Учебно-методический комплекс по учебной дисциплине «философия» обязательного модуля



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ИНОСТРАННЫМ СТУДЕНТАМ В ПОМОЩЬ, проходившим обучение в своих странах на английском языке
ЭЛЕКТРОННЫЙ УЧЕБНО-МЕТОДИЧЕСКИЙ КОМПЛЕКС ПО УЧЕБНОЙ ДИСЦИПЛИНЕ «ФИЛОСОФИЯ» ОБЯЗАТЕЛЬНОГО МОДУЛЯ «ФИЛОСОФИЯ»


15. Philosophy of communication 55

30. Human mind and artificial intellect. 109

31. Artificial intellect and virtual reality. 110

45. Philosophy of technology 134

46. Philosophy of engineering activity. 135

48. Culture and civilization. 138

49. Philosophy of value. 140

50. Ethics, Aestetics and philosophy of law. 141

51. Philosophy of identity 142

52. Philosophy of history. 144

53. East and West: dialog culture. 148

57. Globalization. 151

58. Philosophy of safety. 152

59. Futurology and philosophy. 154

60. Philosophy o forecast. 157


ADDITIONAL MATERIAL FOR PHILOSOPHY
1. Subject of philosophy
Philosophy is the art of thinking. The aim is to train one's judgment through analysis, critique, and self-critique, to pay attention to distinctions and to see underlying patterns, and to see the whole beyond the parts. Philosophy is a systematic reflection on reason and reality; studies in philosophy will provide a good foundation for studying any other discipline, as well as for professions that requires analytical skills and a creative intellect. Branch of the philosophy: metaphysics, anthropology, philosophy of mind, epistemology, philosophe of science, philosophe of history, ethics, aesthetics, logic, philosophe of religion.

Philosophy from Greek φιλοσοφία, philosophia, literally love of wisdom is the study of general and fundamental problems concerning matters such as existenceknowledgevaluesreasonmind, and language. The term was probably coined by Pythagoras. Philosophical methods include questioningcritical discussion, rational argument and systematic presentation. Classic philosophical questions include: Is it possible to know anything and to prove it? What is most real? However, philosophers might also pose more practical and concrete questions such as: Is there a best way to live? Is it better to be just or unjust (if one can get away with it)? Do humans have free will?

Historically, philosophy encompassed any body of knowledge. From the time of Ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle to the 19th century, natural philosophy encompassed astronomymedicine and physics. For example, Newton's 1687 Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy later became classified as a book of physics. In the 19th century, the growth of modern research universities led academic philosophy and other disciplines to professionalize and specialize. In the modern era, some investigations that were traditionally part of philosophy became separate academic disciplines, including psychology, sociology, linguistics and economics.

Other investigations closely related to art, science, politics, or other pursuits remained part of philosophy. For example, is beauty objective or subjective? Are there many scientific methods or just one? Is political utopia a hopeful dream or hopeless fantasy? Major sub-fields of academic philosophy include metaphysics concerned with the fundamental nature of reality and being, epistemology about the "nature and grounds of knowledge and its limits and validity, ethicsaestheticspolitical philosophy, logic, philosophy of science and the history of Western philosophy. Since the 20th century, professional philosophers contribute to society primarily as professors, researchers and writers. However, many of those who study philosophy in undergraduate or graduate programs contribute in the fields of law, journalism, politics, religion, science, business and various art and entertainment activities.


2. Philosophy as world view.
At first glance the term "world-view" suggests a general view of the world—and no more. But the appearance of the word does not reveal the full meaning of this complex intellectual phenomenon. A world-view, as we understand it, is a system of generalised views of the surrounding world and man's place in it, of man's relationship to the world and himself, and also the basic positions that people derive from this general picture of the world, their beliefs, socio-political, moral and aesthetic ideals, the principles by which they know and appraise material and spiritual events.

While it possesses a relatively independent existence in the sphere of social consciousness, the world-view also functions as something individual. A person becomes an individual when he forms a definite world-view. This process of formation indicates the maturity not only of an individual but also of any given social group, social class or its party. The concept of world-view, which was first encountered among the Greek sceptics, is substantially broader in meaning than the concept of philosophy; moreover it has several different meanings.

We speak of the philosophical, the socio-political, the natural-scientific, the artistic, the religious, and even the ordinary man's world-view. And this is quite natural. If we picture the various types of world-view in the geometrical form of circles, the central position should be given to the circle of the philosophical world-view. And this circle will intersect with all the others and form their nucleus. In this way we find that the meaning people and social groups attach to the term "world-view" is extremely diverse. But despite this diversity, every world-view reveals a certain unity in the sense that it embraces a certain range of questions. For example, what is the world that exists outside us? What is the relationship between spirit and matter? What is man? What is his place in the universal interconnection of phenomena? How does man come to know reality? What are good and evil? What is beautiful in life and in art? What laws guide the development of society? The totality of the natural sciences forms a natural-scientific picture of the world, and that of the social sciences yields a socio-historical picture of reality. What is a picture of the world? It is a picture of how matter moves and how in the shape of the human being it feels, thinks and poses goals. The creation of a general picture of the world is the task of all fields of knowledge, including philosophy. In compressed form, general pictures of the world are presented in universal encyclopaedias compiled at various historical stages to reflect the intellectual achievements of mankind.

