Woah, how about Voltaire? Rembrandt’s Philosopher in Meditation, a classical view of philosophy isolated from the world. Though usually not household names, contemporary philosophers have radically altered the way we think about all sorts of things --- from the nature of God to the role of race in democracy. Many names from nature are popular names today, like Lily, Ash, Glen, and Robin for example. August 26, 2017 Human Nature-Philosophical John Messerly. But as all these things are in limited supply, humans are at war with each other in an effort to obtain them. [This is quite dubious.] The debate of whether to trust our reason or to trust our senses is one that people deal with frequently. Some thought it was water, others air, but they were all left with the problem of how changes occurred. [This is similar to the doctrine of no self in Buddhism.] But, while it changes and moves on, there is no guarantee that philosopher's answers are correct, and the same host of questions must continually be asked. It asks only why the Lego is "the most ingenious toy in the world." Thanks for chiming in Mr. Austin. Thus “I think therefore I am.] While one can doubt the existence of the body and the external world—perhaps you are dreaming the world or some evil demon is making you think there is one—you cannot doubt your own consciousness. We are simply a bundle of perceptions, a continual flow of perceptions without any underlying substance. He was not a philosopher who came up with some dogmatic system, instead writing about and fighting battles to translate into real life philosophical values like justice, fair trial, tolerance, free speech. Empedocles' conclusion that there are four basic substances is an attempt to rectify the situation, allowing us to believe what we see but also to trust in our reason. Use up and down arrows to review and enter to select. Liked it? It also points out that it is very important when assessing each philosopher to understand what his project was—what questions he was attempting to answer. To avoid this state of war humans accept a coercive political authority to adjudicate their disputes—they trade some of their freedom for the security of the state. The Enlightenment: Can Science Be Our Guide To Life? This name generator will give you 10 random names related to nature. With Parmenides comes rationalist thought, the concept that what we perceive through our senses may be flawed, but we can trust in our reason. She leaves it in the mailbox and then goes upstairs to go to bed. – As science became accepted as the only cognitive authority in the world [religion and science basically has switched places since the middle ages] the question of apply these insights to human nature arose. Our ideas are derived from impressions, either sense impressions or introspective reflection of one’s own mind. [The evidence is in … the answer is YES.] [Even if you are deceived about the existence of your consciousness, you must be to be deceived. [Today Europe is almost completely secular, while America is much more overtly religious.]. Heraclitus, on the other hand, believes that we can only know what we perceive, and since our senses tell us that things are in a constant state of change, they therefore must be changing. All these strains of thought will lead to Immanuel Kant, the crowing figure of the Enlightenment. It appears that what the philosophers were doing was attempting to explain the way the world must be based upon what we can perceive of it, and this is extremely important. But Empedocles resolved this problem by suggesting that there were four basic substances and that all changes are the result of intermingling of the four. The next great cultural movement was the Reformation, begun when Martin Luther posted his ninety-five thesis of the door of his German church. He also advocated the dual-aspect theory of mind or human nature. Sophie finds that everything she learns seems to make sense to her, and, moreover, to be extremely applicable to life. [This begins to reconcile the material and immaterial.] After reading the last packet, Sophie finds another white envelope in the mailbox. – The 17thcentury scientific revolution changed the world. But when events in the world are no longer described in terms of the actions of gods' but rather given some sort of naturalistic explanation, then it makes sense that the events in people's lives would also cease to be attributed to supernatural causes. Although we could live without thinking about these sorts of questions, the very questions themselves and the answers that we pose to them determine precisely what the very act of living means. Your email address will not be published. Anaxagoras, from Athens, believed nature was made up of infinitesimal particles but that each one contained part of everything. In response some sects like the Quakers placed more emphasis on religious experience. Could reason and science explain human beings and improve the human condition? Luther had many disagreements with the Church, especially with their selling of indulgences which allowed people to believe they could buy their way into heaven. Sophie is amazed by the fact that Democritus managed to use the philosophers before him to come up with a new theory. The Natural Philosophers, Democritus, and Fate, The Garden of Eden, The Top Hat, and The Myths. The next day is Saturday, and when Sophie wakes up, she finds a scarf with the name Hilde on it. Huss was burned at the stake, while Wycliffe was declared a heretic whose remains exhumed and burned. Change was the major problem, and Parmenides' solution—that nothing actually changes—is something that everyone feels sometimes. The debates over the substance that the Greek philosophers believed made up the world are very instructive for Sophie. David Hume (1711 -1776) – Hume was an empiricist, one who believes that knowledge derives from sense experience. She writes a letter to whomever it is who is teaching her philosophy, inviting that person to coffee. [This is a bit more materialistic than dualistic.]. Philosophy is not an activity that takes place outside of everyday life; Gaarder says that nothing could be more relevant to the way we live than philosophy. To believe that there is a natural explanation for change in the world but not in human life would not be very consistent, and so after taking the first steps away from a mythological worldview, it may be inevitable that fatalistic explanations of people's lives will be questioned. All of this led to centuries of violent conflict and genocide between various religious groups.