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Old 24th November 2012, 07:10 PM   #41
StankApe
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I don't recall soliciting anything. I recall making a gripe thread. If you think yer going to change my mind you are mistaken. The only thing you will do is end up making me angry. I have bad days like this where the only thing keeping me out of prison is that I'm smart enough not to own firearms....

and personal enlightenment is for trust fund babies who can "find themselves " in a 3rd world country while the rest of us are out there living life for realz.
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Old 24th November 2012, 07:14 PM   #42
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Originally Posted by StankApe View Post
I hate philosophy. I think it's a waste of brain cells. it's long winded ,self important, pseudo-scientific postulating.

There is nothing more annoying to me than when some 23 yr old grad student starts rambling on about stuff in such an arcane and boring manner that it would put coffee to sleep.

I think it serves no purpose and it's sole existence is just to perpetuate more Philosophy Professors and hence, more philosophy students.

Those who can do science, do science, those who can't do science do the humanities, those who can't do the humanities do philosophy (and it makes them feel self important and smart! "look I just wrote a 300 page paper on my toes!") those who can't do philosophy are in comas.


bahh humbug.

I'm currently listening to the audiobook of Russell's History of Western Philosophy which you might find worth reading. (I read the text version many years ago. Interesting also that Russell, a philosopher, is quoted so often by skeptics.)

You simply cannot understand world history or religion or science without knowing the philosophical currents of whatever era you are studying. Your dismissal of "philosophy" (which seems to be based on your dislike of academic philosophy professors and students) is not only ahistorical, it is anti-intellectual.

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Old 24th November 2012, 07:26 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by StankApe View Post
I don't recall soliciting anything. I recall making a gripe thread. If you think yer going to change my mind you are mistaken. The only thing you will do is end up making me angry. I have bad days like this where the only thing keeping me out of prison is that I'm smart enough not to own firearms....
This merely sounds like a proud declaration of closed-mindedness.

Originally Posted by StankApe View Post
and personal enlightenment is for trust fund babies who can "find themselves " in a 3rd world country while the rest of us are out there living life for realz.
No, it means gaining knowledge or understanding about something. It is more than possible to gain knowledge and/or understanding while living in the real world (and why do you think that the 3rd world is not real?)
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Old 24th November 2012, 07:26 PM   #44
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Originally Posted by Walter Ego View Post
I'm currently listening to the audiobook of Russell's History of Western Philosophy which you might find worth reading. (I read the text version many years ago. Interesting, also that Russell, a philosopher, is quoted so often by skeptics.)

You simply cannot understand world history or religion or science without knowing the philosophical currents of whatever era you are studying. Your dismissal of "philosophy" (which seems to be based on your dislike of academic philosophy professors and students) is not only ahistorical, it is anti-intellectual.
Just a casual: you need to be very sure you know, in addition, the philosophical beliefs/foundation of the person(s) witing or teaching that history. Historians often cannot seperate their philosophy from that of the people of a particular location in time and space.
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Old 24th November 2012, 07:30 PM   #45
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Originally Posted by angrysoba View Post
The point of the methodological doubt was to discover what kind of knowledge was incorrigible. Given that most kinds of knowledge could be doubted, what was there that couldn't be doubted? Rene Descartes thought that the cogito was one example of that. He is sometimes accredited with having begun modern epistemology and skepticism which I would have thought was a Good Thing, no?
Meh. Skepticism existed before Descartes and would have existed even if he hadn't made his statements. You don't have to be a deep thinker to realize that you shouldn't believe things without evidence. I don't think it requires a reductio ad absurdum to figure that out.

Last edited by Tricky; 24th November 2012 at 07:33 PM.
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Old 24th November 2012, 07:37 PM   #46
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see, i am a firm believer that philosophy hasn't actually changed much of anything. Man would've pursued his explorations in science regardless. (in fact, i would say the religious philosophy has in fact hurt scientific endeavor wayyyy more than philosophy has ever helped it).

