Talons Philosophy

An Open Online Highschool Philosophy Course

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Knowledge

“Knowledge is power” – Francis Bacon 


  1. If power is the ability to influence people and events
  2. And if knowledge allows us greater influence on people and events
  3. Then, knowledge is power.

Power gives us the ability….

  • To defend ourselves from inequality
  • To manipulate/influence others
  • To climb up in the social scale (education, money…etc.)
  • To have our own beliefs and ideas about truth

Every single individual has a certain amount of power due to their existence, influence on their environment and being different from every other human being. The fact that there is no other human designed the exact same way as us, (even identical twins have distinguishable fingerprints,) makes us exceptional and matchless. Our uniqueness can either make us feel confident or insecure. Power is usually used in a negative connotation because it can be extremely corrupt. Often, when people experience emotions of greatness, they lose focus of reality.  We have the ability of shifting our power to a ephemeral height and authority or to a state of humbling self control. When you are aware of things that other people aren’t, you feel more confident which results to you feeling more powerful in the situation compared to someone who is oblivious. You can use that against people in multiple ways. Whether by being condescending or using it as a skill to get more opportunities, you have a higher potential of succeeding. This could also be sustained by education or a certain training. Individuals can abuse their knowledge of others and situations to get what they will benefit from; sacrificing others along the way. The return of their actions might seem so wonderful and pleasing that they conceal the flaw and inhumane effect it has on others. This is a way of manipulation and influence on others. Power is overwhelming however, when managed well, a Utopian outcome can be a result of knowledge.

Finally, If you have knowledge, you are aware of your rights so you can defend yourself which prevents you from being taken advantage of. It is important to not abuse knowledge, rather grow from it. Knowledgeable people have their own perspective and ideas; they are usually leaders. However, It is important to listen to others and learn before we speak.

Progress is created by being open to new ideas and I believe a large portion of knowledge is being able to learn from other people who have different views and difficult experiences.

“Once you stop learning, you start dying.” -Albert Einstein

 

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Collision without Curiosity

Where to start from?

Hello.

My name is Elmira, some call me Ellie for short.

The discussion of philosophy is very common in the Middle East, and being Persian, I grew up listening to many deep conversations about life. Some famous Persian philosophers were brilliant poets. (e.g. Rumi), whom phrased their theories so beautifully. I always enjoyed hearing and reading about other opinions because I felt they expanded my thoughts. Sometimes, philosophy confused me more than it answered my questions but I realized that maybe we chase these subjects because curiosity adds more flavour to the world we live in.

The mind, this globe of awareness, is a starry universe that when you push off with your foot, a thousand new roads become clear, as you yourself do at dawn, sailing through the light. ~Rumi

One of my favourite quotes regarding philosophy was mentioned during the reading of Love, wisdom and wonder: three reasons to celebrate philosophy:

“Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art. It has no survival value; rather it is one of those things which give value to survival.” -C.S. Lewis

-Ellie

 

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Bertrand Russell’s “Value of Philosophy”

A Philosopher.

Courtesy of Jeff Longland via Twitter, a supplemental read for our first week:

This view of philosophy appears to result, partly from a wrong conception of the ends of life, partly from a wrong conception of the kind of goods which philosophy strives to achieve. Physical science, through the medium of inventions, is useful to innumerable people who are wholly ignorant of it; thus the study of physical science is to be recommended, not only, or primarily, because of the effect on the student, but rather because of the effect on mankind in general. This utility does not belong to philosophy. If the study of philosophy has any value at all for others than students of philosophy, it must be only indirectly, through its effects upon the lives of those who study it. It is in these effects, therefore, if anywhere, that the value of philosophy must be primarily sought.

 
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