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Philosophy
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★ Philosophy

Philosophy: see Happiness & Emotion & Brain & Head & Anger & Mind & Religion & Faith & Belief & Superstition & Think & Greeks & Knowledge & Poetry & Literature & Reason & Attitude & Life’s Like That

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83,486.  The philosopher forms his principles from an infinity of particular observations.  Most people adopt principles without thinking of the observations that have produced them, they believe the maxims exist, so to speak, by themselves.  But the philosopher takes maxims from their source; he examines their origin; he knows their proper value, and he makes use of them only in so far as they suit him.  (Observation & Philosophy)  Denis Diderot, L’Encyclopédie  

 

 

173.  When you say that if I deny, that the operations of seeing, hearing, attending, wishing, &c., can be ascribed to God, or that they exist in Him in any eminent fashion, you do not know what sort of God mine is; I suspect that you believe there is no greater perfection than such as can be explained by the aforesaid attributes.  I am not astonished; for I believe that, if a triangle could speak, it would say, in like manner, that God is eminently triangular, while a circle would say that the divine nature is eminently circular.  Thus each would ascribe to God its own attributes, would assume itself to be like God, and look on everything else as ill-shaped.

 

The briefness of a letter and want of time do not allow me to enter into my opinion on the divine nature, or the questions you have propounded.  Besides, suggesting difficulties is not the same as producing reasons.  That we do many things in the world from conjecture is true, but that our redactions are based on conjecture is false.  In practical life we are compelled to follow what is most probable; in speculative thought we are compelled to follow truth.  A man would perish of hunger and thirst, if he refused to eat or drink, till he had obtained positive proof that food and drink would be good for him.  But in philosophic reflection this is not so.  On the contrary, we must take care not to admit as true anything, which is only probable.  For when one falsity has been let in, infinite others follow.

 

Again, we cannot infer that because sciences of things divine and human are full of controversies and quarrels, therefore their whole subject-matter is uncertain; for there have been many persons so enamoured of contradiction, as to turn into ridicule geometrical axioms.  (God & Philosophy)  Baruch Spinoza

 

 

330.  All good moral philosophy is but an handmaid to religion.  (Religion & Philosophy)  Francis Bacon 1561-1626, The Advancement of Learning

 

 

59,185.  A little philosophy inclineth man’s mind to atheism, but depth in philosophy bringeth men’s minds about to religion.  (Atheism & Philosophy)  Francis Bacon

 

 

369.  Generally speaking, the errors in religion are dangerous; those in philosophy only ridiculous.  (Religion & Philosophy & Error)  David Hume

 

 

9,079.  Opposing one species of superstition to another set them a quarrelling; while we ourselves, during their fury and contention, happily make our escape into the calm, though obscure, regions of philosophy.  (Philosophy & Superstition)  David Hume

 

 

432.  To become a popular religion, it is only necessary for a superstition to enslave a philosophy.  (Religion & Superstition & Philosophy)  William Ralph Inge

 

 

515.  Philosophy is questions that may never be answered.  Religion is answers that may never be questioned.  (Religion & Philosophy & Question & Answer)  Author unknown

 

 

601.  Religion is what you get before Philosophy.  (Religion & Philosophy)  Christopher Hitchens, lecture 6th October 2009

 

 

773.  Philosophy is an odd thing ... The most important philosophy I think is that even if it isn’t true, you must absolutely assume there is no after-life.  You cannot for one second I think abrogate the responsibility of believing that this is it.  (Belief & Philosophy & Heaven & Life’s Like That)  Stephen Fry, televised interview

 

 

9,098.  It’s not all bad.  Heightened self-consciousness, apartness, an inability to join in, physical shame and self-loathing – they are not all bad.  Those devils have been my angels.  Without them I would never have disappeared into language, literature, the mind, laughter and all the mad intensities that made and unmade me.  (Philosophy & Life’s Like That)  Stephen Fry, Moab is My Washpot 

 

 

1,031.  Though nothing can bring back the hour

Of splendour in the grass, of glory in the flower;

We will grieve not, rather find

Strength in what remains behind ...

