How To Have Productive Philosophical Conversations

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Post Number:#31  Postby celebritydiscodave » May 22nd, 2010, 1:11 pm

Rust
I`m trying to respond but your sentences have a very unusual construction - The two of us are past the point of explaining something which I know? If that does make sense(?), surely it`s ment only for you to understand its meaning? What do you mean by guideless philosophy, because that seems an unusual expression? Do you mean philosophy which speaks immediately of truth, rather than taking people on a more gradual journey?, philosophy which isn`t guided, or philosophy which you think cannot be guided? Ruleless "philosophy"(?), a philosopher that might apply more than one set of rules according to the circumstances which the issue presents? It can only mean that, surely? I`m not even sure from this what your considering would qualify as a rule? How do you cool down philosophy to its core temperature? I know that you know what you mean, but to me it`s still only misleading(?) Neither of us are explaining anything, I understand that part, but I suppose I just think that you`ve begun to do a far better job of this than me. I can clarify my last post, or, at least try to.
My main social contention is over the degree of age discrimination/programming that there is of younger adults over not specifically age, but rather...
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Post Number:#32  Postby celebritydiscodave » May 22nd, 2010, 1:12 pm

Rust
I`m trying to respond but your sentences have a very unusual construction - The two of us are past the point of explaining something which I know? If that does make sense(?), surely it`s ment only for you to understand its meaning? What do you mean by guideless philosophy, because that seems an unusual expression? Do you mean philosophy which speaks immediately of truth, rather than taking people on a more gradual journey?, philosophy which isn`t guided, or philosophy which you think cannot be guided? Ruleless "philosophy"(?), a philosopher that might apply more than one set of rules according to the circumstances which the issue presents? It can only mean that, surely? I`m not even sure from this what your considering would qualify as a rule? How do you cool down philosophy to its core temperature? I know that you know what you mean, but to me it`s still only misleading(?) Neither of us are explaining anything, I understand that part, but I suppose I just think that you`ve begun to do a far better job of this than me. I can clarify my last post, or, at least try to.
My main social contention is over the degree of age discrimination/programming that there is of younger adults over not specifically age, but rather...
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Post Number:#33  Postby celebritydiscodave » May 22nd, 2010, 1:12 pm

Rust
I`m trying to respond but your sentences have a very unusual construction - The two of us are past the point of explaining something which I know? If that does make sense(?), surely it`s ment only for you to understand its meaning? What do you mean by guideless philosophy, because that seems an unusual expression? Do you mean philosophy which speaks immediately of truth, rather than taking people on a more gradual journey?, philosophy which isn`t guided, or philosophy which you think cannot be guided? Ruleless "philosophy"(?), a philosopher that might apply more than one set of rules according to the circumstances which the issue presents? It can only mean that, surely? I`m not even sure from this what your considering would qualify as a rule? How do you cool down philosophy to its core temperature? I know that you know what you mean, but to me it`s still only misleading(?) Neither of us are explaining anything, I understand that part, but I suppose I just think that you`ve begun to do a far better job of this than me. I can clarify my last post, or, at least try to.
My main social contention is over the degree of age discrimination/programming that there is of younger adults over not specifically age, but rather...
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Post Number:#34  Postby Rust » May 22nd, 2010, 2:12 pm

I don't remember who's quote that was,I was simply trying to explain to that person why most people pop up with a half way clever response to some philosophical question that in my opinion has no answer,but never can follow through when pressed to elaborate.It only makes sense to me that these people either have no idea what they're talking about,or they fully understand what they're talking about but lack an ability to articulate it's meaning(the rope a dope).When I used an analagy for (absolute zero) I was referring to a theoretical tempature that is unlikely ever to be achieved,hence the core tempature of any philosophy.This is saying that no matter how much thought we put into our own belief system,once you have taken away all trivial(or ego,if you prefer)assumptions we are all left with the same question.Sadly this question has no answer.There's always the possibility I was just trying to sound smart as well. seya round friend.
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Post Number:#35  Postby celebritydiscodave » May 25th, 2010, 8:37 am

