Definition 3 expresses philosophy as we are going to understand it in this class. Philosophy in this sense is (like definition 1, but unlike definition 2) an activity: it is something you do. In particular, doing philosophy is using our rationality in trying to figure out the answers to difficult questions (related to any subject matter).
Ethics is a branch of philosophy which assesses explanatory theories concerning the moral rightness or wrongness of different kinds of actions, as well as the moral goodness or badness of different kinds of emotions, intensions, volitions and states of character.
Epistemology (from Greek ἐπιστήμη - episteme-, "knowledge, science" + λόγος, "logos") or theory of knowledge is the branch of philosophy concerned with the nature and scope (limitations) of knowledge. Much of the debate in this field has focused on analyzing the nature of knowledge and how it relates to similar notions such as truth, belief, and justification. It also deals with the means of production of knowledge, as well as skepticism about different knowledge claims. The term was introduced into English by the Scottish philosopher James Frederick Ferrier (1808–1864). Wiki
It addresses the questions: • What is knowledge? • How is knowledge acquired? • What do people know? • How do we know what we know? Wiki
Metaphysics is the branch of philosophy which assesses world views. A world view is any more or less complete enumeration of the most general categories of being, coupled with a definition of each of those categories, an account of the way in which things in those categories are related to each other, as well as an account of the ultimate origins of things. Metaphysics (G. meta ta physica – “after the Physics”) ~ a science that studies all beings insofar as they are beings. Ontology (G. ontologia; onto – “being” and logia – “talking”; “talking about being”) ~ a metaphysical study of all realities/beings insofar as they exist. Real ~ extra-mental or that whose existence is independent of the human mind. Logical ~ one which is considered as intra-mental (e.g., numbers, geometrical points, mathematical objects, time); they don’t have “real existence” in the outside world. Ideal ~ one which is purely intra-mental; those whose existence lies only inside the human mind (e.g., flying-horse, golden mountain, square-circle) Approaches to Philosophy Special Metaphysics ~ studies beings specially or specifically, when it studies the world (cosmology), God (theodicy), and man (rational psychology). Cosmology ~ a metaphysical science which studies the general nature of the world or the structure and history of the universe. Theodicy or Natural Theology ~ a metaphysical science which studies the nature, operations, and attributes of God or the study about God in the context of reason, not of faith. Rational Psychology ~ a metaphysical science which treats man’s nature as a being endowed with reason and intellect which studies the rational metaphysics of the human soul
A philosophical study on the correct processes of thinking. The systematic study of argument The rule of inference Distinguishing valid from invalid argument Examination fallacies Using correct argument patterns
Theocentric: the study of the existence, nature, and essence of God; Moral questions such as the existence of evil and the immortality of the soul; St. Justin Martyr, Hippolytus, Tertullian, Lactantius, Origen, St. Basil, St. Gregory of Nyssa, St. Ambrose, St. John Damascene, St. Augustine, Boethius, Alfarabi, Avicenna, Averroes, Avicebron, Moses Maimonides, St. Bonaventure, St. Albert the Great, St. Thomas Aquinas, William of Ockham, Johannes Meister Eckhart, Nicholas of Cusa, Francis Bacon, Francis Suarez
Eexplosive: it has no center; anything goes; Auguste Comte, Henri Bergson, Jean-Paul Sartre, Martin Heidegger, Michel Foucault, Merleau-Ponty, Levi Strauss, Albert Camus, Simone de Beauvoir, Karol Wojtyla, Suzanne Langer, John D. Caputo, Gabriel Marcel, Hans-Georg Gadamer, Jean François Lyotard, Jacques Derrida, Slavoj Žižek, Jean-Luc Marion
Philosophy lecture rpc
Prepared by Raizza Corpuz
INTRODUCTION TO PHILOSOPHY
“Wasn’t it extraordinary to be in
the world right now, wandering
around in a wonderful
― Jostein Gaarder, Sophie's World
• To be filled with curiosity or doubt
• An event inexplicable by the laws of nature; a
• A feeling of puzzlement or doubt.
