6
   

What can philosophy accomplish?

 
 
thack45
 
  1  
Reply Tue 27 Jul, 2010 06:48 pm
@kennethamy,
kennethamy wrote:

markgernot wrote:

I know what philosophy is but if every philosopher on this planet dropped dead it would have no effect on science. Scientists can do their own conceptual analysis. Conceptual analysis within science belongs to the history of science. Numerous scientists with no philosophical training have done this.


Before you say that kind of thing again and embarrass yourself, you might want to inform yourself a little. A good place to begin would be here:

http://d-scholarship.pitt.edu/2683/
Indeed. And consider...
http://rescomp.stanford.edu/~cheshire/EinsteinQuotes.html
Would this be considered science? Philosophy?
0 Replies
 
north
 
  1  
Reply Tue 27 Jul, 2010 08:12 pm
@kennethamy,
kennethamy wrote:

markgernot wrote:

Yes I agree I obviously was not too focused on this statement. Im concerned with what philosophy can accomplish. Your right of course.
There are historical questions as well and questions on how to hit a tennis ball. Im really more interested in what philosophy can accomplish, thats all. Thats what I was focusing on. My point being that philosophers sometimes are trying to accomplish things they cant. So what can they accomplish?


They can try, and sometimes answer, philosophical questions like: is there free will even if determinism is true? How are determinism and fatalism different, and is either true? When I know something, must I also be certain that what I know is true? Can there be morality even without a God? And, so on.

Philosophy is critical thinking applied to very abstract problems we call philosophical questions. So philosophy is an activity called, philosophizing. And, just a critical thinking can often answer non-philosophical problems; what ought to be done about North Korea's hostility (a question for the United States government) so critical thinking can be applied to philosophical problems as well. At any rate, unless critical thinking works it is highly unlikely any other method (like crystal ball gazing) will work.


very well put and agreed
0 Replies
 
sillybillybadboy
 
  1  
Reply Wed 28 Jul, 2010 03:51 am
@markgernot,
I would ask why you feel that there needs to be a competition between the two subjects? I have a degree in physics and mechanical engineering, that does not however preclude me from finding philosophical questions both interesting and engaging.
One does not always have to succeed in finding a conclusive answer to enjoy contemplation of a question. I find that personally, both philosophy and science provide me with great intellectual stimulation.
0 Replies
 
laughoutlood
 
  1  
Reply Wed 28 Jul, 2010 04:26 am
@kennethamy,
Quote:
When I know something, must I also be certain that what I know is true?


Yeah, and being a good guesser helps too. OK that's that one sorted.
- Persiflage
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Wed 28 Jul, 2010 06:42 am
@laughoutlood,
laughoutlood wrote:

Quote:
When I know something, must I also be certain that what I know is true?


Yeah, and being a good guesser helps too. OK that's that one sorted.
- Persiflage


If it were true that I would have to be certain, then we would not know that (for instance) Quito is the capital of Ecuador. But, since we do know that Quito is the capital of Ecuador, we do not have to be certain in order to know.
laughoutlood
 
  1  
Reply Wed 28 Jul, 2010 06:50 am
@kennethamy,
Quote:
we do not have to be certain in order to know


i know but are you certain
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Wed 28 Jul, 2010 06:54 am
@laughoutlood,
laughoutlood wrote:

Quote:
we do not have to be certain in order to know


i know but are you certain


Pretty confident.
0 Replies
 
ACB
 
  1  
Reply Wed 28 Jul, 2010 07:02 am
@kennethamy,
kennethamy wrote:
They can try, and sometimes answer, philosophical questions like: is there free will even if determinism is true? How are determinism and fatalism different, and is either true? When I know something, must I also be certain that what I know is true? Can there be morality even without a God? And, so on.

What, in your opinion, are the major unanswered philosophical questions? Are there any important philosophical issues that you find difficult either to (a) understand or (b) make up your mind about?
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Wed 28 Jul, 2010 07:17 am
@ACB,
ACB wrote:


What, in your opinion, are the major unanswered philosophical questions? Are there any important philosophical issues that you find difficult either to (a) understand or (b) make up your mind about?


I really have no idea what the answer to that might be. There are may issues that philosophers seem to be exercised which I don't understand or even see why they feel so strongly about them. And, then again, I don't think I have thought much about many issues in philosophy. I am interested in what I am interested in, and it I read something the perks my interest, I may think about it, and if I have anything intelligent to say about it, I may say something about it.
laughoutlood
 
  1  
Reply Wed 28 Jul, 2010 07:26 am
@kennethamy,
Quote:
I am interested in what I am interested in, and if I read something that perks my interest, I may think about it, and if I have anything intelligent to say about it, I may say something about it.


I'm not so fussy.
0 Replies
 
prothero
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Aug, 2010 10:24 pm
I still rather like Alfred North Whitehead and Betrand Russell on the value of metaphysics and rational speculation in philosophy.

