Sunday, May 10, 2009

17b - 17c -17d Ayn Rand (1905 -1982)

"Within academia, her philosophical work has earned either no attention or has been criticized for its allegedly derivative nature, a lack of rigor, and a limited understanding of the issues she wrote about;

though an increasing interest in her writing saw the philosophy department of the University of Texas at Austin establish a fellowship in her name in 2001"

This is not my wisdom, but what you find in the English Wikipedia about Ayn Rand. She got a lot of publicity and a statement like this sounds so much like academic jealousy. Except for Texas of course....but isnt that the homebase of George Bush? Oops....just kidding...

I think we should spend some effort on investigating if this alligation is really true and defendable.

We are half way of our project on Women philosophers and I want to share an observation with you. When we did the 100 philosophers -just by the book of history - almost every philosopher came up with new innovative ideas and thoughts or to use Susanne Langer's words: "generative ideas"

As we are doing now the women philosophers the story is quit different. No one of the women philosophers is a trendsetter. They all appear to be tend followers,

notwithstanding the fact that we have seen a number of women philosophers with original ideas and for instance great impact on education. Especially if you consider philosophers like Lady Welby, Mary Calkins, Susan Stebbing and Susanne Langer and others yet to come.

And that is what this quote from Wikipedia made me think of....that implication...your work is only of derivative nature....and that reference to the University of that a relevant observation or just 'tongue in cheek' sarcasm?

Just read this heading and subtitle:
"A growing concern
Mainstream academic interest in the Russian-born novelist-philosopher Ayn Rand continues to grow around the world, writes David Cohen
*, Friday 7 December 2001 15.19 GMT leducationnews.highereducation

Then read how he describes her: "this rather odd Russian-born novelist-philosopher" and "Rand, a self-styled high empress of the libertarian right" and "Probably her most influential disciple is..." or worse "A diminutive Russian Jew"

Are we talking here about a woman philosopher or about some charismatic intellectual guru or some charlatan? Just for the record...there is the story that she chose her lastname derived from the brand of typewriter she had. This is most unlikely since she emigrated to the US in 1926 and she already used that name before.

In those days Remington dominated the market and only in 1927 Remington Typewriter and Rand Kardex merge to form Remington Rand. For more info and research start here (^_^)

Well...let's get back to basics. What we are talking about here is a brilliant mind, that made a society at least nervous. She is US based. Till now I had never heard of her, tho she was in the American talkshows form 1959 till 1982, but historically she had the same impact on her society like in Europe philosophers like Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir had.

Let me give you a typical SL quote from a friend who IMed me today:"Ayn Rand---got involved with her philosophy when I was in college---very interesting, was dating a strange man twice my age who "swore" by Ayn Rand.....have read several of her books, we can talk about her while we dance:) " This person is in RL an Amercan Ph.D. social worker. and I look forward to the dance (^_^).

So, one thing is clear.: Ayn Rand was one of the first women philosophers, who got an audience and with her ideas a real impact on people's mind, at least American minds.

Let me present the core of her ideas: everywhere you read that word, that is associated with her ideas. Objectivism. The name as such is philosophicaly already interesting. It implies a message, like its counterpart: subjectivism.

The first issue I want you to make a note of is binary thinking. Here we see objectivism vs. subjectivism, but also on a simpler level you see it: warm vs. cold, good vs bad, dark vs. light..... We can make an endless list. How to deal with it?

Then this objectivism. What did Ayn Rand mean by that. Let me just throw it on the table....

The key tenets of the Objectivist metaphysics are
(1) the Primacy of Existence,
(2) the Law of Identity ("A is A")
(3) the Axiom of Consciousness.
(4) the Law of Causality is a corollary of the Law of Identity.

In the next lecture we'll dig into these issues philosophically. Keep in mind that Ayn Rand is a completely unkown to me till now, tho in the US she seems to have been a cult figure. So I still have some readings to do.

Apart from her philosophical ideas I also have read a few things, contributed to her, that make me frown. She claimed to base a lot of her ideas on Aristotle and in the context of women philosophers, regarding the position of the woman she is indeed as bad as Aristotle himself.

