11 Most Important Philosophical Quotations
1. “The unexamined life is not worth living” – Socrates (470-399 BCE) Socrates’ [wiki] belief that we must reflect upon the life we live was partly inspired by the famous phrase inscribed at the shrine of the oracle at Delphi, “Know thyself.” The key to finding value in the prophecies of the oracle was self-knowledge, not a decoder ring. Socrates felt so passionately about the value of self-examination that he closely examined not only his own beliefs and values but those of others as well. More precisely, through his relentless questioning, he forced people to examine their own beliefs. 2. Commonly known as Ockham’s razor, the idea here is that in judging among competing philosophical or scientific theories, all other things being equal, we should prefer the simplest theory. The ultimate irony of Ockham’s razor may be that some have used it to prove God is unnecessary to the explanation of the universe, an idea Ockham the Franciscan priest would reject. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11.
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