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47909Re: The functions of thinking

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  • louise
    Apr 28, 2009
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      Mary,

      I don't mean to be unkind, but now you are amusing me. Ideas are never wrong? Surely all the arguments and bad feeling concerning the question of 'racism' at this list concern the fact that so many people are convinced that the term refers to racial supremacism and that it is a wrongful idea. Not only that, but as a general principle, ideas that can be demonstrated to be false (involving incoherence of argument or errors of fact) that are also dangerous, ineffective or cruel in their application, are routinely exposed in thoughtful magazine or newspaper articles, and this kind of research bolsters the work of those who are working for social change. They may, on cultural grounds, as a matter of practicality or sensitivity, not emphasise the ideas-content of their objections, but to those who share similar values, the truth-content of ideas is usually most important. For instance, in regard to questions of animal welfare, evidence of whether animals suffer physically or emotionally under certain conditions, whether certain medical treatments for humans or animals are helpful and effective or not, and so on.

      Louise

      --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, "mary.josie59" <mary.josie59@...> wrote:
      >
      > It seems nearly impossible to think; observe how we think; separate our emotions from both—while both voluntary and autonomous physical inter/actions are occurring. And even though by definition philosophy lends itself to many realms except technology and theology, the mind doesn't seem to want that distinction.
      >
      > I think there is also an overlapping of philosophy of science and bioethics which needs to be sorted out. All the social engineering folks need to become more ethical, and scientists need to be less exclusionary. But that's precisely where durability and adaptability to your chosen environment become key. You have to fight for your right to participate, perhaps organize like the atheists Bill mentioned. Existentialism encourages activism, but unique and sometimes anachronistic individuals are pigeon-holed and exclude themselves. So if a particular issue involves politics, race, culture, science, and philosophy, it's going to be nigh impossible to sort it all out. Do we really need to?
      >
      > To find something valuable to contribute seems to me more important than courtesy or a cultural cache. Whether presented down-and-dirty or hoity-toity, ideas are never wrong. They're discussed, digested, rejected, implemented, etc. What more can one want?
      >
      > Mary
      >
      >
      > --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, "louise" <hecubatoher@> wrote:
      > >
      > > Still attempting to get a purchase on the basics. How to discriminate different realms of concern. As an example, a recent reference, the question arising, what is an Anglo-Saxon? This is not a biological category. However, the further question arises, as to the superstitious and magical nature of science, to which I have referred also. Political suppression is ignored and denied, so that what claims to be science may only be a highly selective application of focussed intelligence. To become a 'scientist', one must pass certain tests of social acceptability, which are cultural or quasi-religious, and may be themselves highly unscientific. What responsibilities are involved in philosophising? What is the relevance, if any, of courtesy? May one only be a contemporary existentialist if developing a certain toughness or dexterity, or does the acquisition of such skill vitiate the quality of thought itself?
      > >
      > > Louise
      > >
      >
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