Philosophers

The Conductor

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What does your kind think of women who read these philosophers? Would you allow your females to read any of them?

Nah, I'd probably drag her by the hair into the cave, demanding that she prepare me the sabertooth I just speared.
 
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The Conductor

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But seriously, with every writer there's going to be gold and chaff. St. Augustine seemed to appreciate the Platonists because they sort of prepared him to understand certain aspects of Christian doctrine, especially the existence of the Word. Paul quotes a few philosophers in the books of Acts and Titus. They can be helpful, but ultimately miss something very important, as Augustine said, 'but that “the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us,” I read not there.'
 
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ebia

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Leah71 said:
I am referring to Christians. I use the term 'your kind' since I find absolutely NO similarities between myself, a non-Christian, and you, a Christian. I also use the phrase to avoid angering/upsetting Christians.
Seeing the world as divided into them and us.

Hmm.

Maybe you have something in common with the worst of Christianity after all.
 
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The Conductor

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“The best revenge is to be unlike him who performed the injury.”- Marcus Aurelius
If that's the case, then,
15246571-an-engraved-vintage-illustration-image-of-the-crucifixion-of-jesus-christ-from-a-victorian-book-date.jpg

"Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord" -Epistle to the Romans 12:19
"For as by the one man's disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man's obedience the many will be made righteous." - Romans 5:19
 
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ViaCrucis

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Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle have historically been revered as great intellectual minds among Christians.

St. Justin Martyr, a Christian theologian and philosopher of the mid 2nd century, regards Socrates nearly a pre-Christian saint among the Greeks.

Plato's philosophy was important to many early Christian thinkers, such as Origen of Alexandria, and includes also St. Augustine of Hippo who applied Platonic and Neo-Platonic philosophy to Christian theology, trying to assimilate the best of the Platonic tradition. And Augustine remained the preeminent theologian of the Western Church into the middle ages.

With the re-introduction of Aristotle's philosophy into Western Europe through interaction with the Arab world, Aristotle became incredibly important to the scholars, philosophers, and theologians of the high middle ages, in particular through the works of St. Thomas Aquinas. Aquinas became the theologian of Western Christianity in the high middle ages and for Roman Catholicism generally remains so. The Roman Catholic doctrine of Transubstantiation is Thomist in articulation, and is rooted in the Aristotelian definitions of substantia and accidentia.

The pre-Socratics, such as Heraclitus and Zeno, were instrumental in establishing the philosophical language of the Logos, which is adopted into the philosophy of the Jewish Platonic philosopher Philo of Alexandria, which is the linguistic background for the Logos language of St. John's Gospel, "In the beginning was the Logos, and the Logos was with God, and the Logos was God." And the identification of Jesus with the Logos is made possible because of an established Greek Logos tradition in the philosophy of the Greeks going back to Heraclitus and the Stoics.

St. Basil the Great, one of the most important theologians of the Church in the 4th century, taught his students to be "wise honey bees, choosing only the choicest nectar" meaning to take the very best of the Greek thinkers, but not embrace everything uncritically.

So I'd say the Greek philosophers are an invaluable resource, that doesn't mean to accept them uncritically in everything--there's certainly plenty in the philosophy of Plato or Zeno that shouldn't be accepted--but when they are good and helpful, they are good and helpful.

And of course Socrates' statement that Apollo named him the wisest man in all of Greece because, "The only thing I know is that I don't know anything." is a fantastic bit of wisdom that should sober every thinking mind.


-CryptoLutheran
 
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2PhiloVoid

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I am curious what your kind thinks of the Greek philosophers Socrates, Plato and Aristotle. I also curious what you think of the philosophers Epictetus and Marcus Aurelius. Do you think anyone should read them or is it a waste of time? Do the works of these philosophers serve any purpose for your kind?

What does your kind think of women who read these philosophers? Would you allow your females to read any of them?

Hi Leah,

I think philosophy is a great area of study, right next to science, art, ethics, history, and religion/Christianity. I also think some Christians, whether male or female, could benefit from reading various philosophers, both old and new. Such reading can help us to become informed of how non-Christians think, which is one reason why I earned a degree in philosophy; the other reason is that I value critical thinking (and I wish more Christians would too.)

Peace, Leah
 
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VDMA

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I just read Epictetus' Enchiridion. It seems interesting, more thoughts to follow, probably tomorrow. Primary question: how does one pronounce Epictetus?

Epic tee-tuhs

Ee-pic-tay-tuus

Eh-peek-tee-tahs

Beats me.
 
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dcalling

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I am referring to Christians. I use the term 'your kind' since I find absolutely NO similarities between myself, a non-Christian, and you, a Christian. I also use the phrase to avoid angering/upsetting Christians.

absolutely no similarities? So you don't love your neighbor? You steal and kill? Do you not respect your parents?

:)
 
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dcalling

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Why would you care how non-Christians think? Are we not 'evil' and/or 'wrong' in your world view? Or are you hope to use it to try and win converts?

I agree the study of philosophers can help with critical thinking. I enjoy Thomas Aquinas' writings. I also enjoy Hobbs, Locke, Rousseau and Voltaire. From the East I like Lao Tzu and Chuang Tzu as well as Sun Tzu. Not quite philosophy perhaps but I also like Miyamoto Musashi along with other writings of the Sengoku Period Samurai.

If you like Lao Tzu and Chuan Tzu, you would like Buddha's teaching as well. I held his teachings much higher than Aristotle, who just assumed objects will fall faster according to their weight without even experimenting....
 
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2PhiloVoid

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Why would you care how non-Christians think? Are we not 'evil' and/or 'wrong' in your world view? Or are you hope to use it to try and win converts?

I agree the study of philosophers can help with critical thinking. I enjoy Thomas Aquinas' writings. I also enjoy Hobbs, Locke, Rousseau and Voltaire. From the East I like Lao Tzu and Chuang Tzu as well as Sun Tzu. Not quite philosophy perhaps but I also like Miyamoto Musashi along with other writings of the Sengoku Period Samurai.

Great questions, Leah!

In regard to your first question, I'd just say that Christians should care about how everyone thinks, including other Christians. The 'why' of it is because since we are supposed to love other human beings--even those who swear opposition to us as enemies--we therefore commissioned to do our best to understand others, reach out to them, and if possible, help them. However, if we (Christians) don't gain insight into why people may be acting or thinking as they do, we have very little chance of helping them. It would be like a person wanting to become a clinical psychologist without actually doing the studying and work required to actually become a clinical psychologist. On a more practical level, the study of how 'non-Christians' think can help Christians understand where other may be coming from.

As to your second and third questions, Leah, I'd say that non-Christians are human beings just like everyone else, and from a Biblical perspective, we are ALL sinners, all capable of doing evil. Christians are supposed to develop empathy, compassion and love for others, and it isn't just to win converts. Remember, Jesus told His disciples to give without expecting anything in return. ;)

Like you, I've read some Lao-Tzu, Chuang Tzu (for my Eastern Philosophy class), some Hobbs, Locke, and Rousseau, as well as others staple figures like Descartes, Hume, Kant, and Hegel. But for me, it is the modern philosophers that I enjoyed the most: Russell, Carnap, Quine, Sellers, Dewey, Wittgenstein, etc. (And I guess I'll have to check out SunTzu sometime--that might apply in some ways too. )

Yes, all of this can help, although a good dose of logic and argumentation can help to some extent as well. I wish more Christian would avail themselves of these disciplines, along with more knowledge of history and ethics. Unfortunately, since we live in a fallen world, I can't expect too much from my fellow human beings.

Peace, Leah
 
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