What are your philosophical views - Page 3 - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

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For the discussion of Philosophy. Discuss thought from Socrates to the Enlightenment and beyond!

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People of all races and cultures of this globe, if the sight of philosophy pains your little brain and you are unable to muster concentration to follow a thought for even five seconds. It does not mean it is the same case for other people.

Stop taking verbal dumps in this thread and leave men to discuss greater things in life.

Nonintellectual attitude you find these days on PoFo is concerning.

I'm for one enjoying the discussion me and Cart are having at the moment.
To be fair it wasn't a very thoughtful response, I just wanted to name one philosophical branch in each category (which is erroneous as I don't think one umbrella can strictly cover that), for epistemology I tried to remember most scientific branch (and Hawking came to mind thus positivism and this is silly, I realize it.) and hence my answer. It was a lazy response, yes and could had been entirely different at a different time.

What are you talking about, fuser? This was never in Gorkiy!

I apologize for my grave mistake, carter. This shall never happen again.
I just have noticed that I tend towards insults lately rather than actual arguments

Really? It might just be you I am sure that no one had noticed such a thing.
Rather than trying to encapsulate my approach to each as a quick one word school of thought I shall try to take a more measured approach.

Ethics: I can see where expressivists and relativists are coming from when they say that moral judgment necessarily varies depending on the source and their relation to events at hand. Ethics are necessary as an internalized code of conduct for humans given that we are social creatures and what constitutes the moral thing to do depends on our own relationships in society. There is no externally prevalent or inherent “good and evil” but certain actions that can be seen as harmful or positive in context to our relations with each other. However, I still frequently employ a roughly “utilitarian” approach in that I think the “right” thing to do is push for society that maximizes the outcomes for the greatest number of people. I reject the odd attempts to measure this in “utils” though or John Stuart Mill’s attempts to use his approach as a reaffirmation of liberal capitalism. I do however essentially see my technocratic socialist approach as being positive precisely as a way to maximize the benefit received to a large number of people thus roughly speaking “utilitarian”.

Epistemological: Mostly I agree with scientific/rationalist approach to the acquisition of knowledge. Natural forces are real tangible things that exist independent of our consciousness or understanding of them. There are limitations in what our senses and instruments can pick up to be sure but for most practical purposes these are trustworthy enough. Experimentation and empirical evidence are important to be sure but they should not discount intuition altogether. Often I think intuition is important to formulate broader, general ideas that can bridge the gaps of pure empirical understanding and give cohesiveness that makes such information actionable. Relying purely on mathematical or scientific equations can lead to blind spots and unaccounted for externalities. Ultimately though we should continue to accrue as much useful scientific, empirical data as possible but it is up to our own understanding and intellect to posit and cogitate such information in a useful way.

Metaphysics: Essentially straightforward materialism here. The universe is as it is and continues to exist outside our consciousness or understanding of them. Our consciousness is derived from material reality – we receive the information about it from our senses and our conscious thoughts are derived from this input. We take action as we see fit in response to the input we receive and can act insofar as material reality will allow.
Epistemological: Classical skepticism mixed with fideism (for me, they're two sides of the same coin), certainly in the case of religion (I'm a Christian of sorts), but not alone. It is beyond human power to know anything in any conclusive way; there always remain ways to fundamentally doubt or invalidate any proposition, no matter how reasonable it first seems. However, there is faith, both in the sense of believing on the basis of something other than knowledge as such and in the sense of an intervening Grace that convinces.

Ethical: Moral nihilist leading on to Kierkegaardian Religious. No ethical standards are available to reason. It is by choice that we adopt an ethical standard, although there do seem to be universal feelings of wrong-doings, such as consciously mistreating someone who is innocent. Relativism seems obvious, but enters the self-contradiction of offering the universal explanation that it denies exists. It seems logical that any human preoccupied with the ethical, will constantly come up against its impossibility, in that even if ethical standards were available to reason, and even those we choose ourselves, they remain in an ultimate sense impossible to adhere to. One logical route of this quandary is the Kierkegaardian Religious position, and Christian morality in general, which one chooses to adopt, and then it turns out the point of Christian morality is something essentially different from merely being ethically good.

Of course, choice as such involves a belief in transcendence, in this case, the notion that we can transcend the moral possibilities that we are born into and caused by. That is, choice assumes that it is an act 'uncaused'. Many who emphasise choice seem to forget this, primarily because they ignore the structuralist thesis, that all our beliefs and actions are caused by something other than us, something that preceded us.

Metaphysical: 1: Pluralist. Reality is not reducible to one thing, substance or symbol, and attempts to reduce it as such will always fail.

2: Nominalist. Categories, substances, individuals, species, etc... are names that we perhaps necessarily impose on the world, not actual discoveries.

