• creativesoul
    7.9k
    Take undeniably true statements. Use them as a means to discriminate between different philosophies.
    — creativesoul

    How do you know what statements are undeniably true? Isn’t that a philosophical question?...
    Pfhorrest

    It's called one. It is a question that is placed into the category of being a philosophical one. Your question involves metacognition. Truth does not. True belief does not. Both exist prior to their namesake, as do undeniably true statements.

    So, what sense does it make to ask me about the kind of questions you're asking me?

    :brow:

    Talking about questions is not equivalent to good philosophy. Knowing the kinds of questions one is asking is a part of good philosophy, however, not just any talk about any questions will do here.

    True statements are imperative to good philosophy.

    Do you agree?



    There are undeniably true statements. Those are the most reliable strongest ground upon which to judge whether relevant claims are true as well, particularly when they are mutually exclusive claims.

    Do you agree?



    You're asking me about my knowledge regarding undeniably true statements, and then asking me what kind of question that is...

    :brow:

    I'm talking about true statements as though there are such things. Are you denying that there are? If so, lose the "undeniable" qualifier. It's unnecessary and may be causing confusion bearing the same name. So...


    Are you denying that there are true statements?



    Seems kind of circular to then base your means of discerning truth on something you discern to be true based on... what means exactly?

    This is confused. It does not follow from anything I've written. It's not an accurate report of anything I've written.

    I updated my criterion a bit, and it doesn't take 80,000 words.

    Where is it found lacking?
  • StreetlightX
    4.9k
    A good philosophy acts as a force multiplier to thought; it forges connections between the disparate, as elaboration on world and word. A good philosophy constantly surprises, pulls one along a forceful current of throught that propels a mind from one element to the next, and leaves one hungry for more. It inspires creation in thought and serves as a launchpad to thinking otherwise, always. It refers one constantly to an elsewhere and an outside that cannot be captured within that philosophy but on which it always draws upon, augments, and edifies.
  • Pfhorrest
    1.6k
    Are you denying that there are true statements?creativesoul

    Not at all. I'm denying that we can know for certain, especially prior to any philosophizing, which statements are the true ones and which are the false ones.

    A good philosophy gives you a way to tell which statements are the true ones and which are the false ones.

    That philosophy can't then depend on already knowing for sure which statements are the true ones and which are the false ones.

    Because to know that would require the philosophy that, you say, first required that we know that.
  • creativesoul
    7.9k
    I'm denying that we can know for certain, especially prior to any philosophizing, which statements are the true ones and which are the false ones.Pfhorrest

    I never made that claim, but could easily argue for it.

    One can easily know that the statement "the cup is in the fridge" is true or not long prior to any ability to do philosophy.



    A good philosophy gives you a way to tell which statements are the true ones and which are the false ones.Pfhorrest

    An understanding of what sorts of things can be true and what makes them so gives you a way to tell which statements are the true ones and which are the false ones.

    There is no need for philosophy here. Five year olds have such an understanding.


    Good philosophy includes the strongest possible justificatory ground. True statements are such things. Do you agree?
  • Pfhorrest
    1.6k
    An understanding of what sorts of things can be true and what makes them so gives you a way to tell which statements are the true ones and which are the false ones.

    There is no need for philosophy here. Five year olds have such an understanding.
    creativesoul

    An understanding of what sorts of things can be true and what makes them so is a kind of philosophy. I agree that five year olds often have a pretty good intuition for that kind of thing, but lots of adults forget it, and start claiming that weird things that can't be true are obviously true. Disabusing them of such notions and making sure people keep to the common sense that five year olds have takes philosophizing.

    I actually make this very point myself:

    I consider that general philosophical view to be a naively uncontroversial, common-sense kind of view, from which various other philosophical schools of thought deviate in different ways; and I aim to shore up and refine that common-sense view into a more rigorous form that can better withstand the temptation of such deviation.The Codex Quaerentis: Introduction
  • creativesoul
    7.9k
    An understanding of what sorts of things can be true and what makes them so is a kind of philosophy.Pfhorrest

    No, it's not. At least, not in the case currently under consideration.


    I agree that five year olds often have a pretty good intuition for that kind of thing...

    Invoking the notion of intuition offers no help here. Muddies the waters.

    Five year olds know when "the cup is in the cupboard" is true or not. They can look for themselves. They do so in order to check and see for themselves. We can watch these events happen again and again. They do not have what it takes to do philosophy. They are not doing a kind of philosophy. They are showing a clear undeniable understanding regarding what sorts of things can be true and what makes them so.

