All Questions

13
votes
9answers
7k views

Is absolute ethical veganism an irrational position?

I have a handful of friends who are strictly vegan, and I talked with each of them before about their views. At least 3 of them have said to me that under no circumstance would they eat an animal or ...
14
votes
8answers
35k views

What is the difference between philosophy and religion?

How do you make the distinction between philosophy and religion? Are there some philosophies/religions that are hard to categorize as being one or the other?
13
votes
4answers
940 views

If zombies are possible would that imply that physicalism is false?

The SEP article on Zombies writes: Zombies in philosophy are imaginary creatures used to illuminate problems about consciousness and its relation to the physical world. Unlike those in films or ...
7
votes
4answers
2k views

Why can't (or shouldn't) economists answer normative questions?

Normative questions are those which: affirm how things should or ought to be, how to value them, which things are good or bad, which actions are right or wrong. Normative is usually contrasted ...
3
votes
3answers
254 views

Are there token events?

The type/token distinction appears to be generally explained in terms of objects. A given Honda Accord is, e.g., a token of of the type "Honda Accord". However, the literature I have read seems to do ...
10
votes
4answers
3k views

What makes a good question?

Most philosophy begins with a question. I'm wondering why certain questions provoke more profound thoughts than others. What characteristics do good questions share with each other? How can we go ...
-3
votes
1answer
107 views

Philosophy and actuality [closed]

According to the understanding of Nietzsche's superman did Hitler live up to Nietzsche ideal of the superman? (IMPORTANT NOTE: I am by NO means a Fan of Hitler this is a question of scholarly interest)...
3
votes
7answers
571 views

Is work neccessary to be happy?

I've been following some online discussions about the current economic situation. There are a number of solutions proposed to the economic malaise across much of the developed world, but one idea ...
10
votes
4answers
17k views

What were the government ideals for the Socrates and Aristotle?

Winston Churchill famously quipped, "The best argument against democracy is a five minute conversation with the average voter." Plato also seems to have held such a view, where he wrote in The ...
4
votes
2answers
445 views

Self referential paradoxial statement with a twist

Self referential statements can be paradoxical as known since ancient times. (Some of this basic paradoxes had immense impact on my own field -mathematics.) Of course, paradoxical self-referential ...
2
votes
2answers
172 views

What, if any, common fallacy would relate to an appeal to the importance or gravity of a situation?

Is there any common fallacy that might fit the following 'syllogism'? X is important, or urgent Therefore, X Here's an example of a conversation where this could come up: It's conceivable that our ...
45
votes
8answers
49k views

What is the difference between metaphysics and ontology?

I know that ontology is a sub-field of metaphysics. But I can't see the difference between them. I mean ontology is defined as "The study of being and existence", and metaphysics is defined as "...
3
votes
2answers
242 views

Books/Pieces/Essays about self-worth? [closed]

I'm interested in reading some good books/pieces/essays about self-worth (ultimate meaning of life, learning, working, etc). It's hard to precisely define the topic, but anything you think is ...
13
votes
5answers
1k views

How should we characterize the relationship between mathematics and philosophy of mathematics?

How should we characterize the relationship between mathematics and philosophy of mathematics? Specifically, in what ways might the study of philosophy of mathematics make a mathematician better at ...
0
votes
2answers
609 views

Does time exist? [closed]

When we try to define time, we define it based on an event which happens periodically. For example, in a clock,we say that the time elapsed is 1 minute if the second hand completes 1 revolution. Here ...
0
votes
2answers
454 views

Why is left and right different from up and down? [closed]

If you put a banner in front of a mirror, it flips the left-right axis, but not the down-up axis. Why don't all directions have equal merit in the universe? How does this relate to the time dimension -...
10
votes
6answers
45k views

What is the relationship between philosophy and science?

While philosophy and science as held as separate disciplines (and often taught in completely different colleges within a university [i.e. College of Liberal Arts vs. College of Science]), it is ...
13
votes
4answers
29k views

Is there a correct or better order to read Aristotle, Plato, and Socrates?

