Monday, January 16, 2012

The Five Most Important Questions

Stefan Molyneux
of Freedomain Radio asks and answers 5 of the most important philosophical questions everyone should consider.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

With answers of around ten seconds each for truth and virtue, compared to approximately 50 seconds each for government, law and money this is less philosophy and more political polemic.

Molynuex’s definition of truth, “principles and statements that confirm to reason and evidence,” is too simplistic—ironically a misleading half-truth. The sun revolves around the earth according to reason and evidence. What we usually call truth is merely our model of reality, based on our reasoning given the evidence available to us at a certain moment in time. Truth, like the Way in Doaism, cannot be told—it exceeds our comprehension, and wisdom is found in recognizing the limitations of our truth claims.

If truth cannot be fully grasped, and yet we can act virtuously, virtue cannot be dependent on truth as Molyneux claims. Rather, virtue must stand above our concepts of what is true. The belief that something is true has too often provided the justification for evil. Molynuex’s definition of virtue, “universally preferable behavior,” is a rather tall order, and not in my opinion practical or helpful. A more workable definition, I suggest, is that virtuous actions are those which create or enhance harmony and life at all levels within a system, from the local to the whole, and from present to future. The greater the harmony and life created, the greater the virtue.

Moleneux’s definitions of government, law and money, the focus of his video, are fine, however the Austrian School Economics that he promotes support actions that are far from virtuous, for example the abolition of a security net for those who are disabled, sick or unemployed.