In the faith that looks through death,

In years that bring the philosophic mind.  (Faith & Hour & Life’s Like That & Philosophy)  William Wordsworth, ‘Ode Intimations of Immortality’ 1807

 

 

62,468.  Adversity’s sweet milk, philosophy.  (Adversity & Philosophy) William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet III iii 55, Friar Laurence to Romeo

 

 

1,193.  There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio,

Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.  (Life’s Like That & Heaven & Earth & Dream & Philosophy & Life After Death)  William Shakespeare, Hamlet I v 167-168, Hamlet to Horatio

 

9,084.  There is something in this more than natural, if philosophy could find it out.  ibid.  II ii 392

 

 

2,370.  Ever since Plato most philosophers have considered it part of their business to produce ‘proofs’ of immortality and the existence of God.  They have found fault with the proofs of their predecessors – Saint Thomas rejected Saint Anselm’s proofs, and Kant rejected Descartes’ – but they have supplied new ones of their own.  In order to make their proofs seem valid, they have had to falsify logic, to make mathematics mystical, and to pretend that deepseated prejudices were heaven-sent intuitions.  (Logic & Philosophy & Proof & God)  Bertrand Russell, A History of Western Philosophy 

 

 

2,666.  Science is what you know, philosophy is what you don’t know.  (Science & Knowledge & Philosophy)  Bertrand Russell

 

 

9,096.  The point of philosophy is to start with something so simple as not to seem worth stating, and to end with something so paradoxical that no one will believe it.  Bertrand Russell 

 

 

9,104.  Dogmatism and scepticism are both, in a sense, absolute philosophies; one is certain of knowing, the other of not knowing.  What philosophy should dissipate is certainty, whether of knowledge or ignorance.  (Philosophy & Dogma & Sceptic & Absolutism & Certainty & Knowledge & Ignorance)  Bertrand Russell   

 

 

9,124.  The theoretical understanding of the world, which is the aim of philosophy, is not a matter of great practical importance to animals, or to savages, or even to most civilised men.  (Philosophy & Understanding)  Bertrand Russell

 

 

9,133.  Philosophy seems to me on the whole a rather hopeless business.  Bertrand Russell, letter to Gilbert Murray 28th December 1902 

 

 

9,134.  Philosophy, if it cannot answer so many questions as we could wish, has at least the power of asking questions which increase the interest of the world, and show the strangeness and wonder lying just below the surface even in the commonest things of daily life.  (Philosophy & Question)  Bertrand Russell, The Problems of Philosophy 1912 

 

9,135.  Philosophy is to be studied, not for the sake of any definite answers to its questions, since no definite answers can, as a rule, be known to be true, but rather for the sake of the questions themselves; because these questions enlarge our conception of what is possible, enrich our intellectual imagination and diminish the dogmatic assurance which closes the mind against speculation; but above all because, through the greatness of the universe which philosophy contemplates, the mind is also rendered great, and becomes capable of that union with the universe which constitutes its highest good.  (Philosophy & Question & Universe)  ibid.

 

 

2,625.  For me, I am driven by two main philosophies: know more today about the world than I knew yesterday and lessen the suffering of others.  You'd be surprised how far that gets you.  (Science & World & Philosophy & Suffering)  Neil deGrasse Tyson 

 

 

2,726.  My view is that if your philosophy is not unsettled daily then you are blind to all the universe has to offer.  (Universe & Philosophy)  Neil deGrasse Tyson

 

 

2,647.  Now, my own suspicion is that the universe is not only queerer than we suppose, but queerer than we can suppose.  I have read and heard many attempts at a systematic account of it, from materialism and theosophy to the Christian system or that of Kant, and I have always felt that they were much too simple.  I suspect that there are more things in heaven and earth that are dreamed of, or can be dreamed of, in any philosophy.  That is the reason why I have no philosophy myself, and must be my excuse for dreaming.   (Science & Universe & Philosophy & Dream)  J B S Haldane, Possible Worlds

 

 

2,768.  Philosophy is dead.  I believe Science holds the key.  (Universe & Science & Philosophy)  Stephen Hawking’s Grand Design: The Meaning of Life

 

 

9,121.  Why are we here?  Where do we come from?  Traditionally, these are questions for philosophy, but philosophy is dead.  Stephen Hawking

 

 

9,080.  The philosophers have only interpreted the world in various ways.  The point however is to change it.  (Philosophy & Change & Marxism)  Karl Marx

 

 

4,306.  For the first time I believe Science has pushed past Religion and Philosophy in daring to tackle this most fundamental of questions.  (Humanity & Question & Religion & Philosophy)  Professor Jim Al-Khalili, The Secret Life of Chaos BBC

 

 

6,789.  To learn is not to know; there are the learners and the learned.  Memory makes the one, philosophy the others.  (Knowledge & Learning & Memory & Philosophy)  Alexandre Dumas, The Count of Monte Cristo 

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