What is Philosophy?
Philosophy is the systematic and critical study of fundamental questions that arise both in everyday life and through the practice of other disciplines. Some of these questions concern the nature of reality: Is there an external world? What is the relationship between the physical and the mental? Does God exist? Others concern our nature as rational, purposive, and social beings: Do we act freely? Where do our moral obligations come from? How do we construct just political states? Others concern the nature and extent of our knowledge: What is it to know something rather than merely believe it? Does all of our knowledge come from sensory experience? Are there limits to our knowledge? And still others concern the foundations and implications of other disciplines: What is a scientific explanation? What sort of knowledge of the world does science provide? Do scientific theories, such as evolutionary theory, or quantum mechanics, compel us to modify our basic philosophical understanding of, and approach to, reality? What makes an object a work of art? Are aesthetic value judgments objective? And so on.
The aim in philosophy is not to master a body of facts, so much as think clearly and sharply through any set of facts. Towards that end, philosophers are trained to read critically, analyze and assess arguments, discern hidden assumptions, construct logically tight arguments, and express themselves clearly and precisely in both speech and writing.
I studied philosophy and psychology at university, and being an avid observer of the human condition, I started writing on the two subjects to bring the major ideas of both to the working man for a practical use. To this end my book 'A Book of You' examines the uniqueness of the individual through an understanding of their emotional DNA. Below are some excerpts from the book.
On uniqueness - 'We must understand we are as unique emotionally as we are physiologically, and our future lies in this development of our emotional DNA because it can be modified, our physiological DNA can't.'
On emotions - 'We should realise that our emotional DNA is more important than our physiological DNA. The first we can change, the second we can't, so we must therefore find a workable and explainable solution to our emotional individuality. '
On self-assessment - 'Tomorrow morning look in the mirror, use your fingers and pull the ugliest face you can. Slowly let it go and you'll say 'Hey, not so bad', it's sad that to appreciate the real we have to create the unreal.'
On relationships - 'Our emotional DNA is unique, so logic should indicate that relationships work better when we concentrate on what we don't have in common rather than what we do.'
On sexuality - 'To fully understand our sexuality we must realise that whoever designed the system only put the pleasure in it as the sweetener to make us do it in the first place.'........'For our sexual reproductive system to work as it was designed to do, then women must be sexually superior to men , he must orgasm, she doesn't, it wont work the other way.'
On religion - 'Wake up tomorrow, look out the window, which one is the Jewish cloud, where's the Catholic tree, point out the Muslim mountain. This wonderful world was not designed by committee, therefore logic will tell you if there is a God there can only be one.'.....'The only thing religions have in common is that they sell you time and it is not theirs' to sell, unfortunately time is easy to sell and yet impossible to buy.'.....'We have, and still do, killed each other in the name of religion and perhaps the reason the Jew kills the Palestinian, and vice-versa, is not because he believes his way is right, it's because he can't afford to believe that your way might be right.'
On selfishness - 'The emergence of China is like a virgin on her first date, she should be careful, if she jumps into bed with the West and embraces our entrepreneurial ideology too closely she may well fall pregnant with our selfishness.'
On youth - 'Don't be too hard on our youth, they can only grow up in a world we made for them, and can we honestly say we got that right.'