22 votes

Is it a fallacy to say that a sane person cannot apply rational thought to the motivations of the insane?

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 ...
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17 votes

Is it a fallacy to say that a sane person cannot apply rational thought to the motivations of the insane?

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 ...
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10 votes
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What is the meaning of "meaning of life" and why do people seek it?

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 ...
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  • 24.3k
10 votes

Is it a fallacy to say that a sane person cannot apply rational thought to the motivations of the insane?

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 ...
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  • 231
6 votes

Is it a fallacy to say that a sane person cannot apply rational thought to the motivations of the insane?

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 ...
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6 votes

What ethical studies have been performed on what would happen if a government raises kids without parents?

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 ...
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  • 343
6 votes
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Possible reason for the exponential development of Mathematics

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 ...
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5 votes

What is the meaning of "meaning of life" and why do people seek it?

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 ...
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  • 15.7k
5 votes
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Is the belief "I have Impostor Syndrome" paradoxical?

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 ...
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  • 5,262
5 votes

Should scientific realists reject knowledge obtained by psychology?

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 ...
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  • 116
5 votes
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Should I be content with short-term happiness and avoid thinking about long-term concerns?

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 ...
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  • 4,130
5 votes
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What ethical studies have been performed on what would happen if a government raises kids without parents?

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 ...
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  • 34.6k
5 votes

What ethical studies have been performed on what would happen if a government raises kids without parents?

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 ...
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  • 339
4 votes

Should philosophers care about the existence of emotions?

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 ...
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  • 81
4 votes

Has anyone tried to empirically demonstrate the existence of subconscious thoughts and motivations?

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 ...
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  • 15.7k
4 votes
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What does Nietzsche mean by the intellectual costs that "For" and "Against" incur?

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 ...
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  • 1,100
4 votes

Movies on philosophy similar to "Waking Life"?

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 ...
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4 votes

How did philosophy react to empirical psychology when there have been disagreements?

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 ...
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  • 40.7k
4 votes

For a political ruler is it better to be loved or feared?

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,...
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4 votes

How might studying philosophy impact your mental health?

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 ...
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  • 34.6k
4 votes
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What did William James mean by metaphysics being "an unusually obstinate effort to think clearly"?

The quote appears at the beginning of Chapter VI of James's Principles of Psychology, and is preceded by a sentence that gives important context: "The reader who found himself swamped with too ...
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  • 40.7k
4 votes

Locke's psychology : reference request

I'm not sure that there is anything that's exactly what you need but you might consult: Locke's Ideas of Mind and Body (Routledge Studies in Seventeenth-Century Philosophy) Han-Kyul Kim ISBN 10: ...
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  • 34.6k
3 votes

Should philosophers care about the existence of emotions?

Yes, they should care about emotions. Emotions give us purpose. Emotions, feelings and desires are at the core of what used to be called morality. Morality disappears after analysis; emotion will not. ...
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