    Thus, the claim quoted at the top of this post is not true.
  • Pussycat
    282
    OK, well what makes a good dance?A Seagull

    Seeing what makes a good philosophy, well this I think is extremely difficult to do by itself, but seeing what makes a good dance, that's a lot easier. Thus by answering the latter, I believe we would be one step closer to answering the former. So what is it that characterizes a good dance, what is essential to it? I guess you need rythm; rhyme and reason. Assuming of course that some dances are better than others. But what do you think?
  • A Seagull
    344
    P

    258
    Pussycat

    Well I have to say I like the metaphor of philosophy as a dance. Extending the metaphor Life is a dance.

    Some dances are more enjoyable than others, some lives are more enjoyable than others. A good philosophy is then one that enables one to have an enjoyable life. Ultimately a philosophy is personal, it has very little to do with truth or statements, they are only useful if one wants to communicate one's philosophy.
  • Bilge
    8
    The fundamental questions that relate to humans and nature are interpreted in different ways. Understanding the reason for this diversity requires a multi-disciplinary approach. Philosophy is not an island. Neither philosophy nor any other science can only be scrutinised in themselves. They always require investigation through the lens of other(s). Thus, it is needed to understand the reason for seemingly endless variation in philosophical approaches by taking into consideration their i.e. historical, social, cultural, psychological roots. In other words, a significant part of sorting out the jigsaw of philosophy requires us to know where they come from, the circumstances under which they emerged, the need they serve etc. Every question also has many sub-questions. Therefore, the first part is about finding out what is out there and what they want / mean. This is also to know how to deal with an enormous circle of circles. Depending on their level of strength, each individual would either continue with this journey or chooses a harbour. That point / location/ particular philosophical approach become the permanent home of the mind that cannot go on. Those who continue extract the logical nucleus out of every philosophy and gradually form a set of principles that help on the journey. Through critical thinking, open-mindedness, constant questioning, healthy scepticism, constant triangulation etc each principle would get tested until they prove to be invincible, beyond the slightest doubt. It is because the content(s) of each principle coincide perfectly with the modus operandi of life. This method also helps the individual to grow as an original thinker. Mistakes and even frustration would occur, but they do not characterise the thinker, who is able to observe the movements of his / her mind at every step of this journey. Thinking observes and thinks about itself. Being his / her own person, the thinker would develop their own words, concepts and ways of explaining things that necessarily change with more learning, The result is also the well-coordinated totalization process of open-ended body of all-round knowledge. The thinker would already be aware that every philosophy has or had a historical mission / role regardless of whether it sounds right or wrong or anywhere in between.
  • A Seagull
    344
    That said, the essence of philosophy is, in true Socratic spirit, a journey of discovery of not wisdom but of our own abject ignorance. The philosopher then is the quintessential tragic hero, lured by the promise of wisdom to begin a quest to become a sage but sadly betrayed to none other than himself and his pathetic ignorance.TheMadFool

    Well, one can still enjoy the journey.. :)
  • Pussycat
    282
    Well I have to say I like the metaphor of philosophy as a dance. Extending the metaphor Life is a dance.

    Some dances are more enjoyable than others, some lives are more enjoyable than others. A good philosophy is then one that enables one to have an enjoyable life. Ultimately a philosophy is personal, it has very little to do with truth or statements, they are only useful if one wants to communicate one's philosophy.
    A Seagull

    Yes of course, philosophy has little to do with statements, true or false, but if one sees it that way, then they are statesmen, and not philosophers.

    What sais google on statesman? "A statesman or stateswoman is usually a politician, diplomat or other notable public figure who has had a long and respected career at the national or international level". Ah yes, we should not forget about stateswomen, or we could just say statespersons - as political correctness requires it. Anyway, that sort of race of people seek acknowledgement, the more the merrier, they are also self-proclaimed truth and wisdom seekers. What do they have to do with dancers, that only want to put on a good show?
  • Coben
    1.4k
    Well, this is a self serving answer but I'd like to say that it is ad hoc, flexible and not too fussy. That tools and models from other metaphysics or approaches can be used without feeling like one is a hypocrite. I think there's a bit of (perhaps quite useful) hubris in thinking one can come up with the right ontology the right tools for all situations. That'll all be in our messy lilttle language and using metaphors and points of view coming from our motor cortex and primate brains. When we navigate our days we mix intuition, empirical study, listening to experts, deduction and a whole lot of not conscious at all tools, assumptions and problem solving approaches. We have more time when we are doing philosophy, if we do, but I still think a mixed approach suits our brains/minds and also 'the situation'.
  • Harry Hindu
    2.8k
    Ultimately a philosophy is personal, it has very little to do with truth or statementsA Seagull
    Is this a true statement? If not, then how would it be useful to you or anyone else? If so, then philosophy wouldn't be personal because the truth in the statement would be useful to everyone that shares the same world.