Quote:
Greek words philos and Sophia mean respectively ‘love of ‘and ‘Wisdom’ and thus the term philosophy primarily means ‘love of wisdom’”
Wisdom could be held to be different than knowledge of specific facts or the measurable and empirical properties of objects. It is a mistake not to take the facts and knowledge of science into account in forming a world view or a theology. Science alone, however. does not address the entire range of human concerns and human experience and is an inadequate basis for forming a worldview which includes a sense of value.
Quote:
Speculative philosophy” for Whitehead is a phrase he uses interchangeably with “metaphysics.” However, what Whitehead means is a speculative program in the most scientifically honorific sense of the term. Rejecting any form of dogmatism, Whitehead states that his purpose is to, “frame a coherent, logical, necessary system of general ideas in terms of which every element of our experience can be interpreted”
By “every element of our experience” it is not meant just those things which can be measured and empirically tested and verified. It also meant our subjective experience and our notions of value (aesthetics and ethics).
Quote:
Whitehead’s words are: “The explanatory purpose of philosophy is often misunderstood. It is a complete mistake to ask how concrete particular fact can be built up out of universals. The answer is: in no way. Philosophy must explain abstraction, not concreteness”. He speaks of “an instinctive grasp of ultimate truth”: “The sole appeal is to intuition”.
Science was of course a subtopic under philosophy (natural philosophy). Now science has broken free although metaphysical and philosophical speculation often still form the basis of significant breakthroughs in science (later confirmed by empirical observation). Philosophy remains rational speculation about matters unknowable and often forms the conceptual basis for our broader worldviews and into which scientific knowledge as well as human experience should be incorporated.
Quote:
Thus, to sum up our discussion of the value of philosophy; Philosophy is to be studied, not for the sake of any definite answers to its questions since no definite answers can, as a rule, be known to be true, but rather for the sake of the questions themselves; because these questions enlarge our conception of what is possible, enrich our intellectual imagination and diminish the dogmatic assurance which closes the mind against speculation; but above all because, through the greatness of the universe which philosophy contemplates, the mind also is rendered great, and becomes capable of that union with the universe which constitutes its highest good. from Bertrand Russell's The Problems of Philosophy

0 Replies
 
Mutian
 
  1  
Reply Wed 4 Aug, 2010 01:29 am
One way to determien the purpose(s)of philosophy would be tracing back to its origin.
Philosophy appeard as a subject against religious superstition as well as sophistry. The two subjects that philosophy countered were all related to falsification of truth. Therefore, it is believed that one purpose of philosophy would be seeking truth.
The road to truth is never easy-probably,most of the time, failed. However, as the cliche-which is nevertheless true-indicates: sometimes, process weighs more than outcome. The process of pursuing truth can at least let us know how deeply we are engulfed by erroneous and falsified ideas, so we can take corrective measures thereafter.
Turth might never be met/acquired, but it is the road to it that matters the most.
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Wed 4 Aug, 2010 07:25 am
@Mutian,
Mutian wrote:

One way to determien the purpose(s)of philosophy would be tracing back to its origin.


Do you think that one way to determine the purpose of astronomy " would be tracing back to its origin"? Now, the origin of astronomy was, astrology. And the purpose of astrology was to try to predict the future from the stars and the planets. Do you think that is the purpose of astronomy too?
Mutian
 
  1  
Reply Wed 4 Aug, 2010 08:41 pm
@kennethamy,
Well, dear Kennethamy, first, I emphasized in the first place that "tracing back to its origin"is only "one way" to determine the purpose-namely, there could be other methods; second, I did not claim that "tracing-to-origin" strategy is a panacea in determining purpose(s) of every subject. This strategy may not even be applicable to the examination of the purpose(s) of philosophy. But when you get back to its origin, it surely gives you some insight as to, at least, why philosophy appeard-that is to say, philosophy came into being out of certain purposes initially; and the purpose of it was adjusting what was falsified or misled.
According to Aristotle, everything's existence can be accounted for by a purpose. Althought this theory seems a little bit out-dated, it nevertheless shed some light upon the topic being discussed here.
Be that as it may, a subject may well have different purposes during different eras/periods. But, for me, philosophy serves as a tool whereby we seek truth.

Waitting for your response.
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Aug, 2010 08:27 am
@Mutian,
Mutian wrote:

Well, dear Kennethamy, first, I emphasized in the first place that "tracing back to its origin"is only "one way" to determine the purpose-namely, there could be other methods; second, I did not claim that "tracing-to-origin" strategy is a panacea in determining purpose(s) of every subject. This strategy may not even be applicable to the examination of the purpose(s) of philosophy. But when you get back to its origin, it surely gives you some insight as to, at least, why philosophy appeard-that is to say, philosophy came into being out of certain purposes initially; and the purpose of it was adjusting what was falsified or misled.
According to Aristotle, everything's existence can be accounted for by a purpose. Althought this theory seems a little bit out-dated, it nevertheless shed some light upon the topic being discussed here.
Be that as it may, a subject may well have different purposes during different eras/periods. But, for me, philosophy serves as a tool whereby we seek truth.

Waitting for your response.


I was just pointing out that it is fallacious to infer the present purpose of a discipline from its origins. Doing so is a variation of the genetic fallacy. Since philosophy is a kind of inquiry, and the general goal of any inquiry is truth, it follows that the goal of philosophy is truth. Of course, that has to be fleshed out. And important question is, what kind of inquiry philosophy is.
0 Replies
 
 

Related Topics

How can we be sure? - Discussion by Raishu-tensho
Proof of nonexistence of free will - Discussion by litewave
morals and ethics, how are they different? - Question by existential potential
Destroy My Belief System, Please! - Discussion by Thomas
Star Wars in Philosophy. - Discussion by Logicus
Existence of Everything. - Discussion by Logicus
Is it better to be feared or loved? - Discussion by Black King
 
Copyright © 2021 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.06 seconds on 04/18/2021 at 10:41:24