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We discuss topics of general philosophy and the implications of new technology on the future.

Upcoming events (4+)

Live-Reading Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics--American Style

Link visible for attendees

Let's try something new. For the next dozen weeks or so, starting 4/17/2022, we are going to live-read and discuss Aristotle's ~Nicomachean Ethics~. What is new and different about this project is that the translation, by Adam Beresford (2020), happens to be rendered in standard 'Murican English.
.
From the translator's "Note" on the text:
.
"This translation is conservative in interpretation and traditional in aim. It aims to translate the text as accurately as possible.
.
"I translated every page from scratch, from a clean Greek text, rather than revising an existing translation. ... I wanted to avoid the scholars’ dialect that is traditionally used for translating Aristotle.
...
"I reject the approach of Arthur Adkins, Elizabeth Anscombe, and others who followed Nietzsche in supposing that the main elements of modern thinking about right and wrong were unknown to the Greeks, or known to them only in some radically different form. My view of humanity and of our shared moral instincts is shaped by a newer paradigm. This is a post-Darwinian translation. (It is also more in line with the older, both Aristotelian and Christian view of human character.)
.
"Having said that, I have no interest at all in modernizing Aristotle’s ideas. All the attitudes of this treatise remain fully Greek, very patriarchal, somewhat aristocratic, and firmly embedded in the fourth century BC. My choice of dialect (standard English) has no bearing on that whatsoever. (It is perfectly possible to express distinctively Greek and ancient attitudes in standard English.) ... I have also not simplified the text in any way. I have translated every iota, particle, preposition, noun, verb, adjective, phrase, clause, and sentence of the original. Every premise and every argument therefore remains – unfortunately – exactly as complex and annoyingly difficult as in any other version in whatever dialect.
...
"Some scholars and students unwarily assume that the traditional dialect has a special connection with Greek and that using it brings readers closer to the original text; and that it makes the translation more accurate. In reality, it has no special tie to the Greek language, either in its main philosophical glossary or in its dozens of minor (and pointless) deviations from normal English. And in my view it certainly makes any translation much less accurate.
.
"I will occasionally refer to the scholars’ dialect (‘Gringlish’) and its traditional glossary in the Notes."
.
.
Here is our plan:
1. Read Intro excerpts or a summary to gain the big picture.
2. Read a segment of the translated text.
3. Discuss it analytically and interpretively.
4. Repeat again at #2 for several more times.
5. Discuss the segments evaluatively.
.
.
Zoom is the project's current meeting platform, but that can change. The project's cloud drive is here, at which you'll find the reading texts, notes, and slideshows.

1
On Politeness

Link visible for attendees

This event is brought to you by the Free Thinker Institute (FTI), a not-for-profit looking to support and empower personal development for its members. The FTI focuses on transformational development for anyone interested, both personally and professionally, organizing a free event every Tuesday to discuss ways to transform wisdom into practical applications that benefit our lives, covering topics widely ranging from professional subjects to spiritual ones.

Format: Lecture and discussion
Note: new social time for our community 15 minutes before presentation.

I have moderated online forums for decades, even in forums before the internet back in the BBS days for those who remember that. Having moderated forums for a long time, I’ve tried to keep the moderation rules simple and concise, and I’ve found I could simplify everything down to one thing: Everyone must be polite.

When I shared this rule at one of our events, several people had a negative reaction to it. When I said what I meant by polite, they said respectfulness is more the way they’d phrase it. I’d like to have an open discussion on the differences between politeness and respectfulness, since I want to use terminology that resonates with everyone and I want us as an organization to clearly define the terminology we end up using so everyone knows the one most important rule of the organization: Being polite and/or respectful.

PLEASE READ ESSAY:
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1qj7fSWnVMEAoUkMOL70UF0583Kp1DLVo1Fdp6KzX1ps/edit?usp=drivesdk

Host:
Garrett Lang
an entrepreneur whose hobby is writing and discussing practical philosophy who finds the time to be the executive director of The Free Thinker Institute (http://freethinkerinstitute.org/).

To get familiar with our past events, feel free to check out our Youtube channel:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmixGB9GdrptyEWovEj80zg

Register in advance for this meeting:
https://us06web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZctdumvqD0pGdwrfItiS7nD_nDTjsYcjOz6
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

We publish our event recordings on our Youtube channel to offer our help to anyone who would like to but can’t attend the meeting, so we need to give this clause. If you don’t want to be recorded, just remain on mute and keep your video off. Here’s our legal notice: For valuable consideration received, by joining this event I hereby grant Free Thinker Institute and its legal representatives and assigns, the irrevocable and unrestricted right to use and publish any and all Zoom recordings for trade, advertising and any other commercial purpose, and to alter the same without any restriction. I hereby release Free Thinker Institute and its legal representatives and assigns from all claims and liability related to said video recordings.