    they are only useful if one wants to communicate one's philosophy.A Seagull
    They're only communicated if the communicator believes that it's "personal" insights would be useful to others, thereby making it an objective (applicable to others) philosophy, not personal or subjective.
  • A Seagull
    344
    ↪A Seagull Well, this is a self serving answerCoben

    Which is a self serving answer?
  • Cabbage Farmer
    242
    There are a variety of approaches to philosophy: realism, idealism, theiem, existentialism and so on.

    Is there an over-riding means of evaluating which is better than the others?

    Are they distinct or do they share a commonality which suggests they are all just minor variations of a common philosophy?

    What makes for a good philosophy?
    A Seagull
    I say the purpose of philosophical discourse is to cultivate an integrative worldview suitable to inform, guide, and promote harmonious action in individuals and whole communities. Accordingly, philosophical discourse is just a special exercise of a more general sort of philosophical activity that belongs to our nature and that is ceaseless in creatures like us.

    I doubt whether there is a single set of noncontroversial objective criteria according to which divergent philosophical discourses, each reasonably coherent in itself, may be evaluated. I expect that people who diverge from each other in philosophical outlook also tend to disagree on the standards by which they would assess divergent philosophical discourses.

    Even so, these divergent views might be called variants of the same sort of thing, a worldview, produced by the same sort of process, philosophical activity.

    I expect there may be widespread agreement among participants in this forum that values like rationality, coherence, and truth figure prominently among the criteria according to which we engage in and assess philosophical discourse.
  • Antidote
    154
    Yes. You only need one tool to work this out, its called, "Reason". Not to be confused with "logic" which has little hope of helping you out.

    Sorry, I'm banging on about this at the moment. Ancient Greeks made up the system we now call "Logic". The logical system is relative because it was created. It has definition and expression. As long as both of these are kept the same at each step, logic will be useful. Socrates and Plato and the like were masters at this, they would split "definition" and "expression" which created an illogical argument that looked logical but one that couldn't be defeated by another logical argument (because it was illogical).

    See the Agnostic view of the world, splitting the two aspect thus, "God" definition, "Gods" expression. Mixing singular and plural which cannot be. A big deception in their argument meaning "what ever they argued would stand because a logical argument could not beat it. Hence why they created "Rhetoric" and the like, because it would not allow "reason" to enter the argument - i.e. the only thing that could debunk the illogical argument first presented.

    What an incredibly clever trick, but what God-awful consequences it has had on our world and our people for the last 2000+ years.
  • Coben
    1.4k
    Mine. The one that sentence was in. This is a self-serving answer. And what followed were the details of that answer in that post.
  • Congau
    114

    Some approaches to philosophy contradict each other – realism and idealism can’t both be true-
    while others merely present different perspectives or independent problems that can exist side by side with a number of different approaches. Existentialism, being about one’s personal relation to the world, can be paired with several different approaches.

    A good philosophy may be restricted to a true philosophy, and whenever you argue in support of one school, you implicitly argue that it presents the right representation of the truth and consequently that it is a good philosophy.

    “Good” may also refer to the logical consistency of an approach. In that case, all the major philosophical theories would be good, as they have certainly proven their worth by surviving. If in a system, there were significant internal breaches for anyone to see, it would quickly fall apart.

    It’s been said that all of philosophy is just footnotes to Plato. It elaborates on the same general topics that Plato identified, and in that sense, it is all the same.
    All philosophy that is truly philosophy, that which deals with the relevant topics, would then be good philosophy, and bad philosophy would be that which only pretends to be philosophy.

    Whatever searches for the truth would be good philosophy, whereas whatever reduces it to an aimless game, would be sophism and bad.

