PHIL 1301Does God Exist?
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PHIL 1301Does God Exist?
PHIL 1301Does God Exist?
PHIL 1301Does God Exist?
Does God Exist?
How Does the Mind Relate to the Body?
What Is Real? (What Actually Exists?)
So Why Study Philosophy?
Some Reasons
Critical thinking skills, writing skills and speaking skills
Liberation from prejudice and provincialism.
Expansion of one’s horizon
Understanding Society
Not usually taught before college
Guard against propaganda Intrinsically interesting
Helps fulfill our “self actualization” needs (Abraham Maslow)
Critical Thinking
In most academic subjects, students are taught what to think, rather than how to think.
The goal of philosophy:
Autonomy
The freedom of being able to decide for yourself what you will believe in by using your own reasoning abilities.
In other words, learn to think for yourself.
Traditional Divisions of Philosophy
Epistemology
Metaphysics
Ethics
Political & Social Philosophy
Logic and Critical Thinking
Aesthetics
Epistemology
Epistemology refers to that branch of philosophy that critically evaluates the nature, methodology, limitation, and origin of human knowledge.
Metaphysics
a division of philosophy that is concerned with the fundamental nature of reality and being.
ETHICS
The theoretical study of morality (likened to a theoretical study of physics)
…is a code or set of principles by which people live by.
Political & Social Philosophy
The study of social values and political forms of government.
Studies the nature of justice.
Logic and Critical Thinking
Logic maybe defined as the branch of philosophy that reflects upon the nature of thinking itself.
Distinguishes, “What is the correct way of thinking?”
Logic is perhaps the most fundamental branch of philosophy.
All branches of philosophy employ thinking; whether this thinking is correct or not will depend upon whether it is in accord with the laws of logic.
Aesthetics
The Study of Beauty and Art.
Inappropriate Authority
We base much of what we believe on the evidence of authority, and citing an authority is a legitimate way of justifying a belief.
Generally speaking, philosophers do not accept a statement solely on the basis of an individual’s authority, no matter how eminent.
Ludwig Wittgenstein
“Philosophy aims at the logical clarification of thoughts. Philosophy is not a body of doctrine but an activity. . . . Without philosophy thoughts are, as it were, cloudy and indistinct: its task is to make them clear and to give them sharp boundaries.”
But why Philosophy?
What is Philosophy?
It aims for a clear, critical, comprehensive conception of reality.
Rational Argument
The hallmark of philosophy is rational argument.
Philosophers clarify concepts and analyze and test propositions and beliefs, but their major task is to analyze and construct arguments.
Distinction: Scientist vs. Philosopher
Philosophical reasoning is closely allied with scientific reasoning in that both build hypotheses and look for evidence to test those hypotheses with the hope of coming closer to the truth.
Scientific Experiments:In Lab
However, scientific experiments take place in laboratories and have testing procedures to record empirically verifiable results.
Philosophical Experiments: In Mind
The laboratory of philosophers is the domain of ideas—the mind, where imaginative thought experiments take place; the study where arguments are written down and examined; and wherever conversation or debate about perennial questions of life takes place , where thesis and counterthesis are considered.
You must proofread your paper. But do not strictly rely on your computer’s spell-checker and grammar-checker; failure to do so indicates a lack of effort on your part and you can expect your grade to suffer accordingly. Papers with numerous misspelled words and grammatical mistakes will be penalized. Read over your paper – in silence and then aloud – before handing it in and make corrections as necessary. Often it is advantageous to have a friend proofread your paper for obvious errors. Handwritten corrections are preferable to uncorrected mistakes.
Use a standard 10 to 12 point (10 to 12 characters per inch) typeface. Smaller or compressed type and papers with small margins or single-spacing are hard to read. It is better to let your essay run over the recommended number of pages than to try to compress it into fewer pages.
Likewise, large type, large margins, large indentations, triple-spacing, increased leading (space between lines), increased kerning (space between letters), and any other such attempts at “padding” to increase the length of a paper are unacceptable, wasteful of trees, and will not fool your professor.
The paper must be neatly formatted, double-spaced with a one-inch margin on the top, bottom, and sides of each page. When submitting hard copy, be sure to use white paper and print out using dark ink. If it is hard to read your essay, it will also be hard to follow your argument.
ADDITIONAL INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE CLASS
Discussion Questions (DQ)
Initial responses to the DQ should address all components of the questions asked, include a minimum of one scholarly source, and be at least 250 words.
Successful responses are substantive (i.e., add something new to the discussion, engage others in the discussion, well-developed idea) and include at least one scholarly source.
One or two sentence responses, simple statements of agreement or “good post,” and responses that are off-topic will not count as substantive. Substantive responses should be at least 150 words.
I encourage you to incorporate the readings from the week (as applicable) into your responses.
Weekly Participation
Your initial responses to the mandatory DQ do not count toward participation and are graded separately.
In addition to the DQ responses, you must post at least one reply to peers (or me) on three separate days, for a total of three replies.
Participation posts do not require a scholarly source/citation (unless you cite someone else’s work).
Part of your weekly participation includes viewing the weekly announcement and attesting to watching it in the comments. These announcements are made to ensure you understand everything that is due during the week.
APA Format and Writing Quality
Familiarize yourself with APA format and practice using it correctly. It is used for most writing assignments for your degree. Visit the Writing Center in the Student Success Center, under the Resources tab in LoudCloud for APA paper templates, citation examples, tips, etc. Points will be deducted for poor use of APA format or absence of APA format (if required).
Cite all sources of information! When in doubt, cite the source. Paraphrasing also requires a citation.
I highly recommend using the APA Publication Manual, 6th edition.
Use of Direct Quotes
I discourage overutilization of direct quotes in DQs and assignments at the Masters’ level and deduct points accordingly.
As Masters’ level students, it is important that you be able to critically analyze and interpret information from journal articles and other resources. Simply restating someone else’s words does not demonstrate an understanding of the content or critical analysis of the content.
It is best to paraphrase content and cite your source.
LopesWrite Policy
For assignments that need to be submitted to LopesWrite, please be sure you have received your report and Similarity Index (SI) percentage BEFORE you do a “final submit” to me.
Once you have received your report, please review it. This report will show you grammatical, punctuation, and spelling errors that can easily be fixed. Take the extra few minutes to review instead of getting counted off for these mistakes.
Review your similarities. Did you forget to cite something? Did you not paraphrase well enough? Is your paper made up of someone else’s thoughts more than your own?
Visit the Writing Center in the Student Success Center, under the Resources tab in LoudCloud for tips on improving your paper and SI score.
Late Policy
The university’s policy on late assignments is 10% penalty PER DAY LATE. This also applies to late DQ replies.
Please communicate with me if you anticipate having to submit an assignment late. I am happy to be flexible, with advance notice. We may be able to work out an extension based on extenuating circumstances.
If you do not communicate with me before submitting an assignment late, the GCU late policy will be in effect.
I do not accept assignments that are two or more weeks late unless we have worked out an extension.
As per policy, no assignments are accepted after the last day of class. Any assignment submitted after midnight on the last day of class will not be accepted for grading.
Communication
Communication is so very important. There are multiple ways to communicate with me: Questions to Instructor Forum: This is a great place to ask course content or assignment questions. If you have a question, there is a good chance one of your peers does as well. This is a public forum for the class.
Individual Forum: This is a private forum to ask me questions or send me messages. This will be checked at least once every 24 hours.
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