Why Learn Philosophy?

Why Learn Philosophy?

Some people think that philosophy is some sort of lofty academic intellectual discipline reserved for the “eggheads” of the world. Not so, and the root meaning of the word is simple “lover of wisdom” and EVERYBODY has a “philosophy” of one for or another. More importantly, the study of philosophy allows one to develop practical skills for critical thinking and evaluating the “knowledge” or “wisdom” which we are presented with on a daily basis. The study of philosophy also helps to gain a better understanding of where many of our/your world-views originate, and even the roots of our current/popular source of “knowledge”, which is science (empiricism).

“Taking philosophy classes gives a child both personal and social benefits. A kid may become a better person while learning how to think philosophically and improve their communication skills. Moreover, philosophy gives them a new key to solving daily tasks without using violence or causing deep emotional traumas to both themselves and the others.”

#philosophy #criticalthinking #education

http://fundailyfeed.com/thanksgiving-to-philosophy-why-is-it-so-important-to-teach-our-kids-philosophy/

The Big Lebowski

The Big Lebowski

Wittgensteinian language puzzle?

Very interesting (and convincing) article linking the Cohen brother’s movie to Wittgenstein’s notion of a language puzzle. There are already strong/obvious connections to Taoist philosophy in the Big Lebowski, so once again I am even more impressed by the Cohen brother’s work.

So, in our digital, mass-communication and social-media age, is it “…too easy to slip into playing these empty language games at the cost of actual meaningful communication, and that causes a huge amount of confusion that drives the various plots of life forward, as it were.”?

#wittgenstein   #thebiglebowski   #cohenbrothers   #philosophy  

http://splitsider.com/2015/09/the-big-lebowski-wittgenstein-and-the-garbage-pile-that-is-online-discourse

When Do Off-Work Comments Cross the Line

When Do Off-Work Comments Cross the Line

This is a very important and ethically complex issue. How far can an employer go when it comes to conduct, or statements, said by employees outside of work hours? As far as I can tell, the two main issues around “rights” involve (at least):

(1) Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (Section 2):

2(b) Freedom of Expression

Everyone has the following freedoms:

b) freedom of thought, belief, opinion, and expression, including freedom of the press and other media communication

The s. 2(b) protection of freedom of expression protects everyone’s right to hold any opinion or belief and to express those beliefs, through their words, actions or any other means of expression so long as the expression is not violent in form or in content. An assault on another person would not be defendable as an expression deserving protection. However any non-violent expression is deserving of protection under s.2(b). Infringement of this right is frequently justified under s.1 to protect the safety of others, or to promote and maintain an orderly society.

(2) A Company’s Right to Employee Persons They Choose

I don’t think anyone would argue for the right of any business owner to hire/fire who they like, so long as they are not violating any laws.

Opinion

In this case, I think that it could be reasonably argued that since Infringement of this right is frequently justified under s.1 to protect the safety of others, or to promote and maintain an orderly society, such clearly offensive and sexist comments like “f— her right in the p—-.” Referred to online as FHRITP” are not conducive to promoting an orderly society.

What do you think?

#canadiancharter   #canadiancharterofrightsandfreedoms   #ethics  

http://www.vancouversun.com/news/11052783/story.html

Hey, Canada

Hey, Canada

Are you paying attention?

Or are you too preoccupied with dreams of sucking off the natural gas teats while you fantasize of Asian money? All the while participating in the raping of the planet and depletion of our natural resources.

By the way you rocket-scientist Canadian politicians, have you noticed that Colorado has collected so much excess revenue from the decriminalization of marijuana it needs to give $30 million BACK to the citizens!

The longer we (Canada) wait for the inevitable, the more stupid, ignorant and Johnny-come-lately we will show ourselves to be as a Country. And to think BC used to be known as a marijuana capital and around the world people knew about BC Bud! Now look at us, shameful I say.

We need to evolve past our adolescent phase of conventional moral reasoning and elevate our thinking towards a post-conventional morality where higher principles, individual rights and justice are the driving forces. Rather than our current rule or expectation of blind adherence to authority and social order typical of conventional moral reasoning..

Wake up Canada! The proven medical benefits alone – across a remarkably wide range of physical and psychological ailments – should be sufficient grounds to start shifting policies and thinking around marijuana.

#marijuana   #marijuanalegalization   #colorado   #canadianpolitics   #drugs  

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2015/02/23/marijuana-may-be-even-safer-than-previously-thought-researchers-say

Scientific Fundamentalism

Scientific Fundamentalism

Is scientific fundamentalism just as bad, just as limiting, just as dangerous as religious fundamentalism?