The Discussion
[13:29] herman Bergson: This on Ayn Rand for today ^_^
[13:29] oola Neruda: in some circles...she is still a cult figure
[13:30] Gemma Cleanslate: oh yes
[13:30] herman Bergson: yes I can imagine....and I must say I really get mixed feelings about that
[13:31] herman Bergson: her Objectivism...all people love simple answers to complex questions
[13:31] Cailleach Shan: warm vs. cold, good vs bad, dark vs. light..... aren't these simply polarities?
[13:31] herman Bergson: no Caillleach...
[13:31] Cailleach Shan: Maybe it's a matter of 'language'
[13:31] herman Bergson: ok..
[13:31] herman Bergson: let me explain binary thinking...
[13:31] herman Bergson: it is a matter of language indeed Cailleach
[13:32] herman Bergson: when we have a word we are tend to believe there is something the word refers to..
[13:32] herman Bergson: so..the word light refers to what strikes our eyes...
[13:32] herman Bergson: the word darkness.....
[13:32] herman Bergson: that must be something too...
[13:32] herman Bergson: or not?
[13:32] Paula Dix: lol, thats interesting
[13:33] herman Bergson: in fact ..the word darkness is another way of writing 'no light present'
[13:33] Paula Dix: but and bad x good??
[13:33] Alarice Beaumont: good point
[13:33] herman Bergson: like the word cold means nothing else than 'no warmth present'
[13:34] herman Bergson: so the so called polarities are just expressions of light ----no light
[13:34] herman Bergson: warmth --no warmth
[13:34] herman Bergson: same there paula...
[13:34] herman Bergson: good good present
[13:34] Paula Dix: so bad would be the non existing one?
[13:35] hope63 Shepherd: dualism is the proper of mankind.. smile.. that's why they needed a god..
[13:35] Paula Dix: ok
[13:35] herman Bergson: yes Hope...we love dualism...
[13:35] herman Bergson: it is because we live in a world of dualism...
[13:35] Paula Dix: and a devil also? :)
[13:35] Coral Ceriano: but you could also see bad as the absence of good though...
[13:35] hope63 Shepherd: i think not only do we love it.. we can't escape from it..
[13:35] herman Bergson: it is warm or cold, dark or light, honest or dishonest
[13:36] herman Bergson: yes we can...
[13:36] Paula Dix: thats what i was thinking, bad can be as real as good, its not the same as light and darkness
[13:36] herman Bergson: who said that before..?
[13:36] Lokifluff Clarity: Coral did
[13:36] Gemma Cleanslate: :-)
[13:36] Coral Ceriano: :)
[13:36] herman Bergson: I meant the ;'Yes we can' ..:-)
[13:36] Coral Ceriano: lol
[13:36] Lokifluff Clarity: oh... sorry... :-)
[13:36] Cailleach Shan: BARAK
[13:36] Gemma Cleanslate: yes
[13:36] AristotleVon Doobie: darkness and cold are the natural state and to get the opposite you must apply light and heat, subjectivism is also the natural state to which you must apply reasoning to arrive at objectivism
[13:37] Paula Dix: lol
[13:37] Gemma Cleanslate: amazing
[13:37] herman Bergson: there you go talk of darkness if it is something
[13:37] Paula Dix: hmmm then bad is the natural one also?
[13:38] AristotleVon Doobie: stripped of all the light emitiing abjuects that is what is left, I believe
[13:38] Cailleach Shan: mmmm....ok.. what about love and fear?
[13:38] AristotleVon Doobie: objects*
[13:38] hope63 Shepherd: love and hate
[13:38] herman Bergson: when you regard all polarity expressions as just expressions of A and not-A..there is no polarity
[13:38] herman Bergson: the philosophical question then is....
[13:39] herman Bergson: we have good and evil...
[13:39] Cailleach Shan: ok Herman.... I get that.
[13:39] hope63 Shepherd: but a and not a are interchangeable..
[13:39] oola Neruda: opposite of love is apathy
[13:39] herman Bergson: if you say...evil only means the absence of good, good get some ontological status...
[13:39] hope63 Shepherd: lol.. oola..
[13:39] oola Neruda: i am serious hope
[13:40] herman Bergson: and here we get into philosophicla problems...
[13:40] herman Bergson: for we also can say...evil only means the absence of good
[13:40] AristotleVon Doobie: evil is relative, and not being good does not make you evil
[13:41] Paula Dix: from thre came the discussion if people is good when born?
[13:41] Gemma Cleanslate: thsi si the identity part????
[13:41] Sluggy Easterwood: but it is possible for something to be neither good or evil?
[13:41] herman Bergson: Yes Aristotle...there you introduce the color grey...
[13:41] AristotleVon Doobie: neutral, too
[13:42] herman Bergson: And that is exactly what makes me think about Ayn Rand....
[13:42] Alarice Beaumont: why?
[13:42] hope63 Shepherd: good.. bad.. we would have to go baxk to the history of mankind..
[13:42] herman Bergson: She is a polarity thinker....and indeed established even some cult around her
[13:42] oola Neruda: that is why apathy is the opposite of love... and also the opposite of hate
[13:42] Cailleach Shan: Can you elaborate on this statement you made Herman... I don't understand what you are saying here either!! "and in the context of women philosophers, regarding the position of the woman she is indeed as bad as Aristotle himself."
[13:42] AristotleVon Doobie: I think she was very black and white
[13:43] herman Bergson: Oh yes...Cailleach...
[13:43] herman Bergson: I dont have the quote at hand, but I'll give it in another lecture..
[13:43] Cailleach Shan: kk
[13:43] AristotleVon Doobie: she tended to idolize strong males
[13:43] Sluggy Easterwood: would society be pleasent to live if eveyone was selfish and self-obsessed... is it really the type of scoiety we would like to live in?
[13:43] herman Bergson: how she looks at the man - woman relation....really ...I WAS FLABBERGASTED
[13:44] herman Bergson: so not in line with her rationalist approach of things
[13:44] AristotleVon Doobie: and was submissive in romantic regards
[13:44] herman Bergson: in her view the man is the hero the woman should look up to
[13:45] Cailleach Shan: Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha.... ROFL...
[13:45] herman Bergson: yes..Aristotle..that is the word...the woman has to be submissive in her oppinion
[13:45] Alarice Beaumont: this sounds strange considering the other statements she made!
[13:45] Paula Dix: oh, and follow all decisions he make??
[13:45] herman Bergson: yes Alarice...
[13:45] AristotleVon Doobie: yet she controlled her extramarital lover for many years
[13:45] Alarice Beaumont: she sounds modern
[13:45] Paula Dix: lol
[13:45] Alarice Beaumont: lol
[13:45] herman Bergson: do you now understand that I am getting more second thoughts about her the more I read ?
[13:46] Paula Dix: objectively a contradiction
[13:46] Gemma Cleanslate: she was extremely strange in many ways
[13:46] AristotleVon Doobie: two different things, I think
[13:46] Cailleach Shan: Her attitude to men doesn't necessarily negate her philosophy though.
[13:46] herman Bergson: Yes Aristotle as Paula says...a contradiction :-)
[13:46] AristotleVon Doobie: yes, Cal
[13:46] AristotleVon Doobie: you are right
[13:47] Paula Dix: true Call
[13:47] Alarice Beaumont: but then one surely does find some contradictions in her talkings!
[13:47] herman Bergson: True we said of Aristotle (the Greek I mean) too
[13:47] Coral Ceriano: well, maybe her husband was having extramarital affairs so she decided to follow his example being the "hero" n all
[13:47] AristotleVon Doobie: her romantic inclinations and her philosophical opinions are differnt things
[13:47] herman Bergson: Cailleach?
[13:48] AristotleVon Doobie: her husband was vvery faithful
[13:48] Cailleach Shan: ooops..... sorry.... hit the wrong button...
[13:48] AristotleVon Doobie: he took care of the house while she worked
[13:48] Alarice Beaumont: wow
[13:48] Gemma Cleanslate: but was an artist
[13:48] herman Bergson: I agree that you can not judge philosophical ideas by looking at someone's personal life
[13:48] Coral Ceriano: okay...that was rude of me...I'm sure he was a good man
[13:49] AristotleVon Doobie: yes he was a creative person
[13:49] Gemma Cleanslate: ans she claimed HE earned
[13:49] AristotleVon Doobie: part of her attraction to him
[13:49] Alarice Beaumont: well..making the household doesn't make him good ,-)
[13:49] hope63 Shepherd: right alarice..
[13:49] Sluggy Easterwood: her personal life must affect her thought
[13:49] AristotleVon Doobie: he new of the affair an allowed it
[13:49] herman Bergson: I havent read anything about a husband....she had one?
[13:49] Alarice Beaumont: i would expect that too
[13:49] AristotleVon Doobie: yes, for along time
[13:50] Gemma Cleanslate: yes
[13:50] Gemma Cleanslate: and they are buried together
[13:50] AristotleVon Doobie: their home was in California
[13:50] herman Bergson: ok..:-)
[13:50] Gemma Cleanslate: in New York state
[13:50] AristotleVon Doobie: she loved him
[13:50] AristotleVon Doobie: the affair was sexual
[13:50] Paula Dix: Ah, if he knew about that changes all
[13:51] hope63 Shepherd: funny.. are we in a tv show trying to find out all the aspects of the personal life.. because we don't understand what a person had to say?
[13:51] AristotleVon Doobie: the wife of the man knew of the affair and allowed it
[13:51] herman Bergson: Well...enough about Ayn Rand personal life...
[13:51] Gemma Cleanslate: oh goodness
[13:51] herman Bergson: philosophically not relevant
[13:51] Gemma Cleanslate: true
[13:52] AristotleVon Doobie: her personal life does not negate her philosophy
[13:52] herman Bergson: her ideas about the man - woman relation are relevant from an ethical perspective tho
[13:52] herman Bergson: lecture will dig into her philosophical ideas...
[13:52] AristotleVon Doobie: only if you hold a opposing ethical view
[13:52] Cailleach Shan: Hate to leave early Herman.... thanks for today everyone... looking forward to some more.
[13:52] hope63 Shepherd: smile.. please do herman..:9
[13:52] Gemma Cleanslate: good to see you
[13:52] AristotleVon Doobie: bye Cailleach
[13:52] Daruma Boa: bye calli
[13:52] herman Bergson: Bye Cailleach...I am glad to see you're ok
[13:53] herman Bergson: ok...for today I thank you for your participation and contributions to our discussion...
[13:53] AristotleVon Doobie: thank you Heramn
[13:53] AristotleVon Doobie: Herman
[13:53] Coral Ceriano: thanks
[13:53] Seneca Quandry: Thank you.
[13:54] Alarice Beaumont: Bye Cail
[13:54] herman Bergson: For now: class dismissed ^_^
[13:54] Alarice Beaumont: Thanks Herman
17c: Ayn Rand and Reason

If there is one philosopher well represented on the Internet then it certainly is Ayn Rand. And not only in the Internet. There also is an Ayn Rand Institute, in Irvine California and The Objectivist Center in New York.

