Should philosophy be easy to understand? | Page 6 | INFJ Forum

Should philosophy be easy to understand?

Discussion in 'Philosophy and Religion' started by Ren, Sep 4, 2018.

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  1. Hostarius

    Hostarius Apostate INFJ

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    No no I just went off on a tangent there on the general theme of humility... I suppose the relevance is, does it matter if Socrates felt humble or not?
     
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  2. Wyote

    Wyote Con Risa Absoluta
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    Actually, I was writing another response about how I figured out that I had misunderstood you, since this seems to be a sort of Ni future thing at work. I getcha!

    I think to me personally, forming a connection with him and being able to relate to him and his words deeply would on some level require that he at least understood the practicality of humility.
    But that's just me :)
     
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  3. robert

    robert Regular Poster

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    Its not?
     
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  4. OP
    Ren

    Ren Pin's android and co-founder of Stoic Café

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    Well, I guess it depends. Philosophers like Plato and Descartes are easy to understand, but would you say that Hegel is easy to understand?

    From Phenomenology of Spirit:

    "Thus there exist for consciousness three different ways in which individuality is linked with the Unchangeable. Firstly, it again appears to itself as opposed to unchangeable, and is thrown back to the beginning of the struggle which is throughout the element in which the whole relationship subsists. Secondly, consciousness learns that individuality belongs to the unchangeable itself, so that it assumes the form of individuality into which the entire mode of existence passes. Thirdly, it finds its own self as this particular individual in the unchangeable. The first unchangeable it knows only as the alien being who passes judgement on the particular individual; since, secondly the unchangeable is a form of individuality like itself, consciousness becomes, thirdly, spirit, and experiences the joy of finding itself therein and becomes aware of the reconciliation of its individuality with the universal.”

    Not saying it's impossible to understand, but not exactly a walk in the park either. :grimacing:
     
  5. JennyDaniella

    JennyDaniella Stargazer

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    I am quite late to ze party. However, now that I am almost finally finishing with classes, I have more time to fully read and respond properly. :)

    Philosophy requires a depth of profound thinking and contemplation; one must be required to look intensively in all different angles and think outside the box. If there wasn’t a challenge, I believe it would lose that certain essence that makes philosophy exciting and alluring—even quite beautiful when you finally understand an idea when you delve in more deeply. It’s such an accomplishing yet profound feeling.

    However as others have mentioned; philosophy shouldn’t be to the point where one reader is unable to comprehend the material presented as philosophy is already a complex field, nor should it fit in any type of standard—which make philosophy so incredibly rich and diverse with variations of terminology and ideas.

    I suppose a good balance of a challenge and basis of understanding would be sufficient; especially if one wants to apply philosophical concepts to their life.
     
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  6. Wyote

    Wyote Con Risa Absoluta
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    My spirit conscious floaty jangled meat sack walked all the way through the park and out to the ocean after reading that word salad
     
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  7. OP
    Ren

    Ren Pin's android and co-founder of Stoic Café

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    lmao, anything with "meat sack" in it gets my validation.

    We could also cite Gayatri Spivak's Critique of Postcolonial Reason: "The in-choate in-fans ab-original para-subject cannot be theorised as functionally completely frozen in a world where teleology is schematised into geo-graphy."

    Nice bit of Derridean influence there, of course. (I highly recommend Terry Eagleton's review of the book - it is hilarious).
     
  8. Wyote

    Wyote Con Risa Absoluta
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    Wow this article really is full of gems lmao

    "A Passage to India is inherently more threatening to the transnational corporations than an inquiry into Thackeray’s use of the semi-colon."​
     
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  9. OP
    Ren

    Ren Pin's android and co-founder of Stoic Café

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    :tearsofjoy:

    Even the comments section is priceless. From a certain Stephen Howe:

    "I'd been following the exchanges provoked by Terry Eagleton's assault on Gayatri Spivak with great interest when I encountered the letter from Mustapha Marrouchi (Letters, 1 July). A particularly devastating polemic, I thought: vigorous, well informed, and spiced with some rather good jokes. But then I would think that – for the letter is an almost verbatim, complete transcription of my review of Spivak's previous book, published in the New Statesman in February 1994."
     
  10. Wyote

    Wyote Con Risa Absoluta
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  11. OP
    Ren

    Ren Pin's android and co-founder of Stoic Café

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    On the topic of intelligibility — do you guys agree with Russell?

    [​IMG]
     
  12. Skarekrow

    Skarekrow ~~DEVIL~~

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    That’s only if a stupid man cannot memorize a few sentences.
     
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  13. Pin

    Pin "Magnificent Bastard" / Ren's Counterpart

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    What he says always remains true presuming stagnant conditions, (i.e stupid people remain stupid and clever people remain clever).
     
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  14. HDhotdog

    HDhotdog Regular Poster

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    I think it depends (as always). If the stupid man just repeats without thinking or, to make it more clear, writes it down and then reads it, the accuracy will stay the same.
    But if he's trying to understand (assuming he cannot understand) I'd agree with Russell because you can't explain something you didn't / don't understand.
     
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  15. OP
    Ren

    Ren Pin's android and co-founder of Stoic Café

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    I agree with you that, paradoxically perhaps, in such cases only mechanical repetition will guarantee a faithful report.

    Replacing "stupid" with "less profound", I think this is something that happens all the time in philosophy, especially when somebody comes forward with a genuinely novel kind of thinking. That "new thinking" is bound to be misinterpreted by a host of critics who will deface the content of the thinking by translating it into old categories that they can refer to internally, and then point out the limitations of that content according to that old frame of reference. It really happens very often. Interestingly, Russell himself was guilty of it, I think, with regard to philosophers like Nietzsche and Schopenhauer. Nevertheless, I think that quote of his is important.
     
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