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  • Nick A.

    As I understand it, philosophy has the potential to vivify the contradiction. We can love the contradiction as did Kierkegaard and we can also allow it to be the door as suggested by Simone Weil. The real value of philosophy seems to result from the depth of the questions it inspires rather than superficial answers many love to argue over.

    "The paradox is the source of the thinker's passion, and the thinker without a paradox is like a lover without feeling: a paltry mediocrity." (Soren Kierkegaard) "When a contradiction is impossible to resolve except by a lie, then we know that it is really a door." Simone Weil...

    February 2, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Another angle is how far philosophy can go on any topic. Sure, philosophy aids inquiry, but to what extent can philosophy actually answer any question about anything in any definitive manner? How much can philosophy ever tell us about any topic?

    Philosophy can aid us in asking questions about the nature of the real world that we can see and touch and otherwise sense and feel and believe, but how much aid can philosophy be when pondering the unknown or even that which is even unknowable in any real sense? How far can philosophy take us in pondering theology or the nature and existence of a deity? To what extent can philosophy aid us in pondering speculation of any sort?

    Essentially, how far can philosophy take us, such that trying to go further than that is a place that philosophy cannot go?

    January 19, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    My initial, kneejerk reaction to the topic question is a simple and resounding "No", but... it depends on how you want to interpret the word "should" or "shouldn't". I mean, philosophy "can" certainly be applied ANYWHERE, but "can" and "should" are categorically distinct concepts.

    Philosophy is simply an intellectual tool that "can" be used to make sense of... anything. "Can" has no ethical considerations, while "should" and "shouldn't" are both filled with ethical considerations.

    Does society "want" us to inquire about certain topics? Does society "forbid" us from inquiry about certain topics?

    Socrates comes to mind - he was accused of corrupting the minds of the youth of Athens. He was challenging the the democratic form of government of Athens.

    Maybe this splits the question into different aspects of philosophy: pure philosophy - inquiry and merely seeking truth vs. applied philosophy - prescription for HOW society should function - and challenging authority.

    January 19, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    The topic selected by the group for this upcoming meeting is:

    Are there places philosophy shouldn't go?

    January 13, 2013

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