Up@dawn 2.0

Friday, October 14, 2016

Quiz Oct17/18

Kant & Hegel, HP 701-746; PW 18.

1. What did Kant do every day with such predictable regularity that his neighbors were said to have set their watches by it?

2. What are space and time, for Kant, if not concepts?

3. What famous phrase did Kant introduce in his Metaphysic of Morals to distinguish his view from utilitarianism?

4. Who was the Galileo and Newton of the 19th century?

5. What did Hegel consider unreal or illusory?

6. What does Russell say freedom meant for Hegel?

7. What concerns did Kant share with Nietzsche?

8. What impresses Gros about Kant?

DQ

  • How would you define "time" and "space"? Do they exist independently of us, or of any and all sentient beings?
  • What makes right actions right? If you do the right thing, does it matter why you did it?
  • Is everything ultimately connected with everything else? Or do things stand more-or-less loosely together (and apart)?
  • If you voluntarily follow a rule or law, is that a free act? Or is it compelled?
  • Are reading, writing, and eating important to you? Why?
  • Do you practice any form of daily discipline that helps you accomplish your goals in a slow and steady way?

Old posts-
[Note: we'll get to Schopenhauer & Bentham soon]

1. Who was Minerva, and what did Hegel say about her? 



(More Hegel quotes below*)

2. Hegel (accepted, rejected) Kant's view that noumenal reality lies beyond our reach, and that we can know only the appearances of things in the phenomenal world. 

3. Stern says Hegel's philosophy is ______ (similar to, different from) Mill's in its emphasis on progress, optimism, and freedom of speech.


4. Schopenhauer was _____  in general, but ______ about the possibility of personal "enlightenment". (optimistic, pessimistic)

5. Schopenhauer called the "deeper reality beyond the world of appearances" ___. 

6. (T/F) Even though he once pushed an old lady down the stairs for chatting outside his door, Schopenhauer thought harming other people was a kind of self-injury. 

BONUS: Who thought he might better understand Hegel if he first ingested nitrous oxide before reading The Phenomenology of Spirit?

BONUS+: Was Schopenhauer an ascetic? 


DQ:
1. Do you consider history important, either your own personal history or that of your community, nation, world, species...? Do you think it generates what Hegel called a "gradual increase in self-awareness"? Is there a "spirit" of history? Is it getting smarter? What has history taught you? Us? What does it ever teach anyone? (Henry Ford said it's just one damn thing after another.) Is it true that those who fail to learn its lessons are doomed to repeat its mistakes? (And do you know who said that?)

2. Is it worth trying to grasp the ultimate reality of things, or do you agree with Douglas Adams?  "The chances of finding out what's really going on in the universe are so remote, the only thing to do is hang the sense of it and keep yourself occupied." Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

3Are you optimistic about progress in society and history? Are we solving more problems than we're surrendering to? Will future generations be happier, smarter, kinder? If you're pessimistic, does that make you a misanthrope? (How do you feel about George Carlin?) 

4. What do you think of Schopenhauer's belief that everyday life ("the human situation") is a meaningless cycle of will, striving, and unfulfilled desire? Is a blind, purposeless, voracious Will really the ultimate reality of our existence? What do you think of the idea that art and music are our salvation? LH 135

5. What's the deepest reality you know about? How do you know?

6. Should your metaphysics make you a better person? If there's a disconnect between what you believe about reality and how you treat other people, is that a personal or a philosophical failing? Or both?


HE has short hair and a long brown beard. He is wearing a three-piece suit. One imagines him slumped over his desk, giggling helplessly. Pushed to one side is an apparatus out of a junior-high science experiment: a beaker containing some ammonium nitrate, a few inches of tubing, a cloth bag. Under one hand is a piece of paper, on which he has written, "That sounds like nonsense but it is pure on sense!" He giggles a little more. The writing trails away. He holds his forehead in both hands. He is stoned. He is William James, the American psychologist and philosopher. And for the first time he feels that he is understanding religious mysticism... (from "The Nitrous Oxide Philosopher"... "The Subjective Effects of Nitrous Oxide"... Hegel's Phenomenology of Spirit)

But despite the density and difficulty of his prose style, "friend Hegel" had a fairly straightforward message:
To the degree that we are thinking beings, Hegel says, we have to consider ourselves as part of a larger whole and not as neatly individuated. He calls this mental whole Geist, or Spirit, [or Absolute Reason,] and tries to work out the rules by which it develops through time… Robert Prowse
The message is that we're all a part of a progressive history, towards freedom and enlightenment. 
Hegel thinks that one important movement in history is the movement from thinking that just one of us is entitled to freedom (a king, say) to some (the patricians of ancient Athens, say) to all of us, where obviously this development relates to changing views of what freedom is, what we are, how we relate to one another... I'm not free unless I'm working for the good of society.  Robert Stern
Less mystifyingly expressed, Hegel seems to be saying the same thing Carl Sagan used to say:we are the universe, coming gradually but steadily to know itself. History (personal, social, and natural) is the process of dawning self-awareness. We're waking up. This is good!

So Hegel's an optimist, unlike his countryman Schopenhauer and perhaps oddly more like the Brits Mill and Darwin.
==

*A few pithier-than-usual Hegel quotes:
“Only one man ever understood me, and he didn't understand me.” 
“Truth is found neither in the thesis nor the antithesis, but in an emergent synthesis which reconciles the two.” [There's a pedestrian example of what Hegel means by "dialectic" in The Cave and the Light: think of automobiles as the thesis, traffic jams as the antithesis, and stop signs & traffic laws as the synthesis... and so on, ho hum.]
“We may affirm absolutely that nothing great in the world has been accomplished without passion.” 
“What experience and history teaches us is that people and governments have never learned anything from history, or acted on principles deduced from it.” 
“To be independent of public opinion is the first formal condition of achieving anything great.” 
 
*Schopenhauer was darker, maybe deeper, probably not nicer. He's another philosopher who loved dogs, probably more than people.

“The assumption that animals are without rights and the illusion that our treatment of them has no moral significance is a positively outrageous example of Western crudity and barbarity. Universal compassion is the only guarantee of morality.” 

“We will gradually become indifferent to what goes on in the minds of other people when we acquire a knowledge of the superficial nature of their thoughts, the narrowness of their views and of the number of their errors. Whoever attaches a lot of value to the opinions of others pays them too much honor.” 


“It is difficult to find happiness within oneself, but it is impossible to find it anywhere else.” 

