The Philosophy Thread

johnlocke

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Philosophy studies the fundamental nature of existence, of man, and of man’s relationship to existence. As against the special sciences, which deal only with particular aspects, philosophy deals with those aspects of the universe which pertain to everything that exists. In the realm of cognition, the special sciences are the trees, but philosophy is the soil which makes the forest possible.

As a human being, you have no choice about the fact that you need a philosophy. Your only choice is whether you define your philosophy by a conscious, rational, disciplined process of thought and scrupulously logical deliberation—or let your subconscious accumulate a junk heap of unwarranted conclusions, false generalizations, undefined contradictions, undigested slogans, unidentified wishes, doubts and fears, thrown together by chance, but integrated by your subconscious into a kind of mongrel philosophy and fused into a single, solid weight: self-doubt, like a ball and chain in the place where your mind’s wings should have grown.

Philosophy: Who Needs It “Philosophy: Who Needs It,”
Philosophy: Who Needs It Ayn Rand
 
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johnlocke

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I'll start at the most fundamental branch of philosophy, Metaphysics, and it has an equally fundamental branch, Epistemology.

The are 4 basic hierarchical branches of philosophy, They are, in order:

Metaphysics, which asks the question, "What is it?"

Epistemology which askes, "How do I know?"

Ethics which asks based on the answers to the previous two, "How should I act and why."

Politics, which asks "how should men deal with one another in a society?"

Also many include Aesthetics, Art( music, artworks, sculpture, performance and much more)
 
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johnlocke

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Let's begin with the most fundamental question in the most basic branch, metaphysics.

Are you in a universe which is ruled by natural laws and, therefore, is stable, firm, absolute—and knowable? Or are you in an incomprehensible chaos, a realm of inexplicable miracles, an unpredictable, unknowable flux, which your mind is impotent to grasp? Are the things you see around you real—or are they only an illusion? Do they exist independent of any observer—or are they created by the observer? Are they the object or the subject of man’s consciousness? Are they what they are—or can they be changed by a mere act of your consciousness, such as a wish?

The nature of your actions—and of your ambition—will be different, according to which set of answers you come to accept. These answers are the province of metaphysics—the study of existence as such or, in Aristotle’s words, of “being qua being”—the basic branch of philosophy.

“Philosophy: Who Needs It,”
 

AnOldTroll

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Philosophy translates from Greek to the Love of Wisdom. Most great words do. :)
I wish I had some.

But I look forward to seeing how this thread develops.
 

subroc

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Well, for the most part I don't care all that much about my fellow man. Don't care if he lives of dies. Don't wish any ill will on him. Just don't care all that much about him. Philosophically, I am ambivalent. That said, I give to charities that will feed my fellow man or will provide medical care to complete strangers. So, it depends.
 

O_P_T

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In the realm of cognition, the special sciences are the trees, but philosophy is the soil which makes the forest possible.

Well not to quibble, but there is one "special science" that doesn't quite fit that claim.

Namely, physics.

That's not simply due to the fact that physics was referred to as "natural philosophy" into the 1800's, but that physics and philosophy are fundamentally the same mental exercise.

I know this from personal experience.

I went to UCONN in the late '70's and majored in Physics.

Physics was part of the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, so there was a requirement for all students in that College to take a minimum of 3 courses from three separate "columns".

Philosophy was a wild card. You could use it to fulfill your requirement in any of the 'columns".

So I took one to use as a wild card, and found I liked them.

The initial 100 level courses consisted of the students reading the literature and then debating the professor and class on that topic.

I'm sure everyone here will be shocked, shocked mind you, to know that I was good at that and enjoyed it. :coffee:

So, I started taking more philosophy courses.

As I got into the 200 level courses, I realized that what I was being taught in my physics courses and my philosophy courses was fundamentally the same thing. The only difference was what the two disciplines were "questioning".

Both do the following: Deconstruct the issue into it's fundamental elements, identify the key aspects, construct a model/formula to represent it and allow further analysis.

The deconstruction process is virtually identical for both: What assumptions have been made about the issue? Are they valid?

What are the boundary conditions? That is, where does the issue "start"? Where does it "end"? This defines the "region" over which the issue "operates"

What influences the issue? That is, what is input to the issue, and how does the issue modify that input and create an output?

The way I looked at it, my physics and philosophy courses were teaching me the same thing, simply starting at opposite end of the common continuum.

Philosophy starts at the realm of pure thought and moves towards the physical.

Physics starts at the real of the physical and moves towards the realm of pure thought (Heisenberg anyone?)

It's still the same thought process.
 
