Derives from Greek words meaning Love of Wisdom
Is the philosophical examination of the most fundamental questions concerning the nature of reality. Realism: Things exist and would exist without minds to comprehend them. Nominalism: no universals without minds to think them.
Concerns questions of the source and nature of knowledge, The nature of consciousness, And other questions of personal identity as distinguished from ontology.
According to ‘The Theaetetus’, Protagoras says that a man is the measure of all things.
Declares that the unexamined life is not worth living.
Divides reality into two distinct worlds, A natural world of particular objects, subject to perceptual error, and, An ideal world of universals (forms). His Parable of the Cave illustrates this notion that reality is hierarchical – the world, available to the senses, is but the distorted shadow a higher world of forms.
Substance is not simple but rather a complex of both matter and form, i. e., informed matter. Essentialism: Essential properties are Necessary, i. e., such that it is inconceivable that the substance lack the property and yet remain numerically one and the same object. Accidental properties are not necessary to preserve the identity of the substance.
Maintains that all change is produced as a result of design or prior purpose. This sometimes leads to the assumption of a prime mover or intelligent creator. Teleological explanation is sometimes expressed as inverse cause and effect wherein a change in x is ‘caused’ by a later natural end state which end is the purpose of x.
Dualism argues that, in addition to physical substance (the body), there exists a (separate but parallel) mental substance (the mind). Famously, he wrote, “I think therefore I am” His philosophical arguments tend to proceed from sheer deductive reasoning to conclusions with little or no trust in induction reasoning. He is therefore considered a Rationalist, maintaining that knowledge comes from reason alone.
Argues that Mind and Body are ONE kind of thing Physical in nature.
Conceived of God as the being greater than which cannot be conceived.
Maintained that all of reality is nothing over and above minds and their ideas. Idealism – material substance is never perceived, only properties or qualities are perceived, and only these non physical qualia have reality.
Claimed that knowledge is the result of empirical investigation, i. e., knowledge comes from experience. primary qualities - the bulk, figure, texture, and motion of insensible parts Secondary qualities - colors, sounds, tastes, &c.
Considers that belief in the concepts of cause and effect is simply an unjustified dogma. This is called “Hume's problem” or “Humean Skepticism”
We can know a priori that like causes produce like effects – this is possible because Causation is in a class of synthetic a priori truths. Like mathematical truths, Mathmatical truths are studied via the principles governing the concepts that we ourselves construct. Other such principles include space and time. Using these the mind constructs the objects of experience.
Truths discovered by the understanding are synthetic because they are not logical truths and a priori because they apply to all possible experience. Synthetic a priori truths, then, describe those features of the world that are necessitated by our construction of it. It’s not that concepts come from experience, rather, experience is derived from fundamental concepts.
The world in itself, the noumena, is unknowable.
Non-Normative : descriptive Normative: seeks grounds for determining good Consequentialism: rightness determined by cause or effects of action Egoism: rightness determined by maximizing personal long term best interests. Utilitarianism: rightness determined by the general good of all collectively Act: case by case consideration Rule: the rules trump the individual case considerations. Fallibilism: value is subject to revisions. So no end justifies every means. Deontic Kant: do no harm
Act only according to that maxim by which you can at the same time will that it should become a universal law
The view that right action is the action most likely to produce the greatest overall utility
Existentialism: Maintained that existence proceeds essence And we are therefore condemned to be free. He argues that we ignore freedom through acts of bad faith. This is the inverse of Heidegger's phenomenology which maintains that Essence precedes existence.