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Belief in Nothing Nihilism confuses people. "How can you care about anything, or strive for anything, if you believe nothing means anything?" they ask. In return, nihilists point to the assumption of inherent meaning and question that assumption. Nihilists who aren't of the kiddie anarchist variety tend to draw a distinction between nihilism and fatalism. What is nihilism? As a nihilist, I recognize that meaning does not exist. In the same way, I accept that when I die, the most likely outcome will be a cessation of being. Even further, I recognize that there is no golden standard for life. A tree falling in a forest unobserved makes a sound. Many people "feel" marginalized when they think of this. Meaning is the human attempt to mold the world in our own image. This distanced mentality further affirms our tendency to find the world alienating to our consciousness. As a result, we like to separate the world from our minds and live in a world created by our minds. Nihilism reverses this process.
Philosophies and Philosophers Philosophical Disquisitions Eric Kaufmann Drugs and the Meaning of Life (Photo by JB Banks) (Note 6/4/2014: I have revised this 2011 essay and added an audio version.—SH) Everything we do is for the purpose of altering consciousness. We form friendships so that we can feel certain emotions, like love, and avoid others, like loneliness. Drugs are another means toward this end. One of the great responsibilities we have as a society is to educate ourselves, along with the next generation, about which substances are worth ingesting and for what purpose and which are not. However, we should not be too quick to feel nostalgia for the counterculture of the 1960s. Drug abuse and addiction are real problems, of course, the remedy for which is education and medical treatment, not incarceration. I discuss issues of drug policy in some detail in my first book, The End of Faith, and my thinking on the subject has not changed. I have two daughters who will one day take drugs. This is not to say that everyone should take psychedelics. (Pokhara, Nepal) Recommended Reading:
Philosophy Pages Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy abduction (Igor Douven) Abelard [Abailard], Peter (Peter King) Abhidharma (Noa Ronkin) abilities (John Maier) Abner of Burgos (Shalom Sadik) Abrabanel, Judah (Aaron Hughes) abstract objects (Gideon Rosen) accidental properties — see essential vs. accidental properties action (George Wilson and Samuel Shpall) action-based theories of perception (Robert Briscoe and Rick Grush) action at a distance — see quantum mechanics: action at a distance in actualism (Christopher Menzel) adaptationism (Steven Hecht Orzack and Patrick Forber) Addams, Jane (Maurice Hamington) Adorno, Theodor W. (Lambert Zuidervaart) advance directives (Agnieszka Jaworska) Aegidius Romanus — see Giles of Rome Aenesidemus — see skepticism: ancient aesthetic, concept of the (James Shelley) aesthetics aesthetics of the everyday (Yuriko Saito) affirmative action (Robert Fullinwider) Africana Philosophy (Lucius T. Outlaw Jr.) B [jump to top] C [jump to top] D [jump to top] Damian, Peter (Toivo J.
NeuroTribes "The Structure of Flame" by autistic artist Jessica Park. Courtesy of Pure Vision Arts: In 2007, the United Nations passed a resolution declaring April 2 World Autism Awareness Day — an annual opportunity for fundraising organizations to bring public attention to a condition considered rare just a decade ago. Now society is coming to understand that the broad spectrum of autism — as it’s currently defined, which will change next year with the publication of the DSM-5 – isn’t rare after all. In fact, “autism is common,” said Thomas Frieden, Director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, last week in a press conference. The CDC’s announcement brought out the usual range of conflicting responses and disputes about causes and cures. No matter where you stand on the rising numbers, there is one undeniably shocking thing about them. Vigil for George Hodgins, Sunnyvale CA For autistic activists like Gross and Paula C. Lydia Brown 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 1. 2.
Allegory of the Cave Plato realizes that the general run of humankind can think, and speak, etc., without (so far as they acknowledge) any awareness of his realm of Forms. The allegory of the cave is supposed to explain this. In the allegory, Plato likens people untutored in the Theory of Forms to prisoners chained in a cave, unable to turn their heads. All they can see is the wall of the cave. Behind them burns a fire. Between the fire and the prisoners there is a parapet, along which puppeteers can walk. From Great Dialogues of Plato (Warmington and Rouse, eds.) Here are some students’ illustrations of Plato’s Cave Go back to lecture on the Phaedo Go back to lecture on the “One Over Many” Argument Go to next lecture on Criticism of Forms Need a quick review of the Theory of Forms? Return to the PHIL 320 Home Page Copyright © 2006, S.