Source: Thesaurus Dictionary
• Walk or move in a leisurely, casual, or aimless
• An act or instance of wandering.
verb. roam - ramble - rove straynoun. wandering - stroll - saunter ramble
Source: Thesaurus Dictionary
• Philosophers’ definition-arises out of wonder, out of
curiosity, out of desire to learn, and to understand
• According to the Philosopher, Philosophy is a process
of analysis, criticism, interpretation and speculation
• Analysis-if we know how to synthesis and antithesis.
• Synthesis- put idea together or event of the same
• Antithesis- remove from or put it out, removing ideas
• Criticism- is a process of commenting or giving a
judgment, even if its positive or negative.
• Interpretation-demonstration of ideas.
• Speculation-being satisfied.
A. Meaning of Philosophy
Etymology- or etymological definition of Philosophy
-derived for Greek words etimos and logos
Etimos-root, origin, cause, basis, history
Etymology-study of the history of the word
Philosophy comes from the Geek Words Philia and Sofia.
Philia-love, desire for, interest in
Philia and Sofia join by Pythagoras-600 B.C.
Wisdom-defining deeply, wise, according to etymology
-is an awareness of something which is basic.
-knowledge of the basic principle.
Knowledge-is only a million formation
-simple data that comes from the outside that pass to our
What is Philosophy as a
The term “philosophy” comes from the Greek
language. It consists of two words :
• philos, (love, or philia )– friendship, affection
• sophos (learned scholar, sage, or
• sophia - wisdom, knowledge, talent)
“philo” - love
“sophia” - wisdom
1. Philosophy is the love of wisdom
2. Philosophy attempts to answer life's Big
3. Philosophy is about Questions
4. Philosophers ask Questions about what people
5. Philosophy is about Examining Ourselves & Our
THERE ARE MANY QUESTIONS but
there are SOME BIG QUESTION
Explores the nature
and limitations of
Definition of knowledge
Investigates how knowledge
Explores the relationship
between belief, truth and
What is knowledge?
How is knowledge
How do we know what
Explores the relationship
between citizens and
System of Law
How should government be
What makes a government
Who decides who the
leaders should be?
What laws are good and
How should law be
Explores the nature of
beauty, art, and taste
with the creation and
appreciation of beauty
What is beauty?
What is art?
What is the value of beauty and
Who should judge what is
beautiful or artistic?
How should art and beauty be
On the left is Marcel
“Fountain”. It's a factorymade urinal on a stand.
Is this “Art”?
Why / Why not?
Is it beautiful? Offensive?
Rules for Thinking
principles (or rules) for
Inferences are made by
construction of Arguments
Rules of Logic determine
which arguments are VALID and
which are FALACIES
Philosophy of Religion
Branch of philosophy
concerned with questions
Nature & Existence of God
Examination of Religious
Analysis of Religious language
Relationship between Religion
Does God exist?
What is God?
What is the nature of the
relationship between God and
Is God active in the world?
Is there life after death?
What is the relationship
between Religion and
Ethics? ...Religion and Science?
What is God?
God is the Universe and the
Universe is God.
There is no distinction
between God and the universe
Some forms of Buddhism are
examples of pantheism.
What is God?
God is in the Universe and the
Universe is in God
God is more than the
God and the Universe are
connected but not identical.
Philosophy of Science
Concerned with the
and implications of
Objectivity of the Observer
Philosophy of Science
What is the natural world?
How should we study nature?
What methods are useful in the
study of nature?
Can science establish Natural
Laws which are absolute (true
everywhere and for everyone)?
What are the limits of scientific
What are the origins of philosophy?
The Ancient Greek World
called philosophy down
from the skies.’ (Cicero)
Teacher of Plato
The Death of Socrates
(Jacques-LouisWestern thought1787) method
David, is his dialogical
Socrates most important contribution to
of enquiry, known as the Socratic method where one finds truth by eliminating
what one knows to be false by following a line of enquiry to a contridiction.
Socrates believed that his wisdom sprung from an awareness of his own
ignorance. He knew that he knew nothing, and that all error came out of
Socrates believed that the best way for people to live was to focus not on
accumulating possessions, but on self-development. Socrates believed that “ideals
belong in a world that only the wise man can understand” making the philosopher
the only type of person suitable to govern others.