The information is overwhelming, but yet it makes me think too. Is this still about a philosophical discourse or are we dealing here with a doctrine, an ideology, a cult or a sekt, a political organization?

"The impact of Rand's ideas is difficult to measure, but it has been great. All of the books she published during her lifetime are still in print, have sold more than twenty million copies, and continue to sell hundreds of thousands of copies each year. " A quote from the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy, which has a decent article on her.
So, let's focus on Ayn Rand's philosophical ideas. She describes her philosophy of Objectivism thus:
1.Reality exists as an objective absolute—facts are facts, independent of man’s feelings, wishes, hopes or fears.

2.Reason (the faculty which identifies and integrates the material provided by man’s senses) is man’s only means of perceiving reality, his only source of knowledge, his only guide to action, and his basic means of survival.

3.Man—every man—is an end in himself, not the means to the ends of others. He must exist for his own sake, neither sacrificing himself to others nor sacrificing others to himself. The pursuit of his own rational self-interest and of his own happiness is the highest moral purpose of his life.

4.The ideal political-economic system is laissez-faire capitalism.

In short is means 1. Metaphysics: Realism, 2. Epistemology: Reason, 3: Ethics: Self-interest and 4. Politics: Capitalism. Let us focus on 1 and 2 for today.

In modern philosophy realism is used for the view that material objects exist externally to us and independently of our sense experience. Realism is thus opposed to Idealism, which holds that no such material objects or external relaties exist apart from our knowledge or consciousness of them.

It also clashes with phenomenalism which, while avoiding much idealist metaphysics, would deny that material objects exist except as groups or sequences of sensa, actual or possible.

What is the open philosophical nerve here? The claim of an "objective absolute". It is nothing more than a claim, not a statement of fact. There is no way of denying that the only source of knowledge we have is our individual sensory experience.

Perhaps our human situation is such that we cannot know anything beyond our experiences; perhaps we are, each one of us individually, confined to the theater of our own minds. Throwing reality on the table as an 'objective absolute' does not refute this observation.

Even more questionable is Ayn Rand's statement that "Reason (the faculty which identifies and integrates the material provided by man’s senses) is man’s only means of perceiving reality"
It sounds so obvious, that you are immediately inclined to say: sure... yes.. absolutely true. But let me ask you a simple question.... it says "reason is a means". We all will claim that we use our reason every day, but how does reason work? What kind of machinery is it?

Philosopy: Who Needs It, pg 62: "Reason integrates man’s perceptions by means of forming abstractions or conceptions, thus raising man’s knowledge from the perceptual level, which he shares with animals, to the conceptual level, which he alone can reach. The method which reason employs in this process is logic—and logic is the art of non-contradictory identification." Ayn Rand.

If this is a knowledge claim and I cant read it otherwise, I really have serious questions to ask, especially while Ayn Rand holds the view that we are born with an empty mind, a tabula rasa. All we know, we know by experience only. In other words..who sent her this revelation?

Let us first put it into historical perspective. Historically we have two kinds of reason. The 17th century philosophers like Descartes saw Reason as opposed to Experience, while the philosophers of the Enlightment saw Reason as opposed to Faith.

When we take an overall view of the work of Ayn Rand, her ardent condemnation of mysticism and religion, I would conclude that she uses the concept of reason in the way as the Enlightment philosophers like D'Alembert and Voltaire did: reason as opposed to faith.

That doesnt bring us much further, but it is a start. The question I still want to see answered is, how can we have knowledge of the existence of reason?

And there is more. What are human beings in a position to do, in virtue of their possesion of the faculty of reason? What , by means of reasoning, are we in a position to achieve?

In this form it becomes very clear that the question raises at least two highly disputable issues. First, it is far from immediately clear what reasoning is, on what occassion, in what activities or processes, reason is exercised.

And second, if we determine, probably with some degree of arbitrariness, what reasoning is, it may very well be highly disputable whether this or that can or cannot be achieved by reasoning.

So, in the end, saying that reason is the only guide man has to survive is not clarifying the human condition that much. And if reason is opposed to faith I even encounter a paradox in Randianism, for you have to accept the truth of her philosophical axioms in good faith, which is against reason.