Ethics exist without a textbook, morality exists without a religion and man would have endeavored to "know" regardless of 400 pages of what "to be" happens to say.

i still think much of philosophy is what people who aren't that bright read to make themselves feel bright. I myself read about the physcis of the Universe when I want to feel dumb and insignificant. THAT'S how you grow and expand your mind. Not by becoming a smug philosophy spouting miscreant.
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Old 24th November 2012, 07:42 PM   #47
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Originally Posted by StankApe View Post
LOL, I'm smarter than 99.9% of everyone in the world (well more intelligent, I'm a lazy drunk ,so maybe smart isn't the right word).

If one cannot formulate a concept with just a few sentences then I believe there is obscuration at work. (yes I just made that word up) .

I see the ramblings of philosophy to be people who aren't very bright trying to show everybody else how smart they are. Real smart people don't have to do that. (we are too busy drinking ourselves to death because we know that life is fleeting and empty).

Yes I'm an arrogant jerk. and no I don't care what you think of it. But don't talk down to me sister. You don't have a tower that high.

Oh my. Posting While Drunk, well that will do it. The art of thinking (not necessarily philosophizing) is one part of being intelligent. The other part is being able to read sophisticated writings and understand them. An example here would be you creating the word "obscuration" because you lack the ability or are too lazy to bother clearly expressing what you mean.

Lazy thinking is a two way street. I do understand your frustration in dealing with idiots on a regular basis, however you don't get to coast on "knowing you are smart." That's called a "slacker."

Btw your comment that "life is fleeting and empty" and so why bother, is a lazy man's version of philosophy. Hate to break it to you.
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Old 24th November 2012, 07:45 PM   #48
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I think of science and philosophy as the difference between cartography and exploration. The scientist is tasked with mapping the world and the map is the point. "Here, look at this, this is what I have discovered about the world and how it is."

Philosophy is more about exploration. "Here, hop on. We are going this way and invite you to come along and see what you can see. I'll be pointing out places of interest as we proceed."

When I read science, I am a spectator, a fan in the stands who remembers stats, good plays and who scored what goal. When I read philosophy, I am immersed in the game, playing it myself.

The purposes are different, the goals different, and the experience is different. I would no more fault philosophy as stupid as I would say that science fails because it cannot tell me the phone number for my mother-in-law. If I want her phone number, I look it up in a directory. If I want to diagnose her illness, I look to the science of medicine. If I want to talk to her about whether she has a duty to promote the welfare of her grandchildren, I might try a little ethics by way of philosophy.

How come mathematics doesn't get the "no real benefit" or "nothing new of importance" broad brush treatment? Have you any idea how far afield mathematicians are? It's to the point that most of them can't even understand what most of the others are even up to. Talk about inbred. Lay off philosophers and take a tour of the math department.
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Old 24th November 2012, 07:50 PM   #49
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I dunno mang..... I'm not very rational today. Perhaps my gripe is more the way philosophy is used by people rather than philosophy itself.....
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Old 24th November 2012, 07:59 PM   #50
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I think it has more to do with the trust fund philosophers that have the luxury of blathering on endlessly. LOL.

When I went to Union we sat around one day in a Buddhism Christianity cross over class. They were sitting around discussing the banality of evil, the detachment of materialism and other such issues.

When I pointed out that the definition of evil was apathy in the face of suffering and that for all intents and purposes we were a bunch of self indulgent philosophers sitting around having conversations about evil and nursing our delicately made Starbucks lattes spending about $30,000 a semester to "discuss suffering" while children were literally dying as minutes ticked by

so were we evil?

I never answered the question but was basically shunned by half the class at that point.
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Old 24th November 2012, 08:17 PM   #51
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Originally Posted by StankApe View Post
LOL, I'm smarter than 99.9% of everyone in the world (well more intelligent, I'm a lazy drunk ,so maybe smart isn't the right word).
Forums like this attract a disproportionate number of people who are in the top 0.1% of the population. Odds are decent that you aren't the smartest person in the room even on your best days. Plus being lazy, drunk and depressed means these aren't your best days.