Socrates views angered the leaders of Athens and he was accused of being antidemocratic and corrupting the youth of the country. Though neither charge
demanded the death sentence the number of jurors who voted to condemn him
to death was actually larger than the number who voted to convict him in the first
place. In other words even jurors who believed he was innocent condemned him
to death. If he was not anti-democratic before, this most certainly convinced him,
and others of the flaws in a democratic system.
Though Socrates left no writings of his own his exploits have been chronicled by a
number of ancient writers, formost among them Plato whose works are based on
the teachings of Socrates.
Ancient Greek Philosophers
School of Athens - Raphael Sanzio
“The unexamined life is not worth living. ...
Wisdom begins in wonder. ... There is only
one good, knowledge, and one evil,
(Socrates, 469 - 399 B.C.)
“The philosopher is in love with truth, that is, not
with the changing world of sensation, which is
the object of opinion, but with the unchanging
reality which is the object of knowledge.”
(Plato, 429 - 347 B.C.)
“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not
an act, but a habit. ... At his best, man is the noblest
of all animals; separated from law and justice he is
(Aristotle, 384 - 322 B.C.)
• Philosophy- love of wisdom
• Greek Philosophers
– Pythagoras- universe followed the same laws that
govern music & numbers
• Pythagorean Theorem- determine the length of the
sides of a triangle
• Sophists- professional teachers
– Taught students how to win
– Rejected the idea of an Absolute Right
• Socrates- criticized
– left no writings behind
– Believed in absolute
– Socratic Method- asked
pointed questions to
force pupils to discover
their own knowledge
– Sentenced to death for
• Plato- Socrates student
– Republic book that
explained ideas about
– Philosopher King –ruled
using logic & wisdom, 2nd
group-warriors, 3rd rest
– Women’s rightsbelieved men & women
should have access at an
– Academy- Plato’s school
• Aristotle- student of Plato
– Lyceum- Plato’s school
– “golden mean”- do nothing in excess
– Politics- in book he compares governments
– Mixture of oligarchy & democracy – he felt would
be the best gov’t
excavation of the Lyceum
• Greek Historians
– History is the study of human past
– Herodotus wrote the history of the Persian Wars
• Tried to separate fact from fiction but still used
mythology to explained some events
• “father of history”
– Thucydides wrote History of the Peloponnesian
• Stressed the importance of having accurate facts
• Primary Source- fought in the war
• Socrates, 469-399
– Believed that one arrives at the truth by questioning
the assumptions on which all things are based
• Plato, 428-347
– Student of Socrates
• Aristotle, 384-322
– Student of Plato
– “THE” philosopher by Medievalists
Greek Philosophy & Its Origins
• Philosophy = love of wisdom
• Mesopotamians and Egyptians
contemplated how the natural
world around them worked
• Early Greeks (time of Homer,
c.800 BCE) used mythological
stories to explain the natural
• 7th Century BCE – Greeks
looked for new, more practical
So Many Questions…
• What should we do? (i.e. how should we
• What is the meaning of life?
• What is the meaning of happiness?
• Is perfection possible?
• What constitutes the good or just life?
• What is virtue?
• How should a man best conduct his life?
Socrates (469-399 BCE)
• What little we know comes from his students, Plato
and Xenophon, and his enemy, Aristophanes
• Humble birth
• Wrote nothing down
• Founded no formal school – taught in the agora
• Believed material things would not bring happiness
• Died for his principles
• For each statement ask as many follow up
questions as you can with a partner. Record
questions that were brainstormed
• Statement #1 – Only people over the age of 19
should be allowed to drink
• Statement #2 – Canada should abolish the sale
of firearms to the public
• Method of elenchus (i.e. rigorous questioning
• Designed to “sting” people into realizing their own
– Provoke genuine intellectual curiosity
• True knowledge gained only by constantly questioning
assumptions that underly all we do
– To achieve truth is to engage in a permanent state of critical
• Alcibiades, Socrates’ pupil, betrayed fellow
Athenians by defecting to Sparta in
• Socrates scapegoated by Alcibiades’ actions,
accused of “not believing in the gods” and
“corrupting the youth”
• Tried and sentenced to death
• Refused to plead for lesser punishment
• Drank poison hemlock
• Socrates used the claim of wisdom as his moral
• Chief goodness consists in the caring of the soul
concerned with moral truth and understanding
• “Wealth does not bring goodness, but goodness
brings wealth and every other blessing, both to
the individual and to the state”
• “Life without examination (dialogue) is not worth
• He would want you to evaluate society and your
own life regularly!