I would like to read the text written by Aristotle, Plato, Socrates and so on. Is there any reference of the best order to read them? Is the chronological order the best or correct one? Or is there a ...
3
votes
1answer
163 views

Are there purely-mathematics-based explanations of existence?

I'm asking for the name of a philosophy and any authors, books, or articles that explore a particular philosophy. The philosophy is motivated in part by a question of, "in what is our universe/...
16
votes
7answers
1k views

How much philosophy should a physicist know?

I began to read Hawking's recent book 'A Grand Design' some time ago and noticed that he savages philosophy. He says '...philosophy is dead. Philosophy has not kept up with modern developments in ...
5
votes
2answers
473 views

Entailment/Presupposition in if-clause [closed]

In our semantics class we were arguing about the exercise 3.(7) from page 33 in Chierchia et al.: What relationship holds between the sentences in the following example?: a) "If John discovers that ...
-1
votes
2answers
153 views

Does complexity generate more complexity in nature? [closed]

I'm a computer programmer. There is one thing that I've noticed now for some time, and it has obsessed my mind. Does complexity generate more complexity naturally? To understand the example better, ...
-2
votes
2answers
816 views

Can robots which passed the Turing test deny the orders given by human? [closed]

(Sorry if this question is off topic, but I concluded that philosophy is most suitable site to ask this question - I think this question is little off topic on theoretical CS SE site. I think that ...
6
votes
3answers
197 views

Is it logically valid to say that an event will happen if all the conditions favouring that event are present?

Is it valid to say that if all the conditions for an event E to happen will happen if all the conditions favorable for it to happens namely n1,n2,n3.... are present & all the factors which may ...
11
votes
4answers
1k views

Is a theory that can only be disproved with an infeasable test still scientific?

If I understand Karl Popper's reasoning correctly, a theory is 'scientific' if there can be devised a test that tries to disprove it; i.e., it must be falsifiable. Now, imagine a theory that ...
-1
votes
1answer
173 views

Logical NOT of an Implication [closed]

How could you write NCpq in terms of moving the negation inside the conditional and keeping the conditional? The question got posed here originally by someone else. I can't post there at the moment, ...
22
votes
12answers
4k views

If the universe has a beginning does that prove God exists?

It is curious to note that a eminent Physicist like Stephen Hawking thinks the universe has a beginning. This has some rather startling Religious implications You can find the link here. http://www....
13
votes
4answers
2k views

What is mathematical existence?

When I make a claim in a proof that a mathematical entity exists, is this no more than saying that the theory I'm working within is consistent, and that all the steps upto that point in the proof are ...
6
votes
4answers
662 views

Does a reader have any responsibilities towards an author?

Are there any obligations a reader (of any form of text) has to fulfill towards the author? Which philosophers argue within this context? Example: Is there anyone arguing, a reader must / should (...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

Does quantum mechanics suggest that our scientific method is flawed?

Some quantum mechanics experiments seem to suggest that our current understanding of reality is flawed. Entanglement experiments show us that particles separated in space, can still somehow ...
15
votes
9answers
2k views

Is it ethically correct to be proud of one's country?

It is a very well known phenomena that people feel pride for the country where they were born and/or live, even though the effect seems to be declining slightly nowadays. Frequently, governments also ...
5
votes
5answers
839 views

Does the concept of existence entail the concept of death?

Does the concept of existence entail the concept of death? I am asking this because many philosophers have tried to prove the existence of god (Descartes through the Meditations) by saying that he ...
22
votes
15answers
9k views

Are there any non-divine objective standards of good/evil?

This question is a step backwards because I've run into trouble with definitions on my original question: What would be the logical consequences of human will/nature being corrupt? Is there any way ...
6
votes
4answers
379 views

What would be the logical consequences of human will/nature being corrupt?