On Politeness

Link visible for attendees

This event is brought to you by the Free Thinker Institute (FTI), a not-for-profit looking to support and empower personal development for its members. The FTI focuses on transformational development for anyone interested, both personally and professionally, organizing a free event every Tuesday to discuss ways to transform wisdom into practical applications that benefit our lives, covering topics widely ranging from professional subjects to spiritual ones.

Format: Lecture and discussion
Note: new social time for our community 15 minutes before presentation.

I have moderated online forums for decades, even in forums before the internet back in the BBS days for those who remember that. Having moderated forums for a long time, I’ve tried to keep the moderation rules simple and concise, and I’ve found I could simplify everything down to one thing: Everyone must be polite.

When I shared this rule at one of our events, several people had a negative reaction to it. When I said what I meant by polite, they said respectfulness is more the way they’d phrase it. I’d like to have an open discussion on the differences between politeness and respectfulness, since I want to use terminology that resonates with everyone and I want us as an organization to clearly define the terminology we end up using so everyone knows the one most important rule of the organization: Being polite and/or respectful.

PLEASE READ ESSAY:
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1qj7fSWnVMEAoUkMOL70UF0583Kp1DLVo1Fdp6KzX1ps/edit?usp=drivesdk

Host:
Garrett Lang
an entrepreneur whose hobby is writing and discussing practical philosophy who finds the time to be the executive director of The Free Thinker Institute (http://freethinkerinstitute.org/).

To get familiar with our past events, feel free to check out our Youtube channel:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmixGB9GdrptyEWovEj80zg

Register in advance for this meeting:
https://us06web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZctdumvqD0pGdwrfItiS7nD_nDTjsYcjOz6
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

We publish our event recordings on our Youtube channel to offer our help to anyone who would like to but can’t attend the meeting, so we need to give this clause. If you don’t want to be recorded, just remain on mute and keep your video off. Here’s our legal notice: For valuable consideration received, by joining this event I hereby grant Free Thinker Institute and its legal representatives and assigns, the irrevocable and unrestricted right to use and publish any and all Zoom recordings for trade, advertising and any other commercial purpose, and to alter the same without any restriction. I hereby release Free Thinker Institute and its legal representatives and assigns from all claims and liability related to said video recordings.

Live-Reading Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics--American Style

Link visible for attendees

Let's try something new. For the next dozen weeks or so, starting 4/17/2022, we are going to live-read and discuss Aristotle's ~Nicomachean Ethics~. What is new and different about this project is that the translation, by Adam Beresford (2020), happens to be rendered in standard 'Murican English.
.
From the translator's "Note" on the text:
.
"This translation is conservative in interpretation and traditional in aim. It aims to translate the text as accurately as possible.
.
"I translated every page from scratch, from a clean Greek text, rather than revising an existing translation. ... I wanted to avoid the scholars’ dialect that is traditionally used for translating Aristotle.
...
"I reject the approach of Arthur Adkins, Elizabeth Anscombe, and others who followed Nietzsche in supposing that the main elements of modern thinking about right and wrong were unknown to the Greeks, or known to them only in some radically different form. My view of humanity and of our shared moral instincts is shaped by a newer paradigm. This is a post-Darwinian translation. (It is also more in line with the older, both Aristotelian and Christian view of human character.)
.
"Having said that, I have no interest at all in modernizing Aristotle’s ideas. All the attitudes of this treatise remain fully Greek, very patriarchal, somewhat aristocratic, and firmly embedded in the fourth century BC. My choice of dialect (standard English) has no bearing on that whatsoever. (It is perfectly possible to express distinctively Greek and ancient attitudes in standard English.) ... I have also not simplified the text in any way. I have translated every iota, particle, preposition, noun, verb, adjective, phrase, clause, and sentence of the original. Every premise and every argument therefore remains – unfortunately – exactly as complex and annoyingly difficult as in any other version in whatever dialect.
...
"Some scholars and students unwarily assume that the traditional dialect has a special connection with Greek and that using it brings readers closer to the original text; and that it makes the translation more accurate. In reality, it has no special tie to the Greek language, either in its main philosophical glossary or in its dozens of minor (and pointless) deviations from normal English. And in my view it certainly makes any translation much less accurate.
.
"I will occasionally refer to the scholars’ dialect (‘Gringlish’) and its traditional glossary in the Notes."
.
.
Here is our plan:
1. Read Intro excerpts or a summary to gain the big picture.
2. Read a segment of the translated text.
3. Discuss it analytically and interpretively.
4. Repeat again at #2 for several more times.
5. Discuss the segments evaluatively.
.
.
Zoom is the project's current meeting platform, but that can change. The project's cloud drive is here, at which you'll find the reading texts, notes, and slideshows.

Past events (558)

On Gender

This event has passed

Photos (349)