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Starting Philosophical Books

Lordknukle
Posts: 12,788
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6/7/2012 11:08:01 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
I've been wanting to start reading about philosophy and before getting into anything too complicated, does anybody here know any starting books/lectures that would be an accurate introduction to philosophy?
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The_Fool_on_the_hill
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6/7/2012 11:11:51 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
Start simplified, if you jump to complicated works most will go over your head. really complicated stuff you need guidance, but of course you could do it eh. Go with a simple short intro to philosophy book, you can download one anywhere its acuall called a "very short intro to philosophy."
"The bud disappears when the blossom breaks through, and we might say that the former is refuted by the latter; in the same way when the fruit comes, the blossom may be explained to be a false form of the plant's existence, for the fruit appears as its true nature in place of the blossom. These stages are not merely differentiated; they supplant one another as being incompatible with one another." G. W. F. HEGEL
FourTrouble
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6/7/2012 11:14:42 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
depends what kind of philosophy you are interested in - if you don't know, I'd recommend reading Plato, just because he's the foundation of almost everything else.
socialpinko
Posts: 10,458
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6/7/2012 11:21:00 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 6/7/2012 11:14:42 PM, FourTrouble wrote:
depends what kind of philosophy you are interested in - if you don't know, I'd recommend reading Plato, just because he's the foundation of almost everything else.

I can attest to that. The first works I really read in their entirety were most of the Socratic dialogues and even regardless of my agreement or disagreement with the ideas presented, they really sparked my interest for philosophy as an outlook and methodology.
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socialpinko
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6/8/2012 12:39:59 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 6/7/2012 11:22:45 PM, OMGJustinBieber wrote:
I found Hegel to be a good jumping off point.

Can't tell if joking.
: At 9/29/2014 10:55:59 AM, imabench wrote:
: : At 9/29/2014 9:43:46 AM, kbub wrote:
: :
: : DDO should discredit support of sexual violence at any time and in every way.
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: I disagree.
YYW
Posts: 36,426
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6/8/2012 2:00:13 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 6/7/2012 11:11:51 PM, The_Fool_on_the_hill wrote:
Start simplified, if you jump to complicated works most will go over your head. really complicated stuff you need guidance, but of course you could do it eh. Go with a simple short intro to philosophy book, you can download one anywhere its acuall called a "very short intro to philosophy."

Good advice.
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tarkovsky
Posts: 212
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6/8/2012 5:02:06 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
To be honest, start with whatever is interesting. If it's too dense, your desire to understand the material should take you to whatever prerequisite works and from there you can start building your way back up. That's what I did; started at Heidegger and worked my way aaaaaalllllll the way back.
OMGJustinBieber
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6/8/2012 9:21:54 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 6/8/2012 12:39:59 AM, socialpinko wrote:
At 6/7/2012 11:22:45 PM, OMGJustinBieber wrote:
I found Hegel to be a good jumping off point.

Can't tell if joking.

Dove into Phenomenology of Spirit at age 14 and never looked back.
phantom
Posts: 6,774
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6/8/2012 11:52:16 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
Philosophy made simple by Richard Popkin and Avrum Stroll is a good one if you're just starting. It was the first philosophy book I read. It deals with metaphysics, ethics, political philosophy, religion, knowledge, logic and contemporary philosophy.
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TheOrator
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6/8/2012 12:14:56 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
I picked up this book called "Philosophy made simple" in Books A Million, and it went over a basic introduction to morality, political, metaphysical, and relitious philosophies, as well as explaining the most well-known examples of them all. It's really good for someone looking to get into philosophy
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TheOrator
Posts: 172
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6/8/2012 12:16:07 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 6/8/2012 11:52:16 AM, phantom wrote:
Philosophy made simple by Richard Popkin and Avrum Stroll is a good one if you're just starting. It was the first philosophy book I read. It deals with metaphysics, ethics, political philosophy, religion, knowledge, logic and contemporary philosophy.

That's the one I was talking about! Sorry that I kind of stole what you said, I didn't know that you said it :P
My legend begins in the 12th century
phantom
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6/8/2012 2:27:56 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 6/8/2012 12:16:07 PM, TheOrator wrote:
At 6/8/2012 11:52:16 AM, phantom wrote:
Philosophy made simple by Richard Popkin and Avrum Stroll is a good one if you're just starting. It was the first philosophy book I read. It deals with metaphysics, ethics, political philosophy, religion, knowledge, logic and contemporary philosophy.

