Philosophy lecture 11


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Philosophy lecture 11

  1. 1. Introduction to Philosophy IS-VNU Mr. Mike Lecture 11
  2. 2. Introduction to Philosophy <ul><li>Existentialism </li></ul><ul><li>Positivism </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Logical Positivism </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. Introduction to Philosophy <ul><li>Exercise: Write an answer to the following question... </li></ul><ul><li>Why are you here? What is your purpose in life? </li></ul>
  4. 4. Introduction to Philosophy <ul><li>Discussion: </li></ul><ul><li>How do you find out your purpose in life? </li></ul>
  5. 5. Existentialism <ul><li>Focused on the condition of human existence </li></ul><ul><li>Individual's emotions, actions, responsibilities, and thoughts </li></ul><ul><li>Asks: What is the meaning or purpose of life? </li></ul><ul><li>Tend to see reality as Subjective not Objective </li></ul>
  6. 6. We are all Subjective Viewers
  7. 7. Existentialism <ul><li>Søren Kierkegaard (1813-1855) </li></ul><ul><li>Father of existentialism </li></ul><ul><li>Individual is solely responsible for giving his or her own life meaning </li></ul><ul><li>the individual is responsible for living that life passionately and sincerely in spite of many existential obstacles and distractions including despair, angst, absurdity, alienation, and boredom </li></ul>
  8. 8. Existentialism <ul><li>Søren Kierkegaard (1813-1855) </li></ul><ul><li>Danish Christian Philosopher </li></ul><ul><li>Critical of Idealism and Organized Christianity </li></ul><ul><li>Viewed Christianity as “Subjective” individual experience (relationship) with Jesus Christ </li></ul><ul><li>Christianity is a matter of faith not rationalism or scientific knowledge </li></ul>
  9. 9. Existentialism <ul><li>Søren Kierkegaard (1813-1855) </li></ul><ul><li>Leap of Faith </li></ul><ul><li>Faith is not a decision based on empirical evidence </li></ul><ul><li>Love is also not based on rational knowledge of another person </li></ul><ul><li>Faith and Love both require the individual to make a commitment </li></ul><ul><li>No “evidence” could ever be enough to pragmatically justify the kind of total commitment involved in true religious faith or romantic love </li></ul>
  10. 10. Existentialism <ul><li>Søren Kierkegaard (1813-1855) </li></ul><ul><li>Leap of Faith </li></ul><ul><li>F aith requires Doubt </li></ul><ul><li>To truly believe in God, you need to experience Doubt </li></ul><ul><li>Doubt is the rational part of a person's thought involved in weighing evidence </li></ul><ul><li>Religious Faith and Love are NOT capable of objective certainty </li></ul>
  11. 11. Existentialism <ul><li>Søren Kierkegaard (1813-1855) </li></ul><ul><li>Leap of Faith </li></ul><ul><li>It doesn't require “faith” to believe that material objects exist because we can experience them with our senses </li></ul><ul><li>Immaterial things (like God and Love) require “faith” to believe in their existence </li></ul><ul><li>There is no “perceptual” access to God (or Love); faith is the only access we have to God </li></ul>
  12. 12. Existentialism <ul><li>Søren Kierkegaard </li></ul><ul><li>(1813-1855) </li></ul><ul><li>Subjectivity </li></ul><ul><li>Dependent on the mind or on an individual's perception for its existence </li></ul><ul><li>Objectivity </li></ul><ul><li>Not dependent on the mind for existence; actual facts </li></ul><ul><li>All religious knowledge is “subjective” not Objective </li></ul>
  13. 13. Existentialism <ul><li>Friedrich Nietzsche </li></ul><ul><li>(1844-1900) </li></ul><ul><li>The Will to Power </li></ul><ul><li>Fundamental driving force of the individual as expressed in the need to dominate and control the external forces operating upon him </li></ul><ul><li>Individual requires the power to be master of his own destiny </li></ul><ul><li>Moral systems and religious institutions attempt to bind and subdue the will </li></ul>
  14. 14. Existentialism <ul><li>Friedrich Nietzsche </li></ul><ul><li>(1844-1900) </li></ul><ul><li>Religion </li></ul><ul><li>Slave Morality </li></ul><ul><li>The resentment of the weak towards the strong. The weak sought revenge on those stronger than themselves, not in this life, but in a fictional ‘other’ world, where some other power, namely God, would wreak vengeance on their behalf. </li></ul>
  15. 15. Existentialism <ul><li>Martin Heidegger </li></ul><ul><li>(1889–1976) </li></ul><ul><li>Ever since Plato, philosophers have been asking about what there is (metaphysics) and what they can know about what there is (epistemology) </li></ul><ul><li>These questions presuppose too much </li></ul><ul><li>We need to ask, “What is being (existence)?” </li></ul><ul><li>Why is there something instead of nothing? </li></ul>