The world-view is by no means all the views and notions of the surrounding world, that is to say, it is not simply a picture of the world taken in its integral form. Not a single specific science can be identified with a world-view, although each science does contain a world-view principle. For example, Darwin discovered the laws of the origin of species. This caused a revolution in biology and evoked universal interest. Did these laws evoke such interest because they were merely biological laws? Of course, not. They awakened such interest because they helped us to understand various philosophical questions, the question of purpose in living nature, the origin of man, and so on. The name of Einstein was made immortal by his discovery. But was this discovery purely physical, a solution to some particular scientific problem? No, Einstein's theory provided a key to the philosophical problem of the essence of space and time, their unity with matter. Why did the ideas of Sechenov on cerebral reflexes create such a furore among intellectuals? Not because they were merely physiological ideas, but because they solved certain philosophical problems of the relationship between consciousness and the brain. We know what a broad impact the principles of cybernetics have had. But cybernetics is not just a specific scientific theory. Cybernetics, and also genetics, raise profound philosophical problems.

The world-view contains something more than scientific information. It is a crucial regulative principle of all the vital relationships between man and social groups in their historical development. With its roots in the whole system of the individual and society's spiritual needs and interests, determined by human practice, by all man's accumulated experience, the world-view in its turn exerts a tremendous influence on the life of society and the individual. The world-view, on the other hand, is oriented on the world as a whole, on the "man-universe" system.

The world-view may exist on the ordinary, everyday level generated by the empirical conditions of life and experience handed down from generation to generation. It may also be scientific, integrating the achievements of modern science concerning nature, society and humanity itself.

The world-view is not only the content, but also the mode of thinking about reality, and also the principles of life itself. An important component of the world-view is the ideals, the cherished and decisive aims of life. The character of a person's notion of the world, his world-view, facilitates the posing of certain goals which, when generalised, form a broad plan of life, ideals, notions of wellbeing, good and evil, beauty, and progress, which give the world-view tremendous power to inspire action. Knowledge becomes a world-view when it acquires the character of conviction, of complete and unshakable confidence in the rightness of certain ideas, views, principles, ideals, which take command of a person's soul, subordinate his actions, and rule his conscience or, in other words, form bonds that cannot be escaped without betraying oneself, set free "demons" that a person can conquer only by submitting to them and acting in accordance with their overwhelming power. The world-view influences standards of behaviour, a person's attitude to his work, to other people, the character of his aspirations in life, his everyday existence, tastes and interests. It is a kind of spiritual prism through which everything around us is perceived, felt and transformed.
3. Historical type of the philosophical world-views.Materialism and idealism.
No matter from what direction the thinker is preceding along the "philosophical road", he must cross the bridge known as "the basic question of philosophy". As he does so he must, whether he likes it or not, decide on which side of the river of philosophical thought he will remain—the materialist or the idealist side. But he may find himself in mid-stream, in the position of dualism, that is to say, recognition of two equal and independent substances in the universe—material and spiritual. The basic question of philosophy is that of the relationship of thinking to being. It presupposes acknowledgement of the existence of an objective, i.e., independent of human consciousness, reality and a subjective, spiritual reality—representations, thoughts, ideas—and a certain relationship between them. Which comes first—matter or consciousness? Which generates which? Does matter at a certain stage of development generate its finest flower—the reason? Or does the world spirit create the material world? Or perhaps they have coexisted eternally as equal substances in their own right and are in some way interacting?

Such is the first aspect of the basic question of philosophy. Its second aspect comes down to the following. Can man and mankind in general know the objective laws of the world by the power of their own consciousness? Or is the world unknowable? In examining the first aspect implied in the basic question of philosophy the thinker inevitably finds himself in one of two camps, materialism or idealism (or dualism), while in examining the second aspect of the question he takes a stand either in favour of the fundamental possibility of knowing the world or in favour of agnosticism, that is, denial of this possibility.

Why is the question of the relation of thinking to being—a seemingly very abstract question—considered to be the basic philosophical question? Because from the nature of the answer we give, as from the source of a great river, there flow not only directly contrasting interpretations of all other philosophical problems but also the general theoretical, world-view questions posed by any science, moral phenomena, standards of law and responsibility, phenomena of art, political events, problems of education, and so on.

We cannot consider any philosophical question unless we first solve the basic question of philosophy. To illustrate, let us take the example of the concept of causality. Materialism presumes that this concept reflects an objective, i.e., independent of human consciousness, process of generation of some phenomena by others. But Hume, for example, denied the existence of causality in nature. He believed that it was habit that taught people to see certain phenomena as the causes of others, for instance, the blow of an axe and the falling of a tree. We have indeed become accustomed to see the result follow the action that causes it. But this habit is based on the continuous consideration of the objective connection of phenomena and did not arise by itself. According to the materialist principle, all authentically proved concepts, categories, propositions, inferences, laws and theories have a substantially objective character and do not depend on the whim of man. Idealism, on the other hand, is inclined to regard them merely as mental constructions. For example, the materialist scholar of literature studying the work of Shakespeare begins by sorting out what objective social conditions predetermined the character and inspiration of the dramatist's work. The idealists, on the other hand, are inclined to attribute his work to the depth of the individual spirit of this genius and ignore the social conditions in which he lived and wrote. If one takes the moral sphere, it is immediately obvious how contrasting the solutions to the basic question of philosophy may be. Are man's moral qualities innate or given by God, or are they formed by life, by upbringing. As applied to history, the basic question of philosophy appears as a relationship between social being and social consciousness. On how this relationship is interpreted depends the answer to the question: what determines man's destiny, what guides history—ideas, the rational powers of historic individuals, or the material production carried on by the people of a given society and the economic relationships that arise from this process. Consequently, the basic question of philosophy is not simply the question of the relation between thinking and being in general, but more specifically, that of the relation between social consciousness and social being, that is to say, the objective relations between people formed on the basis of their production of material goods. The materialist understanding of the basic question of philosophy as applied to history is expressed fully and simply: social being ultimately determines social consciousness and social consciousness, derivatively, has an active influence on this being.