Plato (429-347 BCE)
• The “idealist” or “utopian” or “dreamer”
• Born into a wealthy family in the second year of the
• Name means “high forehead”
• Student of Socrates
• Left Athens when Socrates died but
returned to open a school called the Academy
in 385 BCE
• Wrote 20 books, many in the dialectic style
(a story which attempts to teach a specific
concept) with Socrates as the main character
• Idealist, believes in order and harmony,
morality and self-denial
• Immortality of the soul
• Virtue as knowledge
• Theory of Forms – the highest function of the
human soul is to achieve the vision of the
form of the good
• Most perfect form of government: “Philosopher
Kings” (i.e. very smartest) rule over an essentially
• Why Philosopher Kings?
– Plato believed they alone possess the intellectual
capacity to achieve the highest form of human
• Such penetrating powers of insight necessary to distinguish
between truth (i.e. that which is eternal and unchanging and
therefore is “really real”) from that which is untrue
(changeable stimuli received by our faulty instruments of
perception that serve to trick us into thinking that
something is in fact “real”)
• Plato’s thinking on the immortality of the soul,
Plato’s conception of a world beyond the
sensory and his god-like form of good have
very much shaped Christian thinking on God,
the soul, and an afterlife
• Nietsche called Christianity “Plato for the
Aristotle (384-322 BCE)
• The “real” or “encyclopedist” or “inspired
common sense” or “the prince of those who
• Studied under Plato at the Academy
• Son of a Macedonian doctor, returned home to
become the teacher of Alexander of Macedon for
three years, beginning in 343 BCE
• Later returned to Athens to open
school called the Lyceum in 335 BCE
Mark Steel Lectures: Aristotle
1. Why were there so many philosophers during
2. What does Plato mean by the perfect form?
3. What are some examples of what Aristotle
4. What is his ‘4 Essence’ theory?
5. What did Politics address concerning nature?
6. Why did he feel the rich AND poor were unfit to
7. How was he before his time?
• Believed in the Golden Mean
– i.e. all things follow the middle course; by avoiding
extremes, one will enjoy a maximum of happiness and
a minimum of pain
• Called the “encycolpedist” as he had a profound
love of order
• Numerous fields of scientific study he either
invented or contributed to:
– Logic, biology, zoology, botany, psychology,
chemistry, astronomy, cosmology, metaphysics,
ethics, political theory, constitutional history, history
• Founder of scientific method
– A valid and reliable process by which all scientific
analyses of a given phenomenon could take place
• Led to explosive advances in the Greek
scientists’ capacity to conduct scientific
• Middle Ages’ scholars felt Aristotle knew
almost as much as God, therefore called him
Elements of the Art of Rhetoric
• Ethos = Ethics
– Appeal based on the trustworthiness/character of the speaker
– Relies on the reputation of the author
• Logos = Logic
– Appeal based on logic or reason
– Found primarily in scholarly articles and corporate financial reports
• Pathos = Pathetic, sympathy, empathy
– Appeal based on emotion
– Found in advertisements
– The more people react without full consideration for the “why,” the
more effective an argument can be
– Although it can be manipulative, it is the cornerstone of moving
people to action
Legacy of Greek Philosophers
• Taught us how to think
• Provided a great deal of insight into the natural
• Provided many of the most profound and
meaningful answers to the great philosophical
questions that have befuddled humans since the
dawn of civilization
• Provided a comprehensive, valid, and reliable
method by which we could test whether or not a
given idea is true
• Aristotle is a towering
figure in ancient
to logic, metaphysics,
medicine, dance and
• He was a student of Plato who in turn studied
under Socrates. He was more empiricallyminded than Plato or Socrates and is famous
for rejecting Plato’s theory of forms.
