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But now, since it is this knowledge that we are seeking, we must consider the following point: Aristotle, BC But it is the knowledge of necessary and eternal truths which distinguishes us from mere animals, and gives us reason and the sciences, raising us to knowledge of ourselves and God. It is this in us which we call the rational soul or mind. We thought it would be nice to put these on our website such that others could use them please link to us if you do! We greatly appreciate any comments on how we can improve this website and its content. So please feel free to write to us. It would then be the latter two who would be thought to be sick and deranged and the former not! Aristotle It is clear, then, that wisdom is knowledge having to do with certain principles and causes. Aristotle The first philosophy Metaphysics is universal and is exclusively concerned with primary substance. And here we will have the science to study that which is just as that which is, both in its essence and in the properties which, just as a thing that is, it has. The entire preoccupation of the physicist is with things that contain within themselves a principle of movement and rest. There must then be a principle of such a kind that its substance is activity. Aristotle Demonstration is also something necessary, because a demonstration cannot go otherwise than it does, Aristotle Some philosophers have fallen into this opinion in the same way that they have into other paradoxes. They are confronted by an esoteric argument, find it impossible to refute and end up by giving in to it and accepting its conclusion! This explains the confusion of some, Now a definition arises from the necessity that words have some meaning; for the definition is the account of which the word is the sign. Rather, they start this, displaying it to the senses, This sort of procedure is inductive and it is as plain as a pikestaff that it does not amount to a demonstration of essence or of what it is to be a thing. Aristotle But also philosophy is not about perceptible substances they, you see, are prone to destruction. Aristotle However, there is a science higher than natural science. For in truth nature is but one genus of that which is. It is the principles and causes of the things that are that we are seeking, and clearly it is their principles and causes just as things that are It is, however, vital not to overlook the question of what it is to be a thing and the definitional account of how it is what it is. If we leave these out, scientific inquiry is mere shadow boxing Aristotle Metaphysics involves intuitive knowledge of unprovable starting-points concepts and truth and demonstrative knowledge of what follows from them. Aristotle, Metaphysics The life of theoretical philosophy is the best and happiest a man can lead. Few men are capable of it and then only intermittently. For the rest there is a second-best way of life, that of moral virtue and practical wisdom. Physical objects are not in space, but these objects are spatially extended In order that thinking might not degenerate into "metaphysics", or into empty talk, it is only necessary that enough propositions of the conceptual system be firmly enough connected with sensory experiences and that the conceptual system, in view of its task of ordering and surveying sense experience, should show as much unity and parsimony as possible. Beyond that, however, the "system" is as regards logic a free play with symbols according to logically arbitrarily given rules of the game. All this applies as much and in the same manner to the thinking in daily life as to the more consciously and systematically constructed thinking in the sciences. By his clear critique Hume did not only advance philosophy in a decisive way but also- though through no fault of his- created a danger for philosophy in that, following his critique, a fateful "fear of metaphysics" arose which has come to be a malady of contemporary empiricist philosophising; this malady is the counterpart to that earlier philosophising in the clouds, which thought it could neglect and dispense with what was given by the senses. However, I see no "metaphysical" danger in taking the thing the object in the sense of physics as an independent concept into the system together with the proper spatio-temporal structure. Recapitulating, we may say that according to the general theory of relativity space is endowed with physical qualities; in this sense, therefore, there exists an ether. According to the general theory of relativity space without ether is unthinkable; for in such space there not only would be no propagation of light, but also no possibility of existence for standards of space and time measuring-rods and clocks , nor therefore any space-time intervals in the physical sense. The idea of motion may not be applied to it. The subtlety of the concept of space was enhanced by the discovery that there exist no completely rigid bodies. All bodies are elastically deformable and alter in volume with change in temperature. Albert Einstein, The most beautiful and most profound experience is the sensation of the mystical. It is the sower of all true science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead. To know that what is impenetrable to us really exists, manifesting itself as the highest wisdom and the most radiant beauty which our dull faculties can comprehend only in their primitive forms - this knowledge, this feeling is at the center of true religiousness. Albert Einstein,The Merging of Spirit and Science A human being is part of the whole called by us universe , a part limited in time and space. We experience ourselves, our thoughts and feelings as something separate from the rest. A kind of optical delusion of consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from the prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.. We shall require a substantially new manner of thinking if mankind is to survive. Albert Einstein Somebody who only reads newspapers and at best books of contemporary authors looks to me like an extremely near-sighted