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Old 01.06.2012, 23:32
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Philosopher's stone

Hello all,
Is anyone here interested in philosophy .. from Greek to modern to post-modern... From Socrates, Epicurus via Plato, Marcus Aurelius, Spinoza, Descartes, KANT, Schopenhauer, Wittgenstein to Derrida... If yes, then a discussion thread can be merited..

Thanks,

Yo Ho Ho and a bottle of rum,
Red Rackham's treasure and here we come
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  #2  
Old 01.06.2012, 23:56
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Re: Philosopher's stone

Only if you got an asshole!

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Hello all,
Is anyone here interested in philosophy .. from Greek to modern to post-modern... From Socrates, Epicurus via Plato, Marcus Aurelius, Spinoza, Descartes, KANT, Schopenhauer, Wittgenstein to Derrida... If yes, then a discussion thread can be merited..

Thanks,

Yo Ho Ho and a bottle of rum,
Red Rackham's treasure and here we come
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 02.06.2012, 00:14
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Re: Philosopher's stone

Ratbag.. perhaps you'd like to abstain ?

--

Could Solipsism be defined as philosophy ?
That is, if it really exists.
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Old 02.06.2012, 00:15
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Re: Philosopher's stone

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Hello all,
Is anyone here interested in philosophy .. from Greek to modern to post-modern... From Socrates, Epicurus via Plato, Marcus Aurelius, Spinoza, Descartes, KANT, Schopenhauer, Wittgenstein to Derrida... If yes, then a discussion thread can be merited..

Thanks,

Yo Ho Ho and a bottle of rum,
Red Rackham's treasure and here we come
All just opinions
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  #5  
Old 02.06.2012, 00:18
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Re: Philosopher's stone

NP!

Much more intelligence elsewhere!

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Ratbag.. perhaps you'd like to abstain ?

--

Could Solipsism be defined as philosophy ?
That is, if it really exists.
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  #6  
Old 02.06.2012, 03:39
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Re: Philosopher's stone

This is a wonderful site I've been reading lately. Take a look.
http://www.philosophybro.com/
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Old 02.06.2012, 06:56
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Re: Philosopher's stone

OP, not into rum, but the rest is a great idea..

Seems like we are all philosophers here sometimes

I am digging through some didacticians, psychologists and linguists in theories of communication, it's all fascinating. In terms of domestic personalities, Pestalozzi is my hero (I had to write a phil piece on phil of edu). I love how pragmatic and self taught he was. Naivist.

Last edited by MusicChick; 02.06.2012 at 07:56.
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Old 02.06.2012, 07:23
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Re: Philosopher's stone

If you enjoy alternative topics, i would suggest listening to George Noory's show on Coast2Coast AM... I listen to it at least once a week through youtube. I listened to a really fascinating episode yesterday about reincarnation (and egypt) and past lives
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Old 02.06.2012, 19:47
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Re: Philosopher's stone

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Could Solipsism be defined as philosophy ?
That is, if it really exists.
I would like to answer this with the small knowledge I have on this subject. Kindly pardon me for any mistakes and please do point them out if you find any. I also am referring to a few articles and books from which I am quoting in verbatim to the best of my knowledge

I would like to begin by defining Solipsism for the benefit of those who do not have an idea about the same. Solipsism - From Latin solo - only and ipso - self. It means the only reality in this universe is oneself and nothing else. Kant argued in his Critiques that the whole world is a mix of two things called Noumena (things in themselves and the associated reality) and Phenomena (our experience and feeling of the things). If Solipsism is correct, then this whole Kantian argument will fall down as in this case only Phenomenon exists. Further, if solipsism is true then it tolls the death knell for all the ethical theories which ask to do good and be good.

There have been many attempts to deal with this; particularly by Ludwig Wittgenstein in his Tractatus Logico Philosophicus and in the Indian Philosophical jewels called Upanishads. First, looking at Wittgenstein who says thus
"Now the man whom we call a solipsist and who says that only his own experiences are real, does not thereby disagree with us about any practical question of fact, he does not say that we are simulating when we complain of pains, he pities us as much as anyone else, and at the same time he wishes to restrict the use of the epithet “real” to what we should call his experiences; and perhaps he doesn’t want to call our experiences “experiences” at all. For he would say that it was inconceivable that experiences other than his own were real." (Wittgenstein 59 The Blue and Brown Books. )...

This is the gist of solipsism, for we can see the sufferings/ happiness of others but we cannot experience the same ourselves. To be clearer, consider this example: My neighbour wins a million sestertii in a lottery draw and he is consequently happy. Now, even if I win the same amount, my happiness is not the same as his since however I try to follow his each step, the experiences can be similar but not the same.. So for me the only reality is what I experience. It does not mean that others' experience is false and they are lying.. It is just that I do not have an opinion of the same (cue Cannut and Ratbag.. see still no opinion )... In Wittgenstein's words "The solipsist who says “only I feel real pain”, “only I really see (or hear) is not stating an opinion; and that’s why he is so sure of what he says." (Wittgenstein 60)..

