what philosophy taught me essay

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What philosophy taught me essay top writing essay

What philosophy taught me essay

After graduating, studying philosophy has extended even more out of the classroom. My first two years out of college I worked at a day-center for the homeless in Tacoma, Washington. Most nights after dinner we would go on long walks and talk about our day. After a few weeks we realized we were constantly attempting to make sense of our situation by theorizing. These long walks in wet, balmy northwest nights helped to solidify my belief in the indissoluble connection between theory and practice.

I was introduced to the concept of theory and practice in my level philosophy classes. That concept guided me through my papers in college as well as decisions about the course of my life. For that, I am very thankful. S tudying philosophy teaches you how to approach problems, view arguments from multiple perspectives and to think around situations. Studying philosophy refines your ability to communicate clearly with others and articulate your thoughts in a meaningful way.

My primary focus is working with underrepresented populations and bridging achievement gaps. The skills I learned and the talents that were polished in my study of philosophy actually play in important role in my professional life. First of all studying philosophy at Gustavus made graduate school a breeze. My cohort did not have experience wrestling with difficult texts or writing clear arguments and found the work to be much more challenging.

Even now, I am involved in more research and article writing in my professional career because of the jump start I had as an undergraduate. In my position now, my communication and clarifying skills are immensely important. Even though I am the newest person in my office I get most of the challenging work because of my analytic and problem solving skills.

A side from the fact that George and Deane are two of the coolest cats you will meet on any college campus, the study of philosophy has made me a better person in many ways. While most try to defend their position on a topic and get agitated and downright pissed off at times, I find it somewhat amusing at times to hear people out. My ability to negotiate is far superior to my peers for this simple reason.

If I seek to gain understanding, I can then leverage what makes that person tick and try and satisfy their needs along with mine. In addition, philosophy has taught me to be a much better speaker and writer. In order to convey your thoughts in philosophy, you must speak and write essays. No boring, ugly, easy to grade, multiple choice tests here. Macroeconomic classes have that down pat. No room for those who want to go with the masses. They all shop at Wal-Mart. To sum Not a Member? Already a Member?

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New to eCheat Create an Account! Download as Text File Printable Version. Professionally written essays on this topic: What have I learned about Philosophy? How the Local or Federal Government Can Benefit from Military Leadership and Experience is rigidly controlled: they are expected to be at a certain place at a particular time, in a uniform that can pass a rigorous insp Education and Philosophy In nine pages this paper examines teaching philosophies in this overview that explores the relationship between philosophy and edu Comparative Philosophical Analysis of David Hume and George Berkeley In five pages this report compares Hume and Berkeley in terms of their philosophies' differences and similarities particularly as Philosophy's Role and Defense of Socrates in Apology by Plato In two pages this paper examines philosophy's role and human activity purpose as well as Socrates' defense as represented in Apolo Learning Theories and Philosophy of Education positive change are the most successful in terms of influencing educational development and learner outcomes.

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For example, I say "to teach is to model and demonstrate". These are not idly chosen concepts. What we model impacts how they see the world. Consider four world views all of which correspond loosely with different generations in and around my lifetime : We're at war.

Our heroes are war heroes. When we work, we're at the front line. The challenges we face are battles. The determination of a Churchill or a Patton inspire us. We are explorers. We use science and technology to discover new things. When we work, we are solving problems.

The challenges we face are mysteries, the unknown. The courage of John Glenn and James T. Kirk inspire us. We are players. Our heroes are athletes who bring out the best in themselves. We leave it on the playing field, but experience camaraderie outside the arena.

The strength of Gordie Howe or Hank Aaron inspire us. We are entrepreneurs. We take ideas and make change in the world, bending vast empires of money and people to our will. We are driven by results, and expect a return on our investment.

Our heroes are people like Bill Gates and Steve Jobs. And there are many more, in different generations of different societies around the world. Each of these does not represent just a different world view or a different paradigm. It represents a different way of life. Without philosophy, it's impossible even to understand that there are other ways of life, much less to understand what they could be like.

What are 'evidence' and 'proof' to people in each of these different worlds. I inhabit a workspace where the only measure of whether something has value is whether someone will pay for it - part of that entrepreneurial mindset. I don't agree with that mindset, but I'm also aware that my own mindset, the explorer mindset, isn't inherently superior. People are always saying to me that " this counts as a theory, but that doesn't," or that " this counts as research, but that doesn't. I know I won't change their minds on this, probably, because no evidence exists that does not reinforce their world view.

That's the nature of world views. Thought is Associative Not everybody who studies philosophy will learn this see the preceding paragraph but I did, and it was of fundamental importance to me. There are different ways to make the same point. Other people, for example, will say that they learned that not everyone is rational, or that people don't make rational decisions. Others will say that people think in music and pictures and whatever.

