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Chapter 1: Philosophy and the Search for Wisdom

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1 Chapter 1: Philosophy and the Search for Wisdom
Archetypes of Wisdom Douglas J. Soccio Chapter 1: Philosophy and the Search for Wisdom

2 Philosophy From Greek roots meaning “the love of wisdom”
We sometimes use the term “philosophy” to refer to a person’s code of values or the beliefs by which they live

3 The Branches of Philosophy
Metaphysics – the study of “ultimate reality” or how things really are. Epistemology – the study of knowledge or how to tell when we really know something. Ethics – the study of moral problems, right and wrong, and practical reasoning.

4 More Branches of Philosophy
Social & Political Philosophy – the study of the origins and nature of the state. Logic – the study of the rules of correct reasoning. Aesthetics – the study of feelings and judgments related to beauty and art.

5 Archetypes An archetype is an image that all humans use to represent the essential qualities of some “type,” the epitome of some kind. Archetypes have been around throughout history – in myths, legends, and dreams. And the psychologist Carl Jung ( ) claimed that archetypes are integral to how we think about things in general.

6 Philosophical Archetypes
A philosophical archetype is a philosopher who expresses an original or influential point of view, significantly affecting subsequent thinkers. Philosophical archetypes are strict advocates of a particular philosophical worldview or philosophical method, and 6challenging the beliefs of others.

7 Are Philosophers Always Men?
The history of Western philosophy contains mostly men, leading to the charge that it is a study of “dead white males”. However, not only were there women in the history of philosophy whose work went unacknowledged, but many more women are joining the ranks of professional philosophy today.

8 The Search for Truth Philosophy is perhaps the most “open” of all subjects, since no question or point of view is off limits. The history of philosophy has been described as “the history of heresy,” since it challenges us to question even our most cherished beliefs. As one famous philosopher put it, “I do not know how to teach philosophy without becoming a disturber of the peace.” – Baruch Spinoza

9 The Goal of Wisdom The chief goal of wisdom is a fundamental understanding of reality as it relates to living a good life. By combining these – and even more – branches of philosophy, a person may gain an understanding of how all knowledge is related. The attainment of wisdom involves reflection, insight, learning from experience, and a plausible conception of the human condition.

10 The Need for Knowledge One of the most important things in the attainment of wisdom is knowledge. Philosophers generally think of knowledge as some form of true belief. And they usually make a distinction between theoretical and practical knowledge.

11 Types of Knowledge Theoretical Knowledge involves accurate assessment of factual and systematic information and relationships. Practical Knowledge consists of skills needed to do things like play the piano, build things, perform surgery, ride a bicycle, or bake a cake.

12 Belief and Ignorance In contrast to knowledge, belief refers to the subjective mental acceptance that a claim is true. But unlike knowledge, beliefs need not actually be true. There is also a difference between an informed belief and “mere belief” – which is when the only evidence for the belief is the act of believing itself. A mere belief is one that tries to “validate itself”. Ignorance is not an option.

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