From Plato to Derrida - The BB House Discusses Philosophy

Discussion in 'Big Brother House' started by deltron_zero, Jun 30, 2002.

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  1. deltron_zero Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 1, 2002
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    I am actually starting this thread by request from Debo, but i am happy to do so. in fact, if i had known that anyone in the house had any interest in philosophy at all i probably would have done this the first day.

    so what issue or thinker or tradition should we tackle first?

    should we start from the beginning and talk about socrates and plato? that's always fun :D
  2. Debo Force Ghost

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    Sep 27, 2001
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    Well, ol' smarta$$ said, didn't it all end with Socrates in a way? :D
  3. deltron_zero Force Ghost

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    yeah, who was it that said the entire history of philosophy is just a footnote to plato? those basic questions of knowledge brought up by socrates and plato really have defined the entire history of the tradition, and probably always will.
  4. Debo Force Ghost

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    Sep 27, 2001
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    Do you have a -- wrong word -- "favourite" philosopher? Someone whose works / words made the most impact?
  5. deltron_zero Force Ghost

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    Feb 1, 2002
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    hmm, it would probably be either plato or nietzsche. i see them as bookends of sorts. they are so antithetical that it really makes their works interesting. plus they are both very gifted writers, i really love nietzsche's style. kierkegaard is another thinker i've spent a lot of time with, and the existentialists. how about you?
  6. Debo Force Ghost

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    Sep 27, 2001
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    Nietzsche is my favourite, too. He's like the dark void. It could easily be interpreted as depressing, but that's what makes him interesting for me: his belief in a total nothing-ness, in which everything, every moral and belief, disappears.

    He went mad just after Hitler (another void) was born, incidentally.

    I especially like what he did for Greek Mythology: adding the dark, Dionysian aspect to the light and Apollonian side of it.
  7. deltron_zero Force Ghost

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    Feb 1, 2002
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    yes, but isn't there also something light about the dyonisian spirit? it has always seemed to me that the dyonisian spirit is, for nietzsche, more life embracing, more joyous than the apollonian. yes we can no longer cling to reason, thus the void... but we can live every moment to it's fullest, enjoying and embracing all the pleasures of the senses, and the joy of the "game" which ultimately is philosophy.
  8. Debo Force Ghost

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    Hm, I hadn't thought about that. The Dionysian side as the care-free, lose-yourself-and-make-of-it-whatever-you-want side. Appealing to our most primitive needs, which is typically Nietzsche.

    EDIT: But what about the danger of losing yourself in some kind of Dionysian delirium?
  9. deltron_zero Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 1, 2002
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    well dyonisis is the god of wine ;)

    but yeah, nietzsche was all about that sort of strong, overcoming spirit that isn't really attached to anything, yet is overflowing with love and a lust for life. i think the idea of the dyonisian does fit into this, and it's why i've always thought it way too simple to label nietzsche as a nihilist.

    EDIT: But what about the danger of losing yourself in some kind of Dionysian delirium?

    i think nietzsche would say that this is only a danger for the weak minded, who aren't truly capable of living in that dyonisian mode. the dyonisian might embrace sensual pleasures but isn't attached to them, or anything else for that matter.
  10. Silmarillion Manager Emerita/Ex RSA

    Member Since:
    Jul 20, 1999
    star 6
    I'd love to reply intelligently to this topic, but the only thing I know about philosophy is what Monty Python taught me.
  11. Debo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 27, 2001
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    Hey, that's where I'm getting my info from.
  12. deltron_zero Force Ghost

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    hey, Monty Python is a great teacher! :D
  13. Debo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
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    The strong spirit -- do you mean the Overman? That concept has always fascinated me. It's the Man of the past and of the future: he's the enlightened man who sees Earth.
  14. deltron_zero Force Ghost

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    well i wasn't really referring to the overman. i've always found that concept quite confusing, to be honest. as far as i can tell the overman exists purely in the future, and the ideal existence in this age would be for man to be a bridge, to help usher in the overman. not even zarathustra had reached overman status, but he was aware that the era of man was ending and that man was merely a bridge to something greater.
  15. Debo Force Ghost

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    Sep 27, 2001
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    But couldn't the Overman state be reached by remaining faithful to the Earth -- by being "primitive"? By stripping himself off all sorts of systems and concepts, and thus become a primitive beast (again)?
  16. deltron_zero Force Ghost

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    i honestly don't know, that's the part that always confuses me. i've never been sure what the overman would really be like, and sometimes i'm not sure that nietzsche himself knows.
  17. Debo Force Ghost

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    I don't really understand it either, although I sometimes think I do. It almost requires over-awareness, to use but a word.

    The reason I mentioned Hitler was because of that: Hitler was all rituals, manifestation, systems: the anti-Overman. It always struck me Nietzsche died when Hitler was born.
  18. deltron_zero Force Ghost

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    yeah, that is striking and ironic that the nazis would actually end up adopting nietzsche's philosophy by completely misinterpreting it.
  19. Debo Force Ghost

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    Sep 27, 2001
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    They plundered practically all areas of history, philosophy and science for their own use.

    Why do you think about the fact that Holland never produced great philosophers, but only took care of them when they were in trouble? Spinoza, Descartes, Voltaire and Rousseau all sought shelter here, and were given the freedom to do whatever they wanted.
  20. Bithysith Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 6, 2000
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    Personally, I resonate more with Eastern philosophical ideas than those of Western philosophers. :)
  21. deltron_zero Force Ghost

    Member Since:
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    that is interesting. i wonder why there haven't been more famous thinkers from holland. do you have a theory on that?

    (it's not like the U.S. is a hotbed of great philosophers either)

    EDIT: me too Bithy, i've read quite a bit of taoist and zen buddhist philosophy. i actually find nietzsche very eastern in a lot of ways.
  22. Debo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 27, 2001
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    My theory is that, in Holland, we've always been more practical than idealistic; the idea was to work, be cool, and not misbehave too much. We were very religious: extrovert behaviour and wildness were seen as tools of the Devil. We built social structures, fought the sea, rather than building ideological structures and fighting the state.

    EDIT: Yes, the taoists. Taoism interested me quite a bit when I first read about it, but it has since waned a bit. But I do know I found it very sympathetic and comforting in a way. What attracts you to it?
  23. deltron_zero Force Ghost

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    that's pretty much the same as our philosophical legacy, even the few american thinkers who have achieved some sort of fame have been basically utilitarian pragmatists. (ie. dewey)

    EDIT: for me, i like the care-free attitude of taoism, and even though i'm not religious at all, the idea of "the force" has always appealed to me. gee, wonder why ;) :D
  24. Bithysith Jedi Grand Master

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    Oct 6, 2000
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    I'm thinking more of the works the Indian philosopher Radhakrishnan. :)

    And, if I remember correctly,the religious stronghold in Holland was replaced by a revolution of thought that the first great banks brought with them ? one of logic and practicality.
  25. Debo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 27, 2001
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    Perhaps philosophy didn't really flourish in the US because they were in a similar situation as us: they were building a country, setting up structures, rather than trying to change a foundation or be introvert.

    EDIT: I'm not sure I understand "the great banks" correctly, Bithy. Do you mean it literally or figuratively?
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