Talons Philosophy

An Open Online Highschool Philosophy Course

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Right or Wrong? How do we define moralities? h

What is morality? My definition of morality is: doing the right thing for the right reason. What does it mean though?  I would say that it means using your knowledge and concept of what is right and what’s wrong to live in a society. The way and reasons that you act affects people around you. Your principles should define who you are and also build your morality. Having a good or bad behavior comes from your morality, it’s your personal belief of what is right and what is wrong. There’s not a unique answer to define morality however we live in a society so we must decide what moral we are using to keep people in harmony.

Reading about utilitarianism and Kant’s ideas made me think about our society and it’s moralities. I personally agree most with Kant, I found very interesting the point that he made about how humans are selfish even when doing a good action. If you think about it,  doing a good action just to get something in return is not doing a good action, because you are not doing for others you are doing for yourself. In my opinion Kant is right and closest to define morals and how humans live. He made some good points trying to explain how we act in some situations, the reasons why we do what we do. Our morals would apply to our actions he divides it in two ways. One way you are guided for good reasons, morals and what you believe is right, the other way relates to you doing something good because you pretend to get something from it, he says if your reasons are guided for the second way you shouldn’t be doing it. So is it moral to help poor people just because you would get a prize in return? Or even help your parents when they ask just because you get the car on the weekend ? I mean of course we have to get things for ourselves but is it moral? I don’t think is moral to say that you made something for people if you were just thinking to benefit yourself. It would be moral if you truly did it to help someone else knowing that you wouldn’t get anything in return. Good actions should come from your heart. That’s why I agree mostly with Kant when we are talking about morals.

Utilitarianism relates to have a justification for an action, I mean you justify a bad behavior saying that it was for the best. They believe that everything that brings happiness can be justified (for some situations I agree but I don’t think is moral). The fact that your bad action resulted in a good action does not justify your first action as moral. However I do agree that we should think about pleasure over pain as they believe but again I don’t think is moral. My point is sometimes we can’t put morality above everything, we should think about the bad and good that an action would cause. Sometimes what’s moral brings more pain than good. That’s why I kinda of like to combine both ideas into one to have a balanced ways to determine morals.

Let’s use the example of killing a murder. You can argue that you are doing something for the good of your society cause the action will bring more happiness than pain. It’s better killing one person than letting this one person killing a thousand. However if the murdered killed his father because he was being beaten his action would be justified. Kant would say that it’s wrong killing him because is not moral it would be wrong. The murder would have to go to jail because is the right thing to do. Killing is against a society’s morals, on killing him we would be being selfish and thinking about our on good and not thinking about someone’s life. Even though I agree with Kant in most of his arguments I think on this case moral won’t justify the cause. Killing a murder would be the best option. It would be the best option to our society and it will also prevent others crimes like this one because people would be scared of getting killed.

So I think both of the arguments are valid, they have good ideas and concepts of morality. I personally agree more with Kant but it doesn’t mean that I don’t believe on the other argument, I think both are important to our society and both are relevant to be discussed.

 

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How do we know that we know?

P1: People tend to learn more when they talk to others and share it’s ideas. You get more knowledge from talking to people

P2: When you travel you meet new people and you learn new things. You are improving to learn something different so you expand your knowledge.

Conclusion: You acquire knowledge by talking to people and travelling

Knowledge comes from travelling, talking to different people and getting experience by trying new things. Since we were born we learn different things every day. We learn the meaning of a new word and the utility of a new object. Everyone has knowledge about something and we end up sharing knowledge with others. We go  to school and we get to learn things every day. Different subjects and concepts. Every human being has a different kind of knowledge, sometimes you know more about material things and some people know more about feelings and ideas. It depends on your experiences and your mind. I don’t know much about knowledge I think it’s a huge topic to talk about, however I do think that most of our knowledge comes from talking to people and travelling. I mean of you course you get knowledge by going to school and learning actual subjects and stuff or you could just use your brain and reason to figure out things, like when you know that you shouldn’t jump from the top of a mountain because you would get killed, those things we just know. But I do believe that when you talk to people and share ideas you are increasing your personal knowledge. You create arguments and you become wiser, also you can see different points of views and make new connections about what you know. Also when you travel you are getting more experience and learning new cultures. You have contact with a different place where you will learn new ideas and things. For example when you travel (It doesn’t need to be a fancy trip as going to Europe any trip counts) you get to learn a new point of view of things, you might see different buildings, clothes, food, cars and people. The way that they live or talk might be different as well and you end up getting a little bit of this. You can learn a new language or even learn a different way to answer questions. I mean sometimes the answers are always the same (like math) but there’s more than one way to get to the answer, so sometimes you just learn new ways to do things. It’s crazy how you can learn so much from people who are different from you. Also when you think about culture you realize that there’s so much to learn, like expressions and habits. I feel that everything that we do becomes knowledge. The more you live the more you will learn. So it doesn’t matter if you had good or bad experiences you will always get something from it. However you will never be able to have knowledge about everything.