The Discussion

[13:24] herman Bergson: So much on point 1 and 2 :-)
[13:24] Finding Nirvana chuckles
[13:24] Gemma Cleanslate: you can lol
[13:24] Anne Charles: I agree with Ms. Rand that religion is antithetical to
reason, and that is about all upon which we now agree.
Disclosure: In my youth, I was a militant ultra-right anti
-communist/socialist who agreed in total with Ms Rand, and I
have read "The Fountainhead", "Atlas Shrugged" and "We the
Living" to the last page.
[13:24] Gemma Cleanslate: if she were here she would dispute that
[13:24] herman Bergson: If you have questions or remarks..feel free ^_^
[13:25] hope63 Shepherd: applause..tonight we have had the best herman so far-- well he needed 3 lectures for that on ayn rand--
[13:25] ChatNoir Talon applauds too
[13:25] Samuel Okelly: You articulated exactly what I view as the contradictory nature of her approach so well herman and I’m sure it will come as no surprise that as a Christian, I find Rand’s views completely abhorrent, :)
[13:26] Hokon Cazalet: from what it sounds, she seems to advocate a tenent of logical positivism, that we structure sense data by as universal language of logic (which if true can come under attack by recent comments of quine and others)
[13:26] herman Bergson: Thank you for your cheers....especially from Hope..
[13:26] AristotleVon Doobie: I think her philosophy opposes 'subjectivism' in what ever form it takes inclulding religion
[13:26] herman Bergson: And yes Samuel, I can imagine how you feel about Rand
[13:27] Finding Nirvana: I acknowledge that it is hard to place a distinction between what we'd catergorize as faith and reason. Yet, my intuition tells me that 'reason' is being excecuted when you weigh the faith of others against your own. Is what I am proposing faith or reason? :)
[13:27] herman Bergson: biggest problem with her philosophy nowadays is that it isnt a philosophical discourse is a kind of belief....a cult or sekt
[13:27] herman Bergson: which is in absolute contradiction with the philosophy itself
[13:28] ChatNoir Talon: I love contradictions :-)
[13:28] herman Bergson: introduce a new epistemic tool..intuition
[13:28] AristotleVon Doobie: many weak folks will seek out cults, it is the strong minded that investigates for their own empirical refinement
[13:28] ChatNoir Talon: How about instinct?
[13:28] Finding Nirvana: how is it new?
[13:28] Finding Nirvana: :)
[13:29] herman Bergson: we have reason...experience..and now intuition too
[13:29] herman Bergson: Oh yes Chatnoir..forgot
[13:29] ChatNoir Talon: We all knew how to suckle on our mothers breast to feed.. isn't that something? ;)
[13:29] Mickorod Renard: reason is where she cannot apply logik in certain cases but then applies her dictoriate (reason)
[13:29] Finding Nirvana: i feel that the human language, or the English language particularly, tends to complicate something which is simple to understand in essence
[13:30] Finding Nirvana: reason, feelings, beliefs, experience/memory, etc
[13:30] Samuel Okelly: personally i recognise the fundemental basis for both in the human experience (hence my "fides et ratio" tag) :0
[13:30] Finding Nirvana: they're all one thing in the end: Thought.
[13:30] AristotleVon Doobie: all things other than the facts are merely feelings
[13:30] Finding Nirvana: It's like a stream of consciousness.
[13:30] Hokon Cazalet: where does logic come from for rand btw, if its not innate, but used to order experience, where does it come from?
[13:31] Finding Nirvana: And with the phenomenon of the 'mind', we categorize to make things simpler to understand :)
[13:31] Finding Nirvana: that's where our reasoning comes in?
[13:31] herman Bergson: Yes Hokon....these are fundamental questions indeed
[13:32] herman Bergson: Well... so we have some open ends here ....
[13:32] herman Bergson: Hokon's question..where did logic come from to assist reason?
[13:32] Finding Nirvana: as always, innit?
[13:32] Gemma Cleanslate: that is not new
[13:32] Finding Nirvana: :)
[13:32] AristotleVon Doobie: LOL, I see no open ends , only 'subjectivism'
[13:32] Finding Nirvana: that is the "open end!" :D
[13:32] Paula Dix: Finding i think something in this line also, the separations of mind parts are artificial
[13:33] AristotleVon Doobie: If you can not exhibit the facts then it is not 'objective'
[13:33] Finding Nirvana: yeap
[13:33] herman Bergson: Yes you could say man is a theoretical construct
[13:33] ChatNoir Talon: Very well put, Ari
[13:33] Finding Nirvana: aristole
[13:33] Finding Nirvana: you speak much of facts
[13:33] Finding Nirvana: what is "fact" to you?
[13:33] Finding Nirvana: :)
[13:34] herman Bergson: One moment....
[13:34] AristotleVon Doobie: that is what Ms. Rand speaks of
[13:34] ChatNoir Talon: Oy, that's another thoughie
[13:34] herman Bergson: HOLD ON
[13:34] Finding Nirvana: i wasn't here for the
[13:34] Finding Nirvana: lol ok
[13:34] herman Bergson: There is the isssue of 'fact' indeed
[13:34] herman Bergson: Rand say 'a fact is a fact'
[13:34] herman Bergson: In a way that is her objectivism....
[13:35] herman Bergson: but objectivity..what is it....
[13:35] herman Bergson: John Locke had a briliant example....
[13:35] herman Bergson: you hold one hand in ice water...
[13:35] herman Bergson: the other hand in warm water
[13:35] Travieso Sella: So, next week you'll talk about the other two parts, herman or when is that?
[13:36] herman Bergson: then you put both hands in trepid water....
[13:36] herman Bergson: the observation then is..that you see ONE object....the bucket with both your hands in and you experience it in two ways...warm and cold
[13:37] Cailleach Shan: The question I still want to see answered is, how can we have knowledge of the existence of reason? Has your reason answered this question yet Herman?
[13:37] AristotleVon Doobie: a fact to me is something that I have personally experienced, Mr Locke's experimant merly confirms the phenomonm of illusion
[13:37] Paula Dix: great experiment!
[13:37] herman Bergson: so one mind can observe on object and have two different experiences..
[13:37] herman Bergson: this explains how two minds can see one object in two different ways....
[13:37] herman Bergson: what is the escape....????
[13:37] AristotleVon Doobie: reason is like thinking,' I reason, therefore I survive'
[13:38] Finding Nirvana: your fact doesn't seem very objective to be generalized, then, ari :)
[13:38] herman Bergson: Measurments.....
[13:38] herman Bergson: that is how science developed in those days...
[13:38] Travieso Sella: How often does this class meet?
[13:38] Paula Dix: thats where science came in i guess
[13:38] Samuel Okelly: it is an act of faith to hold that any sensory corresponds to an objective truth
[13:38] hope63 Shepherd: Samuel.. when will men acknowledge the fast that all his sensory experiences are limited to what "they can experience..
[13:38] Finding Nirvana: hmmmm Samuel
[13:38] AristotleVon Doobie: faith has nothing to do with reason
[13:38] herman Bergson: No samuel....we even dont get that far...
[13:39] Finding Nirvana: u're such an aristotlean
[13:39] Finding Nirvana: :P
[13:39] Mickorod Renard: hi rodney
[13:39] herman Bergson: What we have reached by now it that we measure....calculate...
[13:39] Rodney Handrick: Hi Mick
[13:39] ChatNoir Talon's head hurts
[13:39] Samuel Okelly: :)
[13:39] Daruma Boa: hi rodney
[13:39] Mickorod Renard: i have a sneaky idea that reason and faith are very similar
[13:39] herman Bergson: you can say ..this feels cold ..I can say this feels warm...but we both say this is 20 degrees celcius
[13:40] AristotleVon Doobie: faith is a way for us to explain something we wish were true
[13:40] herman Bergson: a very sneaky idea Mickorod ^_^
[13:40] Mickorod Renard: its about choice
[13:40] Finding Nirvana: ahhh
[13:40] herman Bergson: So eventually we have a degree of intersubjectivity
[13:40] Samuel Okelly: we do not "choose" what we believe or have faith in
[13:41] Finding Nirvana: everything is subjective enough to have something in common between them :D
[13:41] Mickorod Renard: we do choose if we believe it
[13:41] Finding Nirvana: we're "alive" that is a facty
[13:41] Finding Nirvana: :D
[13:41] AristotleVon Doobie: I choose not to file somethings as fact until I have experienced it
[13:41] herman Bergson: To state it again....
[13:42] Finding Nirvana: is your fact supposed to be objective, then?
[13:42] Finding Nirvana: ari?
[13:42] herman Bergson: we all have our private we are locked in in our own mind....
[13:42] AristotleVon Doobie: accorindg to Ms Rand facts are the basis of objectivisim
[13:42] herman Bergson: by measurements we get a mutual agreement about values...facts