“It would be better if there were nothing. Since there is more pain than pleasure on earth, every satisfaction is only transitory, creating new desires and new distresses, and the agony of the devoured animal is always far greater than the pleasure of the devourer.”

“What disturbs and depresses young people is the hunt for happiness on the firm assumption that it must be met with in life. From this arises constantly deluded hope and so also dissatisfaction. Deceptive images of a vague happiness hover before us in our dreams, and we search in vain for their original. Much would have been gained if, through timely advice and instruction, young people could have had eradicated from their minds the erroneous notion that the world has a great deal to offer them.”

Old post-
Thursday, April 9, 2015
Hegel & Schopenhauer

We're into the 19th century, with Hegel (and Robert Stern on Hegel's dialectic) and his arch-rival Schopenhauer. A pair of audacious Hun metaphysicians who presumed to speak grandly for Reality. 

(What's real, if you ask me? Younger Daughter's home pitching debut for her new school resulted in a 15-3 win yesterday afternoon, as she chipped in another triple and a beautiful scoring line drive to support her own cause. Later, Older Daughter phoned home from college with news that she's been recognized for excelling in both cinema and oratory. That's reality. I don't need a theory to tell me so. But Hegel and Schopenhauer thought otherwise.)

And here come the Germans now, led by their skipper Knobby Hegel... 

Hegel was the ultimate optimist, Schopenhauer the uber-pessimist. I prefer to split the difference with meliorism, myself. More on that later. [Hegel up@dawn... pointless will... James reads Hegel; and some quotes from Schopenhauer, Mill, and Darwin]

They’re both in the song, if that helps. Let’s see… Schopenhauer and Hegel were both out-consumed by David Hume.

But it would probably be more helpful to relate the Germans to their predecessor Kant.

Schopenhauer and Hegel tried to go beyond Kant’s proscription against specifying the “thing-in-itself,” the ultimate “noumenal” reality beneath the appearances. For Hegel, History’s the thing. For Schopenhauer it’s Will.

An amusing sidelight: in spite of himself, and his intent to renounce personal will (so as to starve ultimate Will, or at least deprive it), Schopenhauer was stubbornly competitive with his philosophical rival Hegel. He insisted on lecturing at the same time as the more popular Hegel, withpredictable results

But you have to wonder if his auditors understood a word Hegel said? Maybe free gas was provided? (See William James’s “observations on the effects of nitrous-oxide-gas-intoxication” and his essay On Some Hegelisms - ”sounds like nonsense, but it is pure on-sense!”)

That's funny, but not entirely fair. Hegel wanted to fly with Minerva, through a glorious dawn. Any given snippet of Hegelian prose may be impenetrable, but his overall objective is clear enough: he wanted us to understand ourselves and our lives as active participants in the great progressive unfolding of history, of the coming-to-consciousness of spirit ("geist"), of the birth of enlightenment and freedom. Friendly aspirations all.

My old Mizzou prof often spoke of "Friend Hegel," and so did Michael Prowse.
To the degree that we are thinking beings, Hegel says, we have to consider ourselves as part of a larger whole and not as neatly individuated। He calls this mental whole Geist, or Spirit, and tries to work out the rules by which it develops through time… Hegel didn’t regard Geist as something that stands apart from, or above, human individuals. He saw it rather as the forms of thought that are realised in human minds… What Hegel does better than most philosophers is explain how individuals are linked together and why it is important to commit oneself to the pursuit of the general or common good.
And that's why, as Stern points out, 
Hegel thinks that one important movement in history is the movement from thinking that just one of us is entitled to freedom (a king, say) to some (the patricians of ancient Athens, say) to all of us, where obviously this development relates to changing views of what freedom is, what we are, how we relate to one another... I'm not free unless I'm working for the good of society.
That's not Schopenhauer's view, nor is it even remotely close to his mindset and general sensibility. Anything at all ambitious, let alone something as grand as the liberation of society and triumph of good, was to him just more fuel for the Will. Will is a voracious, never-sated, all-devouring blind force or power that uses us, and everything else in its path, to no end beyond its own perpetuation and expansion.

Moreover, Schopenhauer was morose and constitutionally dis-affected. He despised happiness as a form of self-delusion.

But I have to admit: for such an old sourpuss, Schopenhauer’s a lot of fun to read. His aphoristicArt of Controversy is a good place to begin.
The average man pursues the shadow of happiness with unwearied labour; and the thinker, the shadow of truth; and both, though phantoms are all they have, possess in them as much as they can grasp. Life is a language in which certain truths are conveyed to us; could we learn them in some other way, we should not live. Thus it is that wise sayings and prudential maxims will never make up for the lack of experience, or be a substitute for life itself.

And his Studies in Pessimism are oddly cheerful.

Schopenhauer, In Our Time...


One of the lesser-known but more intriguing facets of Schopenhauer’s philosophy was his belief that music is our point of entree to Will, and to ultimate reality.

Schopenhauer, like Rousseau, loved his dog…So maybe he knew a little something about love.






1. Kant said we can't know the _______ world of things-in-themselves, but we can know the _______ world of appearances as presented by our mental "spectacles."

2. If (and only if) you help an injured stranger because _________ (it's your duty, you feel sorry for him), Kant says, you've acted morally. 







3. Jeremy Bentham's utilitarianism affirms the Greatest ______ Principle, defining _____ as pleasure and the absence of pain.


4. According to Nigel, the best way for a Benthamite to maximize pleasure and minimize pain would be to plug into what? OR, who was Bentham's famous pupil and critic, who said maximizing pleasure and minimizing pain is not all there is to the good life?

5. What's the difference between analytic and synthetic knowledge, and what does a priori mean?

6. According to Moore, where does Kant rank among philosophers?


BONUS: Who said “
Immanuel Kant was a real pissant who was very rarely stable"?

BONUS+: Who did Kant say "awakened [him] from his dogmatic slumbers”?

BONUS++: Who had a walking stick he called "Dapple" and a teapot called "Dick"?


BONUS: What Irish-born critic of the French Revolution said it was a sham, proclaiming equality as a pretext for redistributing property?

