Humans are rational beings and operate according to reason and logic.
Or so we like to think of ourselves. Of course, our emotions, instincts, and past experiences also play a role.
But if one has slept sufficiently, the amygdala and the prefrontal cortex are well balanced out, i.e. we are not completely devoted to our random emotions, but our reason helps us to calm these and to look at things more rationally.
The amygdala is the part of the brain that is the center of emotions, while the prefrontal cortex is where we reason and rationally comprehend stuff.
Would you murder the dictator if you could prevent the death of millions of people?
Utilitarianism would answer yes. Or better, scream: YES, DEFINITELY!!!
Utilitarianism is an ethical theory that says the consequences of an act determine the ethical value of the act. In other words, the action is morally valuable when the outcome of an act justifies the act itself.
A classical example of it would be the situation where an individual decides to murder a dictator who was going to murder millions of people. …
Throughout antiquity, philosophers referred to earth with the word cosmos.
The earth was not only the surrounding, the place where people lived, but cosmos simultaneously meant order, decoration, and a good composition: it was considered as organized, beautiful, and precious.
The verb “cosmein” described various actions: Building a house, writing a speech, organizing the army. All these things meant also “to organize”, and were strongly associated with human reason.
A special example of organizing is the following:
An illness was understood as the disruption of the harmony of a living body.
According to ancient physicians, every disease was triggered by…
Ever heard of Timaeus and his probable ideas about the formation of the universe? He appears in a dialogue written by Plato.
Plato is a Greek philosopher (428/7–348/7 BC) who lived during the time of the Peloponnesian War. He wrote many dialogues, while early dialogues reflect his opinion about, for example, the historical Socrates(469–399 BC), while later works tend to contain Plato’s opinions personified by Socrates. For example, his work “Phaedo” is one of the later dialogues he wrote, where Plato is speaking — through the person of Socrates.
Early dialogues usually have an aporetic ending, that means, they end…
“Mistaking introversion for shyness is a common error. Introversion is a preference, while shyness stems from distress. Introverts prefer solitary to social activities, but do not necessarily fear social encounters like shy people do.”
As I searched for an exact definition of introversion, I found this paragraph on Wikipedia. It summarizes perfectly what I want to talk about in this article, which is basically:
Why? There’s a good reason for that, which I want to discuss in this article.
By studying philosophy I learned it’s important to first define things I mention, as other people might interpret things differently, in…
Interested in what studying philosophy is like? Here are the notes I took during the very first lecture of the undergraduate program in Philosophy:
“Empirical sciences like physics or biology look at things practically and observe them. What is important there? The outcome, the result, the new knowledge you gain. And the observer shouldn’t have any influence on the outcome.
To describe this approach better I’d like to introduce the adjective “objective”. These sciences are objective (or at least should be). No matter which kind of person the scientist is, they should come to the same knowledge as every other…
“Death” was the first topic we discussed in theoretical philosophy at university. What a delightful and pleasant topic to start!
But I wasn’t wondering because of the seriousness of the topic — it was the criticism other students expressed. Of course, I didn’t agree with Plato either, but during the lesson, it showed me how many different viewpoints exist regarding just this one issue, not even speaking of other topics. I didn’t think about criticizing the really obvious things — but others did, and I understood that the arguments from this antique text are outdated.
The dialogues constructed by Plato(428/7–348/7…
Jeremy Bentham (1748–1832) was an English philosopher, and he’s regarded as the founder of modern utilitarianism.
Bentham had in many aspects modern views, for example, he advocated equal rights for men and women, the abolition of slavery, decriminalizing homosexuality, and animal rights.
It’s a consequentialist ethical theory which considers an action moral when the consequences of the action add up to the overall utility, i.e., the overall happiness of all people affected by the action.
The greatest happiness principle, meant to declare the idea of moral actions, “is the greatest happiness of the greatest number that is the measure of…
Do you know the TV show Rick and Morty?
It’s an adult animated science fiction sitcom, where Rick, a mad scientist and the “most intelligent man of the universe” goes on adventures with his grandson and high school student Morty.
Whether you know the series — and its underlying existential nihilism as attitude to life — or not, let me tell you: It’s fantastic watching it as a philosophy student.
I’ll now tell you about one specific scene which reminded me of the problems of one philosophical theory: Physicalism.
The scene opens on the day of a school dance and…
We all have desires. And goals, urges, cravings, wishes, self-imposed guidelines.
It might be as subtle as mindlessly making a sip of a glass of water, or as strong as eating when your hungry or meeting your partner when you’re horny. Sometimes, desires interfere with each other, and it can be confusing and frustrating to decide what to do.
There’s one philosopher who wanted to put this dilemma in order. Harry G. …