[13:42] Cailleach Shan: lol sometimes experience can come from 'no mind'
[13:42] Paula Dix: hmmm even if i experience something i have to think a lot before accepting it as a fact :)
[13:43] herman Bergson: Yes Aristrotle, but what are facts?
[13:43] herman Bergson: she doesnt tell
[13:43] AristotleVon Doobie: yes, Paula....reasoning
[13:43] AristotleVon Doobie: the facts are a personal matter, and we each opine what they are
[13:43] herman Bergson: Like the word reason, when we hear the word fact we all think to know what it is all about
[13:43] Finding Nirvana smiles
[13:44] herman Bergson: That..Paula is just renaming your experience
[13:44] Mickorod Renard: many of us exist in a world where we trust in facts,,as they are told as being facts to us by scientists,,so we have faith in what they say
[13:44] Paula Dix: lol hence platos cave?
[13:44] Cailleach Shan: What if there is no such thing as 'facts' what if we just made it all up!!
[13:44] Finding Nirvana: :D
[13:44] Finding Nirvana: There is no spoon
[13:44] Mickorod Renard: or not
[13:44] ChatNoir Talon is so confused :-(
[13:44] Sluggy Easterwood: dictionary says facts are true statements
[13:44] AristotleVon Doobie: Mick, you can not believe everthing you hear ,
[13:45] Finding Nirvana: Bend your mind to bend the spooon
[13:45] Daruma Boa: lol
[13:45] herman Bergson: We did made it all up. Cailleach...
[13:45] Finding Nirvana: :D
[13:45] AristotleVon Doobie: lol, Clailleach
[13:45] Alarice Beaumont: lol
[13:45] Cailleach Shan: lol
[13:45] Mickorod Renard: exactly,,we have to have faith that someone has tested it
[13:45] Paula Dix: Mick, what we believe is that scientific community will really test the new info and confirm or deny
[13:45] Finding Nirvana: Plato + The Matrix [13:45] herman Bergson: but by means of intersubjective agreement we have some hold on an external world [13:45] ChatNoir Talon:[13:45] Samuel Okelly: you couldnt make some of this stuff up herman ;-) [13:45] Daruma Boa: keep te faith, oh yes [13:45] AristotleVon Doobie: keep the reason [13:45] Mickorod Renard: lots could be conspiracies [13:46] Finding Nirvana: oooo [13:46] Finding Nirvana: u want real conspiracy Mickorod? [13:46] herman Bergson: True Samulel..I used books..:-) [13:46] Finding Nirvana: watch Zeitgeist [13:46] Mickorod Renard: some had faith in wall street [13:46] Paula Dix: Perfect Herman, and science is the best way to get hold of whats real [13:46] Finding Nirvana: both 2007 and 2008 [13:46] AristotleVon Doobie: we must be skeptical [13:46] Onasander Belavidorico: facts are something we delegate on a polycentric level authority to- we cooperate with them to the scale our groupings can tolerate until they are codified by law- this is a form of fact- another fact it the brute forceo f reality telling you otherwise [13:46] Finding Nirvana: um, paula, science started as beliefs as well [13:46] Mickorod Renard: yea,,seen all that zieder poo [13:46] Finding Nirvana: lol [13:46] Onasander Belavidorico: the word fact is deceptive- it's not really one thing [13:47] AristotleVon Doobie: I will confirmn ehat is told to me with my own empirical database or as many facts as I can gather [13:47] herman Bergson: Science still is based on believes [13:47] Finding Nirvana: indeed [13:47] Paula Dix: true [13:47] Mickorod Renard: but you cannot test everything in the world Ari [13:47] Daruma Boa: hi tammy [13:47] Paula Dix: like poor wegener was laughed until his death... [13:47] Samuel Okelly: i think honest introspection informs us that the self is shaped by faith AND reason [13:47] AristotleVon Doobie: only wht I am confronted with, Mick [13:47] Finding Nirvana: it's science only when a whole bunmch of egomaniacs asserts that it's "the truth" [13:47] Tammy Zipper: hi [13:48] Paula Dix: now everybody talks like they agreed with continental drift forever [13:48] Daruma Boa: mh, u stand on my legs... [13:48] Tammy Zipper: thanks qwark [13:48] Mickorod Renard: it is reasonable to use faith [13:48] ChatNoir Talon: Faith is just belief in a thought [13:48] herman Bergson: That is quite a different discussion Samuel [13:48] Finding Nirvana: what does Faith tell you, people? [13:48] Finding Nirvana: what does the heart say? :) [13:48] Birgie Breck: yes Samuel... both faith and reason [13:48] AristotleVon Doobie: Egomaniacs Anoymymous [13:48] Finding Nirvana: to me, that's intuition [13:48] Hokon Cazalet: its science when we have a method that gives us reliable information time and time again [13:48] Samuel Okelly: :) [13:48] AristotleVon Doobie: the heart? [13:48] Mickorod Renard: that ayn rand is a dodgy character [13:48] Cailleach Shan: Faith..... what's that? [13:48] AristotleVon Doobie: is that like God? [13:49] Finding Nirvana: metaphorically speaking [13:49] Qwark Allen: ty herman [13:49] Finding Nirvana: cuz we all know that the heart just speaks blood [13:49] herman Bergson: Bye Qwark [13:49] Daruma Boa: see u later q [13:49] AristotleVon Doobie: bye Q-man [13:49] Paula Dix: faith isnt then a kind of reason? we do some leaps without complete evidences because that looks logical? [13:49] Rodney Handrick: bye Qwark [13:49] hope63 Shepherd: bye.q-- [13:49] ChatNoir Talon: Have to go. Thank you Herman. It was a VERY confusing lesson but a really good one! ^^ [13:49] herman Bergson: Ok...... [13:49] Samuel Okelly: thank you herman! tc every1 :) [13:49] AristotleVon Doobie: how coul faith ever be reasoned? [13:50] herman Bergson: let's conclude our discussion.... [13:50] AristotleVon Doobie: thanks, Professor [13:50] Daruma Boa: thxs herman [13:50] herman Bergson: there are a few philosopphical questions for you to contemplate... [13:50] Mickorod Renard: thank you Herman..that was a cool session [13:50] AristotleVon Doobie: indeed [13:50] Finding Nirvana: lol chatnoir [13:50] Rodney Handrick: thanks Herman [13:50] Finding Nirvana: philosophy is meant to confuse you :P [13:50] Cailleach Shan: Good one people. [[13:51] herman Bergson: the first one is that even when accepting an external world, we still are confinded tou our own mind [13:51] Finding Nirvana: yep [13:51] AristotleVon Doobie: yes, Herman, my mind is at the center of the universe [13:51] Alarice Beaumont: well Ari... if succeed 10 times in doing a special thing... don't you think you got faith in yourself that you can make it an 11. time?! [13:51] herman Bergson: and second.....what kind of mechanism is reason..and how did we 'discover' it. with what means??? [13:51] Mickorod Renard: I have tested a fair rang of substance [13:51] AristotleVon Doobie: ahh, Alarice, I call that confidence :) [13:52] Alarice Beaumont: lol [13:52] Alarice Beaumont: :-) [13:52] Finding Nirvana: aristotleVon clearly speaks from a human-centric point of view [13:52] Anja Amaterasu: Danke Professor für die Lehrstunde, aber jetzt muss ich noch schnell meinen neue Mammi besuchen und dann schell schlafen gehen [13:52] Finding Nirvana: :) [13:52] Paula Dix: Ona science is forever a work in progress, never says all answers are there [13:52] AristotleVon Doobie: thanks Finding :) [13:52] Daruma Boa: lol [13:52] Hokon Cazalet: i find the second question the most interesting one =) [13:52] Daruma Boa: grüss schön anja^^ [13:52] Finding Nirvana: you're welcome [13:52] Anja Amaterasu: =))) [13:52] Onasander Belavidorico: some do say all the anwsers are there [13:52] Hokon Cazalet: ty herman for the class [13:52] Finding Nirvana: man.... i miss my philosophy class in RL [13:52] Mickorod Renard: reason,,,mmmmmmm [13:52] Finding Nirvana: fun talking about "what is ethics?" [13:53] herman Bergson: My pleasure ..thank you for participating...:-) [[13:53] herman Bergson: Next class will be on Rand Ethics [13:53] Mickorod Renard: thanks herman..i will ponder over reason [13:53] Finding Nirvana: i mean, i can't say that i haven't heard of this before ^_^" [13:53] Alarice Beaumont: great .-) [13:53] Finding Nirvana: tho [13:53] Finding Nirvana: i must admit [13:53] Ze Novikov: ty Herman [13:53] Daruma Boa: why do humans alwasy searching for something?? [13:53] Finding Nirvana: that it's nice to hear Rand in details [13:53] CONNIE Eichel: lovely class, prof :) [13:53] Finding Nirvana: details* [13:53] Onasander Belavidorico: thanks for the class [13:53] Finding Nirvana: Daruma [13:53] Finding Nirvana: because we uh [13:54] Finding Nirvana: "think" [13:54] herman Bergson: thank you CONNIE :-) [13:54] Mickorod Renard: ok must go,,bye all [13:54] Paula Dix: Oh, dont trust militars, they have a department called Intelligence! :))) [13:54] CONNIE Eichel: :) [13:54] Finding Nirvana: that's the problem [13:54] Finding Nirvana: :D [13:54] AristotleVon Doobie: bye Mick ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 17d: Ayn Rand and Self-interest

