• A Seagull
    610
    ↪A Seagull Ah yes, the very popular opinion that reading Kant is a cakewalk.StreetlightX

    I was actually referring to the popular opinion that anyone who hasn't read Kant knows nothing about philosophy.
  • StreetlightX
    5.9k
    The other criteria would be being able to read what is written I guess.
  • David Mo
    734
    That hardly constitutes a proof!A Seagull

    "Proof" in a broad sense.
  • TheMadFool
    6.6k
    I'm reminded of a common leitmotif in folk tales - there's this mysterious castle and the main protagonist in the story is welcomed in by the owner, allowed to stay and enjoy the exemplary hospitality, given permission to explore the castle with one condition - never to visit a certain section of the castle unless s/he wants something terrible to happen.

    Our minds too are like castles - with complex architecture and hundreds, even thousands of rooms, worthy of exploration and study but...there are certain sections of this mind castle, filled with demons, leftover stuff of our prehistoric roots I suppose, maybe even recent acquisitions in our evolutionary history, and visiting them comes with a hefty price tag - dark philosophy. Ergo, to read dark philosophy is to get to know how ugly things could get.
  • bongo fury
    513
    Maybe it's me. Maybe I'm too stupid to understand Goodman.RogueAI

    A clear reductio!

    Try this: green is like a straight line going through each of a set of data points; grue is a line going through all the same points but it predicts that all subsequent points collected will be on a different straight line, so it jumps straight to that, making (say) a zee shape instead of a "simple" line.

    "Simple" in quotes because it's in the eye of the beholder. If the zee shape projection were borne out by subsequent data we might decide that the straight line had ignored confounding variables. We might then recalibrate so that the zee shape became the straight one after all, but we might just learn to see the zee shape (and its partner zee shape corresponding to bleen) as the simpler and more natural or basic.

    This isn't to deny the zee shape makes the wrong projection, only that what is right to project is a matter of what looks simple or uniform to us, and what looks simple or uniform depends on how we are used to looking at things.
  • David Mo
    734
    Reminds me of Dennett's book3017amen

    Dennet is another example of difficult reading. I got stuck with his book and left it. In my opinion, it's not worth the effort. But I made the effort with Sartre. Why?

    Sartre probably writes better. He has impact phrases that can't be summed up. It's easy to find articles by Dennet that are shorter than the book. Not by Sartre. It's easy to find articles about Dennet. It's not easy to find articles on the Critique of Dialectical Reason.

    Perhaps circumstantial differences made me consider the suffering of reading Sartre's CDR inevitable. I don't regret it. Not quite.
  • 3017amen
    2.2k
    Dennet is another example of difficult reading. I got stuck with his book and left it. In my opinion, it's not worth the effort. But I made the effort with Sartre. Why?David Mo

    I agree. It's as if part of his theory was political double-speak to further some hidden agenda. I think he became unaware that he himself got lost in his own crop dust. No matter.

    Similarly, Sartre seemed to get too hung-up on the existential angst piece of the puzzle. I like Sartre because he was an existentialist, but I think he harped on dread and despair (as apposed to say the higher reaches of human nature). Sure, there exists finitude and temporality within the human condition (just read Christian philosophy/Ecclesiastes to get a lucid idea of our paradoxical finitude). And like eastern philosophy, there is a reconciliation of two opposing forces called cheerful despair.

    https://www.theschooloflife.com/thebookoflife/six-ideas-from-eastern-philosophy/

    Perhaps one of the many takeaway's of existentialism is the recognition and appreciation over the paradox and contradiction concerning the human condition. Self-awareness will always be an inescapable part of the sojourn here. And so why not try to have a broader view of same?
  • A Seagull
    610
    "Proof" in a broad sense.David Mo

    Well then your proof belongs to the same category as the proof that the Earth is flat.
  • David Mo
    734
    Well then your proof belongs to the same category as the proof that the Earth is flat.A Seagull

    I don't think so. Between a nonsense and a reasonable indication, there's a lot of space.
  • A Seagull
    610
    I don't think so. Between a nonsense and a reasonable indication, there's a lot of space.David Mo

    People didn't used to think that arguments for a flat earth was nonsense it was obvious the Earth was flat.

    Your argument is solely one of popular agreement, (or at least a lack of dissension), It is not in any way a rational argument.

    It is more akin to a religious argument... eg : read these sacred scriptures ( of Kant), believe them and you will be enlightened.

    Philosophy is based on assumptions ( without assumptions one cannot say anything about anything). The problem with Kant is that he does not make those assumptions explicit, nor does he make his arguments clear. The result is not so much philosophy as a sub-branch of philosophy.
  • David Mo
    734
    People didn't used to think that arguments for a flat earth was nonsense it was obvious the Earth was flat.

    Your argument is solely one of popular agreement, (or at least a lack of dissension)
    A Seagull

    My argument was based on the relative consensus of the expert community. I don't think it's an argument based on popular belief.

    The argument for a flat Earth has always been based on mythical accounts and delusional evidence today (a wall surrounding the ends of the Earth, a universal conspiracy of millions of people, etc.).

    You may consider that the consensus of specialists is not sufficient proof of Kant's clarity, but you cannot equate the two types of arguments.
  • David Mo
    734
    The problem with Kant is that he does not make those assumptions explicit, nor does he make his arguments clear.A Seagull

    What assumptions does Kant not make explicit?
    What is your criterion for considering Kant obscure?
  • A Seagull
    610
    The problem with Kant is that he does not make those assumptions explicit, nor does he make his arguments clear. — A Seagull
    What assumptions does Kant not make explicit?
    David Mo

    What assumptions does Kant make that are explicit?
  • David Mo
    734
    What assumptions does Kant not make explicit?David Mo
    What assumptions does Kant make that are explicit?A Seagull

    Answering a question with another is dialectical malpractice. It assumes that you don't know how to answer the first question and try to get rid of it in a bad way.
    If you answer first the question I asked you, we will can continue our discussion.
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