quarta-feira, 18 de janeiro de 2012
What is Philosophy?
What is the origin of Philosophy? What is the reason why men desire or need to think philosophically? And putting into practice the act of philosophizing or just thinking, what man really expects to find? Our thoughts tell us that such an uncontrollable impulse is part of human nature. (...) The origins of Philosophy would exist in the first deep thought the first man who first philosophized (...) When God created man, He did not make him of clay, but of thought, so, philosopher. There are many definitions of Philosophy, but there is only one which remains essential: Pythagoras’ Love of Wisdom. (Excerpts from JHPires contained in the Program Booklet of the Spiritist Philosophical Studies Project, fev.2001).
Luc Ferry, philosopher, former Education minister in France, concludes that every definition of Philosophy remains controversial, since most philosophers have been discussed it nowadays without coming to a deal. Among several definitions, we can mention: the formation of a critical and autonomous thinking, a method to meet the main aspects of a rigorous thinking, the art of thought rooted in a wonderment and questioning attitude (FERRY, L. 2006); it is through its methods, more than its subjects, that Philosophy must be distinguished from other arts or sciences (AYER, AJ 2008); Philosophy is the study of fundamental, abstract and general problems since they are concerned to the nature of existence, knowledge, morality, reason and human purposes (Teichman, J., Evans, KC, 2009). No one is absolutely sure about what Philosophy is (...), it can be understood in a traditional way, when dealing with the three Big Questions: What is it? How do we know? What do we do about it? (...) Other thinkers also said that Philosophy is much more defined through a particular method which could find reasons for conclusions and making them clear: finally, some people still say that Philosophy is a kind of attitude or way of life based on Socrates’ teachings (GARVEY, J.; Stangroom. J. 2009).
In the Socratic and after Socratic period in Greece, Philosophy embraces many subjects, when intended to be a method of apprehending reality. In fact, this movement had already taken place with the pre-Socratics and the search for the arkhe (source) of everything. The Western Philosophy, science of the sciences, inquires about the first cause, it is concerned on the “being of things” and about all the latest goals; so, in order to be developed it had to be separated from religion, since it is focused on divine revelation. Its questions about God, the origin of the universe, the nature of being, must be done by the reason itself, detached from any mystical or mythical interpretation.
The Spiritist Philosophy
“This book (The Spirits’ Book) was written by the order and dictation of the higher Spirits to lay the foundations of a rational philosophy, free of the damage caused by the spirit of systems. (Prolegomena/SB)”. By saying that Spiritism is a philosophy, Allan Kardec was not excluding its scientific character, quite the contrary; moreover, as ethics or morality is one of the areas that Philosophy embraces, such denomination did not exclude the moral aspect of Spiritism, which is the essence of so-called spiritist religion. (CHIBENI, S.S. Spiritism’s triple aspect).
Philosophy has much to gain by seriously considering the facts of Spiritism, not only because such facts are the solemn sanction of its moral teaching and by themselves will prove to the most hardened spirits the responsibility of their behavior (...), the detailed study of the consequences deduced from the existence of the soul in a disembodied state (...) the knowledge of the essence of the soul will lead philosophy to know the essence of things and the attributes of God. Philosophy means the search for the answers, meaning, rationality, understanding of things, and Spiritism, by the very nature of the issues it manages, is Philosophy. (PIRES, JH, 1983).
What is the philosophical originality of Spiritism? It was born among the French rationalist heritage (formed in the West since Greek philosophy), it admits the self-identity, as an individual soul researched after death; it admits the intelligibility of the real, yet it admits the effectiveness of human action as a factor of evolution; it accepts the intuition, the possibility to access the spiritual side of life, therefore under this historical and objective reason’s control. (INCONTRI, D. 2004).
In other words, the being, as the immortal Spirit, builds his interexistentiality, his spiritual identity through successive lives. The Spiritist Philosophy, far from being conflicting and unsystematic, assumes the role of conceptual synthesis of all knowledge developed in secure foundations of reason leading to full understanding of natural laws, the divine presence in creation. More than that, it guides the being to a fully identification with his Father, and makes him to know his own religiosity in spirit and truth, so that one day the being might say as Jesus said, I am one with my Father.
THESE ARE THE FIRST COMMENTED CLASSES FROM THE SPIRITIST PHILOSOPHY COURSE OF THE SPIRITIST PHILOSOPHiCAL STUDIES PROJECT – SPSP; AS YOU CAN SEE, THERE ARE MANY CONVERGENT POINTS ACCORDING TO THE AUTHORS ABOVE BETWEEN THE SO-CALLED "TRADITIONAL" PHILOSOPHY AND OUR BELOVED SPIRITIST PHILOSOPHY. SO, LET’S GO DEEP INTO KNOWING WHAT THESE CONVERGENT POINTS ARE, BUT ABOVE ALL, POINTS OR ASPECTS THAT DO NOT CONTRADICT OR PUT IN DOUBT THE PRINCIPLES ON WHICH THE SPIRITIST PHILOSOPHY HAS ITS FOUNDATIONS, SIMPLY BECAUSE THEY ARE UNIVERSAL PRINCIPLES!
ACCORDING TO LUC FERRY, THE MOST IMPORTANT THING IN PHILOSOPHY IS TO THINK: "THINK ABOUT IT, IF POSSIBLE, WITH RIGOUR AND SOMETIMES IN A CRITICAL AND INTERROGATIVE WAY TOO."
