Philosophy looks at the meaning of life, considering topics and questions surrounding human existence and experience, society, knowledge, and the universe.

Philosophy is the study of general and fundamental problems concerning matters such as existence, knowledge, values, reason, mind, and language. Philosophical methods include questioning, critical discussion, rational argument, and systematic presentation

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Vitalism

Vitalism Vitalism is the belief that “living organisms are fundamentally different from non-living entities because they contain some non-physical element or are governed by different principles than are inanimate things”. Where vitalism explicitly invokes a vital principle, that element is often referred to as the “vital spark”, “energy” or “élan...

Knowledge is power

Knowledge

What is Knowledge? Knowledge is a familiarity, awareness, or understanding of someone or something, such as facts (propositional knowledge), skills (procedural knowledge), or objects (acquaintance knowledge). By most accounts, knowledge can be acquired in many different ways and from many difference sources, including but not limited to perception, reason, memory, testimony, scientific...

Laozi Statue,Tai Lake

Laozi

Laozi Lǎozǐ (Laozi or Lao Tzu) was a naturalistic philosopher-sage attributed with founding the Chinese way of life known as Daoism, and credited with having written the Dao De Jing (Tao Te Ching), though both claims have been historically disputed by scholars. Perhaps a legendary figure, Laozi’s influence on Chinese history, thought, and...

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Reason

Reason Reason is the capacity of consciously making sense of things, applying logic, and adapting or justifying practices, institutions, and beliefs based on new or existing information. It is closely associated with such characteristically human activities as philosophy, science, language, mathematics, and art, and is normally considered to be a...

In what remains the most widespread revolutionary wave in European history, several revolutions takes place throughout 1848 and the beginning of the following year, before reactionary forces regains control and the revolutions collapses.

Reactionary

Reactionary In political science, a reactionary or reactionarist can be defined as a person or entity holding political views that favour a return to a previous political state of society that they believe possessed characteristics that are negatively absent from the contemporary status quo of a society. As an adjective, the word reactionary describes points of view and policies meant to...

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Progressivism

Progressivism Progressivism is a political philosophy in support of social reform. It is based on the idea of progress in which advancements in science, technology, economic development and social organization are vital to the improvement of the human condition. Meaning The meanings of progressivism have varied over time and from different perspectives. Progressivism became highly significant during the Age of Enlightenment in Europe,...

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Monarchism

Monarchism Monarchism is the advocacy of the system of monarchy or monarchical rule. A monarchist is an individual who supports this form of government independent of any specific monarch, whereas one who supports a particular monarch is a royalist. Conversely, the opposition to monarchical rule is referred to as republicanism. Depending on the country, a royalist may...

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Juche

Juche Juche (주체/主體, “self-reliance“) is the official ideology of North Korea, described by the government as “Kim Il-sung‘s original, brilliant and revolutionary contribution to national and international thought”. It postulates that “man is the master of his destiny”, that the Korean masses are to act as the “masters of the revolution and construction” and that...

2009 Taxpayer March on Washington as conservative protesters walk down Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington, D. C.

Conservatism

Conservatism Conservatism is a political and social philosophy promoting traditional social institutions in the context of culture  and civilization. The central tenets of conservatism include tradition, organic society, hierarchy, authority, and property rights. Conservatives seek to preserve a range of institutions such as religion, parliamentary government, and property rights, with the aim of emphasizing social stability and continuity....

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Transhumanism

Transhumanism Transhumanism is a philosophical movement that advocates for the transformation of the human condition by developing and making widely available sophisticated technologies to greatly enhance human intellect and physiology. Transhumanist thinkers study the potential benefits and dangers of emerging technologies that could overcome fundamental human limitations as well as the ethical limitations of using such technologies. The most...

A painting by Alphonse-Marie-Adolphe de Neuville from 1887 depicting French students being taught about the lost provinces of Alsace-Lorraine, taken by Germany in 1871.

Nationalism

Nationalism Nationalism is an ideology and movement that promotes interest of a particular nation (as in a group of people) especially with the aim of gaining and maintaining the nation’s sovereignty (self-governance) over its homeland and uniting the different ethnicities of the nation. Nationalism holds that each nation should govern itself, free from outside interference (self-determination), that a...

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Democracy

Democracy Democracy is the name given to a number of forms of government and procedures which have legitimacy because they have the consent of the people they govern. The two main criteria for a democracy are, firstly that the officials exercising power have legitimate authority because they have been elected, as...

Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler (Courtesy of PerlePress Productions)

Fascism

Fascism Fascism is a form of far-right, authoritarian ultranationalism characterized by dictatorial power, forcible suppression of opposition, as well as strong regimentation of society and of the economy which came to prominence in early 20th-century Europe. The first fascist movements emerged in Italy during World War I, before spreading to other European countries. Opposed to liberalism, Marxism, and anarchism,...

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Capitalism

Capitalism Capitalism is an economic system based on the private ownership of the means of production and their operation for profit. Characteristics central to capitalism include private property, capital accumulation, wage labor, voluntary exchange, a price system and competitive markets. In a capitalist market economy, decision-making and investments are determined...

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Dialogue

Dialogue Dialogue (or dialog) is a reciprocal conversation between two or more entities. The etymological origins of the word (in Greek διά (diá,through) + λόγος (logos,word,speech) concepts like flowing-through meaning) do not necessarily convey the way in which people have come to use the word, with some confusion between the prefix διά-(diá-,through) and the prefix...

Emanuel Swedenborg, engraving by William Holl.

Emanuel Swedenborg

Emanuel Swedenborg Emanuel Swedenborg (born Emanuel Swedberg; January 29, 1688 – March 29, 1772) was a Swedish scientist, philosopher, Christian mystic, and theologian. Swedenborg had a prolific career as an inventor and scientist. At the age of 56 he entered into a spiritual phase, in which he experienced dreams and visions of the afterlife. This...

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Tao

Tao Tao or Dao (Chinese: 道; pinyin: Dào) is a Chinese word signifying “way”, “path”, “route”, “road” or sometimes more loosely “doctrine”, “principle” or “holistic beliefs”. In the context of East Asian philosophy and East Asian religions, Tao is the natural order of the universe whose character one’s human intuition must discern in order to realize the potential...

"John Wesley," by the English artist George Romney, oil on canvas. 29 1/2 in. x 24 3/4 in. Courtesy of the National Portrait Gallery, London.

John Wesley

John Wesley John Wesley (28 June  [O.S. 17 June] 1703 – 2 March 1791) was an English cleric, theologian and evangelist who was a leader of a revival movement within the Church of England known as Methodism. The societies he founded became the dominant form of the independent Methodist movement that continues to this day. Educated at Charterhouse and Christ Church, Oxford, Wesley...

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Physicalism

Physicalism In philosophy, physicalism is the metaphysical thesis that “everything is physical”, that there is “nothing over and above” the physical, or that everything supervenes on the physical. Physicalism is a form of ontological monism—a “one substance” view of the nature of reality as opposed to a “two-substance” (dualism) or “many-substance” (pluralism) view. Both the definition of...

Natural Philosophy

Natural Philosophy Natural philosophy or philosophy of nature (from Latin philosophia naturalis) was the philosophical study of nature and the physical universe that was dominant before the development of modern science. It is considered to be the precursor of natural science. From the ancient world, starting with Aristotle, to the 19th century, natural philosophy was the common...

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