How do we know it? Honestly I think we don’t, like there’s no way to prove that we know things, even if we have evidence we won’t be 100% sure. I feel that old people know more than young people because they lived more than us, but I don’t think that they can prove everything that they  know. Of course most of things that we know are true because it was proven, we believe it and we can justify our arguments. Like we know that the earth is round. My statement is based on the fact that we learn from travelling and talking to people but how do I know it? It’s my opinion but I think I’m right because usually people who travel more tend to have a greater knowledge about things as opposed to people who doesn’t travel. Also when you meet people and share ideas you learn more about things which makes you become wiser. You have solid arguments and you also have more information about things. I mean when you don’t know how to do something and you ask someone for help you are getting your knowledge from someone else’s knowledge. And by travelling your experiences will determine your knowledge. However you will always learn something and add your personal belief into it because you have your own opinion and reasonable thoughts. So yes I’m saying that you improve your knowledge by talking to people and traveling, but I’m not saying that you will know everything, the fact that you can get more knowledge doesn’t make you able to answer every single question that exists.

I didn’t get my premises from other philosopher’s ideas however some of my beliefs relates with their ideas. My favorite philosopher is Kant I like the way the he sees things and talk about them. He’s ideas of knowledge are very interesting and his argument that we get knowledge from experiences matches with my ideas of learning. I think that knowledge comes from experiences as well. Also he has the method of classifying knowledge as something that we sense or that we use our intuition. He believes that we use our reason to believe in something and consider it true. We have to justify our ideas and prove that they are right. So in my opinion we have something in common, however he wouldn’t agree with my argument that we get knowledge by sharing ideas and talking to people, he might agree with the travelling part but I feel he would say that getting knowledge from people wouldn’t be solid enough to say it’s true. Kant was a great guy and I really like his concepts of life. He has strong arguments and good examples of getting knowledge but I do think that we can learn from more ways not specifically from experiences, there’s other ways to become wiser.

My concepts from knowledge came from my personal life, I realized that I learned more when I started traveling. I learned different cultures, languages and concepts. I became a new person. I got experiences and now I know so many things and I keep learning every single day. You read different things, you watch a movie and listen to a song, you end up learning new things and getting different ideas. Your mind change, you become more mature and you have so many things to share with people. When I argue with people or when I talk to people that I never talked before I always learn new ideas and see things with a different perspective, also I learn more about a specific topic and I get more information about it. When you have a “combo” between travelling and talking to people your mind get up grated you become wiser and more experienced. Your actions and situations will determine your knowledge and how you see the world. Concepts might change during your life and you will add experiences, reason, knowledge and people’s ideas into one thing which will become your knowledge.

 

 

 

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Philosophy Day Off: Reality by Camille

When I started my topic about reality I had simple questions as what is reality and why is it important to society. I had questions but I didn’t know how to ask them. I don’t need the definition of reality when I want to know if we live in a real place. During this weekend I had time to think about it. I realized that I don’t want to know what’s reality, I want to know if I’m living in reality. Now you might be confused but I will try to make myself as clear as possible. My ideas about reality are not related to the real definition that would be something that exist. My point is are we real? Of course we will say yes because we think we are real, but isn’t possible for us to live a lie? We could be part of someone’s imagination or maybe be a dream. I know it sounds crazy and confusing but I spent hours thinking about it. Now my questions are more related to a personal belief rather than a general knowledge about reality.

To understand what I was looking for I watched some videos about reality and I hated it. All the videos shows things that are logical and obvious which in my opinion is not a definition for reality. I started asking my friends what they think about it and I got frustrated because they had all the same answers. The answers where short and without consistence which made me think ” Am I the only one who has crazy ideas about reality?”. I was reading philosophers points of view about reality and finally I found interesting things, they doubt the answers of what is real. Finally I understood that people believe in what they see so is logical to define real things as existent things, after questioning people and making researches I made the conclusion that even being different from each other people can have the same thoughts about a topic.