These are both true. But for me, it comes down to the idea that thought is associative. But what does it mean? It's hard to explain in words, but by way of a metaphor, I would say that the principles of knowledge, memory and understanding are basically the same as the principles that apply when you throw a rock into a pond.

There is the impact, there is the cascade as waves rush out from the rock, there is the pushback as waves bounce off each other and off the shore, and there is the settling as the pond returns to its level. Now the human brain is much more complex than a pond, but in both cases, the impact of something new affects the entire system, even though the cause touches only one small part of it.

The rock touches some water, which pushes against other water, which pushes against a shoreline, and so on. The water organizes itself through a whole series of molecule-to-molecule interactions. There's no head molecule. There is no 'purpose' or 'order' defining what the waves must be - if tyhe stone had been bigger, the water colder, the shoreline shaped differently, it would have worked out in a completely different way. We are on the verge of understanding how that process actually works in brains we understand pretty well already how it works in ponds, to the point that we have an entire discipline built around fluid dynamics.

What we don't have yet is a way of understanding the world consistent with this understanding of how thought works. For example, I have said frequently, knowledge is recognition. Water doesn't really retain the impact of rocks, which is why ponds aren't intelligent. But other more complex and more stable entities will retain traces of the impact. One thing influences the next, and each thing preserves a trace of that influence, such that after a while characteristic patterns of input produce characteristic responses.

This is recognition. And it is, to my mind, the basis for all human intelligence. This way of thinking is in an important sense post-semantic. I don't see one thing as a 'sign' for another. I don't see mental models as 'representations' of some external reality. I see knowledge, cognition and communications as complex interplays of signalling and interaction, each with no inherent meaning, but any of which may be subsequently recognized by one or another entity.

Remember how Marx said "everything is political"? Well, I think that "everything is a language" or, alternatively, there's nothing special about language over and above other forms of communication. So when I create a 'scientific theory', which is my job, I create something that consists of language, code, actions, photographs, and a host of other artifacts, all of which are reflections of my interactions with the world, not intended to 'represent' some deeper truth or underlying reality, but rather, intended to offer a set of phenomena that may be usefully employed by others depending on what they recognize it as being useful for.

Born Free In any number of recent movies - the Hunger Games, for example, or Divergent - the plot revolves around the idea that society is structured in such a way that we all have our assigned places where we work and live. Sometimes, as in Harry Potter, this is depicted as a good thing. But more often the established order is the subject of resistance. The concept originates in Plato, who in the Republic argued that society should be run by philosophers, and that the position of each person would be determined by their inner nature.

But the far greater differences between people are the result of their upbringing, culture and education. In philosophy I encountered the idea that there is an inborn 'human nature' on a regular basis, from the above-mentioned assertions from Plato to Descartes's ideas about the stamp of God implanted in the human brain to Chomsky's postulation of an innate deep grammar.

People argue that there are common things love of justice, fear of death that unite us all, and essential properties mental capacity, physical strength, mathematical abilities that divide us. But none of this is true. What we have in common operates at a far lower level than people suppose.

It operates at a genetic level, a cellular level, which defines only the most basic principles of human composition. Our heritage determines that we will have leg muscles, but not how string those muscles will be. It determines that we have interlinked neural cells, but not how they will be wired together. It determines that we will have a voice, but not what we will say. Time and time again I have encountered evidence of this.

When we look at physical properties, for example, and even the oft-touted difference between men and women, we see how large a role nutrition plays women are tall and strong in nations where they are well-fed and nourished - think about that.

The physical differences between individual members of any race, class or gender you can to name are far greater than any between the races, classes or any other identifiable group. The same is true of mental properties. Time and time again, the most reliable predictor of educational outcome is socio-economic status.

This is not because as some suggest the best and brightest become rich surely we have countervailing evidence of that but because of the advantages they receive in early life, everything from a rich intellectual environment, proper nutrition and stimulation, and social expectations supporting learning and achievement. How much of philosophy is devoted to determining whether there are natural - or essential - properties of things, and most especially humans?

Arguably, most of it. The argument that something 'must be X' on the basis that 'X has property or capacity Y' runs through the entire history of philosophy, from Thales to Aquinas to Kant to Fodor. And none of these speculations has ever stood the test of time. There are no innate properties of significance.

We are born free. Value The word 'value' is a bit loaded as in our entrepreneurial age it has become virtually synonymous with some means of quantification in terms of worth, utility or commodity. There are older senses in which the term 'value' meant something like those properties synonymous with virtue, but those senses of the word are almost inaccessible to us now; we would have had to have been born in a different time and a different place to understand it.

I think philosophy has taught me to think of value a bit more deeply than that, and to at least be able to articulate alternatives that can count as 'value'. These alternatives form the basis of the various systems of morality and justice that have prevailed over the years.

