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An Exercise In Trust: Wrestling + Physics - Stanford Intellectual Vitality Essay


Altons 2 / 5  
Dec 23, 2010   #1
Hey everyone, this is my essay for one of Stanford's supplements. Any feedback is appreciated. Thanks!

Stanford students are widely known to possess a sense of intellectual vitality. Tell us about an idea or an experience you have had that you find intellectually engaging.

The Half-Nelson produces the maximum torque when I position my body directly perpendicular to my opponent. The Russian Roll can flatten an opponent with minimal exertion courtesy of the law of conservation of momentum. While my body aches, my mind thrives during wrestling matches.

I've realized I take so much of the knowledge I learn for granted. Take my physics textbook - could everything contained within it be fundamentally flawed? It troubles me to see the incongruous relationship between quantum mechanics and general relativity, and I consider the unrivaled trust I place in my relationship with my learnings. What if all those laws, theorems, and principles that I greedily swallow are built upon a foundation of sand?

But a familiar, stale rubber scent greets me, and as I practice curiously named techniques, I discover an unwritten textbook chapter. I venture to wrestling practice with a weary body but an eager mind, for each wrestling match is an elegant experiment - an exercise in trust. Beneath the remote abstractions and rudimentary scenarios presented in the classroom, I meet physics in an intimate manner as body meets body in rude embrace. No doubt the concepts applicable to a wrestling match are trivially simple compared to the theoretical research surrounding the Large Hadron Collider. And of course to a cursory viewer, especially my parents, the scene of a wrestling match is less than pleasant. However, with each carefully calculated move, I test my relationship with my knowledge, and I couldn't be more satisfied.
Doom 13 / 37 2  
Dec 23, 2010   #2
I think you are a little all over the place here.

The concept of wrestling is very interesting. Perhaps remover the second paragraph entirely, and flesh out why wrestling is so intellectually stimulating.
EF_Kevin 8 / 13,321 129  
Jan 4, 2011   #3
What if all those laws, theorems, and principles that I greedily swallow are built upon a foundation of sand?

Ha ha ha, excellent. I think they may be built on a foundation of sand, because it is not necessarily true that material existed in the universe and came to life. It may be that a nonphysical being is having a dream about this material world. That means possibilities are limitless, just as Dr. Deepak Chopra teaches!

Okay, well you obviously are a great writer, and my only complaint is that the essay can be a little hard to follow... only because of the sophisticated and complex writing style. To improve clarity, try using a key word or phrase in the last sentence of the first paragraph so that a THEME will be clear.

Also, it will be great to replace this with a PARAGRAPH TOPIC SENTENCE that captures the meaning of that 2nd para: I've realized I take so much of the knowledge I learn for granted.


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