• Brett
    3k


    But, I think that you need to look into yourself more rather than project all your anger outwards.Jack Cummins

    Unbelievable hubris.
  • Jack Cummins
    917

    You see you project straight back. When I interact with you, I come away so frustrated. You seem to write with such a tone of passive aggression. I think that it something that you do need to address because you do have a lot of good points to say as well.
  • Jack Cummins
    917

    I don't see the relevance of the question. Most of the people on this site are more anonymous than I am. We are not meant to have disclose our personal details.
  • Brett
    3k


    Of course. So I don’t see why you feel you can make judgements about my mental state.
  • Jack Cummins
    917

    I am not making any judgements about your mental state but about the tone of the writing. But I don't really feel that we should continue this conversation because we are not getting anywhere. I have already said points in your favour as well. So, I will leave it there and allow the flow of your thread to continue.
  • 180 Proof
    2.2k
    Is philosophy good for us?Brett
    Philosophy is good for those who recognize that they are congenitally unwise; for them, striving to moderate, if not minimize, their unwisdom becomes both possible (via patiently habitualizing various reflective practices) and desirable.
  • TheMadFool
    8.3k
    This isn’t in my post. It’s not even the subject.Brett

    An apology is in order then. Sorry. I must've gotten carried away by certain suggestive statements in your post.

    “Which makes me wonder if it’s possible that philosophy has nothing to do with life or how ones mind operates. Like I said, it’s as if philosophy is attached to the mind inorganically, that it’s completely alien to what we are.
    Is it a useless development like wings on a frog? It throws up more questions than answers and creates doubt about all possibilities. Is it an aberration that holds respect and meaning because of its attachment to the mind, the intellect being superior to all other things, like emotion or intuition? Which, of course, would be the position of the intellect.”
    Brett

    Well, speaking from an evolutionary standpoint, thinking is a brand new skill for life; my guess is only a handful of recently-evolved species are capable of it. Among all animals capable of some level of thinking humans stand out as species that's taken thinking to the next level, thinking properly, and by that I mean to point at our attempts to get thinking properly down to a science: logic, critical thinking, philosophy and allied subjects. If you're willing to grant that, it seems obvious, doesn't it?, that philosophy, the acme of thinking properly, will be alien to us. After all, as I said, it's a cutting edge evolutionary ability and just as we have trouble using novel technology, we should expect some hiccups using our brains.
  • tim wood
    5.9k
    I have a philosophy that's quite at odds with the society, and world I live in. I cannot live in accord with my philosophy - because society doesn't work that way.counterpunch
    This is some topic-in-a-nutshell! I invite you to open it up a bit more in its own thread.

    In as much as it's a problem, there may be some not-complete solutions. As a statement about a reality, quite interesting.
  • counterpunch
    233
    That's very nice of you to say so Tim but my name is chosen wisely. I just work better responding to others people's ideas than explaining my own. I've tried it and it comes across as ego-maniacal - particularly given that, I think recognising the truth value of a scientific understanding of reality (as opposed to an ideological understanding of reality) is the solution to the climate and ecological crisis. I don't want to come across like I think I'm the second coming. I'm just a philosopher of science, happy when I can point out that science works!
  • TheMadFool
    8.3k
    Philosophy is good for those who recognize that they are congenitally unwise; for them, striving to moderate, if not minimize, their unwisdom becomes both possible (via patiently habitualizing various reflective practices) and desirable.180 Proof

    The OP seems to be concerned about whether your philosopher's prescription above is the right medicine for what ails us. For my money, I'd say our understanding of our world seems to be a couple of steps behind our ability to bend the world to our will and the entire planet has to bear the cost of this seemingly innocuous asynchrony. Shoot first, ask questions later is our modus operandi: we invent new technologies and ideas without the requisite "...reflective practices..." that should've gone into them. Thus my personal version of the question is, is philosophy destined to be always late to the party? If it's a habit, it's a very bad habit.
  • emancipate
    159
    It throws up more questions than answers and creates doubt about all possibilities.Brett

    Yes and this is one of the great qualities of philosophical enquiry! You commence a path that appears to be singular and linear (due to ignorance and presuppositions) and continue along as the path transforms into an increasingly rhizomatic, multiplicity of directions. Slightly lost, you see that you know less than when you started but there is an heightened sense of awe and wonder. Little by little ignorance is chipped away in the realisation that there are no easy answers, no closed circles. Philosophy proliferates difference. Enjoy the journey.