DQ:

  • Do you think it would be possible to communicate with an intelligent alien, whose mental "spectacles" might not perceive space, time, cause-and-effect, etc., as we do? How? Or do you think such categories must be universal among all forms of intelligence? Why?
  • Have you ever gone out of your way to help a stranger? Did you do so because you thought it was the right thing to do, because you felt sympathetic for the stranger's plight, or for some other reason? Do you agree with Kant that dutifulness alone is morally relevant to such acts?
  • Is it better to "do unto others as you would have them do unto you," or as they would have you do...?
  • What does it mean to you to "use your reason" and think for yourself? Does that require a particular form of courage? (Kant: "Sapere Aude," have the courage to use your reason...)
  • Do you agree that maximizing pleasure and minimizing pain are the main (if not exclusive) criteria of ethical action? Why or why not?
  • There's a (false) old saying that he or she who finishes the game with the most toys wins. What about finishing with the most blissful experiences? Would that make you a winner? Would a lifetime of blissful experiences, "real" or not, be tempting to you?
  • What's so funny about liberty, equality, and fraternity? (An Elvis Costello question) 
  • OR, Is redistributivist activism a pretext, or a legitimate political program?
  • Who, in your opinion at this stage of your philosophical education, is #1 (in terms of insight, influence, wit and charm or whatever)?



“Dare to think!”

“He who is cruel to animals becomes hard also in his dealings with men. We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals.”

“Act in such a way that you treat humanity, whether in your own person or in the person of any other, never merely as a means to an end, but always at the same time as an end.”

“Two things fill the mind with ever-increasing wonder and awe, the more often and the more intensely the mind of thought is drawn to them: the starry heavens above me and the moral law within me.”

“Out of the crooked timber of humanity, no straight thing was ever made.”

“For peace to reign on Earth, humans must evolve into new beings who have learned to see the whole first.” 


"The day may come when the rest of animal creation may acquire those rights which never could have been withholden from them but by the hand of tyranny. The French have already discovered that the blackness of the skin is no reason why a human being should be abandoned without redress to the caprice of a tormentor. It may one day come to be recognized that the number of legs, the villosity of the skin, or the termination of the os sacrum are reasons equally insufficient for abandoning a sensitive being to the same fate. What else is it that should trace the insuperable line? Is it the faculty of reason, or perhaps the faculty of discourse? But a full-grown horse or dog is beyond comparison a more rational, as well as a more conversable animal, than an infant of a day or a week or even a month old. But suppose they were otherwise, what would it avail?" 

“Every day will allow you, --will invite you to add something to the pleasure of others, --or to diminish something of their pains.”

“No power of government ought to be employed in the endeavor to establish any system or article of belief on the subject of religion.”

“What is the source of this premature anxiety to establish fundamental laws? It is the old conceit of being wiser than all posterity—wiser than those who will have had more experience,—the old desire of ruling over posterity—the old recipe for enabling the dead to chain down the living.”

“The quantity of pleasure being equal, push-pin is as good as poetry.” 

==
An old post-
Today in CoPhi we'll talk Immanuel Kant, who said the starry heavens struck him with awe (and Adrian Moore on Kant's metaphysics), Jeremy Bentham, and Richard Bourke on ancestral conservative Edmund Burke. [Kant & Bentham quote gallery]

Immanuel Kant was a real pissant who was very rarely stable.”*

No, he wasn’t. Not at all. But that’s still the first thought that ever pops into my head when I hear his name, thanks to the Bruces, and my old Kant professor from grad school whose Brooklynese made his “how I met my wife” story downright vulgar.

Kant was actually the most soberly stable and fastidious of men. They “set their watches by him as he went on his daily walk” in 18th-century Konigsberg, Prussia. That’s probably the thing about him I like most. He well knew the truth of William James’s later observation that steady habits are our greatest productive ally. Kant was as productive, eventually, as he was un-flashy.“Awakened from his dogmatic slumbers” and his romantic dalliance withRousseau and Leibniz by David Hume’s dash of cold water skepticism, he assigned appearance and reality to the phenomenal and noumenal worlds, respectively. He didn’t mean that phenomena are unreal or unknowable, just that we know them through the categorical spectacles of our projective understanding. We don’t know them “in themselves,” the “ding-an-sich” is a non-starter.Russell: "The 'thing-in-itself' was an awkward element in Kant's philosophy, and was abandoned by his immediate successors, who accordingly fell into something very like solipsism." Or what may be worse, into the conceit of thinking they had themselves discovered the things-in-themselves: for Hegel, History, for Schopenhauer, Will, etc.

"It's as if we have innate spectacles through which we look at reality," and knowledge is what we get from "reflecting on the nature of our own spectacles." The spectacles give us categorical knowledge of space and time, causality, and all the other things Hume called mere habituation and custom, or constant conjunctions. "Science is concerned with how things appear to us through the spectacles," continues Adrian Moore, and the result (nicely summarized by Nigel) is supposed to be the protection of the possibility of God, free will, the moral law, etc., "even though we can't be absolutely sure about these things."

But Kant knew what he knew. The stars are awesome, and so is a dutiful conscience (“the moral law within”). Fealty to the latter led him to his “Categorical Imperative” and its “silly” obsession with inflexibly rational consistency.Kant. Obsessive, punctual of habit, semi-gregarious, a mouth-breather, fond of Cicero, and also a philosophical walker (but with a weird aversion to sweat). Famous last word: “Sufficit.” Enough. (I like his countryman Goethe’s better: “Mehr licht.” More light. (Or was it “Mehr nicht,” No more?) Famous living words: “Sapere aude.” Have the courage to reason and think.Kant & Hegel from Osopher [Kant/Hegel slides]

What I love most about my teaching job is that it keeps teaching me new things about our subjects. Utilitarian pioneer Jeremy Bentham is a good example.

It should come as no surprise that the philosopher who had his body preserved and housed for public display (though he keeps losing his head) in University College London had other charms and quirks, but I learned of them only recently. The first volume of Parekh’s Critical Assessmentsreports that (like Kant and Rousseau) Bentham also was a walker and an eccentric, an understatedly “amusing” man.


Bentham was an extremely amusing man, and in many respects rather boyish. Most of his life he retained an instinctive horror of being left alone… He had a large black tom cat of an ‘uncommonly serious temperament’ which he nicknamed the ‘Doctor’ and ‘The Reverend Doctor Langborn’… He had amusing names for his daily activities and favourite objects. His favourite walking stick was called Dapple, after Sancho Panza’s mule, and his ‘sacred tea-pot’ was called Dick. His daily routine included ‘antejentacular circumgyration’ or a walk before breakfast, an ‘anteprandial circumgyration’ before dinner, and an ‘ignominious expulsion’ at midnight accompanied by the ‘putter-to-bed’, the ‘asportation of the candle’ and the ‘transportation of the window.’So yes, he was weird. But also “basically a warm, generous, and kind” man. He wanted to reform the misery-inducing industrial culture of his time and place, and to improve the basic quality of life of his fellow human beings. So, this cartoon featuring Bentham's zombie auto-icon confronting Phillipa Foot is unfair. But not unfunny.

