10 schools of philosophy and why you should know them
Nihilism means "nothing." It is the lack of belief in meaning or substance in an area of philosophy.
Nietzsche was not a nihilist but wrote about the dangers posed by this philosophy.
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Existentialism originates from Soren Kierkegaard and Nietzche. It focuses on the problems produced by existential nihilism. For instance:
Existentialism emphasizes individual existence, freedom and choice.
Stoicism was popular in ancient Greece and Rome and is practiced by many in high-stress environments.
Stoicism focuses on how to live in a world where things don't go as planned. The idea is to accept all the things beyond your control and to focus on what you can control.
Hedonism is the idea that pleasure and happiness are the keys to a good life. Modern philosophers would say that pleasure is a kind of happiness, but not the only happiness.
Epicurus tied hedonism to a virtue ethics system based around moderation and self-discipline.
Marxism is based on the collected ideas of Karl Marx, the German philosopher. He critiqued capitalism. Main ideas:
Famous Marxists include Lenin, Stalin, Mao, and Slavoj Zizek.
It is focused on the idea of verifications. It is trying to base all knowledge on either empirical data or logical tautologies.
The underlying principle of verificationism cannot be shown to be true, making it unsolvable.
Taoism is based around the Tao Te Ching, written by the ancient Chinese philosopher Lao-Tzu. It is based around ideas of:
Taoist thought later fused with Buddhism and formed Zen.
Rationalism is the idea that knowledge must come from reason and thought, rather than empirical evidence. Socrates, Rene Descartes, and Spinoza argued for rationalism.
Today, most thinkers combine rationalist notions with empirical data.
Relativism is the idea that views are relative to the perspective. This idea can be applied to morality or truth, where some argue that there are no moral facts or absolute truths.
Cultural relativism is the idea that the morality of two different cultures cannot be compared.
Buddhism is based on the teachings of Gautama Buddha. Although Buddhism has a diverse range of thought, it is bound together by the idea that suffering has a cause.
Buddhism believe suffering can be overcome by: meditation, following the eightfold path and contemplation of sutras.
SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:
When most people think of philosophy, they believe philosophers simply argue about arguing. Philosophy is viewed as impractical and irrelevant to current issues.
"Science is what you know. Philosophy is what you don’t know."
Philosophy is examining our understanding of reality and knowledge. Philosophy consists of three major branches:
When you order your thoughts into a coherent belief system, you are engaging in philosophy. To criticize philosophy, you must rely on philosophy.
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Aldous Huxley's The Perennial Philosophy(1945) is an extraordinary work of synthesis, introducing global (particularly eastern) spirituality into mainstream western culture.
The Author and Philosopher's fresh take on religion, shaping it as an 'empirical spirituality' was a huge influence in the 1960s and which has since then led to more people (now 27% in the US) being 'Spiritual but not Religious'
Aldous Huxley was heavily criticized after his death by newer philosophers who didn't subscribe to the Perennial Philosophy.
While the author insisted that the ultimate mystical experience is the moment of pure oneness with God where the concepts of 'I', language, image and culture are dissolved, his critics argued that all religions are true and some of them are truer than the others.
One of the critics states that human beings construct reality using their bodies, rituals, words, actions and cultures.
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Philosophy Professor Catherine Wilson talks about pleasure being fundamental in our ability to live a good life, and how a fine balance has to be maintained between current pleasure(indulgence) and future pleasure, which is life planning.
If we work ourselves endlessly, trying to hoard wealth, life will be over in a blink of an eye.
Apart from a more justified and gender-neutral definition of hedonism, the definition of luxury and pleasure itself is changing. What was once enjoyable seems like a waste of time now, while economic instability and low wages do not allow for a hedonistic lifestyle to be a reality for many of us.
Pleasure seeking needs to be viewed as a positive, life-giving pursuit in these times where everyone is striving hard to make ends meet.