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johnlocke

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Well not to quibble, but there is one "special science" that doesn't quite fit that claim.

Namely, physics.

That's not simply due to the fact that physics was referred to as "natural philosophy" into the 1800's, but that physics and philosophy are fundamentally the same mental exercise.

I know this from personal experience.

I went to UCONN in the late '70's and majored in Physics.

Physics was part of the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, so there was a requirement for all students in that College to take a minimum of 3 courses from three separate "columns".

Philosophy was a wild card. You could use it to fulfill your requirement in any of the 'columns".

So I took one to use as a wild card, and found I liked them.

The initial 100 level courses consisted of the students reading the literature and then debating the professor and class on that topic.

I'm sure everyone here will be shocked, shocked mind you, to know that I was good at that and enjoyed it. :coffee:

So, I started taking more philosophy courses.

As I got into the 200 level courses, I realized that what I was being taught in my physics courses and my philosophy courses was fundamentally the same thing. The only difference was what the two disciplines were "questioning".

Both do the following: Deconstruct the issue into it's fundamental elements, identify the key aspects, construct a model/formula to represent it and allow further analysis.

The deconstruction process is virtually identical for both: What assumptions have been made about the issue? Are they valid?

What are the boundary conditions? That is, where does the issue "start"? Where does it "end"? This defines the "region" over which the issue "operates"

What influences the issue? That is, what is input to the issue, and how does the issue modify that input and create an output?

The way I looked at it, my physics and philosophy courses were teaching me the same thing, simply starting at opposite end of the common continuum.

Philosophy starts at the realm of pure thought and moves towards the physical.

Physics starts at the real of the physical and moves towards the realm of pure thought (Heisenberg anyone?)

It's still the same thought process.


Thank you for the comments, as always OPT. It's after midnight so I'm not gonna get in depth this evening but I will.

Suffice it to say that my rebuttal to that is that any science, including physics, in order to form a more perfect union....oh shit different subject. (Joe Biden mode)

ROFL

Bu for real, all sciences including physics rest upon metaphysics (what is it?) and epistemology (how do I know it?) and the answers one comes to in those fundamental and corollary subjects determine where one will come out on the other end.

I will try to get in depth on this one tomorrow. :)
 
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johnlocke

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Just a short comment that I think is fairly succinct is that all special sciences at base rest upon concept formation from perception.

This implies metaphysics and epistemology which are the base of any philosophical system.
 
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johnlocke

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This is a great new series, I think. Production value is really good. The structure is excellent and easily understood. The ideas impeccable and Gloria Alvarez sure isn't hard to look at at.

Highly recommended.

"What Is Philosophy?"

https://youtu.be/lJIzD6sS3jQ
 

Dwight Schrute

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Just a short comment that I think is fairly succinct is that all special sciences at base rest upon concept formation from perception.

This implies metaphysics and epistemology which are the base of any philosophical system.

I’ll dip my toe in waters I have no knowledge of.

But to the above, if your statement is, in summation, that all sciences at core come from philosophy, then how do we explain science in a world without human impact?

That tree is going to fall, whether man existed or not, due to science(gravity).

That lightning bolt? Same.

The air we and all animals breathe?

The water and wind we enjoy?

Man is but an audience. Our rules? Mo Nature has zero fvcks to give.
 
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johnlocke

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I’ll dip my toe in waters I have no knowledge of.

But to the above, if your statement is, in summation, that all sciences at core come from philosophy, then how do we explain science in a world without human impact?

That tree is going to fall, whether man existed or not, due to science(gravity).

That lightning bolt? Same.

The air we and all animals breathe?

The water and wind we enjoy?

Man is but an audience. Our rules? Mo Nature has zero fvcks to give.

Agreed to a point. That is objective reality. If a tree fall in the forest does it make a sound. My answer is of course it does.

But we are not just a passive audience. In order to survive and flourish these things need to be understood and applied.

The 30 minute video I posted addresses this stuff on a basic level.
 

Dwight Schrute

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Agreed to a point. That is objective reality. If a tree fall in the forest does it make a sound. My answer is of course it does.

But we are not just a passive audience. In order to survive and flourish these things need to be understood and applied.

The 30 minute video I posted addresses this stuff on a basic level.

But they all exist.

To put them under mans umbrella is incorrect imo.

I’ll have to check your vid later
 

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Agreed to a point. That is objective reality. If a tree fall in the forest does it make a sound. My answer is of course it does.

But we are not just a passive audience. In order to survive and flourish these things need to be understood and applied.

The 30 minute video I posted addresses this stuff on a basic level.

If Lori is out shopping and I say something in the forest...?
 
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