Philosophy In-Joke Hilarity Galore

When you do philosophy for a living, philosophy novices are frequently inflicting on you the same small stock of stale and unimaginative philosophy jokes and overrated Monty Python philosophy related sketches. So that’s probably why I find this contemporary, philosophically acute, esoteric latest comic strip from Chaos Pet strip a  breath of fresh, hilarious air:

Your Thoughts?

About Daniel Fincke

Dr. Daniel Fincke  has his PhD in philosophy from Fordham University and spent 11 years teaching in college classrooms. He wrote his dissertation on Ethics and the philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche. On Camels With Hammers, the careful philosophy blog he writes for a popular audience, Dan argues for atheism and develops a humanistic ethical theory he calls “Empowerment Ethics”. Dan also teaches affordable, non-matriculated, video-conferencing philosophy classes on ethics, Nietzsche, historical philosophy, and philosophy for atheists that anyone around the world can sign up for. (You can learn more about Dan’s online classes here.) Dan is an APPA  (American Philosophical Practitioners Association) certified philosophical counselor who offers philosophical advice services to help people work through the philosophical aspects of their practical problems or to work out their views on philosophical issues. (You can read examples of Dan’s advice here.) Through his blogging, his online teaching, and his philosophical advice services each, Dan specializes in helping people who have recently left a religious tradition work out their constructive answers to questions of ethics, metaphysics, the meaning of life, etc. as part of their process of radical worldview change.

  • Pete

    I think “Pete” is a good name for him.

  • The Vicar

    I suspect that the whole notion of a P-Zombie in philosophy is a way of trying to sneak religion into more serious discourse through the back door, the same way “Intelligent Design” is a way of sneaking creationism into the science classroom.

    Basically: if you accept a materialist view of the world — no souls — then P-Zombies are impossible. After all, they are supposed to be INDISTINGUISHABLE from ordinary beings, which means that any test devised by neurology or biology will indicate that they are normal. So, therefore, they must contain ordinary nerves and an ordinary brain, structured in the same way as a non-P-Zombie brain. But if their brains are functionally identical on the material level, and there is no non-material level, then the distinction between a P-Zombie and a normal being ceases to exist. It is only by postulating the existence of an unprovable, untestable non-material portion of intelligence — a soul — that the notion of a P-Zombie can have any meaning, and so postulating the existence of P-Zombies in a thought experiment is the same as postulating that a religious worldview is true.

    (In fact, the whole notion of qualia is a red herring. Philosophers should be banned from talking about intelligence and thought unless they have a good solid grounding in neuroscience. And if they were smart enough for that, most of them wouldn’t be philosophers.)