Philosophy “Love of Wisdom”
Why? • Ask “Why?” once and you are a scientist. • Ask “Why?” a second time and you are a philosopher. • Ask “Why?” a third time and you are probably three years old and annoying your mother.
Philosophy • Metaphysics • The nature of reality • Epistemology • The nature of knowledge • Axiology • The nature of value judgments • Ethics • Aesthetics
Philosophers as Physicists • The Monists • Concerned with composition of matter. • Thales – all matter is made from water. • Anaximander – all matter is made from “the boundless.” • Anaximenes – all matter is made from air.
Heraclitus All things change in a “orderly way.” “One cannot step into the same river twice.” Strong influence on Socrates. Pythagoras The universe could be reduced to numbers. Order in the Universe
Empedocles Everything made from earth, air, fire, and water. Leucippus/Democritus Small, invisible particles that moved in a void. Atomic Theory Creation of Matter
From Physics to Ethics The Sophists • First Humanists • “Man is the measure of all things.” – Protagoras. • Taught wisdom for a price.
How do we know what we know? • Sophists • We can’t know anything • Socrates • Question until you find one truth then work backwards • Plato • Reminiscence theory of knowledge • Aristotle • Empirical approach • Observation leads to universal laws
Socrates • “Know thyself.” • “The unexamined life is not worth living.” • “I am the wisest man alive, for I know one thing, and that is that I know nothing.”
Socrates • To know good is to do good. • Most important to know what you don’t know. • Dialectical method–questioning until you question what you believed.
Plato • “Wisdom begins in wonder.” • “We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light.”
Plato • Theory of the Forms • Ideal for every object • Aspatial & atempural • What is the nature of a just society? • The Republic – Utopian society based on education and ability. • Men and women are equal. • What is the Form of a right triangle? • Any three sided polygon which satisfies the statement a2 + b2 = c2
Aristotle • “For the things we have to learn before we can do them, we learn by doing them.” • “It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.” • “Women are failed men.”
Aristotle • Empirical Method – inquiry based on experience • Knowledge is deductive – inside the mind. • Syllogism – 1 conclusion from 2 premises • All men are mortal • Mr. Kelly is a man • Mr. Kelly is mortal and has great hair