I'm serious about the laziness bit. Check the quote in my sig file: I believe it to be a true fact about the universe. IQ test smarts are all well and good but if you haven't combined them with a serious, long-term effort to think well you're just a talented amateur.

Quote:
If one cannot formulate a concept with just a few sentences then I believe there is obscuration at work. (yes I just made that word up) .

I see the ramblings of philosophy to be people who aren't very bright trying to show everybody else how smart they are. Real smart people don't have to do that. (we are too busy drinking ourselves to death because we know that life is fleeting and empty).

Yes I'm an arrogant jerk. and no I don't care what you think of it. But don't talk down to me sister. You don't have a tower that high.
She might. It's been referred to by Newton as "standing on the shoulders of giants". Natural talent is no substitute for cribbing from generations of people as smart as you or smarter who worked very hard to understand the topic.
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Old 24th November 2012, 08:20 PM   #52
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Old 24th November 2012, 08:21 PM   #53
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Old 24th November 2012, 08:24 PM   #54
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Originally Posted by Tricky View Post
You don't have to be a deep thinker to realize that you shouldn't believe things without evidence.
Who are you having that argument with?
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Old 24th November 2012, 08:33 PM   #55
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Originally Posted by Tricky View Post
Meh. Skepticism existed before Descartes and would have existed even if he hadn't made his statements. You don't have to be a deep thinker to realize that you shouldn't believe things without evidence. I don't think it requires a reductio ad absurdum to figure that out.
But aren't you asking me to believe that without evidence?
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Old 24th November 2012, 08:34 PM   #56
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Originally Posted by Kevin_Lowe View Post
It's been referred to by Newton as "standing on the shoulders of giants".
''The common theme of these thoughts is that modern researchers owe much to the knowledge that earlier scientists have discovered. While many believe that was the sentiment being expressed by Newton in his letter to Hooke, some researchers have suggested he was actually using the phrase "on the shoulders of giants" as a veiled insult of Robert Hooke, who was a rather short man. Newton had a reputation as a petty and vindictive man whose ego clashed with those of his rivals in the scientific and mathematical communities. One of these rivals was Robert Hooke, who had been in a long-running feud with Newton over which one had discovered the inverse square law. Although Newton's letter to Hooke appeared courteous on the surface, some historians have concluded he cleverly employed the phrase "on the shoulders of giants" to ridicule Hooke's lack of physical stature and imply that he lacked intellectual stature as well.''

http://www.aerospaceweb.org/question...y/q0162b.shtml
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Old 24th November 2012, 09:30 PM   #57
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Originally Posted by Kevin_Lowe View Post
Forums like this attract a disproportionate number of people who are in the top 0.1% of the population. Odds are decent that you aren't the smartest person in the room even on your best days. Plus being lazy, drunk and depressed means these aren't your best days.

I'm serious about the laziness bit. Check the quote in my sig file: I believe it to be a true fact about the universe. IQ test smarts are all well and good but if you haven't combined them with a serious, long-term effort to think well you're just a talented amateur.



She might. It's been referred to by Newton as "standing on the shoulders of giants". Natural talent is no substitute for cribbing from generations of people as smart as you or smarter who worked very hard to understand the topic.
I don't feel like getting into it with you. But trust me , she doesn't. (I've read enough of her posts to know)



ETA: and I would say I'm actually more hopeless than lazy, I make a serious effort, but it usually ends up horribly

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Old 24th November 2012, 09:32 PM   #58
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But not understood them. Trust me I know. You've been here one month, and have 1,000 plus posts?? Wow. Just noticed that.
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Old 25th November 2012, 12:41 AM   #59
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Originally Posted by Weak Kitten View Post
Philosophy has a place in our modern world. It should be the buffer between science and religion, helping both to better understand each other.
If philosophy is supposed to be about pure logic, what can it possibly say about the illogic?

Quote:
It should be asking the hard questions about ethics and personal choice. It should be keeping pace with our fast paced technological development, helping the average man to understand their place in this rapidly changing world.
What achievements has it ever made in the field of ethics and personal choice?

Quote:

My frustration is not that philosophy has become useless. My frustration is that philosophers have made themselves useless and now the rest of us are having to pick up the slack.
There are three parts to it. Philosophy, philosophical training and philosophers.