I once wrote to the Globe and Mail in a no-doubt long-lost online forum that the underlying value that defines Canada is this: in diversity, harmony. You need both parts. Harmony is the underlying value the earth, as the Taoists might say , the receiver of all things, the pond after it has become stable, the mind after it has become calm, uncertainty and turmoil resolved. But rocks and sand crabs and fungus also exhibit large degrees of harmony; we want something more.

This is provided by diversity, the possibilities of experience, the creation of the need to adapt, to understand, to grow and to learn. But hey - it's just a value system. It's not like others haven't tried before me. And this knowledge keeps me humble. One type of value system revolves around survival.

It's an animal value system, an artifact of our lizard-brain, perhaps, brought through centuries of socialization to mean also the survival of the offspring, survival of the tribe, or survival of the species. We see it reflected to day in such philosophies as social Darwinism, survivalism, and various types of rule-based tribalism. Another type of value system revolves around ideals. We have the Platonic forms, the perfect Christ, Man and Superman- the idea is that the closer we can come to perfection, the greater the value we have realized.

Another type of value system is based on duty and obligation. Perhaps best represented by Kant, it is informed by the idea that each person is an "end in themselves", not a means to an end today we would say "each person is inherently valuable" and that we ought to act in the manner such that every person could also consistently act in the same manner. Your mother invokes Kant's categorical imperative when she says, "What is everyone else did that?

People like Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill are most closely associated with this philosophy, and Mill famously proposes that the goal of society ought to be to allow each person to pursue their own good in their own way. I have a lot of sympathy with that ideal. Maybe they all amount to the same thing. There's no shortage of ecumenical authors who like to suggests that, at heart, we all have the same system of values. But if this were true then we would have no satisfactory explanation for a Jeffrey Dahmer or a Clifford Olsen.

So even while it feels to me that hose perfect moments of harmony are a combination of happiness, obligation and ideals, I think that other people see these values very differently. This is important to understand. People like to say things like "the truth lies somewhere in the middle" or "the good is what we can all agree on". But there really is no such thing or if there is, we have utterly no means of finding it just yet.

Justice I was never really a fan of moral philosophy, because of the force of the observations just presented, and even less of political philosophy, which to my way of thinking was offered for the most part by the powerful to rationalize their exercise of power. Of course, I have probably been jaded by the fact of being born and raised in an environment where the peak of political philosophy varied between people justifying why we would have enough military might to destroy the entire planet and people giving reason why we should or should not use it.

Political philosophy in my age is and continues to be about the deployment of political power. Probably the predominate idea in political philosophy is some sort of version of social contract theory. This is the idea and we see it reflected in school charters and corporate vision statements that we are united as a society under a set of principles that we have agreed to in order to live together, prosper together or learn together.

The motivation for such a social contract is generally that the alternative is unbearable. Without, for example, the benign power of an absolute sovereign, wrote Thomas Hobbes, our loves would be "solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short" or course, given some of the sovereigns he was defending that might be preferable.

The idea that we have actually signed such a contract is, of course, absurd. So the nature and standards of conduct in the contract are often implied - Rousseau, for example, appeals to the state of nature in which the noble savage found himself, as compared to contemporary society - "man is born free, but everywhere he is in chains.

John Rawls imagines that we could imagine what we would negotiate with each other under a "veil of ignorance" in which no one knew whether they would be a pauper or a king; this would result in a system of "justice as fairness". And of course there are communitarian theories of political philosophy based around the common ownership of "the means of production" which would ensure that everyone gets "to each, according to his needs, from each according to his means.

Interestingly, I don't think that anyone who is actually in politics subscribes to any of these philosophies per se. Actual observation if there is such a thing suggests that most of our social and economic leaders are engaged in one or another version of Machiavellian political theory, loosely stated as "might is right". For my own part, I don't know whether "man is born free," but I do observe that "everywhere he is in chains," and just as I feel the limitations of my own self-actualization I feel that the other people of the world who have even less advantage than I do must feel more or less the same thing, perhaps more deeply.

I do not see us as merely "workers" or even as members of this or that community; from Kant I draw the idea that each person is equally important and equally special, and that our society and our individual lives are most enhanced by realizing that. But I have no illusions, I don't believe in utopia, and I don't believe we can engineer as so many political philosophies suggest a better society, a better company or a better school. I have become a person who is able to carry on conversations with strength and meaning, which was something I had struggled with the majority of my life.

I am so thankful for what I have learned about ethics and the skills I could develop here to critically evaluate how to live my life and my obligations toward others. I feel like my character really changed going into my junior year, and I am happy for it. I have become more reflective about the things that I am involved with. After my sophomore year at LMU, I took a hard look at my life and really discerned what I want to do. I became more honest with myself and committed myself to creating true and strong relationships with those I cared about.

I truly believe it is the major that most suits my natural abilities and allows me to exercise my enduring curiosity about the structure of reality and the search for truth. I enjoy having strong opinions about existential topics and feeling able to clearly articulate them under pressure or in debate. My experience as a philosophy major has been the most fulfilling academic endeavor I have ever taken on.

