Barry Schwartz’s Urgent Call For Practical Wisdom

I love how he sums up Aristotle’s notion of practical wisdom, to paraphrase, “practical wisdom is about having a moral will and a moral skill”. The entire talk is a great defense of wisdom, the skill of moral judgment, against cultural overemphases on bureaucratic reliance on rules at the expense of all thinking: Schwartz’s books [Read More...]

How Our Morality Realizes Our Humanity

In a previous post, I discussed the intrinsic connection between being and goodness and between functional activity and being.  I argued, for example that the various components of a heart need to function as a heart to be a heart and similarly that a human being must act morally to realize her humanity.  Specifically, I [Read More...]

The Harmony Of Humility And Pride

Previously I have argued that pride is the proper identification of the self with whatever excellently expresses, manifests, reflects, results from, or causes one’s own excellence. It is only fitting that we feel that we love and admire that which is good and love and admire it more the better it is and less the [Read More...]

Disambiguating Faith: Implicit Faith

In last night’s installment of the “Disambiguating Faith” series, I talked about the difference between, on the one hand, volitionally choosing to believe something that is either not rationally warranted or which is positively refuted by the available evidence, and, on the other hand, simply thinking one has rational warrant for one’s belief and yet [Read More...]

Disambiguating Faith: Defending My Definition Of Faith As “Belief Or Trust Beyond Rational Warrant”

Last week I responded to David Crowther’s argument that we should equally consider all beliefs that are not 100% certain to be “faith beliefs”.  I argued that the word “belief” already covers the fact that we are fallible human beings and as such even our most nearly 100% certain propositions about the world are always [Read More...]

Rightful Pride: Identification With One’s Own Admirable Powers And Effects

Pride is essentially the personal identification with something admirable.  When I am rightly proud of my traits, I rightly take the traits themselves each to be admirable in one way or another and rightly take myself to be admirable insofar as they are part of me and expressions of me.  When I am rightly proud [Read More...]

Disambiguating Faith: Why Faith Is Unethical (Or “In Defense Of The Ethical Obligation To Always Proportion Belief To Evidence”)

A couple of weeks ago, I argued that there was a real distinction between “lacking a belief in any God or gods” on the one hand and “believing there is no God (or gods)” on the other hand.  Primarily I saw the heart of the distinction as resting with the difference between on the one [Read More...]

Michael Shermer On “The Pattern Behind Self-Deception”

Shermer does TED and explains how two of the brain’s most basic, hard-wired traits, useful for survival, backfire on us: Your Thoughts? [Read more...]

Michael Sandel On “The Lost Art Of Democratic Debate”

A good video from Harvard philosopher Michael Sandel, who recently wrote a book on justice for a popular audience, Justice: What’s the Right Thing to Do?, and who last year released on YouTube high production value videos encapsulating his lectures for his standard introductory level ethics class at Harvard. You can start watching those videos here. [Read More...]


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