Of the three, the only portion that is useful is the training. There is no doubt that these people are trained to be very astute and strictly logical thinkers. But the best then go on to do something useful, like learn a science, become a journalist etc. This isn't a new phenomenon, the shackles of the old Greek philosophers with their disdain for experimentation were finally shed in the renaissance. People would be called philosophers, then natural philosophers and finally we still have the hangover of the PhD. But there is still the intellectual snobbery of philosophers looking down on scientists. This is a common human trait when your reason for elevation has been undermined, commonly characterised by trying to invent a new language that only you know. It also happens in class snobbery.

If you want to call logical thinking philosophy then do so, just don't correct the rest of us who call it logical thinking.
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Old 25th November 2012, 12:49 AM   #60
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well said, the smug cloud that seems to lurk around the world of academic philosophy is exactly what triggered me to make this thread (that and I'm half nuts today and in a lousy mood and wanted to gripe)
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Old 25th November 2012, 01:07 AM   #61
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Are you an academic? Do you have an education?
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Old 25th November 2012, 01:44 AM   #62
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Philosopy. Does it exist? Oh shoot now I'm doing it and I'm doing it wrong!!!

People like Anthony Robbins and much of the self help self empowerment crowd annoy me. They generate the same type of false enthusiasim generated by many religions (especially evangelical ones) and cement it all together with lazy generic and overused philosophy styled talk.

I prefer absurdist ways of thinking. Douglas Adams or Terry Pratchett style. At least when its BS its still funny.

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Old 25th November 2012, 01:54 AM   #63
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I too used to make the mistake of putting all of philosophy into one category. Turns out, not all philosophy is this obscurantist, pretentions mumbo jumbo that self amuses itself in a nonsensical game of rhetorics. There's actually very interesting philosophy that is based on evidence and on actual scientific experiments, such as the philosphy of Daniel Dennett. If you have not checked out Dennett, I suggest you do immediately. If you have, I suggest you don't forget about him and try not to be unfair to philosophy, and remember some philosophy is actually as engaging, educational and profound as science.

That aside, Carl Sagan, Neil Degrasse Tyson and Richard Feynman were some of the scientists who didn't simply preach science but rather expressed it in a rather philosophical way. It would be fair to say they were as much philosophers as they were scientists, for they didn't limit to explain why things were, but also added their own personal visions on why they were, and extrapolated from that what other things could also be and why.

And now, some Daniel Dennett:

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Old 25th November 2012, 03:08 AM   #64
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Originally Posted by Kevin_Lowe View Post
.. It's been referred to by Newton as "standing on the shoulders of giants". Natural talent is no substitute for cribbing from generations of people as smart as you or smarter who worked very hard to understand the topic.
Just a minor quibble here.
That idea was about long before Newton:

Quote:
The attribution to Bernard is due to John of Salisbury. In 1159, John wrote in his Metalogicon:[2]

Bernard of Chartres used to say that we are like dwarfs on the shoulders of giants, so that we can see more than they, and things at a greater distance, not by virtue of any sharpness of sight on our part, or any physical distinction, but because we are carried high and raised up by their giant size.
(Dicebat Bernardus Carnotensis nos esse quasi nanos, gigantium humeris insidentes, ut possimus plura eis et remotiora videre, non utique proprii visus acumine, aut eminentia corporis, sed quia in altum subvenimur et extollimur magnitudine gigantea.)
Yes, it's from wiki
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Standin...ders_of_giants


Anyway, here's an illustration of the concept:

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Old 25th November 2012, 03:20 AM   #65
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Originally Posted by Ron_Tomkins View Post
I too used to make the mistake of putting all of philosophy into one category. Turns out, not all philosophy is this obscurantist, pretentions mumbo jumbo that self amuses itself in a nonsensical game of rhetorics. There's actually very interesting philosophy that is based on evidence and on actual scientific experiments, such as the philosphy of Daniel Dennett. If you have not checked out Dennett, I suggest you do immediately. If you have, I suggest you don't forget about him and try not to be unfair to philosophy, and remember some philosophy is actually as engaging, educational and profound as science.

