Defining Philosophy

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Week 1
Individual Assignment
Defining Philosophy Paper
Mafuta Christina Ta'ala-Sauni
PHL 215:Philosophy-Methods and Applications
University of Phoenix-Directive Study
Anna Simonds
March 20, 2006

Defining Philosophy
Philosophy derives from the two Greek words philein, which means ‘to love,' and sophia, which means ‘knowledge' or ‘wisdom' (Moore & Bruder, 2002, p. 2). This is not the only definition of philosophy as philosophy is a very vast subject. "A critical examination of reality characterized by rational inquiry that aims at the Truth for the sake of attaining wisdom" (Russo & Fair, 2000, 4). My interpretation of philosophy is a field of study where one thinks "outside of the box" in the search for knowledge or wisdom that does not involve scientific explanations.

There is no consistency in the nature of philosophical questions. The nature of many philosophical questions concern norms. The application of norms, also known as standards occurs when people decide whether something is good or bad, right or wrong, beautiful or ugly. Normative questions ask about the value of something. The field of science explains how things are but does not tell us how things ought to be. Sometimes philosophical questions arise when different people believe different things. For example, some people believe that a cause-and-effect relationship exists in everything. If a person drinks spoiled milk, he or she will get sick. There are others that believe when one voluntarily decides to do something- nothing made them decide to do that. This refutes the cause-and-effect relationship belief. Then there are many other ways to look at the situation. Is every happening caused? Or are some happenings uncaused? Or is it perhaps that decisions are not "happenings"? These questions cause a dilemma that involves philosophizing. The importance of some philosophical questions-Is there a God who is attentive, caring, and...
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