I would certainly declare it as a major again and recommend it to anyone with a curious disposition. In this way, it is an education that never stops giving. Additionally, philosophy majors are people who learn what ought to be done in the world and perform actions accordingly. There is no way a philosopher can act otherwise after learning about the good. I am proud to say that I am such a person.

I hope that future Philosophical Inquiry professors continue to encourage their students to consider philosophy as a major or minor because it is an experience that has provided me with an endless amount of knowledge about the world that I will never take for granted. I hope many more students can say the same in the future.

I have grown in my critical thinking and analysis skills. I believe that I am well prepared for any task or situation that will be placed in front of me. I am very satisfied with my decision as it made me a more thoughtful person in all areas of life. I have learned to be a better writer, present better arguments, and think critically. These skills are ones that I can apply in my life forever. This major gave me that education. Fortunately, philosophy is foundation of them all, and a stellar group of professors taught it brilliantly.

I feel much more prepared to tackle anything that is thrown at me, both in my academic life and in my professional and personal life as well. Additionally, I have made many great friends in both my classmates and in my professors. It has been a long, tiring, stressful, tremendously amazing ride, and for that, I am eternally grateful.

It prepares you to write much more clearly. Knowledge has become, in a sense, a source of purpose in my life. I used to think of school only as an obligation, but after studying philosophy, I gained a love of education and truth.

I am leaving LMU with a greater understanding of my position in the world, as a critical thinker, a responsible member of society, and as a believer. My ultimate goal is to uphold truth and to live a happy life! My assessment of my own experiences, my relationship with God, my relationship with others, the work I currently do, and my view of the world has changed for the better.

Yes, there have been innumerable crises that have occurred, but once I got to the other side of those inner struggles, I came out a better person every time. However, I do not see that as a negative. I just need to spend much more time evaluating my positions. But I do remember what conatus means and what it stands for, yes.

It also gives me a leg up when arguing with him about things. I win more often now. Struggled with it. Doubted it. Came to know it. And to my surprise, fell in love with it. It has been full of lessons both in and out of the classroom. I was granted the pleasure of reading from some of the most fundamental texts and learning from some of the finest academics truthfully.

My experiences in the major made me think about the type of person I wanted to be. I received more out of my education than a COMM major for example nothing against them. When I am in my ethics classes with non-majors, the difference in critical thinking skills is evident.

I think I have gained valuable soft skills that I will be able to apply in the work force. It is extremely satisfying to master the ideas of a philosopher and to see connections between different arguments. I am also glad I chose to add on a philosophy major because I got to experience the most amazing professors in my college education. I would not have known that it was possible for a professor to care so much about their students, or how inspiring a professor could be, if I had not joined the philosophy department.

The major has allowed me to grow intellectually and personally. It has pushed me to continue asking questions and inspired me to pursue knowledge as a good in itself. Through philosophy, I have come to see the world differently, a place of wonder, beauty, and good. I have never had anything less than a wonderful experience in any of my philosophy classes at LMU.

The faculty and students alike consistently push me to become a better thinker, writer, and rhetorician. I feel that studying philosophy has given me skills that I can easily apply to law school and to my future career in law and politics in addition to excellent facts and knowledge to show off in social situations.

I learned so many things which I never thought I would. It was the best decision I made in my collegiate career. I found a passion in this field, and it provided direction for my academic career and future goals. I think it teaches maturity, it teaches perspective, and it teaches you to learn for the sake of learning. I found it academically rigorous and challenging. I always felt challenged by the coursework and incredibly encouraged by the professors. The concepts and philosophers I was exposed to were truly interesting and enlightening.

Overall, I wish I had added it as a major earlier on. It was the best decision I ever made. When I was an English major, I felt a deep sense of unfulfillment. When I switched to philosophy, it was like a light turned on and there was no going back. I genuinely feel that, by studying philosophy, I have become a more well-rounded individual, better suited to take on the world. This major has taught me quite a lot about myself, the world, and other disciplines. I have loved almost every minute of my studies maybe not reading the Phenomenology of Spirit , and I know that this major has changed me much for the better.

I have evolved through my philosophy education, I no longer take so many things for granted, I look at the world more objectively, more critically, and pursue truth more rigorously. I have nurtured a profound relationship with God that was fueled by me education here. It also helps me be transparent about my biases and get those across to others. At 22 years old I am beginning to understand who I am in life, and I find this very comforting and empowering.

It has made me a more open-minded individual, a sharper thinker, a creative problem-solver, more empathetic, and a more patient individual. It has made me a more disciplined person for the betterment of myself and the world. I have learned to be humble and work hard, and I have broadened my understanding of the world through my research and coursework.

