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Nicholas Lukowiak

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How do YOU define philosophy?

What do you consider the [broad] topic and subject of philosophy to be?

Rules? Procedures? Methods? - What are they?

Make your own definition or use another person's you feel is an amazing explanation of philosophy. Got a favorite school of philosophy that seems to work best in most circumstances? Talk about it!

Post a; quote, poem, link to article, blog or anything you can think of!

Be; artistic, creative, innovative and/or practical

The most important question is: "How do YOU define philosophy?"

Topics: philosophy
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    Dec 7 2012: Read Socrates, Plato, Aristotle and them move ahead from there...

    My anecdotal definitionÉ : It is moral thinking and idealistic wisdom sitting on fat bums with no desire of action.
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    Dec 4 2012: Philosophy was invented so that everybody could be right...... or wrong??
    cheers
    • Dec 4 2012: I like philosophy that allows me to be right AND wrong at the same time :)
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      Dec 4 2012: Vincenzo and Natasha,
      I agree with both of you:>)

      Actually.....truth be known...and I know this is "right".....
      I think anything Nicholas writes has a very broad base of philosophy, intertwined with logic and rationalization, excluding all rules, because there is no point in rules, which are simply meant to be broken regardless of any rule to the contrary, with or without practical application.
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        Dec 4 2012: That's a really nice compliment Colleen, thank you.
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          Dec 5 2012: You are welcome.....I knew you would understand:>)
      • Dec 5 2012: Hi, Colleen !
        Is there any truth different from opinion ? :)
        ".truth be known "
        Maybe.. yes and of course, but it can't be told, you name it and it's gone .That's why i feel comfortable in between, ' right' and 'wrong' , i believe truth is somewhere there :)
      • Dec 5 2012: :)
        Socrates : What Plato is about to say is false.

        Plato : Socrates has spoken truly.

        Here we have the lier paradox in reverse, but it tells about the same : the limitation of logic :)
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          Dec 5 2012: Dear Natasha,
          You get more and more philosophical every day:>)
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    Dec 3 2012: The love of wisdom and knowledge that is expressed by the continous search for it.
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    Dec 10 2012: Philosophy is art of asking question..
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    Dec 10 2012: I was planning on waiting for more responses, but not many more are coming in...

    I would define philosophy in two parts: 1. the individual and 2. the subject.

    1. Philosophy is the process of evaluating Isms (belief systems and religions alike) and finding parallels in order to create both a personal philosophic lens in reality, and an argument for what is consistent in reality.

    2. Philosophy is defining terms and defending them.

    What 'works' is great for knowledge (pragmatism) as well as recognizing that we have no choice but to be subjective (existentialism). In respect to what works and that I am subjective... Any topic in philosophy (logic, epistemology, etc.) are dual entities... A personal and a subject. The personal is your thoughts, and the subject is what is consensual among those who are in the said subject's debate.

    ______
    Often I see people take the subject of logic and want to integrate those rules into their personal logic.. this makes for what I call the atomistic delusion... what you immediately hear/read is what is going to argued/disputed; the things said, are the only thing which are to be disputed. Well people do not work like that, when we say something there are personal philosophies behind what we say (what ever they may be) and if someone is being atomistic about what we say at face value, they are not allowing us to argue with our entire philosophic lens. The cure for such atomistic delusion is holistic inquiry; ask questions about what the other means until you can get to an atomistic point to argue, do not just argue the first or first few claim(s) they make because there exist a world of philosophy behind it...
    _____________

    I am interested in how others have defined philosophy in how they pursue thought and not how they think everyone does pursue thought... Anyone figure out why?
  • Dec 9 2012: A degree to get if you don't want a job.
  • Dec 7 2012: is the totality of expreince one undergo moraly,socialy& emotionaly
  • Dec 7 2012: Philosophy is playing at talking.

    Ambrose Bierce defines it as a noun.
    He says it is a route of many roads leading from nowhere to nothing.
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    Dec 5 2012: philosophy is a explaination of every situation. it teachs you how to live in this cruel world.
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    Dec 5 2012: Bread, not philosphy
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    Dec 4 2012: Philosophy is the way to make sense of LIFE.
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    Dec 4 2012: Philosophy: The search for understanding of values and reality using chiefly speculative rather than observational means.
  • Dec 4 2012: For me philosophy is a kind of a bridge between rational and irrational/intuitive.
  • Dec 4 2012: Philosophy is the ability to draw the line in the sand and justify beliefs using simple or complex methods. Philosophy utilizes pseudo- scientific methodology and in many ways when philosophy transcends to science it is the highest tribute towards the creator.
  • Dec 4 2012: Human beings are still discovering. There is much mystery. A definition of philosophy which seems to me to be right is: A process for reconciling material facts with spirit realities.

    Since we humans do not know everything about either, we are forced into conjecture, rationalization, speculation, and whatever. Bundle it all in thinking persons' experiences as seeking truth.

    Humankind has always asked questions and never has man been fully satisfied at knowing all. What seems right and good in your thoughts is partially due to thinking about sources. Material realities end in a philosophy of a first source or cause. Spirit action in mind asks about the WHY and the VALUE of what is and what is to be.

    We can't find all answers, so we need men and women who are willing to think and choose according to what one sees as valuable and worth keeping!