    Is philosophy good? Depends what good is. Depends what philosophy is. The answers are, of course, diverse.
  • jgill
    983
    Well, philosophy is certainly good for nothing, at least on TPF:

    Nothing! A Conceptual Paradox!

    :cool:
  • Joshs
    911
    Which makes me wonder if it’s possible that philosophy has nothing to do with life or how ones mind operates.Brett

    They don’t appear to have applied their thinking and discrimination to themselves.Brett

    I disagree. The personal actions of philosophers don’t occur in spite of their expressed worldiview but because of it; they manifest the possibilities and limitarions of that worldview. That’s precisely how Derrida, Levinas , Karl Jaspers and other philosophers who were close to Heidegger or his work treated his ideas in relation to his politics.

    Splitting their philosophy off from their actions gives readers an excuse to avoid having to interpret their actions in a more complex way than just :’ Heidegger wrote Being and Time but he was a Nazi.’
  • Ansiktsburk
    107
    Heidegger snuggled up to the Nazis, Sartre treated young women as objects, Schopenhauer had a problem with Jews and looked down on women, Aristotle thought women were “deformed men”, Hume and Kant were racists, Nietzsche despised sick people, Rousseau abandoned his children, Wittgenstein beat his students, Mill condoned colonialism, Hegel disparaged Africans and Frege was anti-Semitic. (https://1000wordphilosophy.com/2018/07/17/responding-to-morally-flawed-historical-philosophers-and-philosophies/).Brett

    And all the scientists in say medicine and physics are good guys? Einstein asked Roosevelt to make nuclear bombs. He was quite a bad husband too. Pretty sure Fleming and Semmelweis were azzholes in some way too.
  • Ansiktsburk
    107
    Splitting their philosophy off from their actions gives readers an excuse to avoid having to interpret their actions in a more complex way than just :’ Heidegger wrote Being and Time but he was a Nazi.’Joshs

    Thats an interesting one. Where do you find Hitler in Sein und Zeit? I’m not ironical, I am seriously interested.
  • Manuel
    66
    Well, scientists helped developed the atom bomb. Now that weapon could destroy us all at any moment. Should we stop doing science? Althusser murdered his wife, should we not engage in political debates? Thomas Jefferson was a slave owner, should we not study history?

    By those standards, we'd have literally nothing to talk about or discuss or discover.
  • Joshs
    911
    Thats an interesting one. Where do you find Hitler in Sein und Zeit? I’m not ironical, I am seriously interested.Ansiktsburk

    You may want to read Levinas’ Totality and Infinity. The whole book is essentially an attempt to show how Heidegger’s way of understanding Being lent itself to his political entanglements. Or Derrida’s “Heidegger and the Question”
  • Ansiktsburk
    107
    You may want to read Levinas’ Totality and Infinity. The whole book is essentially an attempt to show how Heidegger’s way of understanding Being lent itself to his political entanglements. Or Derrida’s “Heidegger and the Question”Joshs
    Sorry, I have a daytime job and a family. Can you give me a resume?
  • Pfhorrest
    3.9k
    That’s fine, but how do you apply them throughout the day with issues bugging you at the time?Brett

    It was struggling with how to overcome practical real-life problems that lead me to find a foundation to the more abstract philosophy I was already building:

    "It may be hopeless but I'm trying anyway".

    I use this all the time, and advise other people in ways that amounts to it, and it shows results. Trying is scary hard work: much easier to either assume you will succeed without trying or assume you will fail even if you try, so in either case no use in trying. But only by trying is success possible, even though it's still not guaranteed. So may as well just give it a try. If you fail anyway... well that's the same outcome as if you didn't try.

    Applies to finding a job, a romantic partner, getting better customer service at a business, etc etc etc. Just ask. Just check. Just try.