It sharpened my critical thinking, my ability to read situations, interact with others, and make tough decisions. I read some amazing works by extremely intelligent people and incorporated their philosophies into my overall philosophy on life. I almost feel that I have cheated the system in this regard. I have a wide range of interests, so I have continued to take classes in other areas during my time here, but I have always found that philosophy is the best way to understand some of the most fundamental things about these other disciplines.

Without the challenge, I might not have demanded as much self-discipline for my education, and I may not have gotten where I am today. The philosophy major has freed me from the dogmatic approach to life that was given to me. Philosophy has helped me value life itself and fight for the protection, dignity, and rights of others. Philosophy taught me to evaluate my actions and exercise introspection frequently. I feel proud to call myself a philosophy student, and I feel incredibly privileged.

From day one, I believed that an education and a degree in philosophy would help me become a better person and an intelligent and compassionate physician. I think a philosophy education is invaluable, and I believe that the philosophy professors at LMU are also invaluable.

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It has also benefited me greatly in my writing, my ability to construct persuasive arguments, and to create clear, organized thoughts. While philosophy has done this exceptionally well, it has transformed my perspective on life, creating a personal approach to the world that carries along with it an appreciation for existence itself. Philosophy has exposed the beauty of the world to me, something that is invaluable.

I cannot imagine that I would have ever known how much I would like it. While it has been difficult, this major has challenged me to think in ways no other major does. It forces you to question everything you think you know, and that has changed my perspective on life as a whole. This major has actually made me see the world differently. There is no other major that could have satisfied me intellectually as much as philosophy has. Without philosophy I feel that I would be worse off in my interactions outside of academia, and it would have taken me years to be at the point that I am at of maturity and understanding of the way the world works and how people operate.

I think that I have taken at least a couple ideas from each of my classes and in some cases, many more and incorporated them into the very fabric of my mind, as Aristotle describes. They have come to shape the way that I observe and engage with my life and with reality. I have become a much more intelligent observer and more engaged in life and reality.

I have a much more definite and well-founded view about what I should be reaching out for. At the end of every single semester, I was able to look back to the beginning of that semester or to the previous semester and be shocked by how much it seemed that I had grown, usually in large part due to my philosophy classes.

The joy, eagerness to help, and depth with which the professors in this department engage reality is truly inspirational. I regret that I did not get to work with more of them. These examples are one of the only reasons that I initially allowed myself to even begin to consider pursuing a PhD and, ultimately, an academic job. I think it was the way in which it was taught. Students, to my surprise, were engaging in conversations about what the philosophers said and trying to grapple with what they meant when they posed a certain argument.

I love how we have studied philosophers whose philosophies seem so obvious once you understand it. The major teaches you to think outside of the box, which has been useful. I noticed that every class I really enjoyed was mostly because of the way the professor approached the material and how engaging or interesting she made it! There are too many reasons to list, but one that stands out is that I will probably never be bored again.

I am eternally grateful to several of the professors who have taken the time to mentor and teach me over the last few years. Additionally, it has enabled me to be better equipped with the mental tools to begin cultivating creative solutions for such challenging issues. I look around, and I see the roots of the ideas I have learned about and how they intersect with my life and those around me. I am urged forward to discover more and more, while finding a strange, yet comforting, discontent in not knowing the ultimate nature of things.

I have made lasting friendships. I want to know, defend, and promote the truth. The philosophy curriculum at LMU is deeply imbued with Jesuit values that promote the education of the whole person so that they may be a global citizen.

All of my classes offered opportunities to better understand my own values and how I can live them out in the world. Philosophy has shaped the person that I have become today, and I believe I would not be the person I am without having engaged in philosophical readings, arguments, and conversations. I have become a person who is able to carry on conversations with strength and meaning, which was something I had struggled with the majority of my life.

I am so thankful for what I have learned about ethics and the skills I could develop here to critically evaluate how to live my life and my obligations toward others. I feel like my character really changed going into my junior year, and I am happy for it.

I have become more reflective about the things that I am involved with. After my sophomore year at LMU, I took a hard look at my life and really discerned what I want to do. I became more honest with myself and committed myself to creating true and strong relationships with those I cared about. I truly believe it is the major that most suits my natural abilities and allows me to exercise my enduring curiosity about the structure of reality and the search for truth.

I enjoy having strong opinions about existential topics and feeling able to clearly articulate them under pressure or in debate. My experience as a philosophy major has been the most fulfilling academic endeavor I have ever taken on. I would certainly declare it as a major again and recommend it to anyone with a curious disposition. In this way, it is an education that never stops giving. Additionally, philosophy majors are people who learn what ought to be done in the world and perform actions accordingly.

There is no way a philosopher can act otherwise after learning about the good. I am proud to say that I am such a person. I hope that future Philosophical Inquiry professors continue to encourage their students to consider philosophy as a major or minor because it is an experience that has provided me with an endless amount of knowledge about the world that I will never take for granted.

