• Ukraine Crisis

    There's an analysis here.
  • Ritual: Secular or otherwise
    Rituals are often meaningless, like shaking hands or throwing a sword into a field to declare war. Is there a ritual that isn't meaningless on its own?
  • Ukraine Crisis

    The other day they showed Ukrainian soldiers taking a bunch of Russian soldiers as prisoners. I was a little horrified that the Ukrainians were going to execute them on the spot on reddit, but they didn't.

  • Most Important Problem Facing Humanity, Revisited
    Much growth is attributable to religious indoctrination and expectations-- like Christian countries used to be, now the Muslim world is propagandizing, very successfully, the idea that a man is only a man if he has more children than his neighbour. Or some other spiritual incentive, I don't know the Koran.god must be atheist

    Losing ground in terms of population is stressful. A labor shortage appears. The labor that does exist can make bigger demands.
  • Ukraine Crisis
    However, Russia-Chinese relationship is far more equal than Western media presents.boethius

    This is not true. China is an economic powerhouse ascending to superpower status. Russia has now lost its status as regional power and its economy is medieval. Any dream of equality with China is gone now.

    The Western media presents the war as Ukraine standing up to the "mighty Russia",boethius

    No, it doesn't, at least not the news sources I see. It's just a little conflict in Eastern Europe. You can see parts of it live on reddit. That's about it.
  • Ukraine Crisis
    Obviously things can swing back and forth.boethius

    I suppose they could engineer some sort of Hundred Years War, but their main ally, quickly becoming their master, is China. It will be Xi's call whether they can wage on indefinitely or not.

    Russia could also use tactical nuclear weapons,boethius

    And that would be Putin's final act as leader of Russia. I'm sure he knows that.
  • Ukraine Crisis
    How is this in anyway clear?boethius

    Well, they're losing previously taken positions, they're running out of troops, they've lost face with their allies. I mean, it looks like they're losing to me. Not to you?
  • Most Important Problem Facing Humanity, Revisited
    2.1. Population size can't be reduced without drastic measures.
    2.2. Drastic measures are opposed by democratic, humanitarian societies.
    god must be atheist

    A lot of countries have close to zero population growth. It turns out that when women have the option to get educated and have careers, the growth rate plummets.

    Plus I think climate change will put a dent in the human population.

    All is not lost.
  • Ukraine Crisis

    It's pretty clear that Russia is losing this war. Exit strategy is what they should be thinking about. This was a disaster for Russia.
  • Most Important Problem Facing Humanity, Revisited
    If the world's population was 10,000 people in total, then the emission problem would not be there, regardless what currently used lifestyle those 10,000 people pursued.god must be atheist

    Population definitely amplifies the problem.

    This is why I insist that it is the overpopulation that is the root cause of many, many problems and the major cause of problems we face today as a species.god must be atheist

    Ok, but so what? How does that impact the way we address the issue?
  • Ukraine Crisis
    She doesn't say how she feels about it though.Benkei

    Why are they doing an emotion inquisition? And why was she given orders to do it? Isn't she the commander in chief?
  • The Shoutbox
    Brown rice
    cheddar cheese
    dried cranberries
  • What is the Idea of 'Post-truth' and its Philosophical Significance?
    I agreed with some of that and disagreed with other parts, but overall: :up:
  • What is the Idea of 'Post-truth' and its Philosophical Significance?
    post-truth and all the political errors that ensue.Banno

    Politicians exploit a longing for truth. If everyone was a postmodern philosopher, people like Trump would be screwed because everyone would start with the assumption that he's peddling myths of former greatness now gone down the toilet because we're stupid.

    As it is, the people love the drama of being 'in the know' in a world of deluded followers of mainstream news.
  • How do we know there is a behind us?
    Imagine an infinitely large line of people or a line of people that goes all the way around earth. Every person in each scenario has a person in front and another person behind them; in addition, each person is in front and behind two other people. Imagine you are the leftmost in a group of three people from one of these lines. How would you explain that the person in front of you is the person in front of you when that person is in the "behind" of someone else? In fact, how would you explain your existence when you are someone else's behind?Daniel

    Yes, we can't delete "behind" from the English language. Our philosophy super powers aren't that strong. :groan:
  • The Shoutbox
    I've thought long and hard about which ingredients are essential, which non-essential. In a nutshell, it's far and away best with all the ingredients, but if you had to do without something it would have to be the pomegranate or apple. The magic for me centres around the feta, olives, yellow pepper, and parsley.Jamal

    I tried it with dried cranberries for pomegranate and brown rice for couscous. :up:
  • How do we know there is a behind us?
    You do have logical proof though and to a lesser extent empirical.Darkneos

    What's the logical argument?
  • Most Important Problem Facing Humanity, Revisited
    It’s not overpopulation. When 7% of the global population are responsible for 50% of carbon emissions— I don’t think “overpopulation” is the problem.Xtrix

    You're right. There's a certain kind of lifestyle that's putting out CO2 way out of proportion to other forms.

    Yet the difference between lifestyles on the earth today comes down to scale for the most part. Americans are adapted to a high emissions lifestyle. For many, it's all they know. They aren't being particularly greedy.

    We aren't being punished for our sins, in other words. There's reason to believe we've been altering the climate for thousands of years. The true cause goes deeper than any particular economic system.
  • Do the past and future exist?
    (1) Tensed language centered on our notional now (most common);
    (2) Untensed language with "timestamps" or times as parameters (common among scientists and not too uncommon among philosophers);
    (3) Tensed language centered on some other time than our notional now (pretty uncommon except for the historical present -- the option you asked about).
    Srap Tasmaner

    #1 gives us an image of time as something digital, or pulsing. Existence only applies to the present. The past is gone and future is imaginary.