    Philosophy is part of the process of discovery! We can be grateful for this privilege of philosophizing!
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    Dec 4 2012: My definition of philosophy is a process of trying to understand the world and the universe by doubting established belief systems (having doubts sounds negative, but it can actually be extremely powerful).

    By doubting, it enables a broadening of my own perspective on life, which then leads to focusing in on those things that go on to reveal themselves to be the most important. This is difficult, because by jettisoning established wisdoms and beliefs, some of the answers I arrive at can get a bit crazy and seemingly lacking in conventional rationality - yet rightly or wrongly it is something I have a very strong urge to stick with.

    I would like to think that my own philosophical thought processes come from the part of the brain that is spontaneous and creative - rather than the part that gets strait-jacketed into following linear thought processes that are so often lacking in essential context.
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    Dec 4 2012: Philosophy to me is the luxury of spare time, in which I reflect, project, construct and test how and why 'the world' resonates within me and to tune my strings for inner harmony.
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    Dec 3 2012: All branches of thought - religion, philosophy, science, even mathematics - proceed from first principles that are unprovable.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_principle

    Philosophy is a system of thought which attempts to define truth based on logic, without relying on any of the other aforementioned systems.
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    Dec 3 2012: The word "philosophy" comes from the Greek which literally means "love of wisdom". It could refer to the beliefs held by a person. When we say that is his philosophy I interpert that as meaning that he can make a rational argument in support of the subject. In philosophy we do not have to prove only argue support.
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    Dec 3 2012: my attempt is:

    philosophy is the kind of rational thinking that is not based on observations.

    in this sense, natural sciences are not philosophy, because they deal with observations. religion is not philosophy, as it is not rational. a weird consequence of this definition is that according to it mathematics is a branch of philosophy. but i'm okay with that. i don't know any meaningful ways to separate mathematics from the rest of philosophy.
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      Dec 4 2012: You are correct to call math irrational. The rules of math demand that one factorial (1 x 0) is one, and that repeatedly dividing a whole number by 2 will eventually lead to a quotient of zero. These "agreed upon assumptions" are not rational in that they are self-contradictory, but the whole system collapses without them. A syllogism: Science cannot exist without math; math is philosophy; science is philosophy.
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        Dec 4 2012: eeer. we have a problem here. i said math is rational.
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          Dec 4 2012: Search as I might I see no such expression in your post. The two examples of self-conflicting math "rules" show it to be inconsistent with reason, aka irrational.
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        Dec 4 2012: formal logic?

        A: philosophy is the kind of rational thinking
        B: mathematics is a branch of philosophy
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          Dec 4 2012: A: Rational is like pregnancy, there is no "kind of pregnant" or "kind of rational".
          B. By convention math is one of the sciences, not philosophy.
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        Dec 4 2012: it is not kind of. it is a kind of.
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          Dec 4 2012: OK. But there is not "a kind" of rational, there is only rational and irrational. It's a litmus sort of deal. Philosophy is irrational but may have costituent features which are rational.
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        Dec 4 2012: okay. last attempt. the field of rational thinking can be split into two subfields: those that deal with the observable reality, and those that are independent of it. the former is called natural sciences, and the latter is called philosophy. no more on that, because i'm totally bored out.
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          Dec 4 2012: Sorry I bored you before I was able to correct you. YAWN!
      • Evan S

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        Dec 5 2012: One factorial (1!) is not the same as (1 X 0). Factorials are the product of all positive integers less than or equal to the number. Since there are no positive integers equal or less than one, 1! becomes an empty product, which is 1.

        As for the dividing by two enough to get zero, I don't know where that came from. I can only guess it is in reference to calculators/computers rounding after a certain point.
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          Dec 5 2012: That's why ancient Rome passed on the zero concept. If zero is not a number then get rid of it. Wait, what? Zero is the starting point of all of math, we can't get rid of it. The science nerds have agreed that anything less than 10 to the minus fiftieth is considered zero. That is calling a non-zero a zero and is self-contradicting and illogical. Math is philosophy. Thanks Mr. Steiner.
      • Evan S

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        Dec 5 2012: I wasn’t able to find any decrees by the science nerds but I do see the need to cut off a number after so many decimals. This would make some numbers effectively zero, not actually zero.

        But I remember the recent conversation about zero not being particularly productive and will avoid going down that path again in this thread.

        Best to you.
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    Dec 3 2012: Philosophy is the cure for belief systems. It is love of wisdom, it is the aknowledgement that knowledge is hard work.
    It's also the art of defining, which is to exteriorise one's understanding of something in a way that manifests an honnest atempt to share this understanding (contrary to hiding behind terms to feign knowledgability).
  • Dec 3 2012: How to define philosophy? That is both the easiest and hardest question that I've fallen across. Simplest way to describe it is the fact that it is an art and a science. It's mostly because of the fact that much like art, philosophy can be diverse in what it covers and how it covers those topics. Science is diverse in what it studies, but there's always a defined method of study and experimentation while art shifts from person to person. However, science, like philosophy, seeks to make sense out of the world while art reflects the world - regardless of how abstract it is. Science explains the world, art explains internal logic of each piece but not the world or abstract concept it seeks to convey.

    Philosophy does all of this.