Create all the happiness you are able to create: remove all the misery you are able to remove. Every day will allow you, will invite you, to add something to the pleasure of others, or to diminish something of their pains. And for every grain of enjoyment you sow in the bosom of another, you shall find a harvest in your own…

Sorry, Mr. Mill, that’s just not what I’d call a “pig philosophy.” It’s humane and compassionate, and it deserves a hearing too.Russell says Bentham was nicer than his philosophy per se encourages people to be, "seduced by his own kindly and affectionate nature" into expecting everyone to pursue not only their own pleasure but to seek to maximize others' as well. I think that's an unduly (but not uncommonly) literalist reading of "greatest happiness for the greatest number." The greatest number would be wholly inclusive. The trouble comes when he dismisses individuals' rights, our ultimate safeguard against unjust discriminatory exclusion, as "nonsense on stilts." A utilitarian need not endorse that dismissal.

A note from a friend currently in painful convalescence from surgery says Bentham was right, the Stoics were wrong: ignoring pain does not work, we've got to work actively to replace it with pleasure.

And following up on Rousseau and Kant and the mystery of what it was about the former’s Emile that kept the latter off the streets– “Everybody who does Education has to read Emile cover-to-cover,” says this jet-lagged Yale lecturer– Rousseau’s Dog is instructive:

According to one anecdote, the fastidious Immanuel Kant, whose daily routine was so rigid and undeviating that people set their watches by him, became so absorbed in Émile that he bewildered his neighbors by forgetting to take his usual post-lunch constitutional… Rousseau understood, he thought, the paradox of autonomy—that freedom meant conformity to a rule. As he was writing his own masterpiece, the Critique of Pure Reason, he had a single portrait in his house—of Jean- Jacques Rousseau. Rousseau’s Dog

So while it was Hume whom he credited with waking him from his “dogmatic slumber,” it was the somber Swiss who really inspired his work and set his Copernican Revolution spinning.

But, Kant "realized that Rousseau's picture of the noble savage was an ideal construct:'This wish for a return to an age of simplicity and innocence is futile.'" (Cave&Light)

In other words: we must live in our own age, not retreat to a romantic and probably false dream of an idyllic Eden. We must continually work to make our complex and "civilized" arrangements and institutions genuinely civilizing. The melioristic impulse is also in our nature.

But I still wonder what the dog thought. [Chains, laws, stars, push-pin & poetry]

I'm not a big fan of Burke, with his defense of aristocracy and the 1% solution. But I do love the quote from him that most everybody knows: “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” If he said it. I know he didn't say one of the other things commonly and falsely attributed to him on the Internet: “Those who don't know history are doomed to repeat it.”

That last is actually a misquotation of Santayana. Or maybe Abe Lincoln. But don't believe everything you read on the Internet.

For discussion. The Kantian mental spectacles that allegedly give us our phenomenal world might very well also prevent us from seeing someone else's. Imagine an alien intelligence, whose world must look very different. Could it be that, on Kantian grounds, the search for ET is doomed? Or are the languages of math and physics literally universal?

Kant's commitment to dutifulness as the sole determinant of correct moral action is distressing to most of us, who want to feel virtuous in our sympathies and not deflected from the paths of righteousness. Why can't solicitude for strangers be dutiful and compassionate, and moral in equal measures?

Is there any reason why the impulse to maximize pleasure and minimize pain must be strictly egotistical? Why do critics of utilitarian ethics make this assumption?

There's a (false) old saying that he or she who finishes the game with the most toys wins. What about finishing with the most blissful experiences? Would that make you a winner? Would a lifetime of blissful experiences, "real" or not, be enviable or pitiable? (What would Neo or Professor Nozick say?)

An Elvis Costello question: What's so funny about liberty, equality, and fraternity? OR, Is redistributivist activism a pretext, or a legitimate political program?

Finally, and in anticipation of next week's exam extra credit discussion prompt: Who, in your opinion at this stage of your philosophical education, is #1 (in terms of insight, influence, wit and charm or whatever)? Moore says Kant. I can't agree. I do love Russell's impish question concerning the Sage's bachelorhood: 

The Encyclopaedia Britannica remarks that 'as he never married, he kept the habits of his studious youth to old age'. I wonder whether the author of this article was a bachelor or a married man.You probably have to be married (though not necessarily male) to get what's impish about that.

99 comments:

  1. (h3) Space and Time? I would say that time does exist independent of all sentient life, as nothing we do can change, halt, excel, or in anyway interact with time. Space we have some limited effect on, as we can change spaces to a degree, However space is not predicated on us nor we it so I would say it is also independent.

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    1. Bryce, do you think that time can be rewritten, that we can change the future, or no?

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    2. I feel we can alter the arrangement of space, but not space itself.

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  2. (H3) Right? If you do the right thing than from a moral stand point it shouldn't matter what you do (with the important prevision of having the truly definition what right is.) From a practical stand point the right thing to do morally might not always the right thing to do practically.

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    1. Hmmmm. I agree and disagree. My question to counter this arguement is that what if you must do something drastically wrong in order to accomplish the 'right' thing? Is it still right?

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  3. (H3) It's all connected? I would say yes. If for no other reason than cause and effect, we are all loosely connected.

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  4. (H3) Follow the law. If you voluntarily follow the law that is a free act, just like voluntary disobedience is a free act. One always has a choice of actions.

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    1. Outright, one can perceive it to be a free act, but I personally can see it as being compelled because there are consequences to everything we do and we are compelled by these consequences.l

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    2. Outright, one can perceive it to be a free act, but I personally can see it as being compelled because there are consequences to everything we do and we are compelled by these consequences.l

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    3. (H3) Just because there are consequences doesn't mean it's not a free act. That's how we decide, if there were no consequences, good or bad, what would be the point of any of it, life in general?

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  5. (H3) Read, write, eat? I read to progress intellectually and personally. I write to make that growth profitable and enjoyable. I eat to allow myself to read and write. By reading I allow myself to continue writing so I may eat. By writing I am able to buy food so I can afford to read... and into infinity.

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  6. (H3) Daily Discipline? My sleep schedule/morning routine basically. I have worked both down to basically a science to find out optimal time frames, deadlines, and checkpoint to allow myself maximum time to devote to maximizing my number of productive waking hours of during the working week.