Let us do this Gedankenexperiment to be crystal clear.. Assume that the brain of the solipsist is connected to the brains of three other individuals, such that when they feel any pain, he feels it as well. Even though the solipsist would be feeling the pains of their bodies, he would still assert that he doesn’t know that they are experiencing the pains. He is experiencing real pain, yes, in the first person sense, but he is still experiencing that pain as himself. Even if all the four persons' memories are somehow interconnected, still the the solipsist's experience is his own.. Furthering this point, one cannot say whether another person's experiences are absolutely real, since to do so would require a fulcrum to judge upon.. Once we start to judge something, then we are comparing that something with our own experiences, what our own self has felt... And the fact is unless we ourself transform into some Mr.X and experience something, there is no way to factually say that Mr.X's experiences are absolutely real.

“When I think about it a little longer I see that what I wished to say was: “Always when anything is seen, something is seen”. I.e., that of which I said it continued during all the experiences of seeing was not any particular entity “I”, but the experience of seeing itself.” (Wittgenstein 63)

“I could also express my claim by saying : ‘I am the vessel of life’… I could almost say that by ‘I’ I mean something which just now inhabits Ludwig Wittgenstein., something which the others can’t see.” (Wittgenstein 65-66).

A similar argument is found in the Upanishads from India(composed circa 1000-400 B.C.). They say this
"Not that which the eye can see, but that whereby the eye can see: know that to be the self, and not what people here adore; Not that which the ear can hear, but that whereby the ear can hear: know that to be the self, and not what people here adore;
Not that which speech can illuminate, but that by which speech can be illuminated: know that to be the self, and not what people here adore;
Not that which the mind can think, but that whereby the mind can think: know that to be the self, and not what people here adore.
The One Power that illumines everything and every one is indivisible. It is the Ear behind the ears, Mind behind the mind, Speech behind speech, Vital Life behind life. The ears cannot hear it; it is what makes the ears hear. The eyes cannot see it; it is what makes the eyes see. You cannot speak about it; it is what makes you speak. The mind cannot imagine it; it is what makes the mind think. It is different from what all we know; yet it is not known either. This Self is not someone other than you." (Kena Upanishad: Translation by Sanderson Beck)

Yes, all our organs, organ systems and our mind make up the self but the self itself is greater than the sum of all these.. It is the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. This is illustrated in the Chandogya Upanishad as a dialogue between the sage Prajapati and Indra, a god.

Prajapati successively identifies the Self with various parts of a person’s identity, leading Indra to the realization that eternal, ultimate reality cannot be limited in such ways. First, he tells Indra that the Self is the body, and Indra replies:
“If the Self is well-dressed when the body is well dressed, well adorned when the body is well adorned, then the Self will be blind when the body is blind, lame when the body is lame, paralyzed when the body is paralyzed. And when the body dies, the Self too will die. In such knowledge I see no value.” (Baird and Heimbeck 28)
Next, Prajapati tells Indra that the Self is the experience of the dream-state (the human consciousness is divided into three viz. waking conscious, dreaming conscious and the deep sleep conscious.. Refer Mandukya Upanishad), to which Indra responds:
“…in the dreaming state, it is true, the Self is not blind when the body is blind, nor lame when the body is lame; yet in this state the Self may still suffer and even weep. In such knowledge I see no value.” (Baird and Heimbeck 29)
Prajapati then goes a step further in removing the Self from the individual ego, by telling Indra that the Self is the state of dreamless sleep. Once again, however, Indra is wise to the deception:
“’Venerable One,’ replied Indra, ‘in the state of dreamless sleep one is not aware of oneself or of any other. The state of dreamless sleep is very close to extinction. In this knowledge I see no value.’” (Baird and Heimbeck 29)
After Indra sees through this final level of falsely identifying the Self with facets of bodily and individual experience, Prajapati gives Indra his final teaching on the Self:
“It is true that the body is perishable, but within it dwells the imperishable Self… Like the wind, like clouds, like thunder and lightning, which rise from space without physical shape and reach the transcendent light in their own form, those who rise above body-consciousness ascend to the transcendent light in their real form, the Self.” (Baird and Heimbeck 29)..

And the Upanishads go as far as to say this personal experience, this Self is God, the Universe and everything we can relate to; for this Self is the master and itself the servant..This Self is the first person experience of Wittgenstein, Averroes’ monopsychism, and Parmenides’ One... I am sure that the more we think about this deeply, the clearer it will become.. And I urge all the interested 'Selves' to do so.

Special thanks to Philoso-Babble for the great post which I have used extensively here..

Oooof.. That took so long to write... I hope I have helped to assuage your doubts Sky... Thanks for the question..
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Old 02.06.2012, 21:25
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Re: Philosopher's stone

Thank you for your educational post KMB.

Splitting hairs, but the question was if solipsism could be defined AS philosophy, not in or by philosophy. As I see it, the question is if this quality of self-centric experience can be equated with the discipline of philosophy. Or, continuing, is there something common in the associated branches of philosophy which overlaps with the totality of our shared human experience?

(That is, if the concept of solipsism can be applied to the general concept of social humanity...)
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Old 03.06.2012, 00:24
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Re: Philosopher's stone

Dear KMB,

Thank you kindly for having taken the time to explain Solipsism via Wittgenstein's "I am my world" and for having compared it to the idealism of Hindu Upanishads.

mmmm..... transcendentalists
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