    If you do that with regards to the search for wisdom -- philosophy -- that gives you the core principles of my abstract philosophical system -- universalism and criticism -- and the rest of my philosophy builds from there.
  • Joshs
    911
    Do you have any cats?
  • 180 Proof
    2.2k
    The OP seems to be concerned about whether your philosopher's prescription above is the right medicine for what ails usTheMadFool
    :mask: Well, ...
    ... philosophy (or, rather, philosophizing) seems medicine for the healthy (i.e. dialectical ones) and poison for the unhealthy (i.e. dogmatic herd).180 Proof
  • Brett
    3k


    Philosophy is good for those who recognize that they are congenitally unwise; for them, striving to moderate, if not minimize, their unwisdom becomes both possible (via patiently habitualizing various reflective practices) and desirable.180 Proof

    I haven’t started this OP to prove anything but to follow a vague thought I had, which may be seen as the hat representing philosophy. Your post suggests that we may need to be introduced to philosophy, to be instructed in it. Otherwise we would be unwise, unless it developed under it’s own steam, which you suggest it cannot be. My list of philosophers was to indicate how, despite their philosophical investigations, these people remained unwise in other ways that those who do not take part in philosophy did not suffer from (my assumption of course). So it seems to me that philosophy is like an appendage or the hat placed on the head.
  • Brett
    3k


    that philosophy, the acme of thinking properly, will be alien to us.TheMadFool

    Well, speaking from an evolutionary standpoint, thinking is a brand new skill for life;TheMadFool

    That’s an interesting take on things. We’re still babies on the earth. So philosophy is still very rudimentary. And taking into account our recent appearance and then even more recently our application of philosophy then it’s a very new and untested thing. So certainly not perfect by any means, but nor necessarily true that it’s a good thing. Like the centipede asked how he walks with all those legs.
  • Brett
    3k


    Philosophy proliferates difference.emancipate

    On the surface that seems like a wonderful thing. But what is the benefit? If we can’t use philosophy to hone in on something, slowly reducing it to the kernel of truth, then as I said it creates more doubt than truth, as if there’s some wonder to an eternity of questions. That’s interesting for those who like to bend their minds around things and wrestle with meanings, but what does it do for the man in the street who, having been told God is dead, then asks are morals real?
  • Brett
    3k


    They don’t appear to have applied their thinking and discrimination to themselves.
    — Brett

    I disagree. The personal actions of philosophers don’t occur in spite of their expressed worldiview but because of it;
    Joshs

    I’m not quite sure what you mean. You seem to be saying, for sample, that Aristotle’s thoughts regarding women was the result of his intellect. But it does seem to me that anyone applying their intellect to the world around them would reach the conclusion that women are not less than men.
  • Joshs
    911
    You seem to be saying, for sample, that Aristotle’s thoughts regarding women was the result of his intellect. But it does seem to me that anyone applying their intellect to the world around them would reach the conclusion that women are not less than men.Brett

    I’m saying that all us carry around our own personal
    worldview through which we interpret the world and through which our values and opinions are determined.
    If it seems to you that anyone should act in a way different than the way they do in fact act, I’d suggest the reason is that you’re applying your own worldview to them rather than effectively grasping their vantage on things.
  • Brett
    3k


    “Hume and Kant were racists,”

    If it seems to you that anyone should act in a way different than the way they do in fact act, I’d suggest the reason is that you’re applying your own worldview to them rather than effectively grasping their vantage on things.Joshs

    I’m not asking anyone to act in the way I think they should. It just seems to me that anyone who applied an intellect of the sort these two possessed, then why would they not deduce that racism is destructive to others, or that anti-Semitism is a dangerous point of view.

    What exactly should I grasp about Kant’s racist beliefs?

    Edit: I guess this adds to my query about philosophy being some sort of add-on. I mean why didn’t Kant’s philosophy permeate all of his thinking?
  • Joshs
    911
    mean why didn’t Kant’s philosophy permeate all of his thinking?Brett

    I believe it did permeate all his thinking.

    why would they not deduce that racism is destructive to others, or that anti-Semitism is a dangerous point of view.Brett

    We live in a much more interconnected world than past philosophers did. They had limited exposure to groups unlike themselves. Had Kant ever met a black person? I heard he never travelled outside of Prussia.
  • Brett
    3k


    why would they not deduce that racism is destructive to others, or that anti-Semitism is a dangerous point of view.
    — Brett

    We live in a much more interconnected world than past philosophers did. They had limited exposure to groups unlike themselves. Had Kant ever met a black person? I heard he never travelled outside of Prussia.
    Joshs

    Frege was an anti-Semite. Jews aren’t that alien to Europeans.

    Edit: Frege, “ Hmmm, what is meaning? Get that Jew out of this building!”
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