I hope many more students can say the same in the future. I have grown in my critical thinking and analysis skills. I believe that I am well prepared for any task or situation that will be placed in front of me. I am very satisfied with my decision as it made me a more thoughtful person in all areas of life.

I have learned to be a better writer, present better arguments, and think critically. These skills are ones that I can apply in my life forever. This major gave me that education. Fortunately, philosophy is foundation of them all, and a stellar group of professors taught it brilliantly.

I feel much more prepared to tackle anything that is thrown at me, both in my academic life and in my professional and personal life as well. Additionally, I have made many great friends in both my classmates and in my professors. It has been a long, tiring, stressful, tremendously amazing ride, and for that, I am eternally grateful. It prepares you to write much more clearly.

Knowledge has become, in a sense, a source of purpose in my life. I used to think of school only as an obligation, but after studying philosophy, I gained a love of education and truth. I am leaving LMU with a greater understanding of my position in the world, as a critical thinker, a responsible member of society, and as a believer. My ultimate goal is to uphold truth and to live a happy life! My assessment of my own experiences, my relationship with God, my relationship with others, the work I currently do, and my view of the world has changed for the better.

Yes, there have been innumerable crises that have occurred, but once I got to the other side of those inner struggles, I came out a better person every time. However, I do not see that as a negative. I just need to spend much more time evaluating my positions. But I do remember what conatus means and what it stands for, yes. It also gives me a leg up when arguing with him about things.

I win more often now. Struggled with it. Doubted it. Came to know it. And to my surprise, fell in love with it. It has been full of lessons both in and out of the classroom. I was granted the pleasure of reading from some of the most fundamental texts and learning from some of the finest academics truthfully. My experiences in the major made me think about the type of person I wanted to be. I received more out of my education than a COMM major for example nothing against them. When I am in my ethics classes with non-majors, the difference in critical thinking skills is evident.

I think I have gained valuable soft skills that I will be able to apply in the work force. It is extremely satisfying to master the ideas of a philosopher and to see connections between different arguments. I am also glad I chose to add on a philosophy major because I got to experience the most amazing professors in my college education.

I would not have known that it was possible for a professor to care so much about their students, or how inspiring a professor could be, if I had not joined the philosophy department. The major has allowed me to grow intellectually and personally. It has pushed me to continue asking questions and inspired me to pursue knowledge as a good in itself. Through philosophy, I have come to see the world differently, a place of wonder, beauty, and good. I have never had anything less than a wonderful experience in any of my philosophy classes at LMU.

The faculty and students alike consistently push me to become a better thinker, writer, and rhetorician. I feel that studying philosophy has given me skills that I can easily apply to law school and to my future career in law and politics in addition to excellent facts and knowledge to show off in social situations.

It teaches critical thinking, close reading, clear writing, and logical analysis; it uses these to understand the language we use to describe the world, and our place within it. Different areas of philosophy are distinguished by the questions they ask. Do our senses accurately describe reality? What makes wrong actions wrong? How should we live? These are philosophical questions, and philosophy teaches the ways in which we might begin to answer them. Students who learn philosophy get a great many benefits from doing so.

The tools taught by philosophy are of great use in further education, and in employment. Despite the seemingly abstract nature of the questions philosophers ask, the tools philosophy teaches tend to be highly sought-after by employers.

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We're ready to eat, Uncle Charlie. This is especially clear in languages like French, where you have to plan your sentences ahead of time, in order to ensure the gender of your words are in accord. In all languages, structure indicates not only the subject and verb, as mentioned above, but also logical form leading to such things as inference and explanation. Why does this matter? Well, as I've written elsewhere , understanding this structure is key to writing useful and meaningful essays.

It is also key to being able to analyze and understand what other people have written. When you read an editorial containing a whole list of sentences, how to do determine what opinion they are trying to express? It is the structure of the article that tells you this. Structure is logic, and logic is structure. You can see this by looking at the different kinds of logic; they reveal to you the different kinds of structures you can employ in your reasoning: propositional - connecting and relating the truth of basic sentences using 'and', 'or', 'if-then' and 'not'.

I also actually learned them, which means I can make really complex inferences, but more importantly, know some pretty basic things. For example, if 'P' is necessarily true, is 'P' true? Syntax and Semantics Syntax is the structure of something - its logic - while semantics refers to its meaning, truth or value. Syntax is the fact that ten dimes make up a dollar; semantics is the fact that it takes ten dollars to attend a movie.

The very fact that syntax and semantics are distinct is important in itself, for several reasons. The first is that syntax is arbitrary. We can make up any sort of syntax we want. This is not so easy to see in everyday arithmetic and propositional calculus, where the rules are deeply entrenched. But in modal logic, however, we have various 'systems' such as T, K, S4 and S5.