Consideration of the basic question shows that the real processes of life from their interpretation in various theories, the material driving forces of society from the ideal motivations, the material interests of people, social groups from their reflections in the mind. Materialism teaches our thinking to see in our mental constructions, in our artistic, political and other ideas and images the objective content determined by the external world, by life. Idealism, on the other hand, hypertrophies the spiritual principle, treats it as absolute. In politics, for example, this attitude may have dangerous consequences for the people; idealism sometimes results in political adventurism. This happens when a politician ignores the objective laws of history, the will of the masses, the existing economic relations, and tries by the power of his own volition to impose his own ideas, which run counter to the real, law-governed current of events.

Materialism understands the world as it is in fact, without attributing to it any supernatural qualities and principles. Explanation of the world from the world itself is the methodological principle of materialism. It maintains that the connections between ideas in people's heads reflect and transform the connections between phenomena in the world. To the extent that people in living their lives cannot help considering the fact of the objective existence of the world, so they act as materialists: some spontaneously, others consciously, on a philosophical basis. Certain scientists sometimes dissociate themselves from materialism while spontaneously working on its principles. On the other hand, the supporters of philosophically conscious materialism not only consistently advocate such a solution of the basic question of philosophy but also substantiate and uphold it.

Idealism is in general related to the desire to elevate the spirit to the maximum degree. In speaking with such veneration of the spiritual, of the idea, Hegel assumed that even the criminal thought of the evil-doer was greater and more to be marvelled at than all the wonders of the world. In the ordinary sense idealism is associated with remoteness from earthly interests, constant immersion in pure thought, and dedication to unrealisable dreams. Such "practical idealism" is contrasted to "practical materialism", which its opponents, wishing to belittle it, present as a greedy desire for material goods, avarice, acquisitiveness, and so on.

Idealism is divided into two basic forms: objective and subjective. The objective idealists, beginning from the ancients and ending with those of the present day, recognise the existence of a real world outside man, but believe that the world is based on reason, that it is ruled by certain omnipotent ideas which guide everything. Consciousness is hypertrophied, separated from man, from matter, and converted into a supra-individual, all-embracing reality. Reality is considered to be rational and the reason is interpreted as the substance, the basis of the universe. All things and processes are thus spiritualised. Such a notion of the superhuman and supernatural spiritual essence, the world reason, the world will, the absolute idea, is essentially a religious notion. For example, in Hegel the "absolute idea" is quite often called simply god, an impersonal, objective, logical process, while nature and the history of society are its guided other-being. Reason is the soul of the world. It resides in the universe, it is its immanent essence.

From the standpoint of subjective idealism it is only through inadequate knowledge that we take the world as we see it to be the actually existing world. According to this conception, the world does not exist apart from us, apart from our sense perceptions: to exist is to exist in perception! And what we consider to be different from our sensations and existing apart from them is composed of the diversity of our subjective sensuality: colour, sound, forms and other qualities are only sensations and sets of such sensations form things. This implies that the world is, so to speak, woven out of the same subjective material of which human dreams are composed.

To the subjective idealists it appears that our efforts to reach beyond consciousness are futile and it is therefore impossible to acknowledge the existence of any external world that is independent of consciousness. It is a fact that we know the world only as it is given to man, to the extent to which it is reflected in our consciousness through sensations. But this certainly does not mean that the world when reflected in consciousness somehow dissolves in it like sugar in water. The reader may legitimately ask: have there really been any philosophers who maintain such a strange philosophy as subjective idealism, a philosophy that for so many centuries was subjected not merely to criticism but to sarcastic ridicule? On the ordinary empirical level, surely it is only madmen, and only a few of them, who can deny the independent existence of the world. In practice, the subjective idealists (Berkeley, Fichte, Mach) probably did not behave as if they believed there was no external world. These ideas were strictly reserved for the sphere of theoretical thought.



The objective idealists elevate human thought and its products—concepts, ideas and culture in general—to the status of the absolute. In ancient times people measured their actions according to the unwritten rules of their ancestors that had been retained in the memory and handed down from generation to generation. The individual consciousness grew accustomed to being dominated by certain supra-individual ideas, social standards retained in human memory and in the form of the "social memory", in language. This relative independence of the spiritual life of society was elevated by imagination into something absolutely independent, into Reason divorced not only from living and thinking people but also from society, from matter in general, so that thinking and its products were elevated to a special spiritual realm, the immanent essence of the universe. And this was objective idealism. Its epistemological roots go down deep into history, when the progress of cognitive activity and the penetration of reason into the essence of things triggered the process of formation of abstract concepts. The problem arose of relating the universal and the particular, the essence and its manifestations. It was not easy for man to understand how the universal reflected in, for example, the concept of beauty was related to the individual form of its existence in a given individual. A beautiful person lives and dies but the idea of beauty survives him and proves to be indestructible. A wise man departs this life but wisdom, as something universal, common to all wise men who ever lived, live or will live in the future, survives in the system of culture as something existing above the individual. This universal, reflected in the concepts (beauty, wisdom, reason, law and so on), came to be identified with the concept itself. The universal features in things and the concept of the universal became merged in the consciousness, forming an objective-idealist alloy, in which the universal was divorced from its individual existence, apart from which it could not exist at all, and acquired the status of an independent essence. Objective idealism begins when the idea of a thing is conceived not as a reflection of the thing but as something eternally existing before the thing, embodied in the thing and determining the thing in its structure, properties and relationships and continuing to exist after the destruction of the thing. Thus Pythagoras thought of numbers as independent essences ruling the world, and Plato regarded general concepts as a special realm of pure thought and beauty that had engendered the world of visible reality. The idea of a thing created by man precedes the existence of the thing itself. The thing in its given form is derived from the aim, the intention of its creator, let us say, a carpenter. The greater part of the things that surround us are the result of man's creative activity, they are something created by man. The idea of creation has become for man a kind of prism through which he regards the whole world. This idea is so deeply rooted that he does not find it easy to set it aside and think of the world as something not created by anybody and existing eternally. The idea of the eternity of existence contradicts all the facts of our life, in which nearly everything is created, one might say, before our very eyes. So the eternal, uncreated existence of the world simply did not fit into people's heads and still does not fit in with many people's thinking. The level of science was very low and this gave rise to the assumption that there must be some universal creator and lord of all things. This idea was strengthened also by the fact that so much in the world was strikingly harmonious and purposeful.