Finally after new discoveries and getting contact with new ideas I realized that in fact we shouldn’t worry about reality, we should worry about our beliefs, goals and futures. As long as we are happy and doing fine there’s no pint of asking yourself if it is real. Just live and get experiences, knowledge is definitely real! My new question now is “Is it actually important to have an answer to every question”? After the reality topic I’ve been asking myself why do we have to know everything, I mean some stuff are important and knowledge is good, but is it relevant to have an argument to every single thing? Some things are better when they are unknown. I just feel that reality and knowledge go on the same direction but through different trials you have to choose one but it will lead you to the same place.

 

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“Reality”- Camille

 

reality-1

How do people define reality?

Reality is something relative when you think about it. The “right” definition would be the state of things that actually exists. However it is something that might have existed in the past or might exist in the future. I say it’s relative because what is real for me could not be real for you. People think that what they can see, touch or create is reality because it exists. In my personal opinion reality goes above that, reality is what you believe and what you want to see. Dreams are real they might not be an actual thing but I know they are real because I can feel it. I do believe that our reality changes during our lives. Reality can be the world/place that you live and during your life you can change it, for example if you are poor and became rich your reality would change because the things around you became different so the existent things in your life wouldn’t be the same. Another fact that is very important is when you are a kid. Do you remember when you was a child and your concepts of reality were different? You believed in Santa Claus, the movies that you watched were so real in your head that all the characters existed in your heart. When you are a kid everything is real and your beliefs are stronger, when you grow up and stop believing nothing is real anymore. My point is people can’t have a conclusion about what reality is because we are not even sure if we are real. You think you are real because you think, feel and act but is that enough? There’s more than one definition for what is real so I understand why people have different opinions about it.

Why is reality relevant to our society? 

It is relevant because reality makes our beliefs and opinions stronger. In a society each person has their own beliefs and we have to accept it even if you don’t agree. Reality is a belief and it affects our society in so many ways. It can affect culture, education, religion, life style and even laws. Your values and what you believe being true and false could affect more than just your life. It affects others. Reality is not consistent, it changes all the time because our minds change all the time. Also within the years our knowledge about the world is different because we get to learn more and figure out new information. I mean years ago people thought that the Earth was flat and it was a reality, however after some time they figured out that the Earth is round and now that’s our reality. So it is relevant because our reality makes our society, it influences families, schools, life experiences and our vision of the world.

Can we consider dreams and feelings real?

Dreams are not considered real by scientists but research shows that every dream has a purpose that would be to solve problems in your life. Every dream comes from actions or experiences that you have experienced, images you have seen. So in my opinion dreams are real, they were meant to show your reality. If we consider everything we have touched or seen real dreams are real because they come from it. Dreams in my opinion are magical, it is something magnificent that our mind does, dreaming is good for everyone. Just because you can’t see or touch it is no reason to say that dreams are not true. If you think about feelings you will get to the conclusion that they are not facts, that’s what the scientists say, but you will probably agree with me that what you feel is real. So it’s controversial to say that feelings aren’t real when for you they are more than real. I would say that just because they aren’t something concrete it does not make feelings less important or real. Every single person has feelings: being happy, being sad, being lazy, being tired, being in love or even being mad. All those feelings are important for our actions and our mood. Feelings are real because they affect our lives and people around us. My point is reality has different definitions.

Why did I chose this topic? 

Because I think it’s an interesting topic, there’s no wrong or right, it depends on your beliefs and your knowledge about reality. I think it’s something nice to talk about and see people’s point of view. “My reality is not your reality” was something that made me think about life and people that live around me. Talking about reality you think about everything, you question yourself and you look for answers to figure out a belief. You challenge yourself to try understand what is true or false. I feel it is a topic where there’s a lot to discuss and think about, it’s a huge subject where there’s many ways to look for answers, reality relates to everything and that’s why I think is important.

Where to next?

I feel people should try to talk more about it, bring more questions and challenges for the topic, assuming that everyone have a different opinion I think would be a nice thing to share different ideas and make new connections about what reality is. When we think about people having discussions we can conclude that new ideas will come from it.

Sources: 

http://inspiremetoday.com/brilliance/just-because-you-think-it-doesnt-mean-its-true/

http://www.thebestbrainpossible.com/my-reality-is-not-your-reality-2/

https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/emotional-fitness/201310/feelings-aren-t-facts

 

 

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Camille – Logic Assignment

Argument

P1: Countries have different cultures

Every country has a different culture. But what do I mean by that? Learning a new culture is beyond of speaking a new language or eating a different type of food. By culture I mean seeing people from another country that have another point of view about the world,  looking on the mirror and seeing a new person that you don’t recognize. You learn an entire new perspective from life. In some countries people like to touch each other as  in others it is something not polite, people have different rules; laws are different and right or wrong are questionable. Each country has it’s own histories and values. Holidays are different and celebrating it in each part of the world could surprise you. Even countries that are separated by borders they are totally different,because of their culture and their beliefs. There’s no wrong or right you just have to accept that nationality makes a big difference in someone’s personality. Like if you put people from different countries together this would be very confusing because they are very different from each other (culturally speaking) .

