18

Not being religious, I'll focus on the argument that religion is inherently inimical to science and an obstruction to technological development. I would say science and religion are not necessarily opposed to one another, but are and must remain simply incommensurable. Historically, your case is doubtful. Religion was not an obvious impediment to the rise ...


12

In short, no. At least not under any falsifiable definition of an organism. When biologists refer to a superorganism or an extended phenotype, they aren't referring to a form of life, but the capacity of a species to propagate themselves. Human systems fail the sniff test for life as well. Societies and organizations cannot replicate themselves by way of ...


12

I would think the modern version of the argument is the Aristotelian version of the argument. Looking at your question, your first point seems to narrow the definition of soul in a way that is not necessary. There's no requirement in the definition of soul that it be untied to body/brain in its operation. What matters is that it would be distinct. That ...


12

Moral Realism isn't a clear term. The way the survey is set up, some constructivists could label themselves under it. (I've also heard of terminology that puts Moral Relativism under Moral Realism, so then things get really strange.) But it'd probably still be popular without that. So why's that? I'd argue it's because the literature on it is vast and, also, ...


7

Levi-Strauss is an obvious reference even if it is not exactly clear what we speaking about. La pensee sauvage proposed "bricolage" as a practical form of mythology in contemporary societies. Within the general framework of economy, re-using things, that have already been used and thus carry signification, is according, to him, a form of mythology. So a ...


6

Some selected quotes It is an infantile superstition of the human spirit that virginity would be thought a virtue and not the barrier that separates ignorance from knowledge. — Voltaire Prudishness is pretence of innocence without innocence. Women have to remain prudish as long as men are sentimental, dense, and evil enough to demand of them ...


6

Has anybody written anything on science as a social process? Yes, the pragmatists: The most characteristic features [of the pragmatic theory of truth] are (1) a reliance on the pragmatic maxim as a means of clarifying the meanings of difficult concepts, truth in particular, and (2) an emphasis on the fact that the product variously branded as belief, ...


6

The problem with elementary gender studies courses is the tendency for their instructors to focus on political matters with little consideration given to the philosophy. As Mozibur Ullah stated, to appreciate the philosophical ideas of gender studies it is important to understand how feminism is more than simply a campaign for equal rights, and how gender is ...


6

Quinean underdetermination is such a generic form of skepticism that I'd suggest it's epistemologically better to focus on the specific arguments made by climate skeptics. For some philosophical discussions of climate skepticism — certainly written in the wake of Quine's work, though not necessarily directly responding to it — I would recommend these three ...


5

I think you have to be careful with metaphors. Very careful. Some writers get carried away with their ideas and comparisons and end up committing the error of treating metaphors as if they had formal import per se. This question is, of course, metaphysical at bottom. For example, one metaphysical position may render the distinction between things is ...


5

I believe there are many, a few quite well known. I'll just run through several, without attempting to define mythology, a la Barthes, or differentiate it from comprehensive ideology. One of the earlier and most fascinating is "The Oldest System Program of German Idealism," retrieved from dusty archives. It is believed to have been written by Schelling, ...


5

You bring up an important issue for philosophy of science. A rough picture of how science functions something like this. A theory is formed that makes hypotheses or predictions about the world. Evidence is gathered that could corroborate or refute the hypotheses, and from that the theory is either supported or shown to be false. One problem, however, is that ...


5

Moral realism I take to be broadly the view that moral judgements can be true or false, that some are true and are known to be true. There has been an upsurge of interest in and sympathy with moral realism among philosophers since roughly the mid-1970s. I account for this on three grounds : ▻ the decline of empiricism ▻ the phenomenology of the moral life ▻...


4

tl;dr Science is the process of finding things out. The sociology of science is linked, but isn't intrinsic to science; it's what we need to do as biased social animals to make sure we don't mess up the process. Full version Science a process that can be conducted in a social or individual context that increases the likelihood that the practitioner(s) ...


4

One of such could be British cult of Queen, on the other hand it could be considered part of British brand along with Union Jack, red buses and postal poles. I think every nation's 'heroes' will be portrayed in too much light and all the traitors and tyrants vilified, which makes it so much harder to draw the line where 'history' ends and 'civic religion' ...


4

Even if we accept your basic assumption --that responsible fatherhood in human beings dates back only as far as the dawn of human societies --that doesn't imply it can't be part of an evolutionary process. Suppose that human societies have been around 10,000 years, and that being a good father provides a strong advantage to your children. That's plenty of ...


4

The idea that it exists to strengthen the patriarchy is silly; the concept of fatherhood directly benefits the female vastly more than the male. According to evolution, it likely came about as a consequence of human's extended childhood. Because of the immense amount of resources that a human child requires, and the fact that a human woman is very limited ...


4

To discuss terrorism from a philosophical point of view, one first must realize that terrorism has a pretty precise definition: Achieving a political objective by terrorizing a civilian population. The group committing terrorist acts sees that it doesn't have the power to achieve it's political aims directly (via negotiation, or via conventional force - i.e. ...


4

Per Quine's results from "Two Dogmas of Empiricism", the Duhem-Quine thesis, and later results such as those of Kuhn and Feyerabend, all empirical observations are theory laden. You missed Popper who pointed this out in 1934 in "Logic of Scientific Discovery". I think the relevant chapter is Chapter V. And Popper is better on this issue than Quine, ...


4

The traditional role of a taboo is prohibition of an action, not of discussion, but the two are often mixed when the term is used loosely, see e.g. Gao's study of English "taboo" words. Taboos against homicide or incest had obvious biological/social benefits. Volume 3 of a classical comparative study of mythology and religion, Frazer's Golden Bough,...


4

Impressionistically I think the public, if it turns to philosophy, turns to ethics. Why might this be so ? I can think of three reasons. The first is that we are beset with ethical problems, moral dilemmas, hard normative questions; and philosophy is well-equipped through its long history of ethical theorising with the conceptual tools for analysing such ...


4

Remembering the emotions Descartes never says that we are merely cognitive beings. Thinking may be our essence - may define our essential nature - but we are also creatures of emotion or 'passion' as the term is usually rendered in translation. In the Passions of the Soul he identifies six primitive passions : The first primitive passion is [1] wonder,...


4

The social sciences generally explain this phenomenon as the Fundamental Attribution Error (FAE). The FAE is a well-documented observation about the way people make causal attributions about other people's actions. If we identify with the person we are evaluating, we tend to explain their behavior in terms of circumstances, contexts, and situational factors; ...


3

In his robot series, Asimov tells a story of a system where the world economy was planned by a computer system which had intricate knowledge of supply & demand. Some discrepancies start turning up—overproduction and underproduction occurs against the design of the system, such that certain people are driven out of business. It turned out that these ...


3

There is no philosophical reasoning to approve one and not the other - and I question whether or not such schizophrenic philosophers even exist. Furthermore, both the freedom of speech and the "freedom of deeds" - even in the most liberal circles - have been generally governed by the harm principle in their seminal states. Ergo, free speech does not mean ...


3

David Sloan Wilson addresses your question in his 2002 book, Darwin's Cathedral. He is the developer of multilevel selection theory, where in addition to natural selection at the gene level, and the individual level, he makes the argument that there is also selection at the group level. He addresses the issue of whether human groups can be scientifically ...


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