Two soldiers escaped from the enemy camp. And in the process they succeeded in getting hold on top secret documents. If this information could reach their HQ it would absolutely save thousands of lives, might even end the war.

Half way their struggle through the desert they ran out of water. But they kept on going.The information had to reach HQ, all those lives at stake. Almost exhausted they stumbled on a bottle of water. Whoever left it there, it was the needed water.

It absolutely was enough for one man to survive and get to HQ to deliver the top secret information. Sharing the water would keep them both alive to die both halfway in the desert.

They sat down and opened their backpacks...there was a book. Ayn Rand on ethics. There should be the answer. It was...basic moral rule: self-interest. They looked at eachother, the bottle of water and the lifes saving information.

Reason is the quintessence....ok what kind of tool is it and in what way will it help our heroic soldiers, who know that only one can survive and save so many lives?

Here we touch the quintessence of philosophy. We never get the anwser, We only get the next question. But ok...let's quote Ayn Rand in this critical situation.

"Just as man cannot survive by any random means, but must discover and practice the principles which his survival requires, so man’s self-interest cannot be determined by blind desires or random whims,

but must be discovered and achieved by the guidance of rational principles. This is why the Objectivist ethics is a morality of rational self-interest—or of rational selfishness." (The Virtue of Selfishness “Introduction,” The Virtue of Selfishness, xiv; pb x.

The soldiers wondered. How to apply rational selfishness in this situation? And how would they know, if their choice would be rational? And does it mean that when they apply rational self-interest, they also can be sure that they do the right thing? They looked at eachother.........

Did they both die in the desert...did the info reach HQ ???

This idea that man is basically a selfish individual is not new at all. Thomas Hobbes (1588 -1679) is the first major philosopher, apart from Machiavelli, to present a completely individualistic picture of human nature. Even so individualistic that we still know the famous expression "homo homini lupus" which means "man is a wolf to his fellowman".

Only the fear of a war of everyone against everyone leads to the adoption of a regard for others from purely self-interested motives. Thus altruism is either a disguise or a substitute for self-seeking.

Since Hobbes this debate has continued through the ages. The difficulty with this debate is that it is close to psychology. On the one hand is chosen for a very specific description of the nature of man and on the otherhand one uses concepts like 'self-interest', "altruism", "benevolence", "sympathy" which lead to philosophical questions, when you try to elucidate them.

We have to face many questions. For instance, if self-interest would lead us to obey the rules of justice and if we had no natural regard for the public interest, how do the rules come into existence and what forsters our respect for them?

The crucial fact is, that did we have no respect for the rules of justice, there would be no stability of property. Indeed, the institution of proberty could not and would not exist. Hume therefore saw next to self-interest "a tendency to public good, and to the promoting of peace, harmony and order in society". In other words, the psychological picture of human nature is modified to find better explanation for human morality.

What I want to make clear is that the quintessence of philosophy is to question things and not to offer a doctrine, that should read like a rule-book for life. And this has become of the philosophy of Ayn Rand. It has become a philosophy of life as a kind of ideology and not somuch a systematic method of constant questioning one's postition.

What is to my interest depends upon who I am and what I want. The question "Is justice more profitable than unjustice?" will be answered differently depending on whether it is answered by a just man or an unjust man. For what the just man wants is not what the unjust man wants.

Thus, there is no single spring of action or a single set of aims and goals entitled "Self-interest", which is the same in every man. "Self-interest" is not in fact the name of a motive at all. A man who acts from self-interest is a man who allows himself to act from certain motives in a given type of situation.

In other words, 'Self-interest" is another word for acting from certain motives and to study morality we thus have to study these motives. We still have no definite answer on the question what drives the human being, what his motives are. Are they universal, individual or contexual? We are still working on it.

Main Resources:
Joke J. Hermsen (ed.), Het denken van de ander (1997)
The Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 2nd edition

