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"The unexamined life is not worth living" -Socrates

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Philosopher Profiles

Buddha Confucius Plato Aristotle St. Augustine St. Aquinas Descartes Spinoza

Berkeley Kant Bentham and Mill Schopenhauer Nietzsche James Kierkegaard Sartre Main Menu

Philosopher Profile

Name:Gautama Buddha

Born:563 B.C.

Died: 483 B.C.

Major Philosophies:The eight-fold path

The four noble truths


Quotes:Life is suffering.

Doubt arises because knowledge and ignorance are two different things.


Miscellaneous:Buddha sat under a Boa tree for days to attain wisdom and understanding.

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Philosopher Profile

Name: Confucius

Born: 551 B.C.

Died: 479 B.C.

Major Philosophies: Three Doctrines of Confucius

His utopia


Quotes: Do not do to others what you would not like yourself.

Do unto others what you wish to do unto yourself.


Book of Rites

Spring and Autumn Annals

Miscellaneous:Confucius taught a total of 3,000 students.

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Philosopher Profile


Born:428 B.C.

Died:347 B.C.

Major Philosophies:The nature of love

The nature of virtue

philosophy of religion

Quotes:Wonder is the feeling of a philosopher, and phiosophy begins in wonder.

Books:The Republic


The Last Days of Socrates



Miscellaneous:Plato created the Academy.

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Philosopher Profile


Born:384 B.C.

Died:322 B.C.

Major Philosophies:Aristotle's Four Causes

Theory of syllogism

Golden Mean

Quotes:Man is a political animal.

The good is the most accurate measure of all things.


History of Animals

Miscellaneous:He formed the Lyceum. He was also the tutor of Alexander the Great.

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Philosopher Profile

Name:St. Augustine

Born:354 A.D.

Died:430 A.D.

Major Philosophies:Early Christianity

Quotes:What is called evil in the universe is but the absense of good.

The will of G-d, which is always good, is sometimes fulfilled through the evil will of man.


The City of G-d

Miscellaneous:Augustine devoted his life to the pursuit of truth.

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Philosopher Profile

Name:St. Thomas Aquinas

Born:1225 A.D.

Died:1274 A.D.

Major Philosophies:Synthesis between faith and reason

Natural Theological truths

Quotes:The ultimate beatitude of man

consists in the use of his highest

function, which is the operation

of his intellect...Hence...the

blessed see the essence of God.

Books:Summa Theologica

Miscellaneous:He came up with the five proofs of G-d.

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Philosopher Profile

Name:Rene Descartes

Born:1596 A.D.

Died:1650 A.D.

Major Philosophies:The systematization of analytic geometry


Quotes:"Cogito, ergo sum," I think, therefore I am.

Doubt arises because knowledge and ignorance are two different things.

Books:Discourse on the Method

Meditations on First Philosophy

Miscellaneous:Descartes tried to use inductive thinking for philosophy.

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Philosopher Profile

Name:Baruch Spinoza

Born:1632 A.D.

Died:1677 A.D.

Major Philosophies:Dues Sive Natura

Reality through geometry

Quotes:All things excellent are as difficult as they are rare


Theological-political Treatise

Political Treatise

Miscellaneous:Spinoza was a pantheist, which means that he believed that everything is G-d.

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Philosopher Profile

Name:George Berkeley

Born:1685 A.D.

Died:1753 A.D.

Major Philosophies:Subjective idealism

Solipsism-the world is my perception

Quotes:Esse est percipi.

To be is to be perceived.

Books:Essay towards a new vision

Tretise concerning the principles of human knowledge

Tree dialogues between Hylos and Philonous

Miscellaneous:He was born in Ireland

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Philosopher Profile

Name:Immanuel Kant

Born:1724 A.D.

Died:1804 A.D.