I'm have a question that I don't think is on topic over on Christianity.SE even though it is the exchanges in chat there constantly raise the issue. This is a kind of thought experiment. "It is the ...
-1
votes
2answers
220 views

being free of desires [closed]

I'm not satisfied with the situation I'm in currently. I tend to watch senseless TV shows and do other senseless things such as gaming for hours (it's ok to me to game about an hour, but if it takes ...
4
votes
2answers
196 views

Is it ethical to sell a product if I developed it with the help of responses to questions I posed to online communities?

Is it ethical to commercialize a product that was developed with the aid of the responses obtained from questions I posed to online Q&A communities? For instance, if I asked a question to a ...
1
vote
2answers
455 views

Can we regard the “mass subjectivity” as “objectivity”? [closed]

Imagine that 6 billion people of earth out of 7 billion population (almost 85%) think that a song is beautiful. In other words, 85% of the whole population, subjectively consider a song as being ...
9
votes
8answers
2k views

In what sense if any could something without mass or energy exist?

I have long been interested in physics as (working toward) a description of absolute truth and, as a consequence, have had a number of discussions with people with religious and metaphysical beliefs ...
8
votes
3answers
334 views

What does 'consciousness' indicate in the context of the anthropic principle?

The anthropic principle postulates that our universe is selected for the presence of consciousness in it. I cite Wikipedia: the anthropic principle is the philosophical argument that observations ...
7
votes
4answers
452 views

Are there borderline cases of existence?

Metaphysical/ontological vagueness, classically understood, can be summed up as the problem of borderline cases of some thing x. Clouds are the standard examples of vague objects. If posit that our ...
7
votes
4answers
5k views

What, if any, are the differences between materialism and empiricism?

Are the differences, if they exist merely semantic ("First World War" vs "World War One") or are they more substantial; for example one's a historical trend and the other's a broader philosophical ...
4
votes
3answers
11k views

Which Philosophers are most often cited as Materialists?

Which Philosophers are most often cited as Materialists (aka physicalists)?
2
votes
5answers
617 views

Why is this set {CqCpq, CCpCqrCCpqCpr, CCNpNqCqp} the most common set of axioms for propositional calculus?

If you look, you can find many "equivalent", sufficient axiom sets for classical propositional calculus. The set {CqCpq, CCpCqrCCpqCpr, CCNpNqCqp} seems like the axiom set most commonly used. There ...
7
votes
3answers
943 views

Which philosophers provide theories of subjectivity?

Which philosophers write about subjectivity? What are some primary sources for philosophical theories of subjectivity?
1
vote
3answers
286 views

A special name for a proposition where the predicate is the subject?

Consider the following propositions: "I am me" "I am my Father's son" In both these cases, the predicate is the same as the subject by definition of the very subject and predicate. Is there a ...
8
votes
4answers
535 views

Where does 'continental' philosophy fit in the subcategories of modern philosophy?

If one considers a abstract systematization of what constitutes modern philosophy, it is very natural to come up with something like wikipedia's outline: metaphysics, epistemology, ethics, logic, ...
2
votes
2answers
361 views

Is this definition of morality from a known philosopher or philosophical school?

I've heard the following definition of morality: A particular action or choice is moral or right if it somehow promotes happiness, well being or health, or it somehow minimizes unnecessary harm or ...
6
votes
2answers
3k views

What views of government were based on Kantian ethics?

Historically, what kinds of government and politics have been influenced by the maxims of Kant's "categorical imperative"? Take for example, the maxim that one should only act in such a way that the ...
9
votes
0answers
2k views

Plato's Socrates contradicts himself…or does he? [closed]

In his Apology Plato's Socrates clearly indicates he would continue to philosophize even if the court ordered him not to--clearly he does not believe one must obey the laws of the state. In his Crito,...
9
votes
3answers
503 views

Does God have the power to make identical universes through different means?

The easiest way to explain this question is with a thought experiment: Consider God, the ultimate of everything, who is wholly omnipotent (all-powerful) and omniscient (all-knowing). Let's just say, ...

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