Idealism is linked with religion and, directly or indirectly, provides its theoretical expression and substantiation. Over idealism there always hovers the idea of a god. Subjective idealism, compelled to be inconsistent in defending its principles, allows the objective existence of a god. The universal reason of the objective idealists is essentially a philosophical pseudonym for god: the supreme reason conceives itself in its creations. At the same time it would be a vulgarisation to identify idealism with religion. Philosophical idealism is not a religion but the road to religion through one of the forms of the complex process of human knowledge. They are different ways of being aware of the world and forming an attitude to it.


4. Philosophy of the ancient East.

Eastern Philosophy refers very broadly to the various philosophies of Asia. Among these are:

Philosophical tradition of the India.

Philosophical tradition of the China.

Arabic philosophy.

The term sometimes also includes Middle Eastern traditions of philosophical thought. In many cases, the philosophical schools are indistinguishable from the various religions which gave rise to them (or vice versa).

Argued that Eurasian philosophy of law is the result of criticism of the theoretical bases European modern philosophy using categorical apparatus phenomenology, axiology, psychology. As a result of this theoretical transformer- originated synthesis of Eurasian ideology and philosophy of law. Concludes Existence in the philosophy of law and the provisions of the conclusions that are relevant to modern legal philosophy, they deal with issues of universal and relativity of different legal cultures in the history and modernity. In this regard, of particular interest is the question of the specificity of Russian philosophy of law in the context of the Eurasian paradigm. It will be attended by heads of diplomatic missions of the CIS countries and a number of other states, employees of state administration, specialists in the humanities, representing the National academy of sciences of Belarus and higher educational institutions of the country. Among the speakers – ambassadors and embassy staff from Kazakhstan, Russia, China, the Commissioner for Religious and Ethnic Affairs of the Republic of Belarus, prominent domestic and foreign scholars.  The participants of the conference are expected to develop a coordinated approach to promote the ideas of ethnic harmony and tolerance in Eurasia in the interests of peaceful coexistence, socio-economic development and integration. The special importance of these ideas is emphasized by the entry into force of the Eurasian Economic Union from 1 January 2015. Particular attention will be paid to the problems of organizing national dialogue during the transition period, the role of state leaders in this process. Participants will raise issues of economic, scientific, educational, humanitarian and cultural cooperation in the post-Soviet space, as well as the role the Assembly of Peoples of Kazakhstan, the prospects for economic, social and cultural integration within the EAEU.
5. Philosophical tradition of the India.
Indian Philosophy (or, in Sankrit, Darshanas), refers to any of several traditions of philosophical thought that originated in the Indian subcontinent, including Hindu philosophy, Buddhist philosophy, and Jain philosophy (see below for brief introductions to these schools). It is considered by Indian thinkers to be a practical discipline, and its goal should always be to improve human life.

The main Hindu orthodox (astika) schools of Indian philosophy are those codified during the medieval period of Brahmanic-Sanskritic scholasticism, and they take the ancient Vedas (the oldest sacred texts of Hinduism) as their source and scriptural authority:

Samkhya is the oldest of the orthodox philosophical systems, and it postulates that everything in reality stems from purusha (self or soul or mind) and prakriti (matter, creative agency, energy). It is a dualist philosophy, although between the self and matter rather than between mind and body as in the Western dualist tradition, and liberation occurs with the realization that the soul and the dispositions of matter (steadiness, activity and dullness) are different.

The Yoga school, as expounded by Patanjali in his 2nd Century B.C. Yoga Sutras, accepts the Samkhya psychology and metaphysics, but is more theistic, with the addition of a divine entity to Samkhya's twenty-five elements of reality. The relatively brief Yoga Sutras are divided into eight ashtanga (limbs), reminiscent of Buddhism's Noble Eightfold Path, the goal being to quiet one's mind and achieve kaivalya (solitariness or detachment).

The Nyaya school is based on the Nyaya Sutras, written by Aksapada Gautama in the 2nd Century B.C. Its methodology is based on a system of logic that has subsequently been adopted by the majority of the Indian schools, in much the same way as Aristotelian logic has influenced Western philosophy. Its followers believe that obtaining valid knowledge(the four sources of which are perception, inference, comparison and testimony) is the only way to gain release from suffering. Nyaya developed several criteria by which the knowledge thus obtained was to be considered valid or invalid(equivalent in some ways to Western analytic philosophy).

