ANNOUNCING ZEN OF ERIC (Facebook Chat Bot) / Philosophical Reflection Tool (WHY? APP)

Try out ZEN OF ERIC on Facebook Messenger.

The “5 why?” challenge

To gain deeper personal truths about why you do anything, or why you feel a certain way … the Zen of Eric Facebook Chat bot isn’t intelligent. It is not AI. It is rather a sounding board for your own thoughts. It won’t tell you anything you don’t already know in your own heart. ZEN OF ERIC (“Why App”) is a chance for you to ask yourself the big ‘why?’ questions in life, to discover a deeper truth for yourself.

If you have Facebook and Facebook Messenger, send ZEN OF ERIC a message here.

How it works

zen of ERIC chat bot messenger why app demo 1
Example Interaction with ZEN OF ERIC Facebook Chatbot.

Essentially we programmed it the following way:

You start chatting with it and saying hello, then you can have the chance to introspect and think about certain things in life.

Once you start chatting, the ZEN OF ERIC chatbot will keep asking you “Why?” until you type: “stop“.

Why did we build this on Facebook messenger?

My friend Stoytcho built this on Facebook Messenger for the practical purpose that the Facebook Messenger app is a robust platform for chat bots and chat applications. Also, you can use it on your laptop, desktop, phone, or tablet. You can interact with it wherever, whenever.

Is there a ‘proper’ way to use Zen of ERIC?

No. Just play around with it. No need to use it if you don’t want to. Rather, see ZEN OF ERIC as a personal mirror or sounding board for yourself, if you just want to flesh out your own thoughts, and to type out and explicate your thoughts.

How to use ZEN OF ERIC in my everyday life

  1. When you’re bored at home, shoot a message to ZEN OF ERIC CHAT BOT to just say hello, to get your creative juices flowing.
  2. When you’re stuck on the toilet, instead of checking Facebook/Instagram/Twitter/News/Snapchat, start an introspection session with Zen of Eric.
  3. If you’re stuck in line at the grocery store, open up Facebook Messenger and say hello to Zen of Eric.
  4. When you wake up and feel unmotivated, instead of scrolling through email, shoot a message to Zen of Eric
  5. When you read the news and you feel really disappointed and afraid, send a message to Zen of Eric.
  6. Use Zen of Eric when you’re happy, bored, sad, depressed, anxious, or anything else!

Privacy concerns

Truth be told, we cannot put 100% faith in Facebook, or Facebook Messenger. It is quite unfortunate we had to build it on Facebook Messenger, but there is really no other better alternative (for now).

I (ERIC KIM) and my friend Stoytcho did not build this to extract any of your dirty secrets for ourselves. It is simply a tool I asked Stoytcho to build for me, for my personal reasons. Even I use it for myself and my sister Annette used it to discover deeper meaning in her life.

So my simple suggestion:

Don’t tell ZEN OF ERIC anything hyper-personal. We don’t really know what Facebook does with all our data.

All the conversations are not saved to a database. In other words, we (Eric, Cindy, and Stoytcho) can’t see what you write. Only you see your conversations with the Zen of Eric.

Also note:

Zen of ERIC is NOT Eric Kim! It is just a soul-less Facebook messenger chat bot, which is programmed to ruthlessly bombard you with “why?’s” to give you deeper philosophical truths about your own personal life.

Example ideas with ZEN OF ERIC

  1. You can start off with an example prompt to get your creative juices flowing, or you can say “no” and simply ask it any question on your mind.
  2. Some example questions include:
    1. Why do I feel so down?
    2. What is the purpose of my life?
    3. What should I do today?
    4. Why do I care about x, y, z?
  3. Keep asking it questions until you get bored, then type “stop“. Just use it enough for your own personal benefit.

What now?

So let us say you used ZEN OF ERIC, and you discovered some very interesting truth about your life. Now what?

My suggestion:

Write a blog post about your introspection, and share it with your friends and family!

Other ideas on how to make your introspections “actionable”

After your introspection session with Zen of Eric, here are some things you can do and actually ACT upon your newfound insights:

  1. Write yourself an email (send it to yourself) with your introspection.
  2. Write your introspection (just for yourself) on a piece of paper, or in your personal journal/diary.
  3. Talk with your friend/family member over dinner about your philosophical inquiry, and also ask them lots of “WHY?” questions as well.