  16. 16. Existentialism <ul><li>Martin Heidegger </li></ul><ul><li>(1889–1976) </li></ul><ul><li>Self-conscious Being (existence) recognizes that the self is finite and mortal </li></ul><ul><li>Understand your finiteness and mortality produces “dread” and “anxiety” </li></ul><ul><li>Life cannot take any positive meaning until you fully understand and accept your finiteness and morality </li></ul><ul><li>This self-awareness leads to authenticity – choosing something out of nothing </li></ul>
  17. 17. Existentialism <ul><li>Jean-Paul Sartre </li></ul><ul><li>(1905–1980) </li></ul><ul><li>Humans first exists without purpose (meaning) or definition </li></ul><ul><li>Humans find themselves in a world without meaning </li></ul><ul><li>Meaning is created out of reaction (experience) to this world </li></ul><ul><li>First existence, then Meaning </li></ul>
  18. 18. Existentialism <ul><li>Jean-Paul Sartre </li></ul><ul><li>(1905–1980) </li></ul><ul><li>Opposite of Aristotle's Ethics - man is created to fulfil some purpose or goal, and that fulfilment of a life consists in striving towards that goal </li></ul><ul><li>Sartre argues that since there is no God or designer to give man a purpose, it is up to the individual to choose the life they think best </li></ul><ul><li>“ Man is condemned to be free” </li></ul>
  19. 19. Existentialism <ul><li>Jean-Paul Sartre </li></ul><ul><li>(1905–1980) </li></ul><ul><li>Even if someone is pointing a gun at you, you still must make a real choice. </li></ul><ul><li>The person holding the gun can never make a choice for you </li></ul><ul><li>Thus, you are never really “forced” to do anything </li></ul><ul><li>You are only forced to choose </li></ul>
  20. 20. Existentialism <ul><li>Jean-Paul Sartre </li></ul><ul><li>(1905–1980) </li></ul><ul><li>Responsibility – Because our choices are free, we are full responsible for them </li></ul><ul><li>We cannot blame human nature, God or our environment for any of our actions or choices </li></ul>
  21. 21. Existentialism <ul><li>Jean-Paul Sartre </li></ul><ul><li>(1905–1980) </li></ul><ul><li>3 Burdens of the Individual </li></ul><ul><li>Anguish – arising from the awareness of the weight of responsibility we each hold </li></ul><ul><li>Abandonment – We are alone in our choices without any moral guidance from God or others </li></ul><ul><li>Despair - We must act without hope. We cannot trust that things will turn out for the best. There is no providence. </li></ul>
  22. 22. Existentialism <ul><li>Albert Camus </li></ul><ul><li>(1913–1960) </li></ul><ul><li>Absurdity </li></ul><ul><li>The Myth of Sisyphus - Condemned by the gods to eternally push a boulder up a hill only to have it roll back down again as he reaches the summit </li></ul><ul><li>Absurdity arises out of our attempts to make sense of a senseless world </li></ul><ul><li>Life is pointless </li></ul>
  23. 23. Existentialism <ul><li>Albert Camus </li></ul><ul><li>(1913–1960) </li></ul><ul><li>Absurdity </li></ul><ul><li>One must not try to resolve the conflict of trying to find meaning in a meaningless world. </li></ul><ul><li>Rather, we must revolt against our fate and choose to live happy lives in spite of life's meaninglessness </li></ul>
  24. 24. Existentialism <ul><li>Paul Tillich </li></ul><ul><li>(1886 – 1965) </li></ul><ul><li>Christian Existentialist </li></ul><ul><li>Believed that Existentialists were asking the right questions about being and existence </li></ul><ul><li>Argued that Christianity supplied the answers to the Existentialist questions </li></ul><ul><li>The task of the philosopher is to formulate questions of existence </li></ul><ul><li>The task of the theologian is to formulate the answers </li></ul>
  25. 25. Existentialism <ul><li>Paul Tillich (1886 – 1965) </li></ul><ul><li>Faith </li></ul><ul><li>Faith is not opposed to either reason or emotion </li></ul><ul><li>Faith transcend both reason and emotions </li></ul><ul><li>Faith is require of both the theist and the atheist </li></ul><ul><li>The theist relies on faith to believe God's existence </li></ul><ul><li>The atheist relies on faith to deny God's existence </li></ul>
  26. 26. Positivism <ul><li>The Scientific Method is the best approach to uncovering the processes by which both physical and human events occur </li></ul><ul><li>Asserts that the only authentic knowledge is that which is based on sense, experience and positive verification </li></ul><ul><li>The Scientific Method replaces Metaphysics </li></ul>
