The words skeptic and skepticism come from an ancient Greek verb that meant "to inquire." Etymologically, then, a skeptic is an inquirer. This should form important background for an understanding of skeptical doubt. Skepticism at its best is not a matter of denial, but of inquiring, seeking, questioning doubt.
With all the restrictions placed upon it, you may think that logic is too narrow to be of much use. But this narrowness is logic's great strength. Logic is like a laser — a tool whose best use is not illumination, but rather focus. A laser may not provide light for your home, but, like logic, its great power resides in its precision. The following sections describe just a few areas in which logic is commonly used.
Pick a number (math)
Because deduction rhymes with reduction, you can easily remember that in deduction, you start with a set of possibilities and reduce it until a smaller subset remains.
The history of philosophy has seen many warring camps fighting battles over some major issue or other. One of the major battles historically has been over the foundations of all our knowledge. What is most basic in any human set of beliefs? What are our ultimate starting points for any world view? Where does human knowledge ultimately come from?
Much of Western philosophy finds its basis in the thoughts and teachings of Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle. You can't begin a study of world philosophy without talking about these guys: the Big Three ancient Greek philosophers.
Socrates: Athens' street-corner philosopher
Socrates was the big-city philosopher in ancient Athens. Accused and convicted of corrupting the youth, his only real crime was embarrassing and irritating a number of important people. His punishment was death.
Famous quote: "The unexamined life is not worth living."
1.) “It’s no use going back to yesterday, because I was a different person then.”
― Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland
tags: alice, humor, inspirational, philosophy-of-life, psychological, yesterday
2.) “The reasonable man adapts himself to the world: the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.”
― George Bernard Shaw, Man and Superman
tags: life, philosophy, philosophy-of-life, progress
If you’re into philosophy, it’s important to become acquainted with some of the early founding philosophers. This list contains the big names and big thinkers of ancient times:
The point of philosophy is to ponder the questions that life presents. Students of philosophy (and, perhaps, students of life) have raised and will continue to raise some of philosophy’s greatest questions:
- Will this be on the test?
The problems posed by the great philosophers can enhance your experience of the world. You've probably even asked yourself some of these philosophical questions without realizing that you're thinking like some of the greatest minds in history!
Here's a sampling of some of the questions always under consideration in philosophy:
To be a really great (or even fair-to-middling) philosopher, you need to understand some of the lingo of philosophy. Some basic terms in philosophy include:
- Philosophy: Love of wisdom.
Aesthetics: The study of beauty, ugliness, and maybe even the sublime. The question, What is art?, is an aesthetical one.
Meta-aesthetics tip: If a theoretical aesthetician can’t match a suit and tie or a skirt and shirt, take anything they say with a grain of salt.