• As a prolific writer
transformed most, if
not all, areas of
touched. It is no
wonder that Aquinas
referred to him simply
as “The Philosopher.”
In his lifetime,
Aristotle wrote as
many as 200 treatises,
of which only 31
Saint Thomas Aquinas
Saint Thomas Aquinas
• Aristotle was the first to classify areas of human knowledge
into distinct disciplines such as mathematics, biology, and
ethics. Some of these classifications are still used today.
• As the father of the field of logic, he was the first to
develop a formalized system for reasoning. Aristotle
observed that the validity of any argument can be
determined by its structure rather than its content. A
classic example of a valid argument is his syllogism: All men
are mortal; Socrates is a man; therefore, Socrates is
• Aristotle was born in 384
BCE at Stagirus, a now
extinct Greek colony and
seaport on the coast of
Thrace. His father
Nichomachus was court
physician to King Amyntas
of Macedonia, and from
this began Aristotle’s long
association with the
Macedonian Court, which
considerably influenced his
• While he was still a boy his father died. At age 17 his guardian,
Proxenus, sent him to Athens, the intellectual center of the world,
to complete his education. He joined the Academy and studied
under Plato, attending his lectures for a period of twenty years.
• It is reported that Aristotle’s writings were
held by his student Theophrastus, who
had succeeded Aristotle in leadership of
the Peripatetic School.
The works of Aristotle
fall under three
• Among his writings of a popular nature the only
one which we possess of any consequence is the
interesting tract On the Polity of the Athenians.
•sAristotle’s writings on the general subject of logic were
grouped by the later Peripatetics under the name Organon,
or instrument. From their perspective, logic and reasoning
was the chief preparatory instrument of scientific
investigation. Aristotle himself, however, uses the term
“logic” as equivalent to verbal reasoning.
• Aristotle’s editors gave the name
“Metaphysics” to his works on first
philosophy, either because they
went beyond or followed after his
physical investigations. Aristotle
begins by sketching the history of
philosophy. For Aristotle,
philosophy arose historically after
basic necessities were secured. It
grew out of a feeling of curiosity
and wonder, to which religious
myth gave only provisional
ARISTOTLE’S PHILOSOPHY OF NATURE
• Aristotle sees the universe as a scale lying between the two
extremes: form without matter is on one end, and matter
without form is on the other end. The passage of matter into
form must be shown in its various stages in the world of
nature. To do this is the object of Aristotle’s physics, or
philosophy of nature. It is important to keep in mind that the
passage from form to matter
within nature is a movement
towards ends or purposes.
Everything in nature has its
end and function, and nothing
is without its purpose. Everywhere
we find evidences of design and rational plan.
ARISTOTLE’S THE SOUL AND
• Soul is defined by Aristotle as
the perfect expression or
realization of a natural body.
From this definition it follows
that there is a close
psychological states, and
physiological processes. Body
and soul are unified in the
same way that wax and an
impression stamped on it are
• Ethics, as viewed by Aristotle, is an
attempt to find out our chief end
or highest good: an end which he
maintains is really final. Though
many ends of life are only means to
further ends, our aspirations and
desires must have some final object
or pursuit. Such a chief end is
universally called happiness. But
people mean such different things
by the expression that he finds it
necessary to discuss the nature of it
• Aristotle does not regard politics
as a separate science from
ethics, but as the completion,
and almost a verification of it.
The moral ideal in political
administration is only a different
aspect of that which also applies
to individual happiness. Humans
are by nature social beings, and
the possession of rational
speech (logos) in itself leads us
to social union.
ARISTOTLE’S ART AND POETICS
• Art is defined by Aristotle as the
realization in external form of a
true idea, and is traced back to
that natural love of imitation
which characterizes humans, and
to the pleasure which we feel in
recognizing likenesses. Art
however is not limited to mere
copying. It idealizes nature and
completes its deficiencies: it
seeks to grasp the universal type
in the individual phenomenon.