RUST - That`s much clearer, though I don`t precisely agree(?) I believe that the real value of philosophy, obviously not psychology and scientific theory ("Love" should only be considered social psychology)is in it`s ability to no more than simply realize truths, absolute truths where they exist, and part where they don`t, for even a sixth sense capacity for seemingly just plucking them from the air gives you a place of focus. It is also the greatest stimulator, I believe, especially when confronted with an absolute truth, for that very same instinct of insight. Those with the best sixth sense capacity tend to go recognized, eventually. If the term philosophy were by definition to be reduced only to a place of explanation it would only become another term for scientific theory, and what capacity we have to perceive of truths beyond this, without a substitute term, might well become severely compromised. Sometimes it`s more friutful to allow one`s gut instinct to do the initial work, and then to fill in the gaps, if they can be filled, afterwards(?)
In this place of conversation we can never assume that at any given time a contributor hasn`t perhaps considerably more to say in support of his speculations(?)
I agree in essense with what I feel you`re probably trying to say/have said, or I wouldn`t have indeed realized it, throughout. I believe ego, and social programming, to be the biggest obsticles to genuine insight, that`s to say uncontrolled ego, for it`s obviously always required to some degree - I appreciate that our ego is what enables us to escape the truth of ourselves, and therefore, truths generally. I would suspect that those of us with this capacity for genuine and novel insight probably also possess the capacity to articulate it, or at least as well as anyone else could, with encouragement, and the right questions asked(?)
My main social contention is over the degree of age discrimination/programming that there is of younger adults over not specifically age, but rather...
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Post Number:#36  Postby Rust » May 25th, 2010, 10:38 am

In this place of conversation we can never assume that at any given time a contributor hasn`t perhaps considerably more to say in support of his speculations

Really? I have alot to say about this and many other points you hit on but I need to take care of something first.I had to bookmark your quote because i'll forget what the hell I wanted to converse you about.I'll probably do this alot so don't take offence,it's nothing personal.Hell sometimes I never even get back to the quote,it's almost as if i'm trying to engage that person in some strange psychological game of charades.I'll talk to you later discodave.
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Post Number:#37  Postby Scott » June 2nd, 2010, 4:11 pm

Jackowens in another thread wrote:I went over your "How To Have Productive Philosophical Conversations" and found especially interesting, in light of the problem I had with Pjkeely (and starting to have with you) is your point about asking questions. What's missing is pointing out the need to answer asked questions. I saw absolutely nothing about that. Why that striking imbalance?

This is a good question. To communicate effective and avoid talking past each other; it's important to not only listen and genuinely try to understand the other person's questions but also to respond to the questions.

Of course, sometimes questions can be unclear, loaded or even unanswerable. The solution here might be to respond to the question with a followup question. For instance, person A may ask, "When do you think Bobby stopped beating his wife?" Person B may think this is a loaded question but can respond productively, "I think that question is loaded with the assumption that Bobby has beaten his wife at all; is that the case? Do you believe Bobby has beaten his wife? Do you have any evidence or argument to support the proposition that Bobby has ever beaten his wife?" Much like the rest of discussion, the point isn't to ignore the question or assume what was meant by an unclear or loaded question just to get past the question and get back to one's own rants but rather to use the principle of charity and followup questions to productively continue the discussion.
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Post Number:#38  Postby Maritzaahrens » June 15th, 2010, 12:56 am

ontologic_conceptualist wrote:It is my belief that from what I've seen not just here but many other philosophy sites, remember not to confuse philosophy with psycology, believe it or not, it can get close, but remember no matter what, never judge, just because your personal philosophy sucks does not mean the other persons does & be open minded with an immagination and a great sense of humor, this is philosophy, "What is being", I love listening to others & looking into their souls, even though I feel I am complete on many levels, I always end up learning more about myself & that is fun !!! :lol:


thanks
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RE: How To Have Productive Philosophical Conversations

Post Number:#39  Postby Im4ever » November 7th, 2010, 11:22 am

Although not directly related to this thread, I feel it appropriate to post this response here, as it may be germane to some new members who are experiencing similar difficulties. Others of you may have been meticulous enough to read the full rules of posting to this site and avoided it, but here is my experience in posting to this site. It took me a while to discover the reason why my earlier attempts at responses to the thread I started on this site were being rejected by the site.

First, in all my correspondence (snail mail and e-mail), I compose the correspondence, original and responses, in my WP program, then cut and paste them to either the final document (snail mail) or e-mail that I am sending. I did the same for this site. It impacted my responses to my original post because I overlooked the prohibition policy regarding cut and paste when I signed up and read the rules. Due to constraints on my leisure time (10 hour workdays, weekend play-dates with my grandson, and of course working on the list of 10,000 projects I would like to complete before I die) I did not discover the reason my posts were being rejected (by reviewing the rules governing the site) until yesterday.

I see the necessity of this rule (to prevent blatant abuse of the site by self promoting new members, who spam all, then move on). Apparently this prohibition will end when I have 10 posts.

