Saturday, June 14, 2014

Philosophy Entry Page

The Shining Peak website of introductory philosophy

The Shining Peak is my website of assorted notes for the philosophy lessons I teach at the College in my area. I hope it is a good resource for the students, and for anyone else that stumbles onto it. Some of the main fields of philosophy are covered by the links to the left. They are brief summaries of some of the questions, and they emphasize a classical, Platonic, Aristotelian and Scholastic view. The philosophy of Plato and Aristotle, and that of the middle ages, often called scholastic (meaning of the schools), is the foundation of thought. Especially the scholastic era is widely overlooked and under appreciated, yet rich and intriguing era of philosophy, far more interesting usually than the modern cold scientific outlook that finds nothing special in the fact that the universe exists, that humans exist and are really a microcosm of all reality, and can know about reality.

Philosophy should be a love of wisdom, a joy at seeing and studying how things are then reflecting on what that means for me, where is the truth in it, what is the meaning for me. Not a dry system trying to deny there is any wisdom to behold, or trying to prove there is nothing special about anything. Philosophy should behold the universe around us and wonder at the meaning of it, seeking to understand it, not cynically claiming there is no sense to it and dismissing any effort to explain it that might hint at some immaterial or metaphysical causes. It should seek to understand the world around us, not float off into possible worlds that will never be. It should not let itself be replaced with, or reduced to mere scientific knowledge.

So why is it called the Shining Peak?
Mountain peaks are symbolic of the heights that human thought aspires to. But that is not why it's called that. Actually Shining Peak is just the translation of my name into English from its Luxumbergish/Germanic roots. There is not some other mystical meaning to it, at least not that I intended.

To the left there are links to the sections of philosophy that correspond to the classes I teach. Below those at the left are links to other sites that have philosophical writings or explanations that I think would be helpful, including sites where you can read original writings of various philosophers. Just because I link to a site does not mean I endorse what is said there.