The Vaisheshika school was founded by Kanada in the 6th Century B.C., and it is atomist and pluralist in nature. The basis of the school's philosophy is that all objects in the physical universe are reducible to a finite number of atoms, and Brahman is regarded as the fundamental force that causes consciousness in these atoms. The Vaisheshika and Nyaya schools eventually merged because of their closely related metaphysical theories (although Vaisheshika only accepted perception and inference as sources of valid knowledge).

The main objective of the Purva Mimamsa school is to interpret and establish the authority of the Vedas. It requires unquestionable faith in the Vedas and the regular performance of the Vedic fire-sacrifices to sustain all the activity of the universe. Although in general the Mimamsa accept the logical and philosophical teachings of the other schools, they insist that salvation can only be attained by acting in accordance with the prescriptions of the Vedas. The school later shifted its views and began to teach the doctrines of Brahman and freedom, allowing for the release or escape of the soul from its constraints through enlightened activity.

The Vedanta, or Uttara Mimamsa, school concentrates on the philosophical teachings of the Upanishads (mystic or spiritual contemplations within the Vedas), rather than the Brahmanas (instructions for ritual and sacrifice). The Vedanta focus on meditation, self-discipline and spiritual connectivity, more than traditional ritualism. Due to the rather cryptic and poetic nature of the Vedanta sutras, the school separated into six sub-schools, each interpreting the texts in its own way and producing its own series of sub-commentaries: Advaita (the best-known, which holds that the soul and Brahman are one and the same), Visishtadvaita (which teaches that the Supreme Being has a definite form, name - Vishnu - and attributes), Dvaita (which espouses a belief in three separate realities: Vishnu, and eternal soul and matter), Dvaitadvaita(which holds that Brahman exists independently, while soul and matter are dependent), Shuddhadvaita (which believes that Krishna is the absolute form of Brahman) and Acintya Bheda Abheda (which combines monism and dualism by stating that the soul is both distinct and non-distinct from Krishna, or God).

The main heterodox (nastika) schools, which do not accept the authority of the Vedas, include:

Also known as Lokayata, Carvaka is a materialistic, sceptical and atheistic school of thought. Its founder was Carvaka, author of the Barhaspatya Sutras in the final centuries B.C., although the original texts have been lost and our understanding of them is based largely on criticism of the ideas by other schools. As early as the 5th Century, Saddanitiand Buddhaghosa connected the Lokayatas with the Vitandas (or Sophists), and the term Carvaka was first recorded in the 7th Century by the philosopher Purandara, and in the 8th Century by Kamalasila and Haribhadra. As a vital philosophical school, Carvara appears to have died out some time in the 15th Century.

Buddhism is a non-theistic system of beliefs based on the teachings of Siddhartha Gautama, an Indian prince later known as the Buddha, in the 5th Century B.C. The question of God is largely irrelevant in Buddhism, and it is mainly founded on the rejection of certain orthodox Hindu philosophical concepts (althought it does share some philosophical views with Hinduism, such as belief in karma). Buddhism advocates a Noble Eightfold Path to end suffering, and its philosophical principles are known as the Four Noble Truths (the Nature of Suffering, the Origin of Suffering, the Cessation of Suffering, and the Path Leading to the Cessation of Suffering). Buddhist philosophy deals extensively with problems in metaphysics, phenomenology, ethics and epistemology.

The central tenets of Jain philosophy were established by Mahavira in the 6th Century B.C., although Jainism as a religion is much older. A basic principle is anekantavada, the idea that reality is perceived differently from different points of view, and that no single point of view is completely true (similar to the Western philosophical doctrine of Subjectivism). According to Jainism, only Kevalis, those who have infinite knowledge, can know the true answer, and that all others would only know a part of the answer. It stresses spiritual independence and the equality of all life, with particular emphasis on non-violence, and posits self-control as vital for attaining the realization of the soul's true nature. Jain belief emphasize the immediate consequences of one's behaviour.

The Arthashastra, attributed to the Mauryan minister Chanakya in the 4th Century B.C., is one of the earliest Indian texts devoted to political philosophy, and it discusses ideas of statecraft and economic policy. During the Indian struggle for independence in the early 20th Century, Mahatma Gandhi popularized the philosophies of ahimsa (non-violence) and satyagraha (non-violent resistance), which were influenced by the teachings of the Hindu Bhagavad Gita, as well as Jesus, Tolstoy, Thoreau and Ruskin.
6. Philosophical tradition of the China.
Chinese Philosophy refers to any of several schools of philosophical thought in the Chinese tradition, including Confucianism, Taoism, Legalism, Buddhism and Mohism (see below for brief introductions to these schools). It has a long history of several thousand years.

In about 500 B.C., the classic period of Chinese philosophy (known as the Contention of a Hundred Schools of Thought) flourished, and the four most influential schools (Confucianism, Taoism, Mohism and Legalism) were established.

During the Qin Dynasty (also know as the Imperial Era), after the unification of China in 221 B.C., Legalism became ascendant at the expense of the Mohist and Confucianist schools, although the Han Dynasty (206 B.C. - A.D. 220) adopted Taoism and later Confucianism as official doctrine. Along with the gradual parallel introduction of Buddhism, these two schools have remained the determining forces of Chinese thought up until the 20th Century.

Neo-Confucianism (a variant of Confucianism, incorporating elements of Buddhism, Taoism and Legalism) was introduced during the Song Dynasty (A.D. 960 - 1279) and popularized during the Ming Dynasty (1368 - 1644).

