelief” where you need to be mentally willing to believe in the unbelievable.  This allows a story to make sense, despite the fact that chipmunks don’t sing and different worlds don’t exist inside your wardrobe.

Since coming to England for my postgraduate, theological studies, I have come to the realisation that there needs to be a “suspension of belief” — that, in my writing, I cannot appeal to my biblical or doctrinal convictions as authoritative. Read the rest of this entry »

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I don’t know why anybody would want to do a PhD.  Some people think people who are in PhD programs are smart.  I beg to differ.

I have been working on my research proposal since September.  5000 words due in April.

When people ask me about it, they wonder why it stresses me out.  Well, because in 5000 words you must state your topic and argue why your thesis holds any water.  Later, it gets revised and is used as the introduction to my 80,000 word dissertation.  But for the most part, you have to come up with something that nobody else has done before (you ever hear of the phrase, “There is nothing new under the sun”?), cover every angle of your argument, every possible critique to your argument, and have read enough to substantiate what you are proposing to do for the remaining two or three years of your life.

My supervisor has already read four different versions of my research proposal and heard me talk about quite a few different thesis topics.  Each time, he tears it apart.  On one hand, it is instructive and he gives very helpful criticism.  On the other hand, it is hard work.  It is emotionally draining.  I mean, I spend hours and hours trying to figure out what these random writers are trying to say and if what they say is “authoritative” or not and then spend hours and hours trying to frame my arguments on paper (or Pages, to be precise) only to get slaughtered for not thinking things through enough.

Its brutal.  Don’t do it.

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I began this morning with my usual routine of reading the latest news through Google Reader (LOVE this product, by the way) and so many articles were stimulating my thoughts.  Among them, writings honoring the legacy of Bill Gates, great tidbits about Legos, and a seminary in prison.

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