3. Negative theism/"atheism". I feel that properly understood Christianity presupposes atheism without denying God, i.e. God is being-less, existence-less nothingness*. In brief, this is more important to describe the human religious route than for anything else; to learn humility, to be God-centred is to have no centre as such, in a project of kenosis (emptying oneself and becoming entirely passive), in a Schopenhauerian retreat from the Will that is the World**.

* "We do not know what God is. God Himself does not know what He is because He is not anything. Literally God is not, because He transcends being." - Scotus Erigena

** "The world is the general name for all the passions. When we wish to call the passions by a common name, we call them the world. But when we wish to distinguish them by their special names, we call them the passions. The passions are the following: love of riches, desire for possessions, bodily pleasure from which comes sexual passion, love of honour which gives rise to envy, lust for power, arrogance and pride of position, the craving to adorn oneself with luxurious clothes and vain ornaments, the itch for human glory which is a source of rancour and resentment, and physical fear. Where these passions cease to be active, there the world is dead; for though living in the flesh, they did not live for the flesh. See for which of these passions you are alive. Then you will know how far you are alive to the world, and how far you are dead to it." - Isaac the Syrian
Verv wrote:And I liked Descartes big conclusion... Even if the whole world is nothing more than a demonic force manipulating and creating illusions, he can still conclude his own existence through his in fact being duped.

This is actually Augustine's conclusion. In answering the skeptics of his time, he wrote: "si fallor, sum", that is, "if I'm mistaken, I exist".
Eudaimonia/Humanism/Human Flourishing
With regard to morality, those real premises are the human beings themselves, their activity and the conditions for their flourishing. In asking whether an action, state of affairs, or principle is moral or not, we do not need to retreat into abstract speculation. Rather, it is possible to determine empirically whether or not a thing is moral or immoral by evaluating whether it is such as to promote or to inhibit the development of human beings.

Not sure what I'd call it, but perhaps some sort of realism with an emphasis on activity over perception
It should also be noted from the outset that Marx’s epistemology cannot be handled in traditional epistemological terms. In their article “Marxist Epistemology: The Critique of Economic Determinism”, Stephen A. Resnick and Richard D. Wolff indicate that traditional epistemology operates as if there are two separate realms: “independent subjects seeking knowledge of independent objects” (Resnick and Wolf, 45). In contrast to traditional epistemology, Marx does not see theory and reality as belonging to two distinct spheres. Rather there is a “circular process” in the production of theory where “theory begins and ends with concretes […] the concrete which determines theory is conceptualized as the ‘concrete real’ [the real concrete] and the concrete produced by thought is the ‘thought-concrete’ [concrete for thought]”( Resnick and Wolf, 43).

Nature is a more comprehensive concept than matter. It includes matter and life, body and mind, the motions of inanimate objects and the flights of passion and imagination. ‘Nature’, wrote Santayana, ‘is material but not materialistic’,[3] a comment that might have come from Feuerbach or from Marx.
For the understanding of Marx a different point is, however, important. The Marxian conception of nature, of man, and man’s relation to nature disposes of many traditional epistemological problems. Marx neither needs to prove existence of the external world, nor disprove its existence. From his point of view both these endeavours are prompted by false assumptions concerning the relation of man to nature, by considering man as a detached observer, setting him against the world or placing him, as it were, on a totally different level. For man, who is part of nature, to doubt the existence of the external world or to consider it as in need of proof is to doubt his own existence, and even Descartes and Berkeley refused to go to such a length.

This conclusion is of considerable significance for the interpretation of Marxian philosophy. As Marx refused to dissociate nature from man and man from nature and conceived man not only as part of nature but also nature in a certain sense as a product of man’s activity and, thus, part of man, Marx’s naturalism has no need of metaphysical foundation. Moreover, since man knows only socially mediated nature, ‘man’, and not natural reality, ‘is the immediate object of natural science’. To use Marx’s terminology, the natural science of man is logically prior to all other knowledge.[59] What Feuerbach said about his anthropological materialism applies even more fittingly to Marx’s naturalism. ‘The new philosophy’, wrote Feuerbach, ‘makes man, including nature as the basis of man, the sole, universal and highest object of philosophy, makes, therefore, of anthropology, including physiology, the universal science.’ [60]

Deontological; Combination of Argumentation Ethics (a branch-off of Habermas's discourse ethics), Divine Command Theory (namely Theonomic Law), and Pro-Natalism.


Direct Perception (anti-realist empiricism).

Practical Rationalism (truth cannot be established apart from propositional reasoning and the laws of logic).

Together, the above would represent what I would call "General Revelation."

Plus I hold to Special Revelation: The Holy Scriptures as the Inspired and Infallible Word of God.


Trinitarian Theism, Phenomenal Idealism, Immaterialism, Occasionalism, Nominalism.



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