Critical Thinking and Language Essay Essay
During our 20-year marriage, my wife and I have been fortunate enough to vacation three times in Hawaii. The island of Maui is our favorite. The island of Maui holds a special place in my heart, because of the one-on-one time I was able to spend with my wife. We enjoy the breathtaking scenery and the tranquil sunsets. The highlight of our trips has been the helicopter rides.
The helicopter is the only way to see some of the islands awesome waterfalls and other secluded places. The ride can be a little hair raising when it is windy.
One of Maui’s most visible attractions is Haleakala, the largest dormant volcano in the world. The word Haleakala in the Hawaiian language means the “House of the Sun.” The top of Haleakala is one of the most outstanding places to watch a sunrise I have ever experienced. Just remember your jackets; it can be a little nippy at 9,000 feet elevation before sunrise.
Visitors can ride a bike down to the base of the volcano, if they are just a little off their rocker. These are just a few reasons why Maui is my favorite vacation spot in the world.
Using metaphors in the paragraphs above, I was able to describe my experiences with more flair. The images painted in your mind would be different if the metaphors were not used. “If language is the mode in which our mind understands the world, and if metaphors are at the heart of language, then metaphors are at the heart of our understanding of the world” (Kirby ; Goodpaster, 1999, p. 109).
Now let us examine some of the questions about language and thinking critically.
What role does language and language diversity play in the critical thinking process? Language helps us make sense of our thoughts. “Language is the software’ that allows our brain to think the way it does; without language the cerebral cortex lies largely unused” (Kirby ; Goodpaster, 1999, p. 77). Language must be thought of when trying to communicate. Does the person you are communicating with have the knowledge or have they been exposed to the language so they can understand what you are trying to say? With the many languages in the world, you must be aware that some words do not translate to other languages.
When this happens, one must think critically on what other words can be used or other ways to communicate. Using pictures or gestures can help with communicating ideas.
How does language empower or limit the expression of our thoughts? At times, everyone becomes speechless. Our thoughts are scrambled and we are unable to express ourselves. At other times, language empowers us to communicate our thoughts and ideas in a way to persuade others to action. The more language we learn about and are exposed to the more we can use it to our advantage.
Using our knowledge of language to express ourself more clearly to get a point across.
What is the role of critical thinking in persuasion? When persuading someone you must first think of a way to understand how the other person is thinking. Try to see the problem from their point of view. Once you understand their position, then think of a reason for that person to benefit from your position. Make a list of these items so when presenting your position you can refer to the list. Take time to assure that you have thought of all angles that the other person may be viewing about the topic.
Present your position on the topic when you have enough time to explain how it will benefit them. Use active listening techniques by rephrasing their response and using eye contact. When attempting to persuade someone be sure to point out all the positive reasons to your point of view and avoid the negatives position.
This paper gives examples of metaphor uses and how they expand our understanding of language. My favorite vacation spot was used as an example for this exercise. The paper answers several questions on the role language plays in critical thinking.
Language helps us all communicate and our ability to think critically .