Hello you thoughtful people out there who also love to write!
Ordinary Philosophy is my little blog that’s all about thinking through the Big Questions that arise from being a conscious, curious being in a vast, fascinating universe, and a social being whose life is filled with ethical quandaries and the ups and downs of cooperation and conflict. Examples of the sort of ‘Big Questions I’m talking about:
‘What is the universe, and is everything that can be talked about a part of it?’
‘What’s it like to feel/think/love/experience this?’
‘What is Beauty / Justice / the Self?’
‘How do we know what we know, and what is “knowing” anyway?’….
‘What is a good life, and how do I go about living it?’
We all confront these questions every day, and I think all of us come up with some pretty deep questions and some pretty interesting answers to them throughout our lives. Some of these we come up with when thinking about situations we personally have experienced or just heard about. Some we derive from the thoughts of others, reading, considering, then responding with our own critiques and defenses.
So I’d like to invite you to share your own essays, critiques, meditations, and so forth. They can deal with all manner of topics, from music and art (aesthetics), to politics and law, to culture and the humanities, to naturalism and theology, to the incredible and the humdrum occurrences of everyday experience. Philosophy is about everything, really. My favorite definition of philosophy I’ve heard (thanks, Daniel Dennett!) was formulated by Wilfred Sellers: “The aim of philosophy… is to understand how things in the broadest possible sense of the term hang together in the broadest possible sense of the term.”
This is an amateur philosophy blog, though if professional philosophers want to take part, I would be thrilled too! I’m saying amateur in the sense that here at Ordinary Philosophy, the posts are aimed at a non-academic audience, using (mostly) ordinary language, for the edification of anyone who wishes to read it. I’m also (unusually, for philosophy forums) more focused here on original philosophy, with ideas drawn directly from life and from other arenas and disciplines, be it science, the news, politics, theology, arts and culture, and so forth, rather than work derived more from other philosophical works (though I value and would accept for posting the latter too).
Works submitted for publication on this blog must relate to some Big Question(s), and / or offer argument in favor of some position or other (not just mere opinions or preferences). They must demonstrate some good, honest thinking, not name-calling and mud-slinging, and while pieces can be strongly worded as needed for the topic at hand, no ad hominem attacks allowed! (Ad hominem is the name of a logical fallacy where you seek to disprove an argument or position by attacking or undermining the person, not the argument the person is making.) No preaching either, please. And yes, it is my blog, so it’s up to me to decide what to include. That being said, I’m also a very democratically-minded person, so I will be happy to include pieces with content I don’t agree with so long as it’s in line with the aforementioned simple rules.
So send that good stuff your brain makes my way!
To: ordinaryphilosophy (at) gmail (dot) com