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Three questions on philosophy


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#1
Ryan

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Yeah...this was a homework assignment to interview 10 people...but I think its an interesting set of questions...

All you need to do is provide answers for three simple questions, plus provide your sex and age (you can make one up if you wish, or provide a range)
  • What is philosophy?
  • Who is a philosopher?
  • What is the relevancy of philosophy for us today?
Thanks for anyone that answers.

-Ryan
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#2
dsenette

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i would assume the first question is more of a "define philosophy in your own words" and not "name a philosophy"

a philosophy is a set of ideas, theories, or observations about something (in most cases life and human existence) that one holds to be true in any given situation.

a philosopher is a person who analyzes existing philosophies to test their applicability and veracity, and or someone who postulates new philosophies or adds to existing ones

philosophy (in the old Plato, Hippocrates, Socrates sense of the term) isn't as rellevant today. they would stand out on a street corner and basically say things like "dude....what if the world were really this way and we were just thinking about it another?...wouldn't that be sweet?!?!"...granted people still do that today...but they're usually "chemically altered" at the time.... our society (for the most part) is more focused on scientefic evidence and tangibility which usually has nothing to do with philosophy

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#3
admin

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1. What is philosophy?
2. Who is a philosopher?
3. What is the relevancy of philosophy for us today?


1. The study of human thought.

2. Someone who studies human thought.

3. No more important than pondering man, and his (or her) existence in the universe. :whistling:

Age: 41
Sex: I posses the defective Y chromosome (male).
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#4
thefreed

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1. the rules, beliefs, and ways that some person lives his life or answers to their life. nothings wrong in philosophy its just how they feel.
2. Someone who feels real strongly about their answers to life, and want to share his visions with other people.
3. I think people need a period where he ponders and goes through his past or his future... like a cocooning period, to look at themselves in a more grand scale. I believe that everyone has their own philosophy and they can get through hard times with it. Its even more relevant today because society is more complex today so we need it more then ever I believe.

Age:17
Sex:male
:)
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#5
ScHwErV

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  • What is philosophy?
  • Who is a philosopher?
  • What is the relevancy of philosophy for us today?

1 - A person's feelings about an issue or topic.

2 - Everyone

3 - The same as it always has been. Just because people's philosophies have changed with the world around them, doesn't make them any more or less relevant than they have ever been.

I guess the only difference is now we don't care about other people's philosophies as much as we do about our own. Society today has this incessant drive to try and push their philosophical beliefs onto others.

Didn't think I was that deep did ya?

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#6
Granz00

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1) A philosophy can be something like an ideal or a belief. It can be limited to one person, or span millions. It can be contained to one time period, or it could span since the beginning of human existence. A samurai's code of honor can be thought of as their philosophy, and such things as religion are just a specialized form of philosophy.

2) Anyone who acts on more then just base instincts.

3) Your philosophy determines how you act. It is pretty much impossible to be "human" without philosophy. A better question may be;

What is the relevancy of the study of philosophy for us today?

This would have a similar answer to the reason for studying history. Also, some believe that the study of a certain philosophy would lead to certain desirable effects. Enlightenment, a happy life, or even a ticket to heaven are a few examples of benefits that are believed to be obtained through the study of philosophy.

Age - I have an agonizing 3 months before I can legally drink. (20 if you don't see the American Flag to the left...)
Sex - Its funny when a movie says that a monster has both an X and a Y chromosome, making it special, and yet us guys actually have an X and Y chromosome. It is females that are lacking one of the two. (Male if you didn't get the context clues...)

P.S. A definition is just commonly accepted meaning for a word. In order to create a definition for a word, you just have to get enough people to use it. So when you ask for something to be defined, this can be an easy or hard task. Certain, plain, words will just have one meaning that is accepted by everyone. A more complex word, like philosophy, gains many definitions, and is therefore both easy and hard to define.

A language is basically a collection of words, and their meanings, used in a certain location. You may think of English as a language, but in reality, the language you use is not English, but rather a variation of English. With this in mind, you can try to come up with a definition for Philosophy based upon each specific language.
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#7
hfcg

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What is philosophy?
Who is a philosopher?
What is the relevancy of philosophy for us today?


Philosophy is the art of thinking.
Any one who is capable of abstract thought.
In the times of the "great" philosophers very few people had the ability to read and write.
In todays world, where most of the people have some education, any one can study a subject and give an informed opinion.
We look for answers from more educated leaders, scientist, teachers,...
The nature of philosophy in todays world is knowledge.
AGE; 45
Gender; male

Edited by hfcg, 02 April 2008 - 06:01 AM.

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#8
Stinky Britches

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Q: What is philosophy?
A: Philosophy is the personal opinion on a given subject based on one's own education, imagination, perception, experience, acceptance and beliefs, which does not have to be proven in a concrete, absolute or scientific manner. "Only thinking makes it so." - Shakespeare

Q: Who is a philosopher?
A: Anyone who engages in philosophy.

Q: What is the relevance of philosophy for us today?
A: The relevance of philosophy for us today is greater than it was yesterday. Famous and published philosophers works are available for our consumption. Meanwhile, great strides have taken place in history, most of which is also available for our learning. Therefore, we are able to compound thought and theory based upon past and present. And as technology has far surpassed our humanity, it is more important than ever to gather and share thoughts intelligent with those of our kind. Philosophy is a higher form of thought which should not be taken for granted or ignored like a garden choked by weed and drought.

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#9
CompooterDummy

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1. What is philosophy?

A set of ideas that influence how we interpret and respond to the world we live in.

