Talons Philosophy

An Open Online Highschool Philosophy Course


You Are Not Alone

We all have questions. Some are little. Some are big ones that we only ask ourselves when our minds wander. These questions keep us awake, keep us wondering. A philosophy class in high school gives teenagers an opportunity to share thoughts and questions and even answers. We notice things about ourselves that we hadn’t yet noticed, see what we connect to, see how we think. We see that we aren’t alone.

Everyone goes through times in their lives where we believe that we are truly alone. We believe that there could be no one who understands how we see the world. Some, during these times, see it as a very dark and harsh world to live in. It’s in these times when we are alone that we start thinking differently. We think about the ‘what ifs’, the ‘what would be different’ and the ‘why.’ Our level of thinking changes to a deeper level when we feel so isolated.Yet we are social creatures; not able to handle being completely isolated.

In the article Talk With Me written by Nigel Warburton, he writes:

Machiavelli, meanwhile, was indeed exiled, cut off from the intrigues of court life, a city dweller forced into a bucolic existence against his will. But in a letter to his friend Francesco Vettori of 10 December 1513, he described how he spent his evenings: he would retire to his study and conjure up the great ancient thinkers and hold imaginary conversations with them about how best to govern. These imaginary conversations were the raw material for The Prince. Descartes might have locked himself away to write, and avoided distractions by doing most of his work lying in bed, but when he came to publish his Meditations it was with a number of critical comments from other philosophers, including Thomas Hobbes, together with his responses to their criticisms. Likewise, Rousseau loved solitude, but he included dialogues within his writing, and even wrote the bizarre book Rousseau Judge of Jean-Jacques (1776) in which he presented two versions of himself debating with each other.

All of these great philosophers believed that they were able to isolate themselves and think of great things. However, in their writings, they still had characters, human beings that they could share their ideas with. Everyone needs someone to talk to, it’s as simple as that.

In high school, teenagers are growing, changing and thinking. It’s during this time, this challenging, scary time, that most people struggle. We are thinking about this strange world we will soon be stepping in to. We have questions, and fears. We need someone to be here with us.

A philosophy class in high school is a gift. We can talk with others who think like us, who let us know that we aren’t alone. We can ask our questions about the world together and face our fears about this world us students will soon be entering. The most important is that it is a place where we can talk. Everyone needs someone to talk to.

That is the basics of philosophy. Philosophy is having a conversation with people, bouncing ideas off one another. That is the basics of how we as humans function. We talk to people about something we did, coming up with more ideas based off that that will lead us to other decisions and events. We talk to people about how we feel and why. Philosophy is taking it beyond a simple conversation. It’s taking it to a place of thinking where we see who thinks like us, who sees the world like us.


8 Responses to You Are Not Alone

  1. Samson says:

    So I know you’ve got this x-files alien theme going on, kind of sort of. You are not alone, aliens, all that good stuff.

    Would you talk philosophy with aliens as a first priority, or would it come after we’ve done all the important stuff like making sure they don’t want to eat and or kill us in some way. Would they even have something good to say in these conversations? Would an advanced civilization be more advanced with their philosophy or would it have fallen to the wayside in favour of sciences like space travel and medicine?

    I dunno, that’s a whole different can of worms and we haven’t even tapped the surface of what our own world holds.

  2. stikkysaladtong says:

    Do you think aliens would even hear us out? If a highly advanced species were to contact us, would they even waste their time on us? Who is to say they don’t just wipe us out or enslave us? WOULD THEY LIKE OUR MEMES? WOULD THEY LIKE TO LISTEN TO OUR FEELINGS AND HOPES AND DREAMS? DO ALIENS CARE? DO THEY FEEL OUR CONCEPT OF LOVE AS WE DO? Or are we just gonna be probed to no end to figure out the mysteries of the human body? AM I GONNA BE PROBED? WOULD THIS BE LIKE MASS EFFECT AND THEY HAVE GENERALLY QUITE PLEASANT HUMAN RELATIONS? WOULD HR DEAL WITH ALIEN V. HUMAN MATTERS OR WOULD THAT BE A WHOLE NEW ALIEN RELATIONS DEPARTMENT? Do you think they could ever love a human? DO THEY LIKE MEMES?!!

    I have a lot of questions that only aliens or maybe Mulder and Scully can answer.

    • Samson says:

      http://www.businesscat.happyjar.com/comic/superstition/ Imagine this, but with aliens.
      Like, not even in a bad way or a “OH NO POLITICIALLY CORRRRRRRECT THAT SCARES ME BEING AWARE OF OTHERS SCARES ME” but just… we’d need a new word probably for the relations between humans and whatever alien race shows up, since hr wouldn’t work if it’s more than human relations.

      • stikkysaladtong says:

        Would alien/human relations cover advanced weapon injuries and such? Or solve interspecies lawsuits? Would interplanetary marriage be more prevalent or open up a whole new can of racism?

        Along the lines of “Just because little gorgyyx is blue, doesn’t mean he’s any lesser as a species.” Would crime statistics include separate species or just generalize as aliens. If some overlord like alien species is watching us right now, please take me with you. I’d love to learn how your space statistics, politics and economy works.

        • Samson says:

          Take me too, maybe your economy is in less shambles than ours under the great potato lord Steven Harper.

          Also what about religion and aliens? How are they going to deal with that? Do they have their own religions and would they connect with ours? Maybe they’ve met what they consider deities or maybe they’ve decided they’re beyond that.
          Show me space Jesus aliens, show me.

          • stikkysaladtong says:

            I think if we go off of sci-fi tropes, we get crocodilian space pope or eventually a whole new space crusade to show the universe the magnificence of earth religions. I feel like we will eventually get to the point where we HAVE to all just put aside our differences and embrace our alien overlords.

  3. meldoy says:

    Aliens need class.We’re not classy.They want nothing to do with us.

  4. Samson says:

    Because the crusades went so well the first time, lets take them on an intergalactic adventure.


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