josh blog

Ordinary language is all right.

One could divide humanity into two classes:
those who master a metaphor, and those who hold by a formula.
Those with a bent for both are too few, they do not comprise a class.

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20 Nov '23 04:28:20 PM

'Not everything asserted in a dialogue, even by Socrates, has been asserted by Plato: Socrates asserting may be Plato suggesting. Because Plato is an immensely serious philosopher, who indeed set philosophy on the path of claiming to address our deepest concerns by means of argument, orderly enquiry, and intellectual imagination, and because we project on to him images of seriousness which are drawn from other philosophy and from later experience, we may well underestimate the extent to which he could combine intensity, pessimism, and even a certain religious solemnity, with an ironical gaiety and an incapacity to take all his own ideas equally seriously. It is a weakness of scholars who study philosophers to think that philosophers are just like scholars, and it is particularly a mistake in the case of Plato. Plato gathered about him a group of people who pursued philosophical discussion, teaching and enquiries into mathematics and astronomy. This gave rise, eventually, to a new kind of institution, a place for what we would now call ‘research’. From the public space on the edge of Athens in which Plato carried on his discussions, it was called the Academy, and in this way Plato gave the word ‘academic’ to the world, but it is an irony that he should have done so. We should not be trapped into thinking of him as a professor.'

30 Oct '23 03:38:25 AM

Shaftesbury and underground philosophy

28 Oct '23 11:26:26 PM

Snow, technically.

23 Oct '23 10:18:27 PM

‘Es bleibt uns vielleicht irgend ein Baum an dem Abhang, daß wir ihn täglich wiedersähen’

15 Oct '23 02:52:25 AM

'Music can't be stopped.'

5 Oct '23 09:41:12 PM

'… they clearly want people to understand what they're doing.'

23 Sep '23 06:34:33 AM

'Unlike detective stories, noir cases aren't solved, merely survived.'

15 Sep '23 05:11:52 AM

Public philosophy is not made distinct by virtue of the technical answers it can give to this or that issue. After all, sociology, economics, and political science are also well-equipped to propose answers to the vital problems we face. Public philosophy, for its part, is an inescapably cultural practice whose aim is the cultivation of practical reason. What I mean by practical reason here is the development of our implicit yet shared sensibility for what is unreasonable in our social life. Public philosophy is a cumulative activity that can help habituate public sensibilities to detecting not only what is unfortunate in our world—as if poverty, violence, and ecological decay were mere signs that we live in an imperfect world with imperfect people. Instead, the task is to explicate how and why these misfortunes follow from the lives we are constrained to lead.’

13 Sep '23 08:01:47 AM

'Ich lerne sehen. Ich weiß nicht, woran es liegt, es geht alles tiefer in mich ein und bleibt nicht an der Stelle stehen, wo es sonst immer zu Ende war. Ich habe ein Inneres, von dem ich nicht wußte. Alles geht jetzt dorthin. Ich weiß nicht, was dort geschieht.'