That's the one I was talking about! Sorry that I kind of stole what you said, I didn't know that you said it :P

No need to appologize haha
"Music is a zen-like ecstatic state where you become the new man of the future, the Nietzschean merger of Apollo and Dionysus." Ray Manzarek (The Doors)
WriterDave
Posts: 934
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6/8/2012 4:16:58 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
My best advice would be, go to a bookstore, look for an interesting book that presents itself as an "introduction to" whatever field of philosophy interests you, take it home and read it -- but as you read it, before each paragraph you should silently say to yourself, "This could be wrong."

Reading what famous and respected philosophers have said is only part of the drill. You need to be able to think yourself.

In philosophy of religion in particular, once you have a basic feel for philosophy, I'd recommend "The Existence of God" by Richard Swinburne, a Christian philosopher. If you get through that all right, go for "Atheism: A Philosophical Justification" by Michael Martin, which is longer and more technical, plus a little dated, but a very good starting point for an in-depth exploration of atheist philosophy.

Or so I think -- I was a philosophy major, and am used to fancy terms, symbolic logic, Bayesian equations, tenseless statements, and so on. It takes practice. :-)
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Stephen_Hawkins
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6/8/2012 4:46:09 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
A History of Western Philosophy. You'll be able to outwit masses upon masses if you can learn that book inside out.
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Kinesis
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6/8/2012 4:52:53 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
'Think' by Steven Blackburn. It's a little difficult, but it manages to explain many of the core areas of philosophy without dumbing any of it down. It's biased towards an empiricist approach, though.

'The Great Conversation' by Norman Melchert is a brilliantly lucid and engaging historical introduction to philosophy. It basically goes over all the most important philosophers throughout history and explains their core ideas.

There's also "50 Philosophy Ideas You Really Need To Know" which basically does what it says on the tin - briefly explains 50 of the most powerful old and contemporary philosophical ideas.

"An introduction to political philosophy" by Jonathon Wolff is brilliant if you're interested in that area of philosophy.

I'm going to go ahead and maintain against previous commentors that you shouldn't read any classical texts - except perhaps as enjoyment. Modern philosophical texts incorporate in one way or another all the good ideas that classical philosophers had - there's no need to go back and read entire tracts of old books, all of which contain ideas long dead, improved or restated more clearly by modern philosophers.
Kinesis
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6/8/2012 4:59:15 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 6/8/2012 4:46:09 PM, Stephen_Hawkins wrote:
A History of Western Philosophy. You'll be able to outwit masses upon masses if you can learn that book inside out.

The Great Conversation is better. It's clearer, less polemical, more comprehensive, it doesn't go on as many tangents, and it also includes some eastern philosophy (which Russel just dismissed out of hand as unstructured nonsense).
socialpinko
Posts: 10,458
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6/9/2012 3:27:02 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
Just the Arguments: 100 of the Most Important Arguments in Western Philosophy. I just bought it and so far it's pretty legit as an introduction. It's divided into sections on philosophy of mind, ethics, religion, etc. and in each section contains ten or twenty short essays on a specific argument related to the field. For instance, under PoR one of the essays covers the modal cosmological argument, an essay in the ethics section covers Rawls, etc. A bit too simplistic for my tastes buts still a good read so far.
: At 9/29/2014 10:55:59 AM, imabench wrote:
: : At 9/29/2014 9:43:46 AM, kbub wrote:
: :
: : DDO should discredit support of sexual violence at any time and in every way.
:
: I disagree.
popculturepooka
Posts: 7,927
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6/10/2012 12:01:15 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 6/8/2012 9:21:54 AM, OMGJustinBieber wrote:
At 6/8/2012 12:39:59 AM, socialpinko wrote:
At 6/7/2012 11:22:45 PM, OMGJustinBieber wrote:
I found Hegel to be a good jumping off point.

Can't tell if joking.

Dove into Phenomenology of Spirit at age 14 and never looked back.

Can't tell if joking.
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