Which one of these is 'true'? Well, they all are. Or none of them is. Or, it doesn't even make sense to ask the question. In mathematics, similarly, there are different axiom systems. Which is 'true', Peano arithmetic? Mill's Axioms? Or does it even matter? In fact, a syntax, thought in and of itself, can be whatever we want it to be. Usually we set out some basic requirements - the system should not allow contradictions, for example.

But there's no requirement that we do this, and if we develop a system that does not have truth as its basis language, say then the principle of non-contradiction doesn't even make sense! Take a look at my categorical converter - do the lines have to be drawn that way? Well, no. Or imagine a logic that is falsity-preserving, rather than truth preserving: they look like mirror images, but in falsity-preserving logic, nothing follows from a contradiction, and everything follows from a tautology.

If pressed, we would say that we need to choose one system of logic over another because one of them works in the real world, but the other doesn't. But the relation between logic and the world is far from clear. We 'prove' a system of logic with a semantical argument, but the relation between a semantics and a logic is itself the subject of discussion; these different relations are called 'interpretations'. What does it mean, for example, to say that "the probability of 'P' is n "?

There are three major types of interpretations of this statement: the logical interpretation, from Rudolf Carnap - for every possible state of affairs in which P could be true or false, in n of them, P is true. For that matter, what makes a statement P 'true' at all? Alfred Tarski said "the sentence 'snow is white' is true if and only if snow is white. But the sentence "brakeless trains are dangerous" can be true even of there are no brakeless trains.

So it seems there are two basic principles of truth - a correspondence principle, which requires reference to a physical world of some sort, or a coherence theory, which requires consistence with a model. This is how murky these questions can get when we're talking about something as basic as truth. In the 20th century, however, philosophers focused on other aspects of semantics, such as meaning and value. Here, the discussion became even more murky. When someone comes to me and says that some thing or another is 'true', you can see I have a lot to think about regarding what this assertion could possibly mean.

When somebody says to me that "We can all agree that such and such ," I begin to distrust this person, first because the statement is probably false, and second because it's not at all clear to me that 'agreement' is even relevant to the sort of truth, value or meaning that we are discussing. These are really important lessons, and they apply everywhere. What are 'Things'? Philosophy taught me that anything can be a 'thing' - it just depends on how you look at it. And that there are different types of things, and different types of types of things.

Our teachers in school spent a lot of time telling us about the basic types of things - animals, minerals and vegetables - and the different types of each thing that fall neatly into categories beneath them as kingdoms, phyla, species and genera. In university I learned that the way we define a thing in this system is to identify the category a thing belongs in, and what distinguishes it from other members of that category.

Then in philosophy I learned that all of this is arbitrary. The beautiful system was upended, most notably, by Wittgenstein. Is there any statement that is true about all games? Is there any statement that is true about only games? The idea of a 'game' os that it is a bunch of things that are kind of the same, like family resemblances, so you can see that they are sort of alike, but there is nothing unique that defines them.

Language itself is like this. We don't have 'rules' properly so-called, we have "language games". What does a word mean? Well, it depends on how we use it. The meanings of words, the rules of language, the nature of what is true and what isn't - these all shift over time, like the bed of a river.

Even more importantly. Because whether one thing 'resembles' something else really depends on your point of view. We can in one sense say that checkers resembles chess, while in another sense say that checkers resembles mathematics.

There are many ways to define things: we can point to them, we can say what they contain, we can say what properties they have, we can talk about what they do, what they were designed to do, what they actually do, what they might do, we can say what they're for, we can talk about where they're from or who or what created them, and on and on.

Viewed this way, anything can be a 'thing', and any group of things can be a thing. George Lakoff talks about the culture that divides the world into two types of things: one class consisting of "women, fire and dangerous things," and another class consisting of everything else. So much of what we do today involves either working with certain types of things, or understanding that we are defining new types of things. What are 'students'? What is a 'learning object'?

How do we define an 'ontology'? Philosophy taught me about the limitations of relational databases long before there were relational databases. Theories and Models Quine's Two Dogmas of Empiricism taught me and everyone else two important things: There's no such thing as the analytic-synthetic distinction Reductionism is false Above I discussed the distinction between syntax and semantics.

The collapse of the analytic-synthetic distinction means that no statement is wither purely syntactical or purely semantical. What does this mean? An analytic statement is supposed to be true simply by virtue of the meanings of its terms.

But if we put it this way, no statement is purely analytic. This is the idea that all true statements can be reduced to 'observation language' or some other basis in pure facts this could be any set of facts: facts about the world, facts about pure thought, facts about the Bible. But in fact, there is no set of 'observation statements'. Every 'fact' carries with it some element of the theory it is purporting to prove.

For, without the theory, there is no way to say whether even a simple sentence like "the sky is blue" is true or false. This taught me, critically, that what a person sees depends on what that person believes. It means we have to rethink how we approach research and discovery, but also that we have to rethink how we communicate with people, how we appeal to reason and evidence, and even how we regard the world and our place in it ourselves.