    #2 if scientific, time is affected by gravity, or maybe it's an aspect of gravity. There is no universal Now. The content of now, in terms of events, is relative to the observer. I think I have that right.

    #3 is a complex use of language where we enter into a faux world.
  • How do we know there is a behind us?

    Yet you have neither empirical nor logical proof. That's the interesting part.
  • How do we know there is a behind us?
    sometimes it makes me question why even bother asking such questions.Darkneos

    Well, there you have it.
  • Do the past and future exist?
    There is one now in the sense that there is one north. But just like north points in different directions at different points, different moments of time are christened "now".hypericin

    Is it a matter of christening? Could I christen yesterday at 10:30 pm "now"?
  • How do we know there is a behind us?
    More like reality, no amount of philosophical musing will change that.Darkneos

    Especially if you don't do any philosophical musing.
  • How do we know there is a behind us?
    How do you know? You just doDarkneos

    Sure. You know there's "stuff" behind you. That's a model.
  • Do the past and future exist?
    Of course. Just not simultaneously.hypericin

    That's a word game. There's only one now.
  • Do the past and future exist?
    Einstein seems to answer that the past and future exist as much as the present. If we grant this, then there is nothing mysterious about a specialness to "now" that cannot be explained by science. It is simply an illusion. After all, every single "now" has this apparent specialness.hypericin

    Every single 'now'? Have you ever experienced more than one?
  • How do we know there is a behind us?
    Yes, I got that. After a slow start. My answer is to ask a friend to look and check for me.Cuthbert

    You can't do that continuously though.

    As I mentioned, the knowledge that there is space behind you is probably a priori because you can't doubt it. If you tried to imagine no space, that would conflict with the idea of 'behind '

    So you know there is space a priori. How do you know there are predictable objects behind you? I think that's part of a dynamic model that's coming from you. In other words, it's a hypothesis. You don't know what's behind you until you do ask a friend, or turn around.
  • How do we know there is a behind us?
    I suppose if there is no world out there (the doubt is coherent and the hypothesis happens to be true),Cuthbert

    The question isn't about whether there's a world. It's about whether there's anything behind you.
  • How do we know there is a behind us?
    Is it possible coherently to doubt it?Cuthbert

    I don't think it's possible to doubt that there is space behind me. I apparently know that there is space a priori.

    But as for objects occupying that space, I can imagine that a void follows me around, so I can doubt the objects. That means if I have knowledge of them, it's a posteriori.

    If it's true, all statements about the past are false.Cuthbert

    Could you explain why?
  • Do the past and future exist?

    Here's an interesting quote from Carnap:

    "Einstein said the problem of the Now worried him seriously. He explained that the experience of the Now means something special for man, something essentially different from the past and the future, but that this important difference does not and cannot occur within physics. That this experience cannot be grasped by science seemed to him a matter of painful but inevitable resignation. So he concluded 'that there is something essential about the Now which is just outside the realm of science.' "
  • 2001: A Space Odyssey's monolith.

    It's some sort of alien technology meant to promote intelligence.
  • How do we know there is a behind us?

    You've demonstrated that it's possible to doubt it. That shows that the knowledge most be a posteriori. Yet, if you haven't seen it, what experience do you base the knowledge on?
  • Ukraine Crisis
    It may seem a bit childish to gloat like that, but in politics optics matter, and this is an apt illustration of the point made in the article.SophistiCat

    The term "paper tiger" has appeared in a number of articles. It seems Putin has screwed up, probably irreversibly.

    I think the US has helped China fill the power vacuum, though.
  • "What is truth? said jesting Pilate; and would not stay for an answer."
    Good. So we agree to moving away from a computational, representational approach to neural networking. — Joshs

    Can you explain the difference?
  • Ukraine Crisis
    With this one war, Putin has undermined Russia's position as a regional power. China is in the process of taking the role Russia once had. Al Jazeera
  • Why is monogamy an ideal?
    By the way, women shortage (some members are mentioning here) must be a phenomenon of the 20th century related to birth/gender controls (China, communist countries and Middle East) and massive emigration of male workers to Europe and US.

    When the institution of marriage was invented I'm quite sure that there was big shortage of males, not of females.

    Missing women, this by Michelle Kohler, :smile:

  • Why is monogamy an ideal?
    I understand. Thanks!
  • Why is monogamy an ideal?
    by scientific you just mean descriptive of human behaviMoliere

    By "scientific", I meant according to the way biologists use the word.

    then human beings are simply not monogamous. There's nothing to explain because this is a false statement.Moliere

    Nevertheless, it's held up as an ideal on a large portion of the earth. The question was: why?
  • Why is monogamy an ideal?
    So, "historically speaking", monogomous relationships count insofar that the penis-haver is the one who holds the power of the wallet within the household.Moliere

    The definition of monogamy I've been using is scientific: it's a bonded pair.
  • Why is monogamy an ideal?
    This balance of power has changed in parts of the world, but that tradition is still alive and well -- and I'd say that even if we choose to re-interpret monogamy in some other way, that this is where the ideal "comes from", so to speakMoliere

    Historically patriarchs had multiple wives, so why do you say this is the source of monogamy? How did monogamy evolve out of polygamy?