Aphorosophy: philosophy in aphorisms.

These are mostly older aphorisms, re-sorted to make a nexus of philosophical points. They are loosely arranged by topic.

Philosophy
  • Living in ambiguities, we think in simplicities.
  • All philosophies are true in the same way all religion are true
  • The pictures we have and use of the world in which we live are far too simple.
  • I have a question: what is a question?
  • I don't have answers as much as I have hesitations.
  • A philosophical question is one that can that can and should be answered in a number of different ways.
  • If philosophy has taught us anything it has taught us that philosophy cannot teach us anything. There are no answers to life's deepest questions.
  • It may be philosophy's function to point out that no one has it figured out, but it is also its function to explain why no one has it figured it out.
  • Philosophy can be dismissed only in the way music can be dismissed by the tone-deaf.
  • If philosophy is just a subject matter, you are not doing philosophy. You've lost philosophy. Philosophy is a way of handling all subject matter, including philosophy.
  • The first illusion of philosophy is that philosophy exists.
  • Why do we need answers to big questions? Well, that's a big question.
  • I must explain in English that in some sense you don't understand English.
  • There is no method but honesty.
Philosophers
  • A philosopher is just anyone who makes a lot of sense.
  • Sometimes we just want to hear a sensible man speak.
  • 'What can philosophers tell us?' is a part of the larger question, 'What can anyone tell us?'
  • Philosophy asks the questions that cannot be answered.
  • Before you tell me what is wrong about a philosopher, tell me what is right about that philosopher.
  • Many philosophical questions are invitation to be interesting, or abstractly personal. It tells and shows people something about you.
  • One role of the philosopher is to say: this is how it makes most sense to me.
Philosophers, Critisms of
  • Academic philosophers: people of the fly-bottle.
  • Philosophers turn men into straw men.
  • It is impossible to construct an understanding of the world from the concepts traditionally used in philosophy. They are like a bad scrabble hand. Even after 2500 years, one can't do much with them.
  • Life is too short to explain where Locke went wrong.
  • Philosophers are caretakers, the inheritors of a glorious tradition. But instead of adding to that tradition, all they want is to keep the museum going.
  • Philosophy is the decoration on the pot, the mosaic on the floor, the pattern on the penis sheath.
Philosophy, Critisms of
  • The aim of a philosophy book is to make you think you understand something profound.
  • We cannot even explain why philosophy cannot explain.
  • Reading academic philosophy makes me less philosophical.
  • Is it easier to understand Heidegger (or Wittgenstein) or to understand the world?
  • Philosophy is what we say in failing to encompass the complexities of the world
  • Philosophical problems take our minds off our actual problems.
  • 'What is the right answer?' is not the right question.
Truth
  • "Is it true?" is different when applied to matters of fact than when applied to philosophy.
Reality
  • There are no words for the way things really are.
  • Your imagination gets in the way of reality.
  • Everything is everything all the time.
Philosophical Topics
  • The problem of free will is how to talk about free will
  • Philosophers commit the straw reality fallacy.
  • We like a philosopher (like Aristotle) who gives us a plausible simple definition of art, drama, politics? as though the world is well-designed.
  • The world is well-designed like a swamp is well-designed,
Language
  • Language is the universal human addiction. Whenever people are together, people are talking — ALL the time. Talking is grooming.
  • Much of what people say is not interesting, but people are interesting.
  • We talk so constantly, we forget that talk is like birdsong. It's purpose may not be to accomplish much, but to assure us that nothing serious is going on.
  • Conversing with someone is a form of hospitality
  • Jargon sweeps everything under the same rug.
  • People speak, and listen, in associations.
  • In thinking and talking, we are often unknowingly engaged in multiple entendres
  • Behind the said is the unsaid.
  • Language is not such a problem once you realize that language is not the solution.
  • To what extent are the limitations of language caused by the limitations of humans
Understanding
  • Any philosophical answer you construct can be easily misunderstood, especially by yourself.
  • Language contain many tricks of understanding.
Dark
Light
  • Reason I hate TV #6: TV does not show us better humans.
Allusions
  • The limits of language is not as interesting as what goes on right in the middle of language
  • The meaning may be the use, but we cannot describe the use
  • It is equally true that the unlived life is not worth examining.
  • [Academic philosophical joke:] Fuck the fly in the fly bottle! It's a fly!! Now if we had a supermodel (in a supermodel bottle...)
  • The music of the spheres is made by things that ring true.
  • How do we not let it get off the ground? Or is there something we can do after it gets off the ground?
  • I am inclined to say and you are inclined to understand.
  • Not "the brain in vat," but the brain in a room.
Miscellaneous
  • When we speak about the virtuality of the world and the disappearance of "the real," this is another kind of end-of-the-world thinking.
  • My answers are getting worse but my questions are getting better and deeper.
  • What question can you not answer in 140 characters? Well, this one (among others).
  • Is there anything we cannot say by being politically correct? (It does make it harder to slam someone with a traditional insults.)