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  7. (H3) Here is a question, could you really classify Kant as a peripatetic. Philo. of Walking seems to suggest so but between Russel and Gros the picture of him I got was that he only had his one hour of devoted walking, and he spent more time sitting or indoors.

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    1. (H3) I guess the question would be, what do you consider peripatetic walking to be? If it is that all philosophical thinking must occur while in physical motion, than Kant doesn't qualify. However, if you believe it just means walking is used as a mean or tool to further philosophical thought, than Kant makes the cut.

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    2. I believe Kant can be called a peripatetic because he does walk that hour a day to think and philosophize which he writes down his thoughts afterwards

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  8. (H2) Are reading, writing, and eating important to me? I believe they are some of the most important things in my personal life. Aside from when I'm socializing with people, I tend to read a lot. No matter what kind of day I've had or what mood I'm in, if I have the time, it's always nice to escape from my life into an alternate reality. To let someone guide me and tell me the way things are rather than making any conscious decisions. I can still feel the emotions of the characters through the connection I build with them through exploring their story, but there is something strangely comfortable about knowing that the book is already written and the end is already there and just waiting to be explored by my eyes. I also have a great appreciation for stories that are written with eloquence - that flow without all of the "like"'s and "um"'s of everyday gossip, and stories that teach me something I have yet to learn on my own.
    Writing is my secret accomplice. It is what gets me through the hardest times and lets me reflect on the greatest. I think that writing is even better than talking because although it's slower, it gives you more time to think about what you'd like to say. And if you mess that up, well you can just erase it and try for something better in the next round of thought. I write because it allows me to express my every thought, even ones I don't have the courage to say out loud, without letting all my secrets spill out into the world. Even when its 3am and the whole world is too busy sleeping to listen to my troubles, there will still be paper and a pencil for me to pour my heart into.
    Eating, even with its implicit importance, is valued more highly by myself than many others. I don't view food as only food; to me it is fuel. It is the very thing that keeps my body performing its basic functions and I get to choose the quality of the fuel. It's like a puzzle, figuring out where I'm going to fit the right amount of each nutrient into my daily intake, and in what form I will consume it. If there is nothing to look forward to in a day, at least I can look forward to eating my next meal.

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  9. (H3) I would say time and space are independent of us or any and all sentient beings. Like Bryce said, we can't affect time and we have a limited affect, if anything, on space. Both concepts, or intuitions, we're around before humans and will endure after we are gone.

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  10. (H3) I think intent and logic have a lot of bearing on what is right. Just because you do what is socially acceptable, the right thing, doesn't automatically make it right. A clear definition of what right is, is needed to determine what qualifications are required. I think in most cases selflessness or sacrifice of some kind indicates consciously making the decision to do the right thing. Just because you make a decision most would consider right doesn't mean anything if you don't have a reason why you chose to make that decision.

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  11. (H3) I think everything is connected. Everything can be determined to have a cause, which, if it hadn't occured, this wouldn't have happened. Everything has a purpose or an effect, whether it is minuscuel or huge. We search our whole lives to find where we fit into the whole "grand scheme of things". Why would we care if it wasn't all connected?

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  12. (H3) Even if you voluntarily follow a law, it is a free act because you make the choice to follow that law or not to. Choosing not to murder someone is following the law and also a free act, a choice.

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  13. (H3) Reading, writing, and eating are important to me. Without reading and writing we wouldn't be able to communicate with the world around us. We also wouldn't be able to pass along information to later generations or interpret information from previous generations. It is how we share ideas and make sense of the world around us. I would say eating is important because being and staying alive kind of requires an outside source of sustenance. Now if the question is whether these are the most important things to me, I'd have to put a little bit more thought into that one.

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  14. (H3) I don't really employ any daily discipline, though I almost always accomplish my goals. Mainly I just make sure I do at least one productive thing every day. I try to stay organized and manage my time well. Dedicating quite a bit to relaxing and the rest to productive work, I manage to get a lot done.

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  15. (H3) How would you define "time" and "space"? Do they exist independently of us, or of any and all sentient beings?
    Time and space are constructs of human perception. They simply exist as we will it. The concepts are very much real, but this is not something material or even something we can percueve definitely.

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  16. (H3) Is everything ultimately connected with everything else? Or do things stand more-or-less loosely together (and apart)?
    Every action is connected to one another, no matter how small. Theres plenty of stories of people who did not die on 9/11 because of small actions like pressing the snooze button or tying their shoes and missing their flight.

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  17. (H3) What makes right actions right? If you do the right thing, does it matter why you did it?
    "Right" is completely subjective. However, if we are referring to something that is considre to be right by the general public, then no, it does not matter why as long as you did it voluntarily.

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    1. So if it was forced then it would no longer be right?

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  18. (H3) If you voluntarily follow a rule or law, is that a free act? Or is it compelled?
    It is completely free. While rules and laws are suggested to be followed for the greater good of the public, we still have the right to not follow them, with consequences of course.

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  19. (H3) Are reading, writing, and eating important to you? Why?
    All three give me a source of life. Reafing as a source of insouration, writing as an outlet, and eating as a passtime during both.

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  20. (H3) Do you practice any form of daily discipline that helps you accomplish your goals in a slow and steady way?
    In reference to long term goals, I try to make at least a little progress every day, at least one drawing or reading a few pages of a book. This way i dont feel overwhelmed and feel accomplished.

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  21. Is everything ultimately connected with everything else? Or do things stand more-or-less loosely together (and apart)?

    In my belief, all actions (and inactions) have consequences. Somewhere along the line, consequences have a way of overlapping. Eventually, then, I see this as evidence in support of the interconnection of all things.

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  22. What makes right actions right? If you do the right thing, does it matter why you did it?

    Right actions are right due to their inherent nature within their context. I'm sure there are exceptions, but I would say, in general, I don't care why someone does the right thing, as long as they do it. "Bad" people can do good things, and my reaction to that is gratitude above anything else.

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  23. Are reading, writing, and eating important to you? Why?

    In order of importance: 1) eating 2) writing 3) reading.
    Eating is number one because... duh. Although it may seem odd, writing comes before reading because of the effect writing has upon me. It is therapeutic. If I am overwhelmed by ideas, current events, or anything else, writing my thoughts down helps me to process and sort information. I love reading, but writing is something I often find more personally beneficial.

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  24. Do you practice any form of daily discipline that helps you accomplish your goals in a slow and steady way?

    Yes and no. I have typical habits that aid me in tasks such as completing homework, but in other areas I am far less regimented. Don't worry though, I am quite diligent in constantly telling myself I should really be more diligent...