  27. 27. Positivism <ul><li>Auguste Comte (1798–1857) </li></ul><ul><li>Theological and metaphysical speculations should be abandoned in favor of knowledge gained through observable “facts” </li></ul>
  28. 28. Positivism <ul><li>Positive Order of Knowledge </li></ul>Mathematics Astronomy Physics Sociology Biology Chemistry
  29. 29. Positivism Positive “ Scientific” Theological Metaphysical Comte's Development of Philosophy
  30. 30. Positivism New Social Order Led by Science Theocracy Monarchy Comte's Development of Societies Anarchy
  31. 31. Logical Positivism <ul><li>Combines the Scientific Empiricism of Comte's Positivism with a modern form of Rationalism </li></ul><ul><li>Empiricism – Observational evidence is foundational for knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>Rationalism – Mathematics, Logic, & Linguistics </li></ul>
  32. 32. Logical Positivism <ul><li>Invalid Sources of Knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>Theology </li></ul><ul><ul><li>All religious knowledge </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Metaphysics </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Questions about the nature of reality </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Ontology </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Questions about the nature of being or existence </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Synthetic a priori </li></ul><ul><ul><li>A statement in which the predicate is not contained in the subject (synthetic) and does not depend on experience (a priori) </li></ul></ul>
  33. 33. Logical Positivism <ul><li>Rudolph Carnap (1891-1970) </li></ul><ul><li>Many philosophical questions were meaningless since they cannot be verified </li></ul><ul><li>Accused philosophers of abusing “language” by not being scientifically precise with their language </li></ul><ul><li>Proposed that Metaphysics be eliminated from the investigations of philosophy </li></ul>
  34. 34. Logical Positivism <ul><li>Rudolph Carnap (1891-1970) </li></ul><ul><li>Logical Syntax </li></ul><ul><li>Formal scientific language </li></ul><ul><li>Every word has only one possible meaning to allow for precision </li></ul><ul><li>A systematic set of rules for exactly how the language can and cannot be used </li></ul><ul><li>Allows for the development of a “logic of science” </li></ul>
  35. 35. Logical Positivism <ul><li>Bertrand Russell (1872–1970) </li></ul><ul><li>Theory of Definite Descriptions </li></ul><ul><li>Some statements contain multiple claims </li></ul><ul><li>Each claim in a statement needs to be analyzed separately if the the whole statement is to be analyzed </li></ul>
  36. 36. Logical Positivism <ul><li>Bertrand Russell (1872–1970) </li></ul><ul><li>Theory of Definite Descriptions </li></ul><ul><li>Example: “The present king of France is Bald” </li></ul><ul><li>Problem: The statement cannot be verified or falsified without accepting at least part of the statement as true which is not true in either case. There is no king of France. </li></ul>
  37. 37. Logical Positivism <ul><li>Bertrand Russell (1872–1970) </li></ul><ul><li>Theory of Definite Descriptions </li></ul><ul><li>Example: “The present king of France is Bald” </li></ul><ul><li>Problem: The statement cannot be verified or falsified without accepting at least part of the statement as true which is not true in either case. There is no king of France. </li></ul>
  38. 38. Logical Positivism <ul><li>Bertrand Russell (1872–1970) </li></ul><ul><li>Theory of Definite Descriptions </li></ul><ul><li>Solution: The statement contains multiple claims </li></ul><ul><li>“ The present king of France is Bald” </li></ul><ul><li>(1) There is a present king of France </li></ul><ul><li>(2) There is only one king of France </li></ul><ul><li>(3) If there is a present king of France that person is bald </li></ul>
  39. 39. Logical Positivism <ul><li>Ludwig Wittgenstein (1889–1951) </li></ul><ul><li>Language is the perceptible form of thought and bound to reality by a common logical form or structure </li></ul><ul><li>The meaning of words and sentences must be determined by the nature of the world </li></ul><ul><li>If not, the meaning or sense of an expression would be uncertain and communication would not be possible </li></ul>
  40. 40. Logical Positivism <ul><li>Ludwig Wittgenstein (1889–1951) </li></ul><ul><li>Language are “picture” (exact representations) of the world </li></ul><ul><li>Meaning is tied to the user of the language and the context in which it is used. </li></ul><ul><li>Language is not tied directly to nature </li></ul><ul><li>Language can be descriptive, inquisitive, playful, commanding and so on... </li></ul>