Spreading the Word: Philosophers on Authenticity

Continuing the theme of the last weeks, today I share a BBC podcast episode on authenticity. What does it mean to be oneself, is there a fixed self at all, and why should it matter whether we are authentic or not? Philosophers engage in discussing these and other questions, addressing some of the perennial themes …

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Spreading the Word: Fable of the Bees

How can a poem influence economy and what do bees have to do with it? The 18th-century Anglo-Dutch philosopher, physician and satirist Bernard Mandeville has an answer. Fable of the Bees is his book that contains the satiric poem "The Grumbling Hive; or, Knaves Turn'd Honest" (1705) in which Mandeville uses an allegory to show …

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Spreading the Word: What is Phenomenology?

Phenomenology represents a crucial turn in the Western philosophical thinking. Tracing its roots to the 18th-century Enlightenment thinker Immanuel Kant, phenomenology takes human experience of phenomena as its central object and method of study. Although a large and complex topic, I found the following short video to offer an informative introduction and overview of what …

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Why Interpretation Matters?

As storytelling creatures, we humans interpret words, texts, conversations, and the world all the time. We make sense by interpreting. We learn this early in life and get so good at it that soon enough we stop noticing that we are interpreting, not to mention what results from our meaning-making activity and why we have …

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Spreading the Word: Scientific Revolution

This week I am finishing up the topic of the history of the Scientific Revolution. After having offered my philosophical take on it in the last two articles, I share with you this fun short video from the same YouTube channel that brought you last week's Plato and Aristotle - the CrashCourse. I especially appreciate …

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Philosophical History of Scientific Revolution – Part 2 of 2

This is the second part of the 2-part article where I explore the history of the Scientific Revolution from a philosophical perspective. That is to say - what sort of intellectual currents characterise and shape the shift in the way people viewed and studied nature. You can read the first part of the story in …

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Spreading the Word: Philosophical Duo – Plato and Aristotle

On Monday, I published the first part of a 2-part article on the history of the Scientific Revolution. My take on its philosophical history, to be precise. In that post, I talk a lot about Aristotle and the centrality of his ideas to the formation of modern science. Today I thought I would give a …

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Philosophical History of Scientific Revolution – Part 1 of 2

What was the Scientific Revolution and why did it happen? This is a historical question and history is almost always an interpretation. The 'almost' stands here for the very small part of historical science that can be considered as close to an objective fact as we can get - things like dates and names. Of …

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Philosophical Notes: Is Kant an Enlightenment Thinker?

There are different views about this question. Some scholars see the 18th-century German philosopher Immanuel Kant as one of the central Enlightenment thinkers, while others claim that in him we can already see the shift away from the self-confident optimism about the power of human reason that marked the Enlightenment age. However, any answer to …

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Al-Ghazali and Artificial Intelligence

What can the 11th-century Islamic polymath, theologian and philosopher al-Ghazali tell us about artificial intelligence and the possibility of conscious machines, long before Alan Turing developed his imitation game, also known as the Turing test? It is impossible, moreover, to create knowledge in inanimate matter. For we understand by the inanimate that which apprehends. If …

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