And it's why education - and how we think of education - is so important. For example, I say "to teach is to model and demonstrate". These are not idly chosen concepts. What we model impacts how they see the world. Consider four world views all of which correspond loosely with different generations in and around my lifetime : We're at war. Our heroes are war heroes. When we work, we're at the front line. The challenges we face are battles.

The determination of a Churchill or a Patton inspire us. We are explorers. We use science and technology to discover new things. When we work, we are solving problems. The challenges we face are mysteries, the unknown. The courage of John Glenn and James T. Kirk inspire us. We are players. Our heroes are athletes who bring out the best in themselves. We leave it on the playing field, but experience camaraderie outside the arena. The strength of Gordie Howe or Hank Aaron inspire us.

We are entrepreneurs. We take ideas and make change in the world, bending vast empires of money and people to our will. We are driven by results, and expect a return on our investment. Our heroes are people like Bill Gates and Steve Jobs. And there are many more, in different generations of different societies around the world.

Each of these does not represent just a different world view or a different paradigm. It represents a different way of life. Without philosophy, it's impossible even to understand that there are other ways of life, much less to understand what they could be like. What are 'evidence' and 'proof' to people in each of these different worlds. I inhabit a workspace where the only measure of whether something has value is whether someone will pay for it - part of that entrepreneurial mindset.

I don't agree with that mindset, but I'm also aware that my own mindset, the explorer mindset, isn't inherently superior. People are always saying to me that " this counts as a theory, but that doesn't," or that " this counts as research, but that doesn't. I know I won't change their minds on this, probably, because no evidence exists that does not reinforce their world view. That's the nature of world views.

Thought is Associative Not everybody who studies philosophy will learn this see the preceding paragraph but I did, and it was of fundamental importance to me. There are different ways to make the same point. Other people, for example, will say that they learned that not everyone is rational, or that people don't make rational decisions.

Others will say that people think in music and pictures and whatever. These are both true. But for me, it comes down to the idea that thought is associative. But what does it mean? It's hard to explain in words, but by way of a metaphor, I would say that the principles of knowledge, memory and understanding are basically the same as the principles that apply when you throw a rock into a pond. There is the impact, there is the cascade as waves rush out from the rock, there is the pushback as waves bounce off each other and off the shore, and there is the settling as the pond returns to its level.

Now the human brain is much more complex than a pond, but in both cases, the impact of something new affects the entire system, even though the cause touches only one small part of it. The rock touches some water, which pushes against other water, which pushes against a shoreline, and so on. The water organizes itself through a whole series of molecule-to-molecule interactions. There's no head molecule. What we learn is class about philosophy defiantly makes me think and makes my brain turn all the time, but so far, my understanding is that philosophy is the study of knowledge.

It breaks down what everything is. According to Aristotle, philosophy is the study of fundamental. The philosophies that influenced me most would be epicureanism and skepticism. I like to have a good time and enjoy myself, but in moderation because that should not be what life is all about. I am the same way when it comes to meeting someone. Philosophy is all about exploring the different perspectives people have in their minds. This was my initial thought of what philosophy was.

I knew that many of the topics that we discussed in this class would stimulate my mind. Learning new theories that contribute to the better understanding of my history is something that I enjoy greatly. No matter the level of difficulty of the subject matter, I enjoy learning what I consider to be reality. Discussing not only where the ideas of race and racialized. Summary The Communist Manifesto covers a variety of topics, the first and most prominent is likely class struggles.

Marx explains in immense detail the unfair relationships between the bourgeoisie and the proletarians and communists. He talks about how these class separations and struggles should be abolished. Equality of opportunity is another big thing that is discussed throughout the book, as well as dealing majorly with class struggle.

What inspires a man to forge his linguistic capabilities of his primary language from sub-rudimentary level, into an art form? Well, as I am only a singular individual, I cannot answer for the entirety of society, but I can give you a record of a period of my life that motivated me to attempt to excel at learning the English Language.

So, what inspired me to learn the English Language better than what I knew beforehand? The answer is not as straight forward. I had many things that happened to me. I am finally on my way to turning that dream into a reality. Along the way, I am learning a lot of things and forming a number of opinions. One of the main areas in which I am forming new beliefs is in relation to what methods I will use in teaching my class and what aspects of what philosophies I will employ. First of all, however, I must reach the point where I have.

Personal Info: I became interested in Education in a Diverse Society because I enjoy diversity and how different people can come together to work or learn as one unit. Volunteering with children is what made me interested in education. Even though I have no plans in becoming a teacher, I would like to keep volunteering at schools and other events such as camps because I enjoy helping children develop their minds and learn various aspects that pertain to life.

Attending school in America my whole. Personal Philosophy of Leadership Being a leader is more than simply holding a leadership position or having the ability to lead.

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