22

The second premise is false unless "heinous crime" and "insane" are defined to make it true by definition, in which case the definitions are question begging. But because people committing heinous crimes are convicted despite the insanity defense, premise 2 fails at least on the legal definition of "insanity". The third premise is also false; otherwise ...


17

I think the fallacy is something along the lines of: Because we cannot provably apply rational thought to what motivates every insane person, every time, we can never apply rational thought to the insane in any situation. It also presumes that an explanation one's actions has to be necessary and sufficient, rather than merely a way to convey information. ...


10

I actually would not say that One of the oldest questions is "What is the meaning of life?" It is true that people have been asking for a long time how they fit in and what they should do, but it is only recently that people have understood the question in personal and existential terms. More classical questions are: "what does it mean to be a good ...


10

There are multiple problems with these statements. First, insane is not a boolean state. Sanity is a spectrum. Second, I don't know of anything that says that everyone who commits a heinous crime is insane (even by this very liberal application of the term). There are many heinous crimes committed where the criminals are not insane. Gang murders, rapes, ...


7

I'm not sure this is really a philosophical question, it's more a matter of scientific process. However, the issue Feynman is talking about is controlling the variables in an experiment. If you do X and the rats do A, and I do Y and the rats do B, we don't know that X to Y is the cause of the change, because there are different rats, a different lab, a ...


6

Attaching a scientific-sounding name to something it doesn't apply to by a long shot, such as "quantum psychology" or "quantum leadership", waving around images of fractals with no apparent reason, and dragging into the picture the Schroedinger's cat by its tail - all these are typical signs of pseudo-scientific bullshit that, alas, engulfed American ...


6

I believe that would just be petitio principii, mistranslated as "begging the question." And doing it twice. First, you assume the insanity after the fact, based on the evidence of the act, which is defined as insane. Likewise for conflation of "insane" and "inexplicable." But I am not good at naming fallacies, so there may be a more precise attribution. I'...


6

This answer is almost entirely opinion, if it will be permitted. Whose morals, whose ethics, whose values do you believe should be passed down to children, taught to them? Should the government just decide what people should believe because it saves on propaganda? The discussed situation is not justifiable unless you allow any means to justify an end and, ...


6

Misanthropy could simply be an expression of frustration - or a perception of reality. Most people in our culture are taught to respect authority. We're taught that man was created in God's image, blah, blah, blah. When a person suddenly discovers that authority can be extraordinarily corrupt, that people have a dark side, humans have been trashing the very ...


6

It's an interesting question. Others will be better able to answer, but I would note that the proper evolutionary model here may be punctuated equilibrium or, more pertinently, Kuhn's "Structure of Scientific Revolutions," with its near-random paradigm shifts. A truly authoritative work, such as Aristotle's logic or Euclid's geometry will hold sway ...


5

This is more of a linguistics question than a philosophical question. The short answer is that a Desire may be a motivation, but a motivation is not necessarily a desire. In more concrete terms, A desire is one kind of motivation, but there are others, like a sense of duty, fear, etc. This should probably be put to the guys over at the English language ...


5

As a sociological phenomenon, people probably seek the meaning of life because we're social primates and as such it is important for us to occupy the socially-appropriate role in our tribe. Thus it isn't at all surprising for us to have feelings that there is something we "ought" to do be doing. This doesn't tell us anything about its coherence as an ...


5

This isn't a philosophy question per se, but I find it interesting because it can be addressed from a cognitive perspective that targets reasoning, which is on-topic. I don't see a paradox, strictly speaking, but I see three ways (and combinations thereof) in which the inconsistency that you mention can be dissolved: The belief that I have an Impostor ...


5

I am currently pursuing my PhD in clinical psychology, so perhaps I can shed some useful light here. Psychology is a huge, sprawling discipline that covers almost everything in some way or another. It is also a very young discipline in a rapidly developing world. This means that some of psychology is science through and through, and that some of psychology ...


5

You will need to strike a balance. If you can't enjoy today, or tomorrow, or they day after that, or the day after that, ... you can't enjoy anything. You should think about foreseeable long term consequences of your actions, so that your actions today don't negatively affect your happiness tomorrow. But there are many things that you can't foresee - it'...


5

It's hard to find spot-on literature. This is connected with what you are interested in : BEHAVIORIST THOUGHT EXPERIMENT Possibly if we had absolute control over food, sex, shelter, if we had some great reconditioning laboratory where the individual could be brought for a year for rigorous study and experimentation, we might be able to undo ...


5

Consider Plato's idea for how (Guardian) children ought to be raised in the kallipolis and all the objections Socrates' interlocutors find with it. Without a nuclear family, Plato thinks children develop familial attachments to their fellow citizens instead, binding individuals to each other and the state in new ways. The myth of the metals serves not only ...


4

The answer is simpler than you think. "Fashion" is the effect, not the cause. Combine two separate concepts: First, that pleasure resulting from a certain aesthetic fades over time. So yes to your first question, it is the aesthetic value that changes. You can only eat ice cream so long until you get tired of eating it, even though nothing changed about ...


4

First of all, philosophers do care about the color of the sky. Or perhaps it would be appropriate to say that they care about what it means that something is colored, how color concepts function, what it would take for something to be colored, whether there are examples of colored things, and so on. For instance, some people would argue that there are no ...


4

You aren't conscious of the state of retinal molecules in your eye (cis vs. trans), but your vision is completely dependent upon it. You are really overstating what one can infer from having subconscious motivations etc.; almost everything that happens in our heads is subconscious. Also, you don't need to do a study to notice that some people (adults as ...


4

The original German reads: "Du solltest Gewalt über dein Für und Wider bekommen". The capitalization in German is required, so in English it is an interpretation of the translator. 'das Für und Wider abwägen' is German idiom for weighing the pros and cons. Basically the text says: you should master your pros and cons; meaning, you should not stick to just ...


4

Waking Life is somewhat sui generis, but I would highly recommend "The Possibility of Hope," a documentary by Gravity director Alfonso Cuaron, included as a DVD extra with his incredible Children of Men. Depending on your opinion of Slavoj Zizek, you might also enjoy his "Pervert's Guide to Cinema." A movie that is less explicitly philosophical, but that ...


4

I am going to disagree with other posters, in my view in the last two centuries the interplay between philosophy and psychology was intricate, and with profound impact on both sides, of all sciences second perhaps only to physics. Let me give two examples. The rise of empirical psychology and psychophysiology in 19th century gave rise to the so-called "...


4

The question was made famous by Machiavelli's Prince, where he also provided the answer: "The answer is that one would like to be both one and the other; but because it is difficult to combine them, it is far better to be feared than loved if you cannot be both... So, on this question of being loved or feared, I conclude that since some men love as they ...


4

PATRICIA TURRISI, 'The Problem of the Philosophical Person', The Pluralist, Vol. 4, No. 1 (SPRING 2009), pp. 68-76, deals with the 'madness' of Socrates and William James. But it's an article, not a book, and too long to quote here. For Nietzsche : Jurgen Kleist, Zarathustra s Last Dance, SBN 10: 1448638682 / ISBN 13: 9781448638680 Published by ...


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