During the Industrial and Modern Ages, Chinese philosophy also began to integrate concepts of Western philosophy. Sun Yat-Sen (1866 - 1925) attempted to incorporate elements of democracy, republicanism and industrialism at the beginning of the 20th century, while Mao Zedong (1893 - 1976) later added Marxism and oth.The main schools of Chinese philosophy are:

Confucianism: was developed from the teachings of the sage Confucius (551 - 479 B.C.), and collected in the Analects of Confucius. It is a system of moral, social, political, and quasi-religious thought, whose influence also spread to Korea and Japan. The major Confucian concepts include ren (humanity or humaneness), zhengming (similar to the concept of the Mandate of Heaven), zhong (loyalty), xiao (filial piety), and li (ritual). It introduced the Golden Rule (essentially, treat others as you would like to be treated), the concept of Yin and Yang (two opposing forces that are permanently in conflict with each other, leading to perpetual contradiction and change), the idea of meritocracy, and of reconciling opposites in order to arrive at some middle ground combining the best of both. Confucianism is not necessarily regarded as a religion, allowing one to be a Taoist, Christian, Muslim, Shintoist or Buddhist and still profess Confucianist beliefs. Arguably the most famous Confucian after Confucius himself was Meng Tzu (or Mencius) (372 – 289 B.C.)

Sometimes also written Daoism, Taoism is a philosophy which later also developed into a religion. Tao literally means "path" or "way", athough it more often used as a meta-physical term that describes the flow of the universe, or the force behind the natural order. The Three Jewels of the Tao are compassion, moderation, and humility. Taoist thought focuses on wu wei ("non-action"), spontaneity, humanism, relativism, emptiness and the strength of softness (or flexibility). Nature and ancestor spirits are common in popular Taoism, although typically there is also a pantheon of gods, often headed by the Jade Emperor. The most influential Taoist text is the "Tao Te Ching" (or "Daodejing") written around the 6th Century B.C. by Lao Tzu (or Laozi), and a secondary text is the 4th Century B.C. "Zhuangzi", named after its author. The Yin and Yang symbol is important in Taoist symbology (as in Confucianism), as are the Eight Trigrams, and a zigzag with seven stars which represents the Big Dipper star constellation.

Legalism is a pragmatic political philosophy, whose main motto is "set clear strict laws, or deliver harsh punishment", and its essential principle is one of jurisprudence. According to Legalism, a ruler should govern his subjects accordoing to Fa (law or principle), Shu (method, tactic, art, or statecraft) and Shi (legitimacy, power, or charisma). Under Li Si in the 3rd century B.C., a form of Legalism essentially became a totalitarian ideology in China, which in part led to its subsequent decline.

Buddhism is a religion, a practical philosophy and arguably a psychology, focusing on the teachings of Buddha(Siddhartha Gautama), who lived in India from the mid-6th to the early 5th Century B.C. It was introduced to China from India, probably some time during the 1st Century B.C. Chinese tradition focuses on ethics rather than metaphysics, and it developed several schools distinct from the originating Indian schools, and in the process integrated the ideas of Confucianism, Taoism and other indigenous philosophical systems into itself. The most prominent Chinese Buddhist schools are Sanlun, Tiantai, Huayan and Chán (known as Zen in Japan).

Mohism was founded by Mozi (c. 470 - 390 B.C.) It promotes universal love with the aim of mutual benefit, such that everyone must love each other equally and impartially to avoid conflict and war. Mozi was strongly against Confucian ritual, instead emphasizing pragmatic survival through farming, fortification and statecraft. In some ways, his philosophy parallels Western utilitarianism. Although popular during the latter part of the Zhou Dynasty, many Mohist texts were destroyed during the succeeding Qin Dynasty, and it was finally supplanted completely by Confucianism during the Han Dynasty.


7. Ancient philosophy.
Thales of Miletus, regarded by Aristotle as the first philosopher, held that all things arise from water. It is not because he gave a cosmogony that John Burnet calls him the "first man of science," but because he gave a naturalistic explanation of the cosmos and supported it with reasons. According to tradition, Thales was able to predict an eclipse and taught the Egyptians how to measure the height of the pyramids

Thales inspired the Milesian school of philosophy and was followed by Anaximander, who argued that the substratum or archecould not be water or any of the classical elements but was instead something "unlimited" or "indefinite" (in Greek, the apeiron). He began from the observation that the world seems to consist of opposites (e.g., hot and cold), yet a thing can become its opposite .Therefore, they cannot truly be opposites but rather must both be manifestations of some underlying unity that is neither. This underlying unity (substratum, arche) could not be any of the classical elements, since they were one extreme or another. For example, water is wet, the opposite of dry, while fire is dry. ]Anaximenes in turn held that the arche was air, although John Burnet argues that by this he meant that it was a transparent mist, the aether. 

Xenophanes was born in Ionia, where the Milesian school was at its most powerful, and may have picked up some of the Milesians' cosmological theories as a result W]hat is known is that he argued that each of the phenomena had a natural rather than divine explanation in a manner reminiscent of Anaximander's theories and that there was only one god, the world as a whole, and that he ridiculed the anthropomorphism of the Greek religion by claiming that cattle would claim that the gods looked like cattle, horses like horses, and lions like lions, just as the Ethiopians claimed that the gods were snubnosed and black and the Thracians claimed they were pale and red-haired.

Burnet says that Xenophanes was not, however, a scientific man, with many of his "naturalistic" explanations having no further support than that they render the Homeric gods superfluous or foolish. He has been claimed as an influence on Eleatic philosophy, although that is disputed, and a precursor to Epicurus, a representative of a total break between science and religion.