P2: Travelling to / living in a different country involves learning a new culture

When you travel or move to a different country you have to adapt yourself to a different culture. You create a new life and you start everything again, is like being back to your childhood, you learn new values and create a new personality. You change the way that your dress, maybe because of the weather or maybe because of the dress code at your new country. When you travel everything seems perfect and pretty, your problems are not there and you are just walking around. You are exploring a place that you never been before. Perhaps when you move at the beginning the feeling is the same but after a while things get harder. Not because the place is not good but because you have different customs. You could be the time that you eat, the way that you dress or the expressions that you use, when you move to a country that you are not familiar with you start missing your “home”. You know the feeling of moving to a new school or starting a new job and the only thing that you want is to fit in? That’s the same feeling of arriving in a new country. You have to make new friends and try to “act” like them, I mean they have a different sense of humor, hobbies are not the same and ways to have fun could be an issue, so you have to learn to adapt. Even the food, sometimes you can surprise yourself by eating something that you never thought you would eat. Or maybe you will try new physical activities because it’s part of the culture. Travelling / living in a different country means sharing and getting experiences, everything becomes possible and the world becomes small to you.

Cultures are complex

Complex means composed of many interconnected parts; compound; composite. So why are cultures complex? Mostly because they can be seen in different points of views. Culture could be the way that a nation/person act, think, talk, work or even their beliefs. Culture is a huge subject to talk about and it can guide to to different directions. The way that people are educated comes from culture, the way that you celebrate a holiday came from your culture. What I’m trying to say is that culture covers knowledge, you end up with different ways to define culture which makes it very complex, you may be talking about languages ​​or about ways to act both are in the same subject but they go in different ways of thoughts because everything is included in the word culture. 

Learning complex things is hard

Everything that is complex demands of you a greater effort to understand it. You have to know all the  possible answers that will make  you
understand the subject. It becomes difficult because it guides you in many directions and you can get lost. For example when we are talking
about something complex with two people they can have different ideas on the subject. There's not  a right answer, there are several.All because 
complexity is something extensive and can be interpreted in many ways. So when we say that culture is complex we meant that culture could
have a lot of definitions and interpretations. It's hard to learn all the ways that a subject can be explained. 

C: Therefore traveling to / living in a different country is difficult.

Trips are always exciting, moving to a new place sometimes are not that exciting but both brings you a new feeling and good memories. But they are not easy. I mean if you are not willing to change your life style and add different cultures in your life than you are going to have a bad time by doing it. They are hard but not impossible you just need to want it. Sometimes all you need is time, things will fall into place and you will begin to adapt and things will become easier. What was a strange habit becomes normal and you finally begins to understand your new country, you begin to think more like your new nation and finally you start to acquire this new culture. You will never leave your roots you will learn how to fit a culture into another and finally feel complete. Every difficult moment that you had passed will bring you something good in return: Wisdom. So as life, travelling is not simple or easy but you just have to do your best and you will get over it.

Truth? Yes, all my premises and my conclusion are truth, my answers and argument were based on my own experience about learning about a new culture and I did a research about culture, complexity and learning both. I would say that everything is true . For some people might be easier to get to learn a new culture which still a hard thing to do.

Validity? My argument is deductive which makes it valid, looking at my argument and it’s premises you can see that is valid. All my premises are justifying my argument, making it more concrete and easy to follow. The points that I made were to prove you that my argument is valid and considered true. Logically thinking about my argument and premises you will probably have the same conclusion that I did which makes the argument valid. Plus my argument relates with my conclusion so even if my premises weren’t true my argument would be valid.

Soundness? My argument is valid and true which makes it sound. So yes my argument has soundness.

This argument affects the society that we live in. People move to different countries all the time and they should be aware that is not easy to go to a place where people are totally different from you. They have another point of view of life and things. The way that they act, think and talk to you. It’s going to affect your life and personality. It does not make you wrong it just make you different. And if you are on the other side of the story like you have someone from a new country in your life you should understand that is not easy for them to be there, so try to be patient. I think even though everyone is different and they have different beliefs if we help each other we could live in a better world. Culture is a big thing in our lives the better we know the better we will be. So my reflection is about how learning a new culture by travelling or moving reflects in our lives and it changes us in various ways. .