That aside, Carl Sagan, Neil Degrasse Tyson and Richard Feynman were some of the scientists who didn't simply preach science but rather expressed it in a rather philosophical way. It would be fair to say they were as much philosophers as they were scientists, for they didn't limit to explain why things were, but also added their own personal visions on why they were, and extrapolated from that what other things could also be and why.

And now, some Daniel Dennett:

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Nice example.

I think that there are some good grounds for collaboration between philosophers and scientists.

Of course, there's plenty of philosophy that deserves to be disparaged, particularly the post-modernist crap, but many like Dennett are also interested in science.
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Old 25th November 2012, 03:45 AM   #66
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Originally Posted by Ryokan View Post
Hard science can't figure out ethical and moral values
Of course it can. You just need to ask meaningful questions.
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Old 25th November 2012, 03:48 AM   #67
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Originally Posted by StankApe View Post
see, i am a firm believer that philosophy hasn't actually changed much of anything.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Age_of_Enlightenment
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Old 25th November 2012, 04:06 AM   #68
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Originally Posted by PixyMisa View Post
Of course it can. You just need to ask meaningful questions.
Or it can't, but neither can philosophy. It really depends on what you mean by "figuring out ethical and moral values." If you mean investigating current moral values and understanding how they come about, sure, you can do that. If you mean flashing out a moral system based on some basic values or perhaps a few desired consequences, again, you can do that. But if you mean determining what is RIGHT and WRONG in and of itself, then I'm afraid neither science nor philosophy can help you there.
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Old 25th November 2012, 05:24 AM   #69
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Originally Posted by Ron_Tomkins View Post
I too used to make the mistake of putting all of philosophy into one category. Turns out, not all philosophy is this obscurantist, pretentions mumbo jumbo that self amuses itself in a nonsensical game of rhetorics. There's actually very interesting philosophy that is based on evidence and on actual scientific experiments, such as the philosphy of Daniel Dennett. If you have not checked out Dennett, I suggest you do immediately. If you have, I suggest you don't forget about him and try not to be unfair to philosophy, and remember some philosophy is actually as engaging, educational and profound as science.

That aside, Carl Sagan, Neil Degrasse Tyson and Richard Feynman were some of the scientists who didn't simply preach science but rather expressed it in a rather philosophical way. It would be fair to say they were as much philosophers as they were scientists, for they didn't limit to explain why things were, but also added their own personal visions on why they were, and extrapolated from that what other things could also be and why.

And now, some Daniel Dennett:
Doing experiments, measuring data, testing hypotheses... This is a scientist, not a philosopher.
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Old 25th November 2012, 07:06 AM   #70
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I used to hate philosophy. I never studied it and it turns out that most of what I was exposed to was street philosophy.

Then I came here and watched PixyMisa deconstruct a couple of personal philosophical stances using proper philosophy and changed my mind.

I still don't understand it, the proper stuff that is, but at times it can be fun.
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Old 25th November 2012, 07:31 AM   #71
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Originally Posted by StankApe View Post
see, i am a firm believer that philosophy hasn't actually changed much of anything.
Well, then you firmly believe something that's demonstrably false.

Quote:
Man would've pursued his explorations in science regardless. (in fact, i would say the religious philosophy has in fact hurt scientific endeavor wayyyy more than philosophy has ever helped it).

Ethics exist without a textbook, morality exists without a religion and man would have endeavored to "know" regardless of 400 pages of what "to be" happens to say.
To me, that's like saying "Words would exist without letters" or "Forests would exist without trees". Science, ethics and morals *are* philosophy.
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Old 25th November 2012, 08:13 AM   #72
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Originally Posted by Ryokan View Post
It is part of the definition of philosophy. Wikipedia says: Philosophy is the study of general and fundamental problems, such as those connected with reality, existence, knowledge, values, reason, mind, and language. Philosophy is distinguished from other ways of addressing such problems by its critical, generally systematic approach and its reliance on rational argument.