Pythagoras lived at roughly the same time that Xenophanes did and, in contrast to the latter, the school that he founded sought to reconcile religious belief and reason. Little is known about his life with any reliability, however, and no writings of his survive, so it is possible that he was simply a mystic whose successors introduced rationalism into Pythagoreanism, that he was simply a rationalist whose successors are responsible for the mysticism in Pythagoreanism, or that he was actually the author of the doctrine; there is no way to know for certain.

Pythagoras is said to have been a disciple of Anaximandar and to have imbibed the cosmological concerns of the Ionians, including the idea that the cosmos is constructed of spheres, the importance of the infinite, and that air or aether is the archeof everything. Pythagoreanism also incorporated ascetic ideals, emphasizing purgation, metempsychosis, and consequently a respect for all animal life; much was made of the correspondence between mathematics and the cosmos in a musical harmony.

Heraclitus must have lived after Xenophanes and Pythagoras, as he condemns them along with Homer as proving that much learning cannot teach a man to think; since Parmenides refers to him in the past tense, this would place him in the 5th century BCE.[21] Contrary to the Milesian school, who would have one stable element at the root of all, Heraclitus taught that "everything flows" or "everything is in flux," the closest element to this flux being fire; he also extended the teaching that seeming opposites in fact are manifestations of a common substrate to good and evil itself.

Parmenides of Elea cast his philosophy against those who held "it is and is not the same, and all things travel in opposite directions,"—presumably referring to Heraclitus and those who followed him. Whereas the doctrines of the Milesian school, in suggesting that the substratum could appear in a variety of different guises, implied that everything that exists is corpuscular, Parmenides argued that the first principle of being was One, indivisible, and unchanging] Being, he argued, by definition implies eternality, while only that which is can be thought; a thing which is, moreover, cannot be more or less, and so the rarefaction and condensation of the Milesians is impossible regarding Being; lastly, as movement requires that something exist apart from the thing moving (viz. the space into which it moves), the One or Being cannot move, since this would require that "space" both exist and not exist. While this doctrine is at odds with ordinary sensory experience, where things do indeed change and move, the Eleatic school followed Parmenides in denying that sense phenomena revealed the world as it actually was; instead, the only thing with Being was thought, or the question of whether something exists or not is one of whether it can be thought.

In support of this, Parmenides' pupil Zeno of Elea attempted to prove that the concept of motion was absurd and as such motion did not exist. He also attacked the subsequent development of pluralism, arguing that it was incompatible with Being. His arguments are known as Zeno's paradoxes.

The power of Parmenides' logic was such that some subsequent philosophers abandoned the monism of the Milesians, Xenophanes, Heraclitus, and Parmenides, where one thing was the arche, and adopted pluralism, such as Empedocles and Anaxagoras. There were, they said, multiple elements which were not reducible to one another and these were set in motion by love and strife (as in Empedocles) or by Mind (as in Anaxagoras). Agreeing with Parmenides that there is no coming into being or passing away, genesis or decay, they said that things appear to come into being and pass away because the elements out of which they are composed assemble or disassemble while themselves being unchanging.[Leucippus also proposed an ontological pluralism with a cosmogony based on two main elements: the vacuum and atoms. These, by means of their inherent movement, are crossing the void and creating the real material bodies. His theories were not well known by the time of Plato, however, and they were ultimately incorporated into the work of his student, Democritus.

Sophistry arose from the juxtaposition of physis (nature) and nomos (law). John Burnet posits its origin in the scientific progress of the previous centuries which suggested that Being was radically different from what was experienced by the senses and, if comprehensible at all, was not comprehensible in terms of order; the world in which men lived, on the other hand, was one of law and order, albeit of humankind's own making. At the same time, nature was constant, while what was by law differed from one place to another and could be changed.

The first man to call himself a sophist, according to Plato, was Protagoras, whom he presents as teaching that all virtue is conventional. It was Protagoras who claimed that "man is the measure of all things, of the things that are, that they are, and of the things that are not, that they are not," which Plato interprets as a radical perspectivism, where some things seem to be one way for one person (and so actually are that way) and another way for another person (and so actually are that way as well); the conclusion being that one cannot look to nature for guidance regarding how to live one's life.

Protagoras and subsequent sophists tended to teach rhetoric as their primary vocation. Prodicus, Gorgias, Hippias, and Thrasymachus appear in various dialogues, sometimes explicitly teaching that while nature provides no ethical guidance, the guidance that the laws provide is worthless, or that nature favors those who act against the laws.

Socrates, born in Athens in the 5th century BCE, marks a watershed in ancient Greek philosophy. Athens was a center of learning, with sophists and philosophers traveling from across Greece to teach rhetoric, astronomy, cosmology, geometry, and the like. The great statesman Pericles was closely associated with this new learning and a friend of Anaxagoras, however, and his political opponents struck at him by taking advantage of a conservative reaction against the philosophers; it became a crime to investigate the things above the heavens or below the earth, subjects considered impious. Anaxagoras is said to have been charged and to have fled into exile when Socrates was about twenty years of age. There is a story that Protagoras, too, was forced to flee and that the Athenians burned his books. Socrates, however, is the only subject recorded as charged under this law, convicted, and sentenced to death in 399 BCE (see Trial of Socrates). In the version of his defense speech presented by Plato, he claims that it is the envy he arouses on account of his being a philosopher that will convict him.

While philosophy was an established pursuit prior to Socrates, Cicero credits him as "the first who brought philosophy down from the heavens, placed it in cities, introduced it into families, and obliged it to examine into life and morals, and good and evil." By this account he would be considered the founder of political philosophy. The reasons for this turn toward political and ethical subjects remain the object of much study.

