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The Self, the Others, and their Relations

  • May 9, 2013 · 7:00 PM
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Having discussed the "self" (Oct. 25), let's bring in the "others" into the discussion of metaethics. This idea will bridge us to more complex ideas and principles in ethics and politics. Mistaking it for something else can really skew any philosophical discussion.

For example, the following series of questions hinge on a proper understanding of the self, the others, and their relations:  People often take it as a given that human beings are social animals. If true,

1. What does it mean for man to be social?

2. How is being social the same as (or different from) being in an organized society?

3. What is the role of government in an organized society?

4. If an organized society is like a living organism, with its body parts and systems and organs and tissues and all; what of the enumerated breakdowns, specifically in this organism, would be the government?

 

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  • A former member
    A former member

    Here is an Aristotle quote on defining terms early in a discussion.

    ''How many a dispute could have been deflated into a single paragraph if the disputants had dared to define their terms.''

    Peter's Quotations: Ideas for Our time by Laurence J. Peter. Bantam books, 1977. p. 24.

    1 · May 11, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      Wasn't that neat!

      May 11, 2013

    • Tom O.

      For the sake of the newer members, perhaps we should have a #10 meeting? http://www.meetup.com...­ You can trace the link backward for more terms.

      May 11, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Tom, Good meeting. Good Discussion. I think a foreshortened ''Review'' segment at the front of each meeting, primarily reviewing definitions, needs to be worked on. Michael's comment (below) about alluding to the time it takes the group to get ''focused, could maybe be foreshortened. Then again, we will probably get into spirited discussion about the definitions and end up taking as much time with the ''review'' as it takes us now to get around to the topic.

    May 10, 2013

  • Tim

    While we discussed whether people inherently have power relations, I almost wanted to say that this is outside the scope of philosophy and that we need to turn to the humanities/physical sciences for an answer.

    Once we started to regressively examine how and why power relations exist, we came to realize that power relations could only exist in an impoverished state. Scarcity is the impetus for hoarding, domination, etc.

    I particularly enjoyed this aha moment. And Tom's Freudian slip.

    May 10, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      Tim, you wrote,

      May 10, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      Tim, You wrote; ''power relations could only exist in an impoverished state. Scarcity is the impetus for hoarding, domination, etc.'' I would only modify you comment thusly; ''perceived impoverishment and perceived scarcity''. The more powerful entity in the equation will attempt to withhold information or goods from the less powerful entity, thus attempting to make the less powerful entity feel impoverished.

      May 10, 2013

  • Tom O.

    I enjoyed our resumption of the metaethics series of meetings. The difficulties we encountered during the meeting were mainly due to our using technical terms that were presumed to have been defined and settled early, but most everyone was able to catch up quickly from the brief review at the outset. The feedback as we adjourned was that we should have a follow-up. Who knew "others" could be so complex and interesting a topic!

    May 10, 2013

  • MLe

    I would love to meeting with all the complexity of mind and brainy people. Looking forward to meet with you.

    May 9, 2013

  • Tom O.

    A forthcoming paper by David Chalmers and David Bourget surveys what contemporary philosophers actually believe. You won't believe what 1972 of them believe, but what they believe will set the cultural tone for the foreseeable future. http://philpapers.org/rec/BOUWDP Here are some scoops from the Daves's results. If interested, I will present the rest at the meeting. In percentages: 1. Innate or a priori knowledge: yes 71.1; no 18.4; other 10.5.
    2. Problem of universals: Platonism 39.3; nominalism 37.7; other 23.0.
    3. Analytic-synthetic truths: yes 64.9; no 27.1; other 8.1.
    4. Knowing: empiricism 35.0; rationalism 27.8; other 37.2.
    5. Knowledge claims: contextualism 40.1; invariantism 31.1; relativism 2.9; other 25.9.
    6. Justification: externalism 42.7; internalism 26.4; other 30.8.
    7. Mental content: externalism 51.1; internalism 20.0; other 28.9.
    8. Perceptual experience: representationalism 31.5; qualia 12.2; disjunctivism 11.0; sense-datum 3.1; other 42.2.

    1 · May 4, 2013

    • Tim

      Very interesting stats, and would love to discuss them. However, given the complexity of the meetup's topic, I have a feeling we won't have the time to get to them. If not, would be a great topic for another meetup.

      May 5, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      Tom, I'm working my way through the Chalmers-Borguet Surveys. Great Stuff. The 30 Questions alone are worth weeks of discussion, never mind the results of the survey, which in the end is pretty pedestrian, don't you think?

      May 9, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    My nephew's design group is having an open house and invited me to it. I need to go to that to support him, thus will not be able to come tonight.

    May 9, 2013

  • Janice

    Have another commitment on the 9th.

    May 7, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    I just posted ''Right and Wrong, what's Right about it and what is Wrong'' on the discussions board. If interested, check ir out.

    April 27, 2013

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