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    1. (H3) Same, I have gotten procrastination down to a science. I am also getting better at ignoring that little voice that tells me I shouldn't waste time watching tv and doing nothing :)

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  25. Space. Well space is in for me everything in existence. When we say space we don't just reference outer space, we reference everything. One day we will be able to travel to any single point in space, meaning that we can go anywhere in the universe, so space is everything in the universe, everything in existence.

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    1. (H3) Do you think there is an end to space or that it is infinite? If it is infinite, we wouldn't be able to reach every point. I do agree with your definition of space, it is all-encompassing.

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  26. Time for me is not a linear path where everything is already set. I believe time is more flexible, that it can bend and change with only certain points in time set. These set points are always there, no matter what we do at any other point in time, the timeline always reverts to these set points. This is time for me.l

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    1. Christian Brooks (H3)12:31 PM CDT

      What if those set points come into contact with a different gravity? It has been proven that as the gravitational force increases, the passage of time slows. Does gravitational time dilation affect your set points that are 'always there, no matter what'?

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  27. Time for me is not a linear path where everything is already set. I believe time is more flexible, that it can bend and change with only certain points in time set. These set points are always there, no matter what we do at any other point in time, the timeline always reverts to these set points. This is time for me.l

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  28. Everything is most definitely interconnected. One small action can cause many reactions which cause even more reactions. Eventually, such a thing can change whole lives and decisions for other people even if they don't know that this cause changed it for them.

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  29. DQ: Is Russell's assertion that nearly all ideas from Hegel are incorrect unfair and horridly biased, or acceptable upon covering the information yourself?

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  30. DQ: Is it to German philosophers' discredit that many of their postulations appear to spring from German history? Is this far too limiting?

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    1. Christian Brooks (H3)12:33 PM CDT

      On a grander scale, everything all philosophers have speculated upon are influenced by their time on Earth. The German instance is just upon a small scale, I think.

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  31. Time is a measurement used to calculate our relative position in space. Time is in reality not real, but is a convenient invention made by humans to be able to get things done and have meetings. While humans have a monopoly on the concept of time, some animals have certain concepts of it, like birds who fly south for the winter. This concept of time is also born out of necessity. (H3)

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  32. DQ: Is it fair to apply Darwin's theory of "survival of the fittest" to the field of ethics, or is it better for the fields to remain separate? Can you think of any historical instances where their crossover was disastrous?

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  33. Space is a measurement of the distance between objects, or how much distance an object takes up. Everything takes up space, no matter how small an amount. Even air particles take up a minuscule amount of space. (H3)

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    1. Christian Brooks (H3)12:28 PM CDT

      What about time? It is affected by gravity, but it has no measurable form that we can observe as of now. Air particles are massive compared to quarks, for example, but time itself also occupies and/or influences space in some degree.

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  34. Daily discipline finds no way into my life. I set my own goals and do then at my own convienence. I don't set a sort of schedule or set a particular slot in time aside for a reason, I do things as I get to them and most days they are all different things

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  35. If one voluntarily follows a law, that is a free act that is influenced. It really depends on if the person was going to follow the law regardless of it was a law. If the only reason a citizen follows the law is fear of punishment, then it is highly influenced and less free. If the citizen knows the law and realizes there must be some type of reason for the public good behind it, i don't think that interferes with freedom because the public good is ultimately going to lead to the highest freedom. (H3)

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  36. Here is a question. Is a daily routine detrimental or benign to us as humans

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    1. Christian Brooks (H3)12:26 PM CDT

      From a psychological point of view, it depends on what type of structure the individual would find most useful. If person A likes to do things on the fly and feels bogged down by a list, it would be detrimental for their health and/or daily performance. The opposite could be true for person B if they feel secure by checking things off their to-do list.

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    2. I think routine is good for human, we become more productive, creative, focused, etc. But I do also believe that you should have spontaneous experiences as well, so that you don't get bored.

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  37. It is better to do unto others as they would have done unto them probably; however, it is not likely that one would know exactly what someone wants done unto them without asking. So, unless one is in a position to ask another how they wold like to be treated, the rule to treat others as you would have done unto you is still pretty golden. (H3)

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  38. I think history is important. It is important to know where one comes from. It is extremely vital the humanity learns from past mistakes so that we don't repeat them. Time an time again mistakes are made that wouldn't be made if a good history lesson was remembered. Humanity does the same silly things. As Albert Einstein said, "Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again ad expecting different results. (H3)

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    1. But some are trying to change history, it is being done all over the world. So then wouldn't that mean that history is not important?

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  39. I think that we could communicate with aliens with different mental spectacles to a certain extent. We would be able to have a small conversation about facts like "this is our leader", "We have been to the moon", etc. We would run into difficulty talking about much else though because most human conversation revolves around the concepts of time and space, even if we don't realize it. (H3)

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    1. But if they are from space and our conversations revolves around space, then wouldn't we be able to converse about more than just those two examples.

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  40. I have gone out of my way to help a stranger before. I did so because of many reasons. I felt bad for the person, I felt like I should do something, but mostly, I felt God promoting me to act. As a young woman, I usually do not feel safe giving homeless men rides in my car. I know that that is a good thing to do though, and since I felt God was prompting me to act, I trusted Him to take care of me. (H3)

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  41. Christian Brooks (H3)12:22 PM CDT

    “How would you define ‘time’ and ‘space’? Do they exist independently of us, or of any and all sentient beings?”
    I approach this with a very scientific view; the fact that a few sentient organisms can ask such a question should hold no power over the inner workings of the universe. Time is ‘the indefinite progress of existence in the past, present, and future’ and space is ‘the dimensions of height, depth, and width within all things exist and move’, regardless of who or what is there to participate in either.

    “What makes right actions right? If you do the right thing, does it matter why you did it?”
    I believe a ‘right’ action is whatever action is considered good by the specific culture outside of a vacuum, even though this makes some actions both right and wrong depending on who considers it. Technically, motivation could also be removed to examine an action, but it would still be up to the culture observing the act.
    An example: The death sentence could be seen as right if the person being executed murdered someone. The death sentence is still a form of murder, even though the motivation may be seen as positive.

    “Are reading, writing, and eating important to you? Why or why not?”
    Many of my interests are heavily dependent upon reading and writing, so they are very important to me. Without them, it would be extremely difficult to maintain my mental health. Eating, on the other hand, is more like an extension of keeping my body healthy; I believe that I have a duty to myself to keep myself alive, though the magnitude of health is much more flexible as of now.

