Is philosophy dead?
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15-03-2015, 09:02 AM (This post was last modified: 15-03-2015 10:26 AM by rezider.)
Is philosophy dead?
Hello, guys!

I've got just one more year and then I am off to university. I want to study both philosophy and theoretical physics. My desire for becoming a physicist and cosmologist and working along side all great minds of the planet in places like CERN is incredibly big.

In his book The Grand Design Stephen Hawking says: "Philosophy is dead!" I can see where Hawking is going with this and pretty much I agree with him. It is an interesting ascertainment and I'm interested in your opinion.

I want to pick up philosophy because in the course I will study a bit of history of philosophy and of course religion, logic, psychology, the different branches of philosophy, ethics and so on. So you see, I want to study philosophy just for utility. But I would like to hear the other side as well. Do you think that when it comes to science philosophy is no longer relevant?

Imagine that we know everything there is to know about the universe. We've answered every what, where, when, how... That's when we start asking why. It'll be a golden age for philosophers Big Grin

"I don't know where I'm going, but I'm on my way." - Carl Sagan
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15-03-2015, 09:07 AM
RE: Is philosophy dead?
I think once we know all the what, when, how we'll know the why.

Until then, philosophy is valuable as it is about what questions to ask and especially how to ask them.

I studied maths and philosophy as an undergrad.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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15-03-2015, 09:15 AM
RE: Is philosophy dead?
(15-03-2015 09:07 AM)Chas Wrote:  I think once we know all the what, when, how we'll know the why.

Until then, philosophy is valuable as it is about what questions to ask and especially how to ask them.

I studied maths and philosophy as an undergrad.

Yes, I'd have to agree with you there. Good point.

What about ontology and mainly metaphysics? Would you say that metaphysics is still a valid perspective and why?

"I don't know where I'm going, but I'm on my way." - Carl Sagan
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15-03-2015, 09:21 AM
RE: Is philosophy dead?
(15-03-2015 09:15 AM)rezider Wrote:  
(15-03-2015 09:07 AM)Chas Wrote:  I think once we know all the what, when, how we'll know the why.

Until then, philosophy is valuable as it is about what questions to ask and especially how to ask them.

I studied maths and philosophy as an undergrad.

Yes, I'd have to agree with you there. Good point.

What about ontology and mainly metaphysics? Would you say that metaphysics is still a valid perspective and why?

Hmmm, I'd suggest some Intro courses, including a survey of philosophies, then follow your nose.

I particularly enjoyed courses in Logic, Language, Ontology, and Ethics.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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20-03-2015, 11:56 PM
RE: Is philosophy dead?
Philosophy as it was originally understood dealt with three main topics: nature, ethics, and knowledge. Natural philosophy is essentially what scientists do; nobody can read Darwin or Dawkins and not perceive what is essentially a philosophical argument on the basis of a collection of known facts about phenomena in nature. A little more sophisticated than what the Greeks tried to do before Socrates and Plato took Western civilization off path with positing the "human soul" as the center point of all future discussion, but still, it falls under the domain of natural philosophy proper. Ethics, of course, has always been a subject of discourse since humans first organized their social interactions with benefits and restrictions, and largely relates to political philosophy and legislation. And knowledge, or epistemology, encompasses logic and language, definitions and the relationships between senses and thoughts, how it is we come to know what we know and how we know THAT, etc. I'd say all three are as relevant as they ever were.
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21-03-2015, 02:48 PM
RE: Is philosophy dead?
You could ask Deep Thought -- but it's currently running a program and it's going to take seven and a half million years to run....... In the meantime, philosophers will live a lifestyle beyond their wildest imaginings......

If this makes no sense, I'll let Deep Thought explain it....

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24-03-2015, 05:26 PM
RE: Is philosophy dead?
(21-03-2015 02:48 PM)onlinebiker Wrote:  You could ask Deep Thought -- but it's currently running a program and it's going to take seven and a half million years to run.......

Better read the book again. Earth is the computer Deep Thought designed to answer the question it couldn't. Earth will be destroyed before the program completes.

As for philosophy, it will never die because humans love to philosophize. As long as people gather around a table with a pitcher of beer there will be philosophy.

"El mar se mide por olas,
el cielo por alas,
nosotros por lágrimas."
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24-03-2015, 05:45 PM
RE: Is philosophy dead?
Philosophy basically translates to love of wisdom. In that sense, philosophy will not die as long as humans exist as conscious beings.

Saints live in flames; wise men, next to them.
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24-03-2015, 06:45 PM
RE: Is philosophy dead?
Let's hope not for the sake of France. If it is their unemployment figures will take a sudden and steep increase (and they're bad enough already!). And if art goes too then 9 tenths of the country will be on social handouts.

It's not the junkie who needs rehab; it's the world
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24-03-2015, 10:55 PM
RE: Is philosophy dead?
If you're questioning if philosophy is dead, philosophy is ongoing in that moment. Checkmate silly rhetorical arguments. Wink

Ethical questions and ways of evaluating, basically everything including everything scientifically understood is still going to exist. The nature of us thinking out the problems before they are problematic situations will still be necessary.

"Allow there to be a spectrum in all that you see" - Neil Degrasse Tyson
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