So there you have it. The answer to your question is: By critical, generally systematic approach and rational argument. It can't be found with a microscope or through mathematics, but must be arrived at by reason. And, unlike in science, the answers can never be true or final.

How else do we figure out ethical and moral values?
So in any given scenario I can find out the right ethical and moral course to follow using philosophy?

Oh, wait you also said that the answers aren't true or final so how is philosophy any different than just guessing?

To sum up you say philosophy gives us answers to moral and ethical problems but we can't depend on those answers.
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Old 25th November 2012, 08:15 AM   #73
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Originally Posted by Atwill View Post
Well, then you firmly believe something that's demonstrably false.


To me, that's like saying "Words would exist without letters" or "Forests would exist without trees". Science, ethics and morals *are* philosophy.

One of these things is not like the other two.
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Old 25th November 2012, 08:41 AM   #74
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Originally Posted by tsig View Post
One of these things is not like the other two.
I wasn't claiming them to be equal or similar in any way other than all of them being philosophy, which they are. Every single scientific axiom, for example, is a philosophical one as well.

It's not that I don't get Ape's (and other people's) frustration with sophistry and vacuous babble, but detesting philosophy based on those annoyances seems a bit bizarre to me, given that you couldn't even articulate a coherent argument against vacuous babble without employing some form of philosophy.
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Old 25th November 2012, 09:50 AM   #75
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Originally Posted by Atwill View Post
It's not that I don't get Ape's (and other people's) frustration with sophistry and vacuous babble, but detesting philosophy based on those annoyances seems a bit bizarre to me, given that you couldn't even articulate a coherent argument against vacuous babble without employing some form of philosophy.
The lacking amateur have given the word a bad rep. Either get them to be honest and call their babbling what it is, or find a new word for "real" philosophy. As it stands "philosophers" have the same status with me as Fox News has with regard to "news service".

And yes, that's me. My opinion. YMMV.
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Old 25th November 2012, 10:18 AM   #76
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Originally Posted by tsig View Post
So in any given scenario I can find out the right ethical and moral course to follow using philosophy?

Oh, wait you also said that the answers aren't true or final so how is philosophy any different than just guessing?

To sum up you say philosophy gives us answers to moral and ethical problems but we can't depend on those answers.
''Just guessing'' is a very good description of philosophy.
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Old 25th November 2012, 10:19 AM   #77
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Originally Posted by Atwill View Post
Every single scientific axiom, for example, is a philosophical one as well.
Examples please.
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Old 25th November 2012, 10:38 AM   #78
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Originally Posted by Atwill View Post
I wasn't claiming them to be equal or similar in any way other than all of them being philosophy, which they are. Every single scientific axiom, for example, is a philosophical one as well.

It's not that I don't get Ape's (and other people's) frustration with sophistry and vacuous babble, but detesting philosophy based on those annoyances seems a bit bizarre to me, given that you couldn't even articulate a coherent argument against vacuous babble without employing some form of philosophy.
So they're not equal or similar but they're all the same thing, philosophy? There's a bit of a contradiction there.

These all inclusive claims that "it's all philosophy" become tiring and repetitive and well show the overweening presumption of most philosophers, they're saying "You can't even argue with us without using philosophy and since we're philosophers we automatically win the argument".
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Old 25th November 2012, 10:49 AM   #79
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Philosophy is great fun, until you hear someone outside the class start talking about it.

When the prof says it, interesting information.

When your buddy at the bar says it, "Oh look at the time... gotta go before I need a shovel to dig my way clear of all this ********..."...
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Old 25th November 2012, 10:49 AM   #80
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Originally Posted by dafydd View Post
''Just guessing'' is a very good description of philosophy.
You mean "Making an assessment of the probabilities of ethical activities leading to the desired result rather than an unformed chaos of Bayesian events eventuating in a very unpleasant scent in a confined but moving space"?

Rules of Philosophy:

1. Never use a naked noun, always clothe it in many adjectives, the longer and more Latin sounding the better.


2. Banish brevity.

3. When in trouble, when in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout.
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