Major Philosophies:Categorical Imperative

Critical Philosophy

Analytic/Synthetic Judgement

Quotes:So act that you at the same time will that your act shall be raised to a level of universal law for anyone at any time

Books:Critique of Pure Reason

Critique of Judgement

Critique of Practical Reason

Miscellaneous:Immanuel Kant was a student, a teacher, and a writer.

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Philosopher Profile

Name:Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill

Born:1748 and 1806

Died:1832 and 1873

Major Philosophies:Utilitarianism

The greatest good for the greatest number of people

Quotes:Every man is the best judge of his own interest.

Books:On Liberty- Mill

A fragment on Government- Bentham

Miscellaneous:Although the two are usually considered as a group, instead of as individuals, they was actually a fifty year difference between the two.

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Philosopher Profile

Name:Arthur Schopenhauer

Born:1788 A.D.

Died:1860 A.D.

Major Philosophies:Principle of Sufficient Reason

The World as Will and Idea


Quotes:The life of every individual is really always a tragedy but gone through in detail, it has the character of a comedy.

Books:On Visions and Colors

On the Will in Nature

Parerga and Paralipomena

Miscellaneous:Schopenhauer is often called the prophet of pessimism.

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Philosopher Profile

Name:Friedrich Nietzsche

Born:1844 A.D.

Died:1900 A.D.

Major Philosophies:Man should become the overman


Quotes:G-d is dead.

Life in its simplest form is exploitation.

Whatever doesn't kill you makes you stronger.

Books:Thus Spoke Zarathustra

Beyond Good and Evil

The Birth of Tragedy

Miscellaneous:Nietzsche died insane in a mental institution from syphilis.

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Philosopher Profile

Name:William James

Born:1842 A.D.

Died:1910 A.D.

Major Philosophies:Pragmatism

Quotes:The whole function of philosophy ought to be to find out what definite difference it will make to you or me, a definite difference in our lives, if this formula or that formula be true.

Books:Principle of Psychology

Human Immortality

The Will to Believe and other Essays in Popular Philosophy

Miscellaneous:William James is considered one of the only "respectable" American philosopher.

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Philosopher Profile

Name:Soren Kierkegaard

Born:1813 A.D.

Died:1855 A.D.

Major Philosophies:Existentialism

Subjective Truth

Freedom of Choice

Quotes:I must find a truth that is true for me... the idea for which I can live or die. What is suspended is not lost, but is preserved in the higher function that is its telos, its purpose.

Books:Fear and Trembling

The Repetition

The Concept of Dread

Miscellaneous:Kierkegaard actually founded existentialism.

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Philosopher Profile

Name:Jean-Paul Sartre

Born:1905 A.D.

Died:1980 A.D.

Major Philosophies:Existentialism

Quotes:Existence Precedes Essence

Hell is other people.

Books:Being and Nothingness

No Exit


Miscellaneous:Sartre is considered the founder of modern existentialism.

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A fallacy is a flaw in logic. There are two types of fallacies: informal and formal. An informal fallacy has a flaw in its content, while a formal fallacy has a flaw in its structure. The following is a list of a number of formal fallacies and their explanations:

Post Hoc Fallacy- stating that two things have a causal effect when it cannot be proven that it is true (remember that just because one thing is always followed by another does not mean that there is a causal connection).
False Dilemma- This fallacy is sometimes called the Black or White Fallacy. This structural error simply means that you are saying that there are only two possibilities.
Argumentum Ad Ignorantiam- This is when you say that something is true simply because someone cannot prove otherwise.
Argumentum Ad Hominem- Through this fallacy, you attack the person instead of the statement that you are trying to dispel.
Begging The Question- When an argument goes in a circle, it falls under this fallacy.
Hypothesis Contrary To Fact- As the name implies, this is when you are using a situation that does not exist to further your argument.
Straw Man- This is when you use a non-sequitur (You can't know the answer to that math question because you have a white dog).
Reification- This is when you assign human-like characteristics to inanimate objects.

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