Reading Time: 2 minutes I’ve been thinking. In doing the philpapers inspired Philosophy 101 series (found here and here, so far), touching on the questions asked in the largest ever survey of philosophers, i thought i would give some nice, basic factfiles explaining what some of the key philosophers have brought to the philosophical table. We hear so much about Aristotle, Plato, Hume and Descartes, but who the hell are they and what did they think (in a really short, easy-to digest manner)?
Philosophy 101 (philpapers induced) #2 – Abstract objects: Platonism or nominalism
Reading Time: 12 minutes So having posted the Philpapers survey results, the biggest ever survey of philosophers conducted in 2009, several readers were not aware of it (the reason for re-communicating it) and were unsure as to what some of the questions meant. I offered to do a series on them, so here it is – Philosophy 101 (Philpapers induced). I will go down the questions in order. I will explain the terms and the question, whilst also giving some context within the discipline of Philosophy of Religion.
(Philosophical) Zombies – The Movie – hilarious!
Reading Time: 5 minutes This is a hilarious post from Less Wrong. Zombies, the Movie (philosophical zombies, of course). For those who are not familiar with philosophical zombies, here is wiki’s definition:
First footage of a thought being formed is caught on camera
Reading Time: 2 minutes So you might well have caught this on various science websites, but the thoughts of a fish, a zebrafish, have been caught on camera. As Gizmodo report:
A team of Japanese researchers has achieved something incredible: they’ve captured, for the first time ever, a movie which shows how thoughts form in the brain.
Biggest ever survey of philosophers results
Reading Time: 4 minutes So the philpapers survey of philosophers is somewhere I often go to see what the general trend is for modern philosophers. Not so much as an argumentum ad populum – quite a number of the results are evenly split – but to get an idea of which positions are deemed most tenable by those in the know. It really is fascinating reading. I might start doing a series on what each question means. Yes, that’s a good idea. Done. Aah, these good ole streams of consciousness out of which good ideas spout forth.
A smorgasbord of philosophical arguments against Twitter
Reading Time: 3 minutes This is a very amusing philosophical take on the phenomenon of twitter, by James Anderson. on his blog Analogical Thoughts The Virtual Home of James N. Anderson. Check it out. SEMI-SERIOUS WARM-UP ARGUMENT (1) Twittering requires communication in 140 characters or less. (2) Almost nothing of substance can be adequately communicated in 140 characters or less. […]
Fogelin – In Defense of Hume on Miracles
Reading Time: 5 minutes This is an interesting book review as found in a Hume Society release. I really want to read this book – a defence of Hume on his work on miracles. Hume often gets criticised for his work in this area. Fogelin, by all accounts, takes a different approach in his defence. And it is a short book, which gets the thumbs up from me.
On meaning and purpose without God
Reading Time: < 1 minute So there has been some debate on my meaning of life essay with JohnM, a YEC. He seems to think the only real purpose is an ultimate purpose, and getting through to him that this is not the case, and that ultimate purposes have no more value than subjective, instrumentalist purposes. Value system are, after all, […]
The Meaning of Life
Reading Time: 28 minutes Here is an essay that is a few years old now, on the meaning and purpose of life. I’m sorry, setting out the html codes for footnotes is an incredible ball-ache. Hope it does not put you off! As ever, let me know what you think.
Life starts at conception but what about personhood?
Reading Time: 5 minutes Growing up in heathen headquarters (aka central Europe), I never met anyone in meatspace who thinks that a fertilized human egg is a “fully human person”. I’ve met many Catholics in my life so far, but none of them would agree with the notion of a zygote having full personhood (disagreeing with the majority of official Church doctrines is quite common for Catholics in first world countries). Since this view is virtually non-existent where I live, I never had to debate it with anyone and, to be honest, I never really thought about this issue until recently. The first time I participated in a discussion on this issue was on JW Wartick´s blog (Jonathan already mentioned the discussion that ensued on his blog in this post). While Jonathan was mostly raising philosophical issues in this discussion, I was focused on whether the personhood-starts-at-conception position is defensible based on a 21st century understanding of Biology, especially Embryology. I think that this position is necessarily incoherent, and I want to summarize my argument for that here.