A&O 2023 meeting 15 – FINAL EXAM – May 13





notes for meeting 15





Tuesday May 9, 2023 

changed to


5113 Riverbriar Rd, Knoxville 37919

e-mail me if you want a map


    • Light hors d’oeuvres and opening :  personal CHECK-IN to include comments on progress of semester project (could include demonstration if you choose)
    • Pot-luck & Social; consult and collaborate on project ideas 
    • CHECK-OUT (written) to incorporate “FINAL EXAM” (psycho-semantic mind-map), seeking (as always) your spontaneous–even impulsive, personal connections.)


POT-LUCK Social: so far, Keller will bring his legendary Mac & Cheese, and Hannah will bring an experimental baklava (?) 




WITH respect to your PRESENTATIONS:


… we have studied, explored, and created … 

Drafts and dreams, ambitions for 

Classic lectures, rich in sentiment, 

With scraps of thundrous epic lilted out

By eager but unsettled students,

some of you soon perhaps to be violet‑hooded Doctors, 

others masters of their arts,

YOU give us elegies

And quoted odes, and jewels five‑words‑long,

That will, on the stretched forefinger of all Time,  Sparkle in memory for ever. 


          (paraphrasing Tennyson)





PRESENTATIONS?  someone observed that each time they try to explain their ideas they become more clear to themselves–enabling more depth and creative exploration:  reminding me of a comment by John Prine: “You don’t always know what your song’s about until you are able to sing it to somebody else…”  of course (as with all art) we begin with our selves– even so far as to read them out loud.

Keep up the good work… Clearly, these were very diverse–definitely not cookie-cutter presentations–and it has become clear that some of of you, consciously or not, are treating your presentations as works of ART — abstracting–distilling–the vast amount of thought and material you have accumulated and extracting the information and insight you can communicate to the rest of us.  




You are going to tell 

“The best story you can tell with the best evidence you have


WE are thus concerned with both binding the multiplicity of things together or keeping the WHOLE thing from disintegrating into lots of shards and fragments…  


Real or not they evoke more-or-less STRESS and drive CHANGE from evolution through personal development and ultimately a sense of progress toward self-actualization

LET US CONSIDER LOVE SUCH A NEED: and appreciate that it can energize CREATIVE INSIGHT: 

[surely you remember Goethe by now: “We must first love that which we would understand.”]

Sounds nice, but “love” is so loaded with beautiful baggage that here, again, we can profit from some closer examination, analysis, and reassembly:  REVISIT OUR PAGE on LOVE and use the perspectives of MOTIVATION, EMOTION, and COGNITION to interpret Sternberg’s three-part view of love and HOW THEY APPLY to your topic, assuming you would (at least at some level) love it.  APPLY THIS to your OWN WORK, Find the thread that runs so true…binding the fragments, one to another. 


And recall from last week’s notes, something I reprinted to encourage your tolerence of imperfection:

LET YOUR HEART BE BROKEN from “The Marginalian”: “We spend our lives trying to anchor our transience in some illusion of permanence and stability. [or at least mitigate the dissolution] We lay plans, we make vows, we backbone the flow of uncertainty with habits and routines that lull us with the comforting dream of predictability and control, only to find ourselves again and again bent at the knees with surrender to forces and events vastly larger than us. In those moments, kneeling in a pool of the unknown, the heart breaks open and allows life — life itself, not the simulacrum of life that comes from control — to rush in.” (Maria Popova)  [recalls One of Leonard Cohen’s most beloved lyric lines, from the song “Anthem,” “There is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in.” ]  Recall also, our discussion of CHANGE: (1) it is inevitable, and (2) often resembles a maelstrom of DISINTEGRATION and RENEWAL.  

and as for the tweaking of consciousness that every seminar aspires to, consider THE GREAT PARADOX: “… consciousness constitutes both our entire experience of reality and our blindfold to reality as it really is. Forever trapped within it, we mistake our concepts of things for the things themselves, our theories for the universe, continually seeing the world not as it is but as we are. The supreme frontier of human freedom may be the ability to accept that something exists beyond understanding, that understanding is a machination of the mind and not a mirror of the world — that the world simply is, and our consciousness is a participant in its being but not a creator of it.”  (Maria Popova’s Marginalian on practical mysticism.


At this point (when certain parts of my brain need refreshment) I stop for music … and it seems strange how it often works out:  so considering story telling as a kind of confession,  I stopped (as I said last week) for the idea in the song at the heart of the movie Evita: Madonna sings, “Have I said too much? / There’s nothing more / I can think of / To say to you…” an expression of a profound existential gamble: “I love you/and hope you love me” listen here])






CONNECTIONS (it should be clear now that there are connections within and between levels of organization):

here are e-mails to provide another way of connecting with each other


Anthony Huang thuang6@vols.utk.edu inner peace, flow, wu wei   
Brittany Okweye bokweye@vols.utk.edu pink  
Brooke N Stillson bstillso@vols.utk.edu biol  
Delaney Reilly dreilly2@vols.utk.edu sleep & creativity  
Eliza Frensley efrensle@vols.utk.edu Authenticity  
Emily Paige Brock ebrock10@vols.utk.edu Appalachian folk art  
Gino Castellanos gcastell@vols.utk.edu archetypal artist’s talk  
Grace Cochran gcochra6@vols.utk.edu Anonymous artists  
Haleigh Ann Eicher heicher@vols.utk.edu into the woods  
Hayley J Eliz Simpson hayjsimp@vols.utk.edu pain and  pleasure  
Hannah Langer hlanger@vols.utk.edu to walk among skeletons  
Hayden Morris cmk468@vols.utk.edu tba  
Kaitlyn Anderson kande113@vols.utk.edu interdependent interactions  
Keller Alexander walexan9@vols.utk.edu DEEP ethology of ants with wings  
Kyle Michael Cottier kcottier@vols.utk.edu sculpture: A gesture of Surrender  
Sophie Greenwell sgreenw4@utk.edu defining art with the senses  
Zoie Lambert tlambe12@vols.utk.edu self-sabatage