On Wednesday, April 15, 2015, I had the pleasure of attending and speaking on a panel at the Collin College Undergraduate Interdisciplinary Student Research Conference (try saying that three times, fast). This was a two day event where students submitted superior research papers for consideration, which were then selected by a panel of educators and field experts to be presented at the conference. It was an amazing experience for me to be one of the selected participants.
My paper, "The Happiest Man: Buddhism and the Liberation from Desire," was accepted as part of the Philosophy and Literature panel. In my paper, I discussed the man who would become Buddha, I argued his sixth sutta in which he examines the nature of desire and how to overcome it by living in the present moment, and how this teaching is reflected in modern literature through the novel Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone.
As you can imagine, I was giddy at discovery that I was selected but also nervous as...well, you get the idea. Lucky for me, a dear friend of mine and my former philosophy professor attended the conference to support me. I'm thankful to have had them there. Their support means the world to me. I can tell you that during the course of the conference I met some amazing people and learned quite a bit in the process. I had a load of fun, and hopefully, I'll have the chance to return again next year.