    “Do you practice any form of daily discipline that helps you accomplish your goals in a slow and steady way?”
    I have found that creating lists and tables to organize everything I need, should, and want to do has a positive impact on my life. For the past few years I tend to make daily or weekly to-do lists, depending on the workload I have set before me. Depending on the items on the list, it may be slow and/or steady.

    “If you voluntarily follow a rule or law, is that a free act? Or is it compelled?”
    The ‘voluntary’ descriptor makes the action free, in my arbitrary definition of free will. Depending on the circumstances, the punishment may compromise one’s health, which would be compelling, but technically they can still perform the act. I may not approve of it, but based on the strict interpretation of my definition it is indeed free.

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  42. (H3) Time and space cannot be understood completely, they are different from other definite things in life.

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  43. (H3) Why you do the right thing matters because you could do it for selfish reason.

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    1. So does that take away from the right thing? Does that become the wrong thing to do?

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  44. (H3) I believe everything is connected.

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  45. (H3) If you voluntarily follow something then it is free law.

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  46. (H3) Reading, writing, and eating are important because they are some of the pleasures of life.

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  47. (H3) I go to the gym everyday which is my daily discipline.

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  48. (H3) I am optimistic about our profession as a society.

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  49. Even if you do the right thing, you should also consider why. If you did the right thing because it helps your image, then you didn't do it for good reasons

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    1. So then would it mean that doing the right thing for the wrong reasons, would then be wrong?

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  50. If you voluntarily follow a rule it may be compelled just because you might have been influenced in thinking there are only two ways to act- to follow or not to follow

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  51. Reading, writing, and eating are important to me but most especially reading. Reading allows me to see in other perspectives and to think critically about issues. I think I've learned a lot just from literature

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    1. Reading is more important to you than eating? Even though if you put reading above eating you could and probably would die?

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    2. H1
      I think she means that reading is more important to her day, and to her interests. I drink water every day but I hardly think about that, and am much more interested in other things.

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  52. Reading, writing, and eating can be seen as meeting some of the basic needs of humans. An expressive outlet of ideas and creation for writing. Reading can immerse you in many world, fiction and non-fiction, which allows you to expand your knowledge base and imagination. And eating is basic sustenance of life that allows us to try new thing and enjoy food itself. I feel these are all fundamentally important for expanding ourselves.

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  53. Laws, by nature are guidelines given to us to follow in order to maintain society. We are compelled to follow them or face punishment for deviance, because theoretically, it is not in the common interest.

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    1. H1
      Laws constrict free will to (hopefully), make life freer for all the citizens.

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  54. I practice the daily discipline of completing my homework required for the next day in order to graduate with good grades to get into a good graduate school. I also go to work on time every day in order to save money for future large financial endeavours.

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  55. I believe everything is interconnected, as our world is filled with infinite possibilities of events and various systems that all dependent on each other in order to be sustained. i.e the water cycle, the solar system orbital patterns, etc.

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  56. I believe the right thing is what is in the best interest of humanity. But, there are also possibilities of people doing the right thing because it has benefits for themselves as well.

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  57. I think that you would have to define time as an indefinite continued progress of existence and events in the past, present, and future regarded as a whole; space as a form of eternity because it is infinite and is not subject to time. I think that we live in time, we need a sense of time in order to function, but space I believe is independent of us and we cannot survive in it because we cannot comprehend it.

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  58. I believe that reading and writing are both very important, without them you would never truly know the truth, you would have to hear from word of mouth and take the person’s word for it. Therefore, I believe you would need to know the basics, reading and writing, in order to progress in life. If you don’t eat you’ll die. It’s quite important.

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  59. Without there being a higher being I don’t believe that you can justify any action as being right or wrong. It would just be someone’s opinion against another person’s opinion.

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    1. H1
      I agree. Without any concrete and objective source for morality, morality becomes nothing more than the average of people's opinions.

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  60. If you voluntarily follow a rule or law that’s a free act whether you feel compelled or not. Just because you feel compelled to do something doesn’t mean you’re going to do it.

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    1. H1
      I agree that the act of following a rule or law depends on the person choosing to do so; their free will. However, I believe laws go against free will. A law is a restriction on often desirable actions; speeding, stealing, etc. Any human action is dependent on free will, but laws go against it. I do not think freedom is defined by the ability to obey the law.

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  61. I try to practice a daily discipline, but I find it difficult to stick to it. I get distracted very easily, or I find an excuse on why I should do something else, or I just sleep. So the only daily discipline I would have is taking a nap every day.

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  62. (H1) How would you define "time" and "space"? Do they exist independently of us, or of any and all sentient beings?

    I would define them both as abstract concepts that as sentient beings we try to apply concrete meanings to. They are both points that we move through, essentially. I believe they exist independently of all sentient beings, that nothing and no one came before or after or effects either.

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  63. (H1) What makes right actions right? If you do the right thing, does it matter why you did it?

    I believe intentions are what makes something right or not, as each person, regardless of whatever society they grew up in, has their own set of morals and beliefs. It is by these individual morals and beliefs that someone determines whether or not something is "right."

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  64. (H1) If you voluntarily follow a rule or law, is that a free act? Or is it compelled?

    Following rules and laws are constituted as free acts, the same way you have the "freedom" to not follow a rule or law. This can be more readily observed in people who commit minor rule infractions or people who jaywalk - they are free to break the rule or conversely there are those who freely choose to wait for the light to walk to appear.

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  65. H1
    DQ: How would you define "time" and "space"? Do they exist independently of us, or of any and all sentient beings?
    I believe in a difference between mind and matter. They affect each other, and perception is important in understanding reality. Unlike these recent philosophers, I believe in the existence of finite (or infinite) matter, which exists beyond my mind. Space and time are real, and their reality is not affected or changed by my perception.

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  66. H1
    DQ: What makes right actions right? If you do the right thing, does it matter why you did it?
    I believe objective morality establishes right and wrong. Actions and motives are equally important. If I donate money to a hospital, giving it a needed new facility, that is a good thing, and has a positive impact on others. However, my motive for doing that very same action can have a positive or negative impact on me, depending on my motives. If I donated money to look good and pat myself on the back, then the action actually had a negative effect upon my vanity and ego. If I gave the money because felt it was the right thing for me to do, then the action has a positive and character-building effect upon myself.

