Topics: Ethics, Philosophy, Immanuel Kant Pages: 6 (1358 words) Published: October 14, 2013
Lecture One
1What does philosophy mean?

-Everyone has a philosophy
-We have ideas concerning things, people, the meaning of life, death, God, what is good and bad.
-We may have certain attitudes to life, certain ways of looking at things.
-For example:
-I am an optimist. I can always see a positive side to most unhappy situations.
-I don’t believe in worrying too much. I think about today. Tomorrow can take care of itself.
-Although an individual claim this to be his philosophy and rightly so.
But this is not philosophy as a discipline. It is too broad, vague, superficial, impersonal and unclear. It does not adequately describe the work of a philosopher.
-We need to define philosophy more specifically.

2The word “philosophy”.

-The Word “Philosophy”.
-Philia (love) + Sophia (wisdom) = the love of wisdom.

3Definitions of philosophy

a.The study of the nature and meaning of the universe and of human life Online Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary.
b.Philosophy is a rational attempt to look at the world as a whole.

4What does philosophy seek to do?

-Philosophy seeks to examine fundamental questions about the universe and about ourselves with the hope of coming up with consistent principles by which we can understand and live.

5Human beings have always sought answers to certain fundamental questions

- What are these fundamental questions?
-What makes an action write or wrong?
-What is my purpose in the world?
-What is truth?
-What makes a good life?
-Is God important in our lives?
-Where does knowledge come from and how do we know that our knowledge is true.
-What is the relationship between mind and body?

6Why do we need philosophy?
Why do we need philosophy when we have science and technology?

-We have advanced so much in science and technology
-We live in cities, we have conquered the air and have ventured into space?
-Communication is so developed that distance no longer matters
-We have immense power over nature
-We are able to produce more goods and services than ever before
-So, why do we still need philosophy?

7Yet all these advances cause us to be disturbed and anxious

-There is a danger that the very technology we have developed could destroy us.
-For example nuclear technology.
-We seem to be unable to deal with the problems of war, famine, terror, distribution of wealth, pollution, the threatened extinction of wildlife, exploitation and oppression of the weak .
-Knowledge and values appear to be divorced.
-This is where philosophy comes in. It helps us to examine our lives as individuals and groups.
-Philosophy may not be able to provide solutions to all the world’s problems. But it helps to examine issues clearly, consider options and help us to make informed decisions.
-With poor, incomplete and shallow reasoning we cannot build an enlightened society
-If we are unable to distinguish between valid and invalid reasoning, then we become victims of persuasive orators, cult leaders and unscrupulous political leaders.
-Philosophy helps us to see more deeply and clearly into an issue. It helps us to question traditional and outdate beliefs so that we can make informed choices
-Knowledge of ethical systems help us to live ethical lives at the personal and communitarian level.
-Knowledge of what constitutes beauty helps us to appreciate and respect differences in individual and cultural concepts of beauty and art.
-Being able to think critically will help us to be aware of any irrational and oppressive beliefs in religion.

8The traditional divisions of philosophy.

d.Value Theory


-The systematic study of rules to distinguish or recognize good arguments from bad.
-In an argument, groups will give opposing views.
-How do...
Continue Reading

Please join StudyMode to read the full document

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Introduction to Philosophy Essay
  • Essay about Philosophy
  • Elements of Philosophy Essay
  • Branches of Philosophy Essay
  • Introduction to Philosophy Essay
  • Education and the Role of Philosophy Essay
  • The Categories of Aristotle Essay
  • Philosophy Essay

Become a StudyMode Member

Sign Up - It's Free