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Ten philosophical questions




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My personal view of the field, in ten questions. I'll work in traditional order, from Being through Knowledge, to Value.

1. Does the world consist of substances with attributes (that is, enduring things with various properties), or is that a misleading way of thinking?

2. If one accepts the substance/attributes dichotomy, what COUNTS as a substance? How many of them are there in the world? Are there an infinite number of substances, or could it all be boiled down to a smaller number? Three, as Descartes thought (mind, matter, God), or maybe just one?

3. In terms of the nature of a human being, are we each one substance with various attributes? Or are we two different substances that somehow interact? Or is a person an attribute of a trans-personal Substance?

4. If we end up with a view of the world in which humans consist of both mind and body: how DO they interact?

5. What do we mean by "truth" as a matter of common language. also, what SHOULD we take the word to mean, if we plan to reform our usage for precision?

6. What do we mean by "knowledge" as a matter of common language, also, what SHOULD we take the word to mean, if we plan to reform usage for precision?

7. Take a first stab and define knowledge as "justified true belief." How do we come to possess such JTB? In other words, how do we know? Or do we?

8. How should we live? is there a right way to act, aside from subjective reactions of the one or the many? If there IS a right way to act, how do we find out what it is?

9. Suppose there are two or more principles that tell us, reasonably, how we should act. Might they not come into conflict? How should we resolve instances of real or apparent conflicts?

10. How should society be organized in light of the principles developed in answering the previous questions?

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