Mind-Body

7 July 2016

Eleanor Metheny, born in Manhattan, Illinois in 1908, was a pioneer in the physical education community for four decades. She attended public school outside of Chicago and moved on to a university in the city. After attending the University of Chicago, where she studied English and mathematics, Metheny made her unintentional entry into physical education as an algebra teacher. At her new school, the math teacher typically taught the physical education classes as well as their designated math classes (Leigh & Studer, 1983). Later, Metheny served as a professor at the University of California for 29 years.

She believed that physical helped to augment movement through which children could “express, explore, discover, and interpret their world” (Shimon, 2011). Metheny published more than 150 articles, papers, and studies, proved instrumental in creating the country’s first graduate program in physical education, and championed women’s equality in sports. After retirement, Metheny worked in physical education at Pegasus Learning Center at USC. Metheny was most recognized as always being on the cutting edge of her profession (Leigh & Studer, 1983).

Mind-Body Essay Example

Eleanor Metheny’s work will continue to influence the field of physical education for many years. Jesse Feiring Williams was both in 1886 in Kenton Ohio. He attended college at Oberlin College where physical education became an interest. At Oberlin, he served as a tutor, coach, and director of athletics. After graduating, Williams taught physical education at the New York Institute for the Education of the Blind. After returning from service in World War II, Williams received his MD from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons.

He then began association with Teachers College where after four years, he was promoted to professor and chairman of the Physical Education department. He remained at Teachers College for 18 years before going into early retirement. It was at Teachers College where Williams developed new concepts on physical education, health education, and dance. During his time in the field, Williams authored of co-authored an astounding 41 books, including the famed Principles of Physical Education (Kretchmar & Gerber, 1983).

Jesse Feiring Williams served as a pioneer in the physical education field, and his revelations continue to impact the field. In her article, The Third Dimension in Physical Education, Eleanor Metheny takes a monistic approach to understanding the concept of physical activity. Metheny begins her article by describing the three-dimensional process that is modern education. She explains the three-dimensional process as the one-dimensional training of the mind, the two dimensional education of mind-body unity, and the three-dimensional interconnection of mind-body-emotions (Metheny, 1954).

Similar to Metheny’s monistic views are Jesse Feiring William’s in the article Education Through the Physical. Williams initiates the article with the following striking statement. “No one can examine earnestly the implications of physical education without facing two questions. These are: Is physical education an education of the physical? Is physical education an education through the physical? ” He elaborates further on education of the physical, stating that supporters indicate chief outcomes as firm ligaments and strong muscles, which demonstrates the dualistic view.

On the other hand, education through the physical embarks on the monistic route, based on the biologic unity of mind and body, viewing life as a totality (Williams, 1930). Because both Williams and Metheny advocated for the monistic view, there are many similarities in their articles. The ways in which the two authors describe physical education gravitate toward the same central values. Metheny defines a physically educated person as one who is able to productively use all possibly faculties of physical movement to “express, explore, develop, and interpret” his or her self in relation to the world in which they inhabit (Metheny, 1954).

Williams, while stating his views more simply, states that physical education mainly as a way of living life. To further elaborate views on monism, Williams states that the apotheosis of solely the mental, or the physical, or the spiritual will lead to tragedy (Williams, 1930). Metheny states that the body is the corporeal expression of the person, his mind, his emotions, and his thoughts. The body is the self that a person presents to the world (Metheny, 1954 ).

Metheny and Williams also express similar values in regard to the timeline and lasting effects relating to physical education. According to Metheny, physical education curriculum must be altered to both instant and long-term needs of students and sensible situations in which we must operate (Metheny, 1954). Williams indicates that education for life and modern physical education must have joint supports and confidences (Williams, 1930). Finally, both authors argue that physical education serves the greater purpose of increasing quality of life.

Williams states that education through the physical will be evaluated by the role it plays in exceptional living and that physical education seeks to further the purposes of modern education when it stands for supreme kind of living (Williams, 1930). Metheny argues that a person will mature in their physical educational experience by finding his or her self improve with each new movement experience. Through each new movement, a person establishes new relationships with others and makes great advancement toward becoming a better incorporated person-mentally, physically, and emotionally healthy (Metheny, 1954).

Essentially, Williams and Metheny prove that they have very similar and monistic views on physical education as a whole. However, while both articles are written to demonstrate monistic views, the both present very different areas of physical education. As previously stated, Williams begins his article with the proposal of the question education of the physical (dualistic) or through the physical (monistic). Williams follows this question up with presentations of the dualistic view throughout the article. We are able to that he prefers a monistic view, but he does elaborate upon a dualistic view (Williams, 1930).

However, Metheny gives no real details on the opposing side of her monistic view, which makes the article somewhat one-sided (Metheny, 1954). Throughout the article, it seems that the purposes of both articles differ greatly. Eleanor Metheny seems to be speaking to an audience of physical educators throughout her article. She indicates what our jobs as physical education teachers must be and describes student’s physical experiences (Metheny, 1954). On the other hand, Williams seems to be putting up an argument for mind-body physical education versus a dualistic view.

First, Williams begins by explaining the opposing dualistic view and some of the downfalls that could be included with it. Finally, Williams seems to be indicating whose responsibility it is to improve the quality of physical education for the future. He completes his article describing the universities responsibilities in regards to physical education and the betterment of modern education (Williams, 1930). The mind-body problem is one of the most highly debated topics in philosophy. In relation to the mind-body problem, monism denies a distinction between the two.

In contrast, dualism indicates the belief that the two are two distinctive parts. I myself seem to struggle with believing one side or the other in the monism/dualism debate. Personally, the best definition of dualism comes from Douglas Odegard (1970), where he described that a “mind and a body are two different entities and each is “had” by a man. A man is thus a composite being with two components, one ‘inner’ the other ‘outer’ (87). ” On one hand, I do believe in the interaction of the mind and body and that they greatly influence and depend upon each other.

On the contrary, I think that it is foolish to believe that the two cannot exist without the other. I do believe that the mind and body are two separate entities; they do, however, closely interact and have dependence on each other. For that reason, my opinions tend to have both a monist and dualist (while more dualist) edge. I tend to share the same opinions as Ernst Johnson (1918) in his article titled Monism and Dualism featured in The Monist. Johnson begins the article by proposing a question on monism and dualism: are incompatible or complementary, can you only have either or are you able to have both?

He then defends his points by elaborating on Plato’s “theory of knowledge” which states that a human may know being through one of two ways: sense perception which entails knowing the material world (dualistic) or though the supersensible, which may contain no duality (monistic). Furthermore, Johnson provides argument that dualism proves to be a more realistic view than that of monism. “Natural science has shown conclusively that all the immediately observable phenomena of the universe are mechanical.

Therefore, no genuine idealistic monism can explain the universe. ” One of the most thought provoking statements comes from Johnson when he asks if monism could simply be dualism in disguise, considering the world arose from interaction of two principles that are difficult to combine: mechanics and creativity. This statement clicked something in my mind that I had never thought about before. Overall, I believe it to be very challenging to simply take one side in mind-body problem, and I look forward to further exploring the topic.

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