The fact that many conversations involving Socrates (as recounted by Plato and Xenophon) end without having reached a firm conclusion, or aporetically, has stimulated debate over the meaning of the Socratic method. Socrates is said to have pursued this probing question-and-answer style of examination on a number of topics, usually attempting to arrive at a defensible and attractive definition of a virtue.

While Socrates' recorded conversations rarely provide a definite answer to the question under examination, several maxims or paradoxes for which he has become known recur. Socrates taught that no one desires what is bad, and so if anyone does something that truly is bad, it must be unwillingly or out of ignorance; consequently, all virtue is knowledge. He frequently remarks on his own ignorance (claiming that he does not know what courage is, for example). Plato presents him as distinguishing himself from the common run of mankind by the fact that, while they know nothing noble and good, they do not know that they do not know, whereas Socrates knows and acknowledges that he knows nothing noble and good.

Plato was an Athenian of the generation after Socrates. Ancient tradition ascribes thirty-six dialogues and thirteen letters to him, although of these only twenty-four of the dialogues are now universally recognized as authentic; most modern scholars believe that at least twenty-eight dialogues and two of the letters were in fact written by Plato, although all of the thirty-six dialogues have some defenders. A further nine dialogues are ascribed to Plato but were considered spurious even in antiquity.

Plato's dialogues feature Socrates, although not always as the leader of the conversation. (One dialogue, the Laws, instead contains an "Athenian Stranger.") Along with Xenophon, Plato is the primary source of information about Socrates' life and beliefs and it is not always easy to distinguish between the two. While the Socrates presented in the dialogues is often taken to be Plato's mouthpiece, Socrates' reputation for irony, his caginess regarding his own opinions in the dialogues, and his occasional absence from or minor role in the conversation serve to conceal Plato's doctrines. Much of what is said about his doctrines is derived from what Aristotle reports about them.

The political doctrine ascribed to Plato is derived from the Republic, the Laws, and the Statesman. The first of these contains the suggestion that there will not be justice in cities unless they are ruled by philosopher kings; those responsible for enforcing the laws are compelled to hold their women, children, and property in common; and the individual is taught to pursue the common good through noble lies; the Republic says that such a city is likely impossible, however, generally assuming that philosophers would refuse to rule and the people would refuse to compel them to do so.

Whereas the Republic is premised on a distinction between the sort of knowledge possessed by the philosopher and that possessed by the king or political man, Socrates explores only the character of the philosopher; in the Statesman, on the other hand, a participant referred to as the Eleatic Stranger discusses the sort of knowledge possessed by the political man, while Socrates listens quietly. Although rule by a wise man would be preferable to rule by law, the wise cannot help but be judged by the unwise, and so in practice, rule by law is deemed necessary.

Both the Republic and the Statesman reveal the limitations of politics, raising the question of what political order would be best given those constraints; that question is addressed in the Laws, a dialogue that does not take place in Athens and from which Socrates is absent. The character of the society described there is eminently conservative, a corrected or liberalized timocracy on the Spartan or Cretan model or that of pre-democratic Athens.

Plato's dialogues also have metaphysical themes, the most famous of which is his theory of forms. It holds that non-material abstract (but substantial) forms (or ideas), and not the material world of change known to us through our physical senses, possess the highest and most fundamental kind of reality.

Aristotle moved to Athens from his native Stageira in 367 BCE and began to study philosophy (perhaps even rhetoric, under Isocrates), eventually enrolling at Plato's Academy. He left Athens approximately twenty years later to study botany and zoology, became a tutor of Alexander the Great, and ultimately returned to Athens a decade later to establish his own school: the Lyceum. At least twenty-nine of his treatises have survived, known as the corpus Aristotelicum, and address a variety of subjects including logic, physics, optics, metaphysics, ethics, rhetoric, politics, poetry, botany, and zoology.

Aristotle is often portrayed as disagreeing with his teacher Plato. He criticizes the regimes described in Plato's Republic and Laws, and refers to the theory of forms as "empty words and poetic metaphors."He is generally presented as giving greater weight to empirical observation and practical concerns.

Aristotle's fame was not great during the Hellenistic period, when Stoic logic was in vogue, but later peripatetic commentators popularized his work, which eventually contributed heavily to Islamic, Jewish, and medieval Christian philosophy. His influence was such that Avicenna referred to him simply as "the Master"; Maimonides, Alfarabi, Averroes, and Aquinas as "the Philosopher."

During the Hellenistic and Roman periods, many different schools of thought developed in the Hellenistic world and then the Greco-Roman world. There were Greeks, Romans, Egyptians, Syrians and Arabs who contributed to the development of Hellenistic philosophy. Elements of Persian philosophy and Indian philosophy also had an influence. The most notable schools of Hellenistic philosophy were:


  • Neoplatonism: Plotinus (Egyptian), Ammonius Saccas, Porphyry (Syrian), Zethos(Arab), Iamblichus (Syrian), Proclus

  • Academic Skepticism: Arcesilaus, Carneades, Cicero (Roman)

  • Pyrrhonian Skepticism: Pyrrho, Sextus Empiricus

  • Cynicism: Antisthenes, Diogenes of Sinope, Crates of Thebes (taught Zeno of Citium, founder of Stoicism)

  • Stoicism: Zeno of Citium, Cleanthes, Chrysippus, Crates of Mallus (brought Stoicism to Rome c. 170 BCE), Panaetius, Posidonius, Seneca (Roman), Epictetus (Greek/Roman), Marcus Aurelius (Roman)

  • Epicureanism: Epicurus (Greek) and Lucretius (Roman)

  • Eclecticism: Cicero (Roman)



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