Second, there is also a prohibition to posting links in responses until I have 10 posts. Since many of my responses list links as references to facts I use in my responses (mostly to other reference sites, such as Wikipedia, etc.), I will be unable to post full responses to this post until I can include references to URLs in my postings.

Therefore, until I have accumulated 10 posts to this site, I will have a limited ability to respond to postings on the thread I started (see "Philosophical Hypothesis for review and comment" under "General Philosophy Forum"). I apologize for any inconvenience this may create for fellow readers.
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Re: How To Have Productive Philosophical Conversations

Post Number:#40  Postby Mdam » November 26th, 2010, 1:13 pm

[quote="Scott"]How To Have Productive Philosophical Conversations
by Scott Hughes

Philosophical discussions are often not very productive, one reason is that we spend much more energy towards justifying our own position rather than trying to find the truth, and in the process sentiments get involved. The suggestion made by you can go a long way towards making the discussions more productive.
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Post Number:#41  Postby Beastey » November 30th, 2010, 1:07 am

recognizing the fact that we have our own biased opinions is not wrong but rather the first step in being unbiased
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Post Number:#42  Postby Thinker » January 26th, 2011, 6:31 am

It is a pleasure to have read such reasonable posts. Conflict can usually be avoided by being civil, polite and understanding. I would hope that in a discussion forum, a person is free to discuss and not bound by rules apart from listening to, and respecting the co discusser.

Anyway,and with great respect, who thinks utalitarianism encourages barbarism?

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Re: How To Have Productive Philosophical Conversations

Post Number:#43  Postby Welder » February 22nd, 2011, 1:06 am

Scott wrote:Listen - Most importantly, you need to listen as well as you can to the other people in the discussion. Many people talk too much and listen too little. Ironically, if you talk too much, you will have a lot of trouble expressing yourself. If you listen well, you can express yourself better because you can tailor your response to what the person has already said. Additionally, if you listen to others intently, they will likely return the favor. If you do not listen to them and just try to talk over them, then they will likely do the same to you.

Is it inappropriate to stop "listening" when, for example, a Christian begins to lecture me the existence of God?

Or you recommend I should smile and nod without voicing disagreement/discontent?


Scott wrote:Ask Questions - Plato's dialogues show how Socrates used questions to have productive philosophical conversations with others. The Socratic Method can come in great use in discussions of philosophy. Asking questions will help you better understand the other speakers, and it will cause them to express their contentions more clearly to you. That will greatly reduce misunderstandings. Additionally, asking questions makes you seem genuinely interested in the other person's ideas. Making disagreeing statements, instead of asking questions, may make the other person feel attacked and may make you seem preachy, both of which will make the discussion less productive.

Some questions are too "taboo" to ask.

Should I ask such questions or censor myself?


Scott wrote:Speak Clearly - This may seem obvious, but many people instead try to show off or make their ideas seem stronger by using more complex language. However, you will have most productive conversation by having the least misunderstandings, which you can do by expressing yourself as clearly as possible. Using concise, simple, and specific phrasing will usually help you express yourself clearly. Rambling, over-elaboration and the unnecessary use of "big words" will make you less clear. Additionally, you can express yourself most clearly when you match the formality of your speech or writing to the formality of the situation. In other words, use formal phrasing in a formal situation and more informal phrasing in a more informal setting.

Agreed.


Scott wrote:Speak Nicely and Politely - If the conversation turns into a contest, or if any of the speakers feel angry or offended, it will greatly reduce the philosophical productivity of the discussion. A discussion about philosophy can quickly degenerate into a name-calling, insult-throwing fight. The other person will listen to you more if they feel more comfortable and respected. Do not just speak as nicely as you must in order to keep the conversation philosophical; instead, speak as nicely, respectfully, and politely as you can. Avoid insults, name-calling, or offensiveness as much as possible. Also, especially if you disagree, try thanking the other person for discussing the topic with you.

If a conversation becomes "combative" then when is it 'okay' or "morally acceptable" to tell the other person what you really think about him/her, even if you hurt feelings?

Is it ever 'okay' to hurt other people's feelings?
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Post Number:#44  Postby Thinker » February 24th, 2011, 3:27 am

I think that if a person is feeling secure enough in their opinions - they wont mind discussing them. It is of course very important to always listen, you might learn something. I agree that being aggressive might make your co discusser too nervous to have a frank and productive discussion with you.
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Post Number:#45  Postby Dewey » February 25th, 2011, 4:56 am

Welder, I think you can clear up the questions and issues you raise above by reading Scott's post in the Feedback & Forum Announcements section. You may find that much of that which you think is just suggested is, actually, firmly required -- for instance, refraining from personal criticisms.
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