    So what makes for a good philosophy? Good in what respect?
  • A Seagull
    344
    ↪A Seagull Mine. The one that sentence was in. This is a self-serving answer. And what followed were the details of that answer in that post.Coben

    Yes, I eventually realised that!
  • A Seagull
    344
    A good philosophy may be restricted to a true philosophyCongau

    Presumably then, a true philosophy is one that is in concordance with the facts.
  • Congau
    114
    Presumably then, a true philosophy is one that is in concordance with the facts.A Seagull
    Well, of course anything that is true must be in concordance with facts, but it’s not necessarily correct the other way around. A philosophy can be in concordance with mere facts without being true. Facts are basic true observations about the world whereas a philosophy is a logical derivation of facts. All philosophical systems worthy of the name would start by stating facts that everyone can agree on. From there they will go in different directions and reach conclusions that contradict each other. The facts remain the same, though, and so in a sense they will all depend on those facts.

    A philosophical truth is not observable in the same way a fact can be observed. Conclusions in moral philosophy, although they may be true, can’t really be called facts. For example, I am convinced that capital punishment is immoral, and I could refer to factual evidence to make the argument, but it would sound odd if I asserted that “it’s a fact that capital punishment is immoral”. Someone else might argue for the opposite and be quite correct about the mere facts referred to, but his conclusion would be false in my opinion. I could admit that what he said was in concordance with facts but still call his conclusion untrue.
  • A Seagull
    344
    A good philosophy acts as a force multiplier to thought; it forges connections between the disparate, as elaboration on world and word. A good philosophy constantly surprises, pulls one along a forceful current of throught that propels a mind from one element to the next, and leaves one hungry for more. It inspires creation in thought and serves as a launchpad to thinking otherwise, always. It refers one constantly to an elsewhere and an outside that cannot be captured within that philosophy but on which it always draws upon, augments, and edifies.StreetlightX

    OK, but that is a very subjective evaluation of philosophy; can you be more objective?
  • StreetlightX
    4.9k
    There's nothing subjective about it. Or objective for that matter (a silly distinction of limited use, everywhere misapplied).
  • A Seagull
    344
    ↪A Seagull There's nothing subjective about it. Or objective for that matter (a silly distinction of limited use, everywhere misapplied).StreetlightX

    well that is up to you.

    And a 'force multiplier to thought' is meaningful???
  • A Seagull
    344
    Conclusions in moral philosophy, although they may be true, can’t really be called facts.Congau

    Well perhaps there are no truths in moral philosophy.

    We are talking metaphilosophy here, so is moral philosophy or at least truths in moral philosophy an essential part of a 'good' philosophy?
  • Pfhorrest
    1.6k
    And a 'force multiplier to thought' is meaningful???A Seagull

    Do you know the term “force multiplier” in general?
  • StreetlightX
    4.9k
    And a 'force multiplier to thought' is meaningful???A Seagull

    Obviously.
  • Congau
    114
    perhaps there are no truths in moral philosophy.A Seagull
    There definitely are truths in moral philosophy, and we all implicitly think there are, or else we wouldn’t argue so vehemently over moral issues. When I say I believe that capital punishment is wrong, I’m saying that I believe it’s the truth that capital punishment is wrong. Sure, I can’t refer to it as a fact that other people could simply check on to know if it’s true. It’s not the same as saying “I believe it’s true that Paris is the capital of France”, but there’s no reason to assign the notion of truth exclusively to plain facts. Facts can be checked by simply taking a look, but something can be true even if that’s not possible.

    Suppose I have a box with a diamond in it. I can open the box and check, notice the diamond and exclaim “There’s a diamond in the box.” Now suppose the same box is locked and I can’t open it, but for some reason I believe there is a diamond in it. Suppose no one could open that box. Still, there is a diamond in it, isn’t there. It is not a fact anymore and no one knows for sure, but the diamond’s existence is the truth.
  • A Seagull
    344
    And a 'force multiplier to thought' is meaningful??? — A Seagull
    Do you know the term “force multiplier” in general?
    Pfhorrest

    From Wikipedia: ' force multiplication or a force multiplier refers to a factor or a combination of factors that gives personnel or weapons (or other hardware) the ability to accomplish greater feats than without it'.

    Nothing to do with thought. If applied to thought it is just new age mumbo jumbo.
  • A Seagull
    344
    perhaps there are no truths in moral philosophy. — A SeagullThere definitely are truths in moral philosophy,Congau

    Just because you personally believe something, that doesn't make it a universal truth.
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