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  67. H1
    DQ: Do you practice any form of daily discipline that helps you accomplish your goals in a slow and steady way?
    Yes I do; each morning I see what work needs to be done for the week, and then I see what exactly I can get done that day. I write a list of my objectives and do my best to complete each goal. This prevents procrastination and overloading myself, by taking things one little bit at a time.

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  68. H1
    DQ: Are reading, writing, and eating important to you? Why?
    Heck yes. They are important to me because they combine what I consider to be necessity with pleasure. My body needs food and my appetite loves it. I love to read and it helps me to grow intellectually. Writing is a skill I want to hone and use well.

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  69. (H1) Time and space are . . . tricky. As conscious beings, we make sense of the universe by perceiving a world full of objects and concepts that undergo slight changes from moment to moment. Your cells are dying and dividing. The sun is changing some of its matter into energy. Your brain is interpreting clusters of symbols as information. As the universe becomes more complex, we perceive the passage of time. But what if the universe is not full of the same objects changing, but rather a series of completely unrelated objects that somewhat resemble the objects that were here a moment ago? Abandon definitive causality as Hume did, and say our concept of 'time' is simply a way of handling a world in which things are continually not the same things? It's no less true. Time is like that. As humans we experience it one way, but it's possible there are aliens out there whose perceived worlds are shaped by a very different view. As for space . . . I have an especially difficult time trying to think of what different perceptions of space would be like. I will say my thoughts about space are almost always sight-based, so it might be best to think about it in terms of other senses, like hearing, too.

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  70. H1
    ~ How would you define "time" and "space"? Do they exist independently of us, or of any and all sentient beings?

    - Time and space are social constructs created to maintain balance and mirage a sense of order in our lives. The use of these measurements give meaning and words to what we have believed them to be. They exist purely for our comfort. We as humans tend to lean towards familiarity and comfort than accepting the unknown, this led to the idea of time to create structure in our lives. Time is no more than an idea or word. The passing of life and death and the growth and deterioration of the physical things of our world could be said to be examples of time but in all actuality they are only part of our lack of knowledge of the entirety of existence. Time is comforting because it can explain these phenomenons without second thought. For these things are only taking up space and experiencing time.

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  71. H1
    ~What makes right actions right? If you do the right thing, does it matter why you did it?

    - We all individually justify our own actions. Though as a species we have come to a collective agreement of which actions are "right" or "wrong" the individual is in the driver seat of their own vehicle, making the turns and choosing the direction in which they drive. Someone doing the "right" thing isn't necessarily deserving of being acknowledged or celebrated; because they are just completing the communal agreement on what they should be doing.

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  72. H1
    ~Is everything ultimately connected with everything else? Or do things stand more-or-less loosely together (and apart)?

    - From my understanding if we break down the matter and genetical make up of every living and nonliving thing that we know of, it condenses down to being made of only vibrations or frequencies. The smallest particle on creates the larger picture by the rapid movement they create. The sounds we encounter everyday are no more than vibration. Though we are one we are separate. My idea of being is different from the person sitting next to me, as are their beliefs to the person next to them.

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  73. H2
    DQ: How would you define "time" and "space"? Do they exist independently of us, or of any and all sentient beings?
    Answer: I view time in, what I call its "natural state", such as seasons and the rising of the sun/moon. The difference is that I don't label time, because there’s no way to be accurate, evident in time changes, universal time line, and of course the often un-known fact that days and years are not, 24 hours and 365 days, accurately. As for space, I see it as exactly that.

    DQ: What makes right actions right? If you do the right thing, does it matter why you did it?
    Answer: For me, right is what feel morally justified. And yes, it does matter why- in fact, why the action took place is partly what makes it right. Even if the action was wrong, the intent is what matters.

    DQ: Is everything ultimately connected with everything else? Or do things stand more-or-less loosely together (and apart)?
    Answer: I view it scientifically- similar to the different states of matter. Some things are like solids- packed tightly together, others are like water- loose but still connected, and the rest are like air- disconnected.

    DQ: If you voluntarily follow a rule or law, is that a free act? Or is it compelled?
    Answer: If fully informed and acting voluntary, then yes, it is a free act. However, this is only true when the person has all the available knowledge.

    DQ: Are reading, writing, and eating important to you? Why?
    Answer: Absolutely. Obviously, eating is essential to survival. However, in my opinion, reading and writing is important to living. Here I must point out the difference between living and surviving. Surviving is merely that, existing as we know it today. Living is having something to survive for- having a meaning or purpose.

    DQ: Do you practice any form of daily discipline that helps you accomplish your goals in a slow and steady way?
    Answer: My daily discipline is more mental than anything else. However, I love writing, and I write in a journal almost every day as a way of expressing my feelings and emotions.

    DQ: Who was Minerva, and what did Hegel say about her?
    Answer: Minerva is the Roman Goddess of arts, trade, and strategy. Hegel says, in layman’s terms, that philosophy only takes place at the end of the day. He says this by comparing it to Minerva’s owl.

    DQ: Hegel (accepted, rejected) Kant's view that noumenal reality lies beyond our reach, and that we can know only the appearances of things in the phenomenal world.
    Answer: Hegel rejected the idea. He saw reality as a distortion.

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  74. H2

    DQ: Stern says Hegel's philosophy is ______ (similar to, different from) Mill's in its emphasis on progress, optimism, and freedom of speech.
    Answer: different from

    DQ: Schopenhauer was _____ in general, but ______ about the possibility of personal "enlightenment". (optimistic, pessimistic)
    Answer: optimistic, pessimistic

    DQ: Schopenhauer called the "deeper reality beyond the world of appearances" ___.
    Answer: Nonumenal world

    DQ: (T/F) Even though he once pushed an old lady down the stairs for chatting outside his door, Schopenhauer thought harming other people was a kind of self-injury.
    Answer: True

    DQ: Who thought he might better understand Hegel if he first ingested nitrous oxide before reading The Phenomenology of Spirit?
    Answer: William James

    DQ: Do you consider history important, either your own personal history or that of your community, nation, world, species...? Do you think it generates what Hegel called a "gradual increase in self-awareness"? Is there a "spirit" of history? Is it getting smarter?
    Answer: History and experience do indeed help with “self-awareness”, and should be used to better one’s-self.

    DQ: Is it worth trying to grasp the ultimate reality of things, or do you agree with Douglas Adams? "The chances of finding out what's really going on in the universe are so remote, the only thing to do is hang the sense of it and keep yourself occupied." Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
    Answer: While I personally agree with Douglas Adams, I respect that this search is some people’s livelihood, and that it means something to them.

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