CONTENTS


CONTENTS

Click to go to parts of chapters.

Preface

Home Page

Syllabus

Introduction:

Introductory remarks

What's in it for me?

The philosophic enterprise

Chapter one:
Epistemology

What can we know with certainty? Research and method

Descartes' experiment: 1.empiricism, 2.realsim and 3.problematic experiments with sense data

4. critical realism, 5. idealism, 6. a material world doesn't exist, 7. arithmetic can be doubted, 8. solipsism, 9. skepticism, 10. a correspondence theory of truth will not work, 11. a coherence theory of truth will not work

12.Kant, 13. solipsism still persists, 14. what the mind knows are only its ideas, 15. The Cogito, 16. solipsism again, 17. the mind/body problem, 18. idealism's problem with its solution to the mind/body problem

concluding remarks and review

Chapter two:
Religion

Can God be shown to exist?

Mystic experience

The Teleological and Cosmological arguments

The Ontological argument. Pascal's argument; having a belief in God is a good bet

Can God be shown not to exist?

The Problem of Evil and other concerns

Faith, Marx and other commentary

Heaven

(Optional)Excursus on Memes and Christianity

(Optional) Ten reasons for having a Christian belief

Chapter Three:
Existentialism

The human predicament

Escape from the human predicament

Chapter Four:
Freedom and Determinism

Hard-Determinism

Soft-Determinism

Libertarianism

Chapter Five:
Society

Social and Political Philosophy

Are women naturally inferior to men?

Flaws in the argument

The argument that marriage is an institution which enslaves women

A quick overview of the nature of marriage

Democracy, the Tyranny of the Majority, Capitalism, Communism

Chapter Six:
Ethics

Ethical Relativism

Psychological and ethical egoism

Religion and ethics

Three basic moral principles:

Utilitarianism,

Problems with utilitarianism,

Deontology,

Social contract theory

Problems with social contract

Case studies:euthanasia, premarital sex, an anti-abortion argument,a pro-abortion argument,optional excursus on abortion,homosexuality, famine relief,anti-famine relief: see Hardin at http://www.garretthardinsociety.org/articles/art_ecolate_view_human_predicament.html,Optional,medical ethics: murder in the ER: a moral argument for socialized medicine, discrimination

Chapter Seven

The Meaning of Life

Odds and ends discussions

Take me to a quick review/discussion of Starship Troopers

Commentary on problems by students:

Take me to reply 1 on the problem of evil

Take me to reply 2 on the problem of evil

Voldemort: why is Voldemort evil incarnate?

Voldemort and unconditional love

Take me to an interesting Cartesian thesis about art and dreams: What is real art?

Stories

Torched: **

Wheel of Fortune: Wheel

PTSD: Dragon

The New Industrial Revolution: Revolution


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