Adjectives on the Typewriter

she moves her words like a prizefighter

01 April 2005

filosofia

Here's a little humor I found in my online wanderings tonight:

An old guru walked barefoot most of the time, which produced an impressive set of calluses on his feet. He also ate very little, which made him rather frail and with his odd diet, he suffered from bad breath. This made him a super callused fragile mystic hexed by halitosis.

Anyway, I thought I'd put in something different from my usual dreary journal entry. Like I said before, philosophy class has been very engaging (and a little confusing so far). But I've managed to muddle through it. Here's something I was trying to argue in class, but once again more poor communication skills got in the way and I made a fool of myself in addition to convincing my prof that I have some inborn "hatred" of these guys :)

Parmenides' Basic Argument
Premise 1: Something is, or something is not.
Premise 2: We can only conceptualize and think about something that is.
Conclusion 1: Therefore, it is impossible to prove that something is not.*


Parmenides goes on to argue that change does not exist, because if it did, that would require us to prove something was, but has changed, and now something is not. Which obviously negates his first conclusion. Similarly, if things cannot change then all we perceive as change is a mere illusion. Thus, according to Parmenides, there is no such thing as change, motion, or flux; all is an infinite, eternal changeless "One."

This argument is, however, very circular when you consider the philosopher's claim that change/motion/finiteness does not exist. This is equivalent to saying that change is not, which defies Parmenides' original conclusion that it is impossible to prove something is not. By asserting that all is One, he outrules the extistence of the Many, thus contradicting the very foundation of his argument (conclusion 1).

All right, now I see why I looked so dumb in class- I really don't have a handle on phrasing this stuff very effectively. Consequently, I think I will begin to use this blog as a forum for my philosophical discourses. Hopefully that will improve my critical thinking skills and my rhetoric, as well as giving me a better understanding of the course material. We'll see how it works out.

Though I don't intend to fully abandon my random musings either...

*Material drawn from Stumpf and Fieser's "Philosophy: History and Problems," (c) 2002.

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