I. Clearly explain some aspects to a religion or a position(s) taken by that religion or philosopher(s). Don’t spend too much of the paper summarizing, but do enough to show that you really did understand the reading and that you have given the author a fair reading. Source material: Use direct quotes from the class readings. II. Next, take a position about the religion or ideas you discuss. This involves carefully drawing comparisons/contrasts and explaining the motivation behind and outcomes of practices. Incorporate information from secondary articles that contribute to the discussion and support or detract from your or someone else’s position. Why do the arguments work or do not work? Point to any tensions or inconsistencies the author missed. Continually attempt to find areas where critics seem to fall short in understanding the relevant issues or “real” reasons behind a particular belief system or religion. Anticipate any nasty consequences of the author’s position that the author did not anticipate or address, but should have. III. Try to use creative, real-world examples that relate to your philosophical views – movies, television, experiences, life! Feel free to explain your position in reference to the other articles you have read (for example, you might have sentences that begin “Unlike Christianity, this belief stems from….” or “In response to perceived moral chaos, this religion holds that a person will…..”). Just be sure to back up your positions with good reasons: give premises for your conclusions, give reasons why you think what you think. Source material: Outside research, especially published peer-reviewed sources of a higher level than Wikipedia, that discuss your own new example are important to use in this section. Don’t just use online encyclopedias, discuss real research! IV. Finally, it would be a good idea to take a step back and address an argument against your position (“Some analysts, such as _____, might disagree with this position about the effect of this belief has on those who adhere to this belief. They sometimes argue that……”). Then try to explain the opponent’s position, and respond to it as best you can (“I find that this argument against my position is incorrect or misconceived because….”). In this way, you can imagine the paper divided into four parts: a careful and objective summary of what the author said about your question, comparison and critique, the argument for your own ideas on that particular question, and responses to criticisms of your view from part III.