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Hello from New Zealand

Please post all introductions in this forum. Tell us how you found the philosophy forums, what interests you about philosophy, and a little about you, such as your age, where you live, what you do for a living, etc.
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Big Boss
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Hello from New Zealand

Post by Big Boss » March 1st, 2018, 3:34 pm

Hi Everyone,

I made an account a while ago but for whatever reason, I made about two posts and stopped. I am going to try and keep up posting here as a means to be able to communicate and practice writing about philosophy outside an academic setting.

I am 29 and currently in the last year of a BA majoring in philosophy with a minor in psychology. For me, philosophy was something I never learnt about growing up so it took until I decided to go to university in my 20s, still unsure of my passions and overall goal in life, that I actually had a first encounter with the subject, taking an elective in epistemology. Long story short: I am now majoring in philosophy and have relegated that pesky psychology to a minor.

My plans are to complete my degree and then move into an honours or masters program.

At this stage in life, I am highly critical of myself in terms of my output and understanding in philosophy and would really appreciate anyone who is in or has been in a similar situation to myself to help out with ways in which to better my talent.

My areas of interest are Meta-Ethics, where I am developing a belief that morality is man made/not actually real, and Metaphysics where I am also developing a rejection of the truth of Metaphysics, but I enjoy arguments on free will and personal identity a lot.

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mathman
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Re: Hello from New Zealand

Post by mathman » March 2nd, 2018, 11:06 pm

Hi man. I am from New Zealand too, aged 27. I studied engineering but always had a deep interest in philosophy - particularly epistemology and metaphysics. We should discuss what you mean by morality? Morality is real but defined mainly by the society one live in and evolution mainly. Morality is seen as a framework for action that is deemed to be in accordance to the benefit of others. That is why when you act in dis-accordance to morality you feel guilt. Psychopaths would not feel guilt and thus in a person with moral framework "immoral".

You have to understand that by each axiomatic law, the law itself is to be questioned. If you say that you do not believe in metaphysics altogether, what is the "real" then? Is it just the experienced and observable? But then how do we relate to the observable? That is what metaphysics would be. How man relates to its environment. You cannot deny there is a relation and an experience of such a relation a priori to the event of your existence; so you cannot deny there is something "about" your reality that made you come into existence.

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Big Boss
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Re: Hello from New Zealand

Post by Big Boss » March 4th, 2018, 3:15 pm

I was being rather vague in my introduction about how I feel about both subjects.

For morality, sure you can say that morality is defined by the society you live in and influenced by evolution, I am fine with that definition. What I meant by morality being not actually real is that I am coming to believe that there is no objective moral law. There is no moral dimension to morality, ala G.E. Moore, nor is there a God to command morality (on this second point I actually have further to say).

For metaphysics, yeah, not really my strong point. What I am leaning towards is a rejection of any sort of abstract concept being real in a sense. This mostly comes from my study of both free will and personal identity where I consider the whole problem of free will as a definitional problem. I see the issue of persisting that there is a 'self' as problematic too. I am toying with the idea that there is nothing but atoms and void and trying to posit some sort of abstract substance on top of this is where a lot of the problems in philosophy arise.

I am studying Wittgenstein this semester for university, and like the nerd I am I have read well ahead on the guy, and find his idea that philosophy should be the "clarifying of concepts" an interesting idea. I can see, prompted by old Wittgenstein as I'm not that smart, that this may have been the case with a lot of classical conceptions in philosophy. The two I mentioned before of personal identity and free will would be my examples here. I just don't think I can bring myself to agree that cutting morality out of philosophy, or only talking about what it is not, is the correct way to go.

I look forward to chatting more with you on this in the forums. Glad to see there are other kiwis on here.

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mathman
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Re: Hello from New Zealand

Post by mathman » March 9th, 2018, 12:10 am

HI Big Boss. Thank you for getting back to me. I see there is no live chat. What a shame. Send me a pm if you want but yes, the study of ontology is very interesting. I myself have skimmed over some of the arguments for and against it. When you start with epistemology, you eventually get to metaphysics which to me is the most interesting because it concerns with the human and how your identity or the existential quantifier "I" can be constituted and understood.

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