“Science shares many of the same problems that burden religion, such as blind faith, self-righteousness, and intolerance. Though science goes to great lengths to distance itself from religion, the two seem to suffer from similar afflictions.The difference between people with scientific beliefs and those with religious beliefs is that most religious believers are aware that their position is based on faith and that believers in other religions, or even different sects of the same religion, have different beliefs. People who put their faith in scientific materialism are often unaware that their beliefs are beliefs at all. They usually think of them as the truth. One of the common ways in which this attitude is expressed is in phrases like ‘People used to believe X, but we now know…’  *Scientific fundamentalism mirrors religious fundamentalism in distressingly many ways*. But there is no need for science to be fundamentalist any more than there is a need for religions to be fundamentalist. Fundamentalism springs from a desire for certainty, but many religious people and many scientists know that this cannot be achieved by beings with limited minds and experience such as ourselves.” (Rupert Sheldrake)

#materialism   #reductionism   #science   #fundamentalism   #spirituality   #transpersonal   #transpersonalpsychology  

http://www.spiritualitymindbody.com/a-question-of-faith-an-interview-with-scientist-rupert-sheldrake

Reductionism – Misses the Mark

Reductionism – Misses the Mark

“Reductionism inevitably misses almost everything of interest about systems that concern us in everyday life and ignores most of the activity of our minds entirely. A more holistic science admits the emergence of new properties at different levels of organization and sees the universe made up of a nested hierarchy, or holarchy, of wholes: organelles within cells, within tissues, within organisms, within societies, within ecosystems, within Gaia, within the solar system, within the galaxy, and so on. All of these defy reduction to the properties of their parts. And human meanings, values, and purposes can only be understood in the context of human societies, traditions, philosophies, religions, and experiences.” (Rupert Sheldrake)

#reductionism   #beliefsystem   #science   #materialism   #spirituality   #transpersonal   #transpersonalpsychology  

http://www.spiritualitymindbody.com/a-question-of-faith-an-interview-with-scientist-rupert-sheldrake

Materialism: An Inconsistent Belief System

Materialism: An Inconsistent Belief System

“Materialism alienates us from our own experience, from the rest of the natural world, and from each other, because it claims our minds are nothing but the activity of our brains isolated in the privacy of our skulls. Yet our scientific knowledge is inexplicable from this point of view. If our brains simply make us think what we think and we have no freedom, as materialist proclaim, then materialism itself is a necessary consequence of the brain activity of materialists.Their brains make them believe it. But they would like to think their beliefs are based on science – reason and evidence – which would require their minds to have a freedom and independence from physical causation that the theory itself denies.”

(Rupert Sheldrake  – Interview with Tricycle: The Buddhist Review)

#materialism   #beliefsystem   #spirituality   #transpersonalpsychology   #transpersonal   #philosophy  

Think About This

Think About This

Great thought experiment by Todd William​ about the age of the Universe.

Originally shared by Todd William

A Brief Thought Experiment ~ The Origin of the Universe

When a ball is thrown vertically into the air, it decelerates until it reaches a peak, stops, and then begins to accelerate back to the ground. You have the earth’s gravitational pull to thank for this.

If you look at a short interval that spans a period of time when the ball is going up and recognize that it is decelerating, you can calculate how high the ball will go and how long it will take to reach its peak. This is simple physics.

However, if you look only at a short interval that spans when the ball is going back down, and recognize it is accelerating toward the ground, it is not clear where the ball began. Using the same laws of physics, you can calculate backwards to the point when the ball began its downward movement, but nothing before that. You can even calculate the amount of time that has passed since it began accelerating (its peak).

But this says nothing of its actual beginning which took place long before this point in time. Without knowing how the ball initially got to the point at its peak, no amount of calculations can tell you whether the ball was initially thrown from a different point or just dropped at its peak. In fact, the variables would be the exact same for this snapshot in either scenario.

Now consider how we look at the universe. It has been observed that the universe is accelerating in an outward direction. Using basic mathematical formulas, we can calculate backwards to a single point in time about 13.8 billion years ago when this acceleration began. And as a result, we have assumed this is the beginning of the universe. 

Yet just like the ball, this assumption is fallacious If we observed a ball that had been decelerating downward for 13.8 seconds, we’ve only determined at what point it reached its peak, not when it began. In fact, 13.8 seconds ago it would have only reached the halfway point along its journey. 

When viewing only intervals where the universe is accelerating, there is no reason to presume we know how it reached this point. Would there by any reason to assume that the ball must have begun its motion with a bang?

What if it was the opposite?

Imagine the universe as a giant sphere, only with a gravitation pull outwards, rather than a push from a big bang. If all matter was “thrown” inward, it would gradually decelerate, stop, and begin accelerating outward, just as we observe the universe today.

What if something far bigger than we have imagined and beyond what we can observe is pulling us outward?

Perhaps the universe didn’t begin 13.8 billion years ago, and just like the ball, the acceleration we are observing is a sign that it is returning to its true origin.

For More Thought Experiments Like This – Click Here: www.todd-william.com/category/thoughteperiments/