2. Who is a philosopher?

Everyone is a philosopher. We all have a set of ideas that influence how we interpret and respond to the world we live in, and in some way we all communicate these ideas to others.

3. What is the relevancy of philosophy for us today?

The relevance of philosophy for us today is the same as it's always been. It is very important. Why? Think about this: When Galileo built his telescope, he did so with the intention of having others see what he saw, in other words, to help them interpret the images in the telescope the same way he did? Guess what? Most of those subscribing to the prevailing thought of the day, which said Galileo was wrong, DID NOT see what he saw, even with the aid of Galileo's telescope. Why? They were influenced by their philosophy which said that what Galileo saw was not possible. At it's best philosophy challenges us to open up to a world of ideas and test ourselves with respect to how our ideas influence our actions and how we interpret the information the world presents us with. This has huge consequences in every discipline man has ever or ever will practice. Think about what might have happened if we'd tried to land on the moon relying on the philosophy of Galileo's opposers. The consequences are even more important with things that affect our everyday life: medicine, law, relationships, etc.
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#10
Oblomov

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From wiki:

Philosophy is the study of general problems concerning matters such as existence, knowledge, truth, beauty, justice, validity, mind, and language. Philosophy is distinguished from other ways of addressing these questions (such as mysticism or mythology) by its critical, generally systematic approach and its reliance on reasoned argument.


***********************************************************

Philosopher, a practitioner of the above. while we can all make philosophical remarks that does make us all philosophers.

The continued importance of Philosophy and Philosophers remains constant. The ability to determine and comment lucidly, eruditely and precisely on the relevance of a belief, actions, be they: Metaphysics, Epistemology, Ethics, Aesthetics etc. The ability to break down the complex and misleading into rational and relevant statements. The ability to comment constructively on the theories and practice of those listed.

Lao Tzu, : The journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step.

A very simple and pragmatic statement, each task, regardless of size must begins with the most simple of functions, the size of the task can be broken down into its individual functions and evaluated, the beautiful thing, it can be applied to almost every part of life, from education, learning the first word will lead to a much greater vocabulary and understanding, the list goes on .. with each journey comes a destination and it is within each of us to set our course to reach that point in life. be it self imposed or detailed by circumstances.
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#11
CompooterDummy

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From Merriam-Webster:

Philosophy: ... 4 a: the most basic beliefs, concepts, and attitudes of an individual or group.

Philosopher, a practitioner of the above. while we can all make philosophical remarks that does make us all philosophers.


From Merriam-Webster:

Practitioner: 1: one who practices ; especially : one who practices a profession

While the word may especially refer to one who practices a profession, it by no means exclusively refers to such. To the extent that an individual or group "practices" (Merriam-Webster: b: to do or perform often, customarily, or habitually") their "most basic beliefs, concepts, and attitudes", to that extent they are a philosopher. "making remarks" is not the only way to communicate. Remember the adage "actions speak louder than words". Behavior, and "practice" is a behavior, is also a form of communication.

Certainly the more narrow definition of "philosophy"/"philosopher" is equally as valid. However, I think there's plenty of room in the world for the broader definition too.
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#12
Skyedog

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Wouldn't a philosophy be the precursor to your thought? "our society (for the most part) is more focused on scientefic evidence and tangibility."
phi⋅los⋅o⋅phy
–noun, plural -phies. 1. the rational investigation of the truths and principles of being, knowledge, or conduct.
2. any of the three branches, namely natural philosophy, moral philosophy, and metaphysical philosophy, that are accepted as composing this study.
3. a system of philosophical doctrine: the philosophy of Spinoza.
4. the critical study of the basic principles and concepts of a particular branch of knowledge, esp. with a view to improving or reconstituting them: the philosophy of science.
5. a system of principles for guidance in practical affairs.
6. a philosophical attitude, as one of composure and calm in the presence of troubles or annoyances.
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#13
CompooterDummy

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Wouldn't a philosophy be the precursor to your thought?


Which came first, the chicken or the egg?

Do you mean, "Is philosophy a precursor to "belief, concept, attitude"?" What is a belief, concept, attitude? Are they thoughts? If so does a thought come before a philosophy or is a philosophy necessary to even have a thought? If a philosophy is necessary to even have a thought how can one ever have a philosophy when one first needs a thought to philosophize over? Or do they? Perhaps the two are inextricable? A bit like trying to peel the white off rice? What is a thought, exactly? (The formal western definition glaringly lacks a rather critical element, at least, according to information bourne out in numerous studies) Find that critical element and, I think, you find the answer to "Which came first, the chicken or the egg" - at least in the smaller historical context.

Merriam-Webster:

1 a: the action or process of thinking : cogitation b: serious consideration : regard c: archaic : recollection , remembrance2 a: reasoning power b: the power to imagine : conception3: something that is thought: as a: an individual act or product of thinking b: a developed intention or plan <had no thought of leaving home> c: something (as an opinion or belief) in the mind <he spoke his thoughts freely> d: the intellectual product or the organized views and principles of a period, place, group, or individual <contemporary Western thought>

What's missing here?
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#14
Skyedog

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What's missing? The point at where your (thought/philosophy) turns into the scientific process of gathering "evidence and tangibility", which is all I was trying to point out. And I really worded it wrong. "Wouldn't a philosophy be the precursor to your thought?"
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#15
CompooterDummy

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And I really worded it wrong


Actually, I think you worded it just fine. It's probably more accurate to say that my response was so wordy it was probably impossible to see the answer to your question in there somewhere. Hope it didn't sound like I was sniping at you.
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