Monthly Archives: March 2017

Is Existence Better than Non-existence? (Final Thoughts on Hope)

Surely the evidence that [humanity] has risen thus far may give [them] hope for a still higher destiny in the future. ~ Charles Darwin

People … yearn to have a purpose larger than themselves. We are obliged by the deepest drives of the human spirit to make ourselves more than animated dust, and we must have a story to tell about where we came from, and why we are here. ~ E. O. Wilson Continue reading Is Existence Better than Non-existence? (Final Thoughts on Hope)

Philosophy and Hope (Academic)

The artist’s job is not to succumb to despair but to find an antidote for the emptiness of existence. ~ Gertrude Stein

For the last few weeks I’ve been discussing hope, and I’d like to now briefly summarize the standard account of hope among professional philosophers.Here’s how the discussion of hope begins in the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy: Continue reading Philosophy and Hope (Academic)

Summary of Schopenhauer on Hope: From “Psychological Observations”

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I would be remiss if I didn’t consider the critique of hope found in the philosophy of Arthur Schopenhauer. (I considered his pessimism in my last post.) He speaks of hope most directly in his essay, “Psychological Observations.” Immediately preceding his brief discussion of hope, he makes these pertinent observations Continue reading Summary of Schopenhauer on Hope: From “Psychological Observations”

Summary of Marshall Brain’s “Robotic Nation”

Recent discussion about the effect of technology on employment reminded me of Marshall Brain‘s prescient essays of almost 20 years ago. (“Robotic Nation,” “Robots in 2015,” and “Robotic Freedom“) Here is a summary of the main theses in each essay Continue reading Summary of Marshall Brain’s “Robotic Nation”