person who scorns eyeglasses. He is completely dependent on the prejudices and fashions of his times, since he never gets to see or hear anything else. And what a person thinks on his own without being stimulated by the thoughts and experiences of other people is even in the best case rather paltry and monotonous. There are only a few enlightened people with a lucid mind and style and with good taste within a century. What has been preserved of their work belongs among the most precious possessions of mankind. We owe it to a few writers of antiquity Plato, Aristotle, etc. Nothing is more needed to overcome the modernist's snobbishness. It resembles a statue of marble which stands in the desert and is continually threatened with burial by the shifting sand. The hands of service must ever be at work, in order that the marble continue to lastingly shine in the sun. To these serving hands mine shall also belong. Albert Einstein, On Education, When, after several hours reading, I came to myself again, I asked myself what it was that had so fascinated me. The answer is simple. The results were not presented as ready-made, but scientific curiosity was first aroused by presenting contrasting possibilities of conceiving matter. Only then the attempt was made to clarify the issue by thorough argument. The intellectual honesty of the author makes us share the inner struggle in his mind. It is this which is the mark of the born teacher. Knowledge exists in two forms - lifeless, stored in books, and alive, in the consciousness of men. The second form of existence is after all the essential one; the first, indispensable as it may be, occupies only an inferior position. Albert Einstein, Numerous are the academic chairs, but rare are wise and noble teachers. Numerous and large are the lecture halls, but far from numerous the young people who genuinely thirst for truth and justice. Numerous are the wares that nature produces by the dozen, but her choice products are few. We all know that, so why complain? Was it not always thus and will it not always thus remain? Certainly, and one must take what nature gives as one finds it. But there is also such a thing as a spirit of the times, an attitude of mind characteristic of a particular generation, which is passed on from individual to individual and gives its distinctive mark to a society. Each of us has to his little bit toward transforming this spirit of the times. Albert Einstein, Communities tend to be guided less than individuals by conscience and a sense of responsibility. How much misery does this fact cause mankind! It is the source of wars and every kind of oppression, which fill the earth with pain, sighs and bitterness. Yet, as a general rule, intellectual work in moderation, so far from retarding cure, indirectly helps it forward, just as moderate physical work will. Albert Einstein, We must not conceal from ourselves that no improvement in the present depressing situation is possible without a severe struggle; for the handful of those who are really determined to do something is minute in comparison with the mass of the lukewarm and the misguided. And those who have an interest in keeping the machinery of war going are a very powerful body; they will stop at nothing to make public opinion subservient to their murderous ends. Faraday When a mathematician engaged in investigating physical actions and results has arrived at his own conclusions, may they not be expressed in common language as fully, clearly, and definitely as in mathematical formulae? If so, would it not be a great boon to such as well to express them so translating them out of their hieroglyphics that we might also work upon them by experiment? In vain would we exalt the one by depreciating the other. Besides, we may observe, in every art or profession, even those which most concern life or action, that a spirit of accuracy, however acquired, carries all of them nearer their perfection, and renders them more subservient to the interests of society. And though the philosopher may live remote from business, the genius of philosophy, if carefully cultivated by several, must gradually diffuse itself throughout the whole society, and bestow a similar correctness on every art and calling. The politician will acquire greater foresight and subtlety, in the subdividing and balancing of power; the lawyer more method and finer principles in his reasoning; and the general public more regularity in his discipline, and more caution in his plans and operations. The connection between the two is not intuitive. There is required a medium, which may enable the mind to draw such an inference, if indeed it be drawn by reasoning and argument. What that medium is, I must confess, passes my comprehension; and it is incumbent on those to produce it, who assert that it really exists, and is the origin of all our conclusions concerning matter of fact. David Hume, Be a philosopher; but, admidst all your philosophy, be still a man. David Hume, We find in the course of nature that though the effects be many, the principles from which they arise are commonly few and simple, and that it is the sign of an unskilled naturalist to have recourse to a different quality in order to explain every different operation. David Hume, When we look about us towards external objects, and consider the operation of causes, we are never able, in a single instance, to discover any power or necessary connexion; any quality, which binds the effect to the cause, and renders the one an infallible consequence of the other. This question I propose as much for the sake of information, as with an intention of raising difficulties. I cannot find, I cannot imagine any such reasoning. But I keep my mind still open to instruction, if any one will vouchsafe to bestow it upon me. David Hume, The supposition that the future resembles the past, is not founded on arguments of any kind, but is derived entirely from habit. Without the influence of custom, we should be entirely ignorant of every matter of fact beyond what is immediately present to the memory and senses.
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