The Discussion

[13:23] hope63 Shepherd: but if we want to work on the study of motives.. we have to refer to other scientific knowledge,, and not limit it to the limited approach of mind/body/etc..
[13:23] Gemma Cleanslate: still thinking about what they will do
[13:23] ChatNoir Talon: Well the answer to the Information reaching the HQ is obvious
[13:23] hope63 Shepherd: to say.. philosophy based on historically developped thought..
[13:24] ChatNoir Talon: The information DID reach the HQ. and one of the soldiers made it.. otherwise we wouldn't know of the story :-)
[13:24] Gemma Cleanslate: not necessarily
[13:24] herman Bergson: I agree Hope
[13:24] hope63 Shepherd: chat.. they found the two dead.. with the bottle still full..
[13:24] herman Bergson: very clever ChatNoir ^_^
[13:24] ChatNoir Talon: :)
[13:24] ChatNoir Talon: Ahhh Touché
[13:24] AristotleVon Doobie: The soldier who will continue on to HQ is a rational Darwinism answer, the stongest will save the others and the weakest will be left to die.
[13:25] ChatNoir Talon: I like that Ari
[13:25] Gemma Cleanslate: yes
[13:25] Gemma Cleanslate: but is that not altruistic?
[13:25] hope63 Shepherd: whcih means trhey had rational elements to qualify a weaker or a stronger sri..
[13:25] hope63 Shepherd: ari
[13:25] AristotleVon Doobie: and so, we are still faced with his self-interest
[13:25] herman Bergson: What I wanted to point out is that I had no idea how to apply self-interest in this situation
[13:25] AristotleVon Doobie: and it's aparrent success
[13:26] ChatNoir Talon: Right.. is too ambiguous a term
[13:26] Alarice Beaumont: welll...self interest is to!
[13:26] herman Bergson: Butt hat is a problem with a lot of Rand's writings....
[13:26] hope63 Shepherd: why not play that famous game: herman has a baloon and the earth will collapse: now he can take 3 more.. give the arguments why it should be you..
[13:26] Gemma Cleanslate: yes
[13:26] ChatNoir Talon: It sounds like self-preservation.. but its hardly the same thing
[13:26] herman Bergson: the easy use of concepts and the lack of conceptual analysis
[13:27] herman Bergson: The more I read the more nervous I became
[13:27] Gemma Cleanslate: i do not think ayn rand would have an answer to this problem that would make sense to us
[13:27] herman Bergson: What she writes is clever and it read easily
[13:27] Hokon Cazalet: to me it seems to have a contradiction, both should take the bottle for themselves (be selfish), yet both cant live (ethical egoism seems to return us back to the war of all against all)
[13:27] Samuel Okelly: maybe one soldier was christian who decided to forego his own biological self interest in order to save the many in the sure knowledge that our biological state is a gateway and not "an end"
[13:27] hope63 Shepherd: that's what make me nervous too.. too easy to apply for too many..
[13:28] AristotleVon Doobie: Ms Rand was much too unforgiving with opponents of her theories, but like all philosohers, she had jewels and she had garbage
[13:28] Gemma Cleanslate: yes very !
[13:28] herman Bergson: Yes true Aristotle
[[13:28] ChatNoir Talon: "One man's garbage is another man's dinner"
[13:28] Anne Charles: Ms Rand's Objectivism might work in a world where everyone
has a three-digit IQ with no mental aberrations and the
manual work is done by robots, but that world doesn't exist,
does it? Only in a work of fiction are her ideas workable.
[13:28] AristotleVon Doobie: Christians are not more altruistic thank no Christians
[13:28] Gemma Cleanslate: her confidence in her mind was almost insane if you ask me
[13:29] Gemma Cleanslate: much as i liked her works
[13:29] ChatNoir Talon: Yes, I don't like her too much :-(
[13:29] Samuel Okelly: they are when compared to rand, ari ;-)
[13:29] hope63 Shepherd: she tried to link self-interest to responsibility.. but i didn't find out how that would work..
[13:29] AristotleVon Doobie: Oh, I like her, but she would not be my friend, I think
[13:29] Mickorod Renard: too right Sam
[13:30] Gemma Cleanslate: well maybe after a few glasses of wine...
[13:30] AristotleVon Doobie: I would argue that Christians as well as any other tribal religion is just as self-concerned as anyone else
[13:30] ChatNoir Talon: She's like the anti-ChatNoir
[13:30] Gemma Cleanslate: :-)
[13:30] Samuel Okelly: tribal????
[13:31] hope63 Shepherd: yelling..:)
[13:31] Mickorod Renard: I agree Ari,,but christians are not afraid of self sacrifice
[13:31] ChatNoir Talon: I agree, Ari. Atheist can be just as selfish as christians... I guess it depends on the situation and their compromise to their faith
[13:31] AristotleVon Doobie: We like to think we are altruistic, but in all things there is a reward for the self
[13:31] Gemma Cleanslate: very true
[13:31] Hokon Cazalet: their faith doesnt matter in this case, rand advocates that we ought to be selfish, not just want it
[13:31] hope63 Shepherd: camus: la chute...
[13:31] ChatNoir Talon: But the big difference is Motive. If you do it for the reward or for the other
[13:31] herman Bergson: This is a concern in philosophical discourse since Hobbes
[13:32] AristotleVon Doobie: I think she advocates that it is not wrong to be selfish
[13:32] Hokon Cazalet: she says its good to be selfish
[13:32] herman Bergson: The empiricist side has more difficulty finding answers than the rationalist side
[13:32] Samuel Okelly: the arrogance of atheism lends itself perfectly to the nonsense which is randism
[13:32] Mickorod Renard: sometimes selfish doesnt cause others harm..
[13:32] ChatNoir Talon: But it hardly does the others any good
[13:32] Mickorod Renard: note sometimes
[13:32] herman Bergson: I think we need to stop for a moment...
[13:33] ChatNoir Talon: Halt!
[13:33] Anne Charles: Ms Rand held that compassion for the feeble, the flawed, the
suffering and the guilty is a cover for hatred of the
strong, the able, the virtuous, the successful, the
confident and the happy. Can this woman really be
considered rational? Or even human?
[13:33] herman Bergson: For the word 'selfish' is so easily used
[13:33] herman Bergson: do we really know we all use the same meaning?
[13:33] Mickorod Renard: yes Herman
[13:33] ChatNoir Talon: Let's define it, please (and I agree Anne.. she can come off as 'inhuman' in some contexts)
[13:33] herman Bergson: I think we should return to Hope's first remark..
[13:34] Hokon Cazalet: when i say selfish i mean something different than how my sister uses it, so thats a good point
[13:34] AristotleVon Doobie: Of course the survival of the most fit is naturally rational
[13:34] hope63 Shepherd: lets face it.. selfish is -as ari would say-- an archaic .. or a a priori,hokon?
[13:34] herman Bergson: For understanding the human condition we need to look at other sciences too....
[13:34] herman Bergson: There are for instance examples of animals sacrificing themselves for the group
[13:35] AristotleVon Doobie: yes hope I think we are hard wire to survive
[13:35] ChatNoir Talon: Lemmings! ^^
[13:35] hope63 Shepherd: chat.. tis lemming story in the disney film
[13:35] herman Bergson: Even an ant species...
[13:35] hope63 Shepherd: was made up..
[13:35] Mickorod Renard: even vines will Herman
[13:35] herman Bergson: they seal their nest every night to survive...
[13:36] AristotleVon Doobie: yes, yes, but thes are not rational beings
[13:36] ChatNoir Talon: Those spider mothers wo become their children first meal
[13:36] herman Bergson: so a small group stays outside and close the entrances of the nest