 

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Plato’s cave – Camille Camara

Everyone has their own cave where everything is clear and easy, everyone has something to learn and should get out of the cave to see the reality or at least see things from another perspective. I had my own cave where I was very comfortable with, I didn’t know about the real world. I moved to Canada one year ago I left my cave (Brazil) to see a reality that I didn’t know before. Everything that I thought that was real were just the shadows of a new world. By leaving the cave I didn’t have the choice to go back, I had to start everything over again. Meeting new people that have a different culture, making friends where everyone already have their own groups, learning a language that I am not fluent I was literally learning how to live again. My life was changed, I what for me was something concrete became shadows in my life. My house, friends, school, routine, were they real? Because since I left I don’t feel I belong there anymore. My concept of reality is different. I had to become someone different. I just realized what independence was when I arrived here, I realized how important my parents were by staying away from them. I learned what friendship was when I left my friends. Living my country changed a lot of things, I don’t think it’s a bad thing, after one year I learned how to live the reality and I learned that the cave is not the best place to be, it might be safer but seeing things how they truly are  makes you someone better. 

I would say that everyone should get out of the cave at least for once. Even if you don’t like it at least you tried, you can always come to the cave anyway. Changing your concept of what is real and what is not can be hard but you learn to adapt and create your own reality. By my own experience of getting out of the cave and seeing the reality of how feelings and life works made me grow up as a person and now I have two options of reality in my life. I can decide which truth I want to believe and follow. I am capable of learning different concepts of the world and how my life works, my cave was my reality until I see that there’s more outside the shadows. So maybe the shadows are the reality, who knows? The fact that we believe in something does not make it real, there are things that we will never be able to explain, but having changed your cave makes your world a place with more opportunities and challenges making life more interesting. 

 

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Camille Camara – Philosophy and I

Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself. – George Bernard Shaw
During this days studying philosophy we were able to think about life and our identity, we had to define philosophy and try to connect love and wisdom into one thing. Relating life, love, wisdom and identity I could realize how important is to have philosophy in my life. Creating goals to my future and getting very excited about this class. Seeing how others think and act is very interesting and now I’m trying to see things with other eyes and try to think differently. The fact that we are questioning how is the right way to live shows that people in the past weren’t different from us, they didn’t have the answer as well. Trying to define how to live is very hard, I mean, people has different opinions and different life style which means that there’s no right answer. The quote from Geroge B. is one of my favorites quotes because it says that you can’t find yourself you have to create it. It makes me question who I want to be, what type of person am I? How can I be better? Is all about you, I mean is up to you decide what you want. Your actions, thoughts and values which is totally related to philosophy, you have  to love learning about yourself. Life is not easy and is not the same to everyone, however everyone has something different to share, it could be experiences, questions, answers or knowledge, better saying connecting ideas is the best way to have a wonderful life.

I would say that since I got into this course I started thinking more about my future and my goals. What I want for my life and where I want to be in a few years. I realize how important school is and how necessary is to have people around you to share ideas. Learning to work with people and being responsible. Also learning how to be a human being and getting prepared to go to the real world where nothing is easy and nothing is perfect. We work hard to get to success and knowing about it makes everything less complicated. Also my goals for this class is to have my own opinion about the meaning of philosophy and be able to justify it. I want to learn about the big philosophers and try to understand their point of view. On another hand I want to learn more about me, understand my feelings and my thoughts, maybe find a quote for my life and find something about me that I didn’t know before. Life and trying to understand from where we came are my favorites topics to think about, not something to share but something that I kept for me, my thoughts. Questioning my life is something that I do all the time. What am I doing with my life? That’s a question that I make all the time. I don’t know if I’m doing things right or not, but I’m always doing what I can and always doing my best. Success is a key world in my life, not disappointing people that I love and trying to have new experiences to become some way wise.

Another thing that I started thinking in this class is about traveling, seeing new cultures and getting new experiences. Getting to know people that are different from you and make new friends. Connecting cultures, feelings and people. Sharing your ideas and realizing that you and others have more things in common that you thought. Having different feeling and maybe fall in love, with a person, with a place, a book, a moment, literally anything…. Falling in love with philosophy, who knows? In my opinion you just live if you get out of your comfort zone and go to a place that you don’t know anything, learn to adapt and to be a better person. I had to experience that by myself, I literally came to another country where I had to deal with new things and guess what? I still alive. So taking a class that makes me question everything is literally something that I will take for the rest of my life.

The truth is you don’t know what is going to happen tomorrow. Life is a crazy ride, and nothing is guaranteed.-  Eminem

 
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