Today I begin reading articles on ontology (existence) so I thought I’d throw out this simple question so you can help me think on this matter: What does it mean to exist?
If you need some “things” to ponder then consider your own existence, the existence of God/gods, the existence of ideas, or the existence of flying unicorns. What makes one or the other exist or not exist? Is there different ways to exist?
I watched a few films this week but due to the head cold that has hit me I will only give attention to one: Cold Souls staring Paul Giamatti.
It is a philosophical film about the human soul. A procedure has been developed where the soul can he extracted from the body like a tumor. Those with heavy souls who want to be freed from the burden of souled existence can experience the freedom of a more natural, purely embodied life.
As you can imagine a lot goes wrong once this procedure is done and Giamatti realizes the value of his own soul. I think this film speaks to the problems with a purely naturalistic ontology. It is an artistic picture of why many rationalist have wanted to preserve the soul even if it doesn’t fit well into their system. Likewise, it is a good example of the
Nihilism that ensues (for many) once a purely naturalistic worldview is adopted. I recommend this film as a worthwhile rental.
As previously mentioned I will be taking a class on philosophy this semester. Since I like to watch movies I thought I would try to watch some more philosophically inclined films this semester. What do I mean by this? Well, I guess something like The Matrix or Inception where your mind feels a bit stretched by the possibilities embedded in the film.
The primary subjects being covered will be (1) ontology, (2) epistemology, (3) anthropology, (4) ethics, and (5) postmodernism. I would say The Matrix falls under (1) and (2) and Inception falls primarily under (2). If you would, when you recommend a film, let me know what broad “subject” with which this correlates. That way I will know when I should rent it!
This semester I am taking a philosophy class. The last time I had a class on this subject was my junior year of my undergraduate program so it has been a while. I am not taking it because I know philosophy; I am taking it because I am so very ignorant.
The primary subjects being covered are (1) ontology, (2) epistemology, (3) anthropology, (4) ethics, and (5) postmodernism. I do not expect to read a lot of additional literature on these subjects, save epistemology which is my primary concern, but I would like article and book recommendations on the above subjects as well as anything on philosophy for the task of doing theology. Articles are preferred since they will be shorter and therefore easier to squeeze in to the schedule!
So you don’t recommend books that I already have to read for the class let me list those: John D. Caputo, Philosophy and Theology; Diogenes Allen and Eric Springfield, Philosophy for Understanding Theology, 2nd Ed.; James K.A. Smith, Who’s Afraid of Postmodernism: Taking Derrida, Lyotard, and Foucault to Church; and James K. Beilby (ed), For Faith and Clarity: Philosophical Contributions to Christian Theology.