[13:36] hope63 Shepherd: ari.. that is a rational rationality linked to man:) but nothing is contradicting rationality in nature..
[13:37] herman Bergson: No Aristotle....but is rationality the primary property of human kind?
[13:37] ChatNoir Talon: As rational being, I propose, we can see that ourselves are no more important in any important way than any other one. Can we say that our culture is better than any other? Can we say our life is worth more than any other? I don't believe so
[13:37] herman Bergson: Right ChatNoir
[13:37] ChatNoir Talon: Thus I can't rationally save my life first more than anyone elses
[13:37] Mickorod Renard: ayn rand would have to be described as a rational individual,,not human
[13:37] AristotleVon Doobie: You raise a good question Herman
[13:38] hope63 Shepherd: what did you believe chat.. and what can we know?
[13:38] herman Bergson: Just one observation....
[13:38] AristotleVon Doobie: It is like the question of god, does he exists merely because you can not disprove his existance
[13:38] herman Bergson: we do a lot with our rationality...but how much of our conduct is controled by other drives?
[13:39] Samuel Okelly: pandering to reductionist views and adopting them as "a given" highlights the inadequacy of a simple dualistic A or B option and forces us to reconsider the common rejection of platonic form
[13:39] Mickorod Renard: or does he not exist just cos we cant?
[13:39] Hokon Cazalet: i think Hume said "reason is and ought to be a slave to the passions"
[13:39] Laila Schuman: Can we say that our culture is better than any other? Can we say our life is worth more than any other? I don't believe so........ can we? i say that people do it every day...all day long... in arrogance
[13:39] AristotleVon Doobie: she did not preach against benelovence, but argued that altruism did not exist
[13:40] ChatNoir Talon: Exactly, Laila.
[13:40] Mickorod Renard: compassion is also a human trait
[13:40] herman Bergson: After all these centuries of philosophy ..we made some progress, but we are still at the beginning
[13:40] hope63 Shepherd: herman.. people are starting to tell me what they believe.. how can we know and what..?
[13:41] AristotleVon Doobie: yes, Herman, each question sought creates more
[13:41] ChatNoir Talon: That's philosophy for ya
[13:41] herman Bergson: Because of all I have lectured about now and all the questions we discussed I have come to a conclusion
[13:42] Hokon Cazalet: well, we ask for a reason to things, yet we then need a reason for those justifications, and so on
[13:42] herman Bergson: I concluded that the mind is a recursive system....
[13:42] herman Bergson: when you look at the index of the book of life and you look for mind you will read
[13:42] herman Bergson: Mind....See mind
[13:42] AristotleVon Doobie: lol
[13:42] Mickorod Renard: curse as in curse?
[13:43] herman Bergson: Yes Hokon...
[13:43] ChatNoir Talon: hehe
[13:43] herman Bergson: As I said earlier...we constantly are biting in our own tail
[13:43] AristotleVon Doobie: have we become the dog chasing its tail for so long that our spines are bent in a fixed circle?
[13:43] Gemma Cleanslate: :-)
[13:44] herman Bergson: Yes Aristotle.....that is my impression at the moment
[13:44] herman Bergson: and I try to understand it
[13:44] Mickorod Renard: philosophy has and is the mother
[13:45] ChatNoir Talon: So it's a) Ask ourselves why are we chasing the tail or B) Run around
[13:45] AristotleVon Doobie: if we could just look off to the side and break out of our revolving path
[13:45] Gemma Cleanslate: welll not much has changed since we started all this over a year ago
[13:45] herman Bergson: True Gemma...
[13:45] herman Bergson: Some has changed.....our ideas have become more diverse
[13:46] Alarice Beaumont: well,. i think more about those questions then I did before
[13:46] Gemma Cleanslate: that may be true
[13:46] Alarice Beaumont: so .. i still don't talk much more lol
[13:46] Mickorod Renard: and our understanding of diferent idea's
[13:46] Gemma Cleanslate: we have been exposed to many thoughts
[13:46] ChatNoir Talon: I think philosophy's not about getting the deep answers of life. But it makes us think better :-)
[13:46] Samuel Okelly: we are a driven ppl
[13:46] Gemma Cleanslate: but we come back to the questions over and over
[13:46] AristotleVon Doobie: I think change comes slowly, and it is those jewels for each individulas thought that makes the progress
[13:46] hope63 Shepherd: instead of simplifying our lifes by what we learn.. you complicated it
[13:47] herman Bergson: that was my point today ChatNoir
[13:47] ChatNoir Talon: ^^ Nicely done, sir
[13:47] Mickorod Renard: well some of us think we have made progress
[13:47] herman Bergson: Yes Hope...hopelessly complicated it gets...hmmmmm
[13:47] AristotleVon Doobie: one hopes, Mick
[13:47] Mickorod Renard: just not in the same direction as you Ari
[13:47] Alarice Beaumont: well..the more one knows.. the moe one questions..
[13:47] AristotleVon Doobie: :)))
[13:48] Mickorod Renard: there are many paths
[13:48] AristotleVon Doobie: but isnt my direction the right one?
[13:48] Mickorod Renard: grin
[13:48] herman Bergson: Seeing the many ideas and possibilities makes life definitely more colorful
[13:48] ChatNoir Talon: Lol
[13:48] Mickorod Renard: I agree Herman
[13:49] AristotleVon Doobie: we all bend and affect each others path as we share ourselves with each other
[13:49] herman Bergson: So I think we have only one option....
[13:49] Samuel Okelly: hearing the views of others helps us to challenge what we believe or cement our beliefs more solidly
[13:49] herman Bergson: We have to continue our quest
[13:49] Mickorod Renard: do another year?
[13:49] AristotleVon Doobie: indeed
[13:49] Mickorod Renard: yeaaa
[13:49] ChatNoir Talon: It's a neverending quest.. that's the fun of it :-)
[13:49] herman Bergson: there are still a number of women philosophers to come
[13:50] hope63 Shepherd: you who isn't spoiled yet with 1 year of class hokon.. what do you think..
[13:50] Mickorod Renard: Did we include Jesus as a philosopher?
[13:50] Hokon Cazalet: hehe
[13:50] Gemma Cleanslate: yes
[13:50] ChatNoir Talon: So maybe the dog just chases its tail because its exerciting and it fun :P
[13:50] Hokon Cazalet: my cats go after their tails for fun
[13:50] AristotleVon Doobie: well, he certainly was that, Mick
[13:51] AristotleVon Doobie: I think my dog is insane
[13:51] hope63 Shepherd: that's hard training for rl hokon..
[13:51] ChatNoir Talon: Why would Jesus work as a carpenter when he could make a fortune as a baker?
[13:51] Mickorod Renard: my dog is a selfish control freak
[13:51] hope63 Shepherd: or with a mcdonalds..
[13:51] Hokon Cazalet: yummy
[13:51] Gemma Cleanslate: oh god
[13:51] Alarice Beaumont: ,-)
[13:51] ChatNoir Talon giggles
[13:51] herman Bergson: Well I think that when we begin to think of MacDonnalds it is time to end our discussion ^_^
[13:52] Mickorod Renard: banker not baker?
[13:52] AristotleVon Doobie: yep !
[13:52] Hokon Cazalet: time for food =)
[13:52] AristotleVon Doobie: thanks Herman
[13:52] ChatNoir Talon: No, baker
[13:52] Gemma Cleanslate: exactly
[13:52] ChatNoir Talon: Thank you Herman!
[13:52] hope63 Shepherd: lol..
[13:52] herman Bergson: Thank you all for your interest and participation today :-)

Posted by herman_bergson on 2009-02-05 15:25:42

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