HOWEVER, ANY SCIENCE OR EVEN THE EXERCISE OF PROFESSIONS COULD ALSO LEAD TO REFLECTION AND DISCUSSION. THEREFORE THE DIFFERENCE IS THAT WITH PHILOSOPHY, WE DO NOT DIGRESS ABOUT COMMON SENSE, THAT IS, THE ULTIMATE PURPOSE OF PHILOSOPHY IS NOT JUST THINK ABOUT PRACTICAL METHODS OF LIFE, FEELINGS ABOUT WAY OF LIFE, OR STILL DIFFICULTIES ABOUT EXISTENCE, ETC.
WHEN WE DO NOT FIND THOSE ANSWERS, OUR TENDENCY IS TO THINK THAT RELIGION CAN IMPROVE LIFE BY ITS REPRESENTATIVES ON EARTH OR EVEN THROUGH SOME "CONTACT" CERIMONIES WITH THE DIVINE. BOTH, PHILOSOPHY AND RELIGION "THINK" WHY WE EXIST, AND WHAT IS THE ULTIMATE PURPOSE OF EXISTENCE. BUT THEY FOLLOW OPPOSED WAYS: WHILE PHILOSOPHY REFLECTS THE HUMAN AMBITIONS, DESIRES, EMULATIONS, RELIGION PROJECTS TOWARD THE DIVINE THE SOLUTION OF THOSE PROBLEMS WICH CANNOT BE SOLVED!! SO, WHAT CAN WE DO?
WELL, THERE IS NO PRACTICAL SOLUTION TO SUCH MATTERS! THE ONLY THING WE CAN DO IS TO LOOK FOR THE ANSWERS.
FOR EXAMPLE, THE HUMAN BEING EVER ASKED THE CAUSES OF AN EARTHQUAKE. IN OLD TIMES IT WAS CAUSED BY THE FURY OF GODS; LATER, BY DIVINE PUNISHMENT BECAUSE OF BAD ACTIONS MEN PRACTICED. TODAY, WE KNOW THAT THERE ARE ISLANDS WHICH FORM COUNTRIES AND CONTINENTS, AND THAT BELOW OR NEAR THEM THERE ARE PLATFORMS THAT MOVE AT REGULAR TIMES. AND WHY? BECAUSE OUR PLANET IS NOT A COMPACT BLOCK; IT HAS AN INCANDESCENT CENTER FORMED BY PLATES THAT MOVE TO THE SURFACE; AND THE EARTH IS ALIVE BECAUSE THERE ARE A GREAT NUMBER OF ANIMAL BEINGS DEPOSITED IN THE DEEP SEA AND OVER IT WHICH LIVE WITH US, HUMANS BEINGS. WE ARE JUST ONE MORE LINK OF A HUGE CHAIN FORMING A WEB OF LIFE, FRITJOF CAPRA SHALL SAY.
WE ARE HUMAN BEINGS WHO HAVE EXPERIENCED, THROUGH THE TIME, THE SEVERAL STAGES OF EVOLUTION - AND MUCH MORE THAN THIS, WE HAVE REGISTERED IN OUR PERISPIRIT THE INORGANIC AND ORGANIC PHASES OF THIS PROCESS, ALTHOUGH WE CANNOT CONSCIOUSLY CONCEIVED IT YET, IN AN EFFECTIVE WAY. DEEP INSIDE US, WE SEEK TO RESPOND TO SUCH PHENOMENA DEFINING THEM AS "TRAGEDIES”, AS "DIVINE PUNISHMENT”, OR " REDEMPTION OR ATONEMENT." THE TRUTH IS THAT IT IS THE SAME IDEA WITH DIFFERENT WORDS.
THEN, LET'S PHILOSOPHISE ACCORDING TO THE SPIRITIST KNOWLEDGEMENTS: THE BOOK OF SPIRITS, QUESTION 920, KARDEC WONDERS IF IT IS POSSIBLE THAT A HUMAN BEING HAS A COMPLETE HAPPINESS ON EARTH. ARISTOTLE WAS ALREADY WORRIED ABOUT OFFERING PRACTICAL GUIDANCE ON HOW TO BE HAPPY. LET’S SEARCH FOR IT?
SEE THAT SPIRITIST PHILOSOPHY NEVER OFFERS WAYS OF "SELF-AID”, BUT RELIABLE AND PERFECT WAYS FOR THE HUMAN BEING TO FIND AND LOVE THEMSELVES AND TO RESPECT LIFE AROUND - INCLUDING YOUR FELLOW! ! AND THEN, TO THANK GOD FOR EVERYTHING THAT MIGHT LEAD YOU TO THIS CONCRETE, SAFE AND FULL HAPPINESS.
quinta-feira, 5 de janeiro de 2012
A thorough and comprehensive study of literature to be used in this course is designed in order to lead the students to approach issues concerning Spiritist Philosophy, and also to equip them to the best and known researchers and historians’s works concerning philosophy (2). Equal work was done in order to highlight convergent aspects to the work contained in the Spiritist Codification, as well as the researches and studies of the pioneers of Spiritism in Europe (France, England and Italy) and North and South Americas (United States and Brazil), whose focus include scientific, philosophical and religious aspects. We also have in view to introduce serious spiritists scholars and researchers whose works reflect coherence and competence in dealing with Spiritism, and by any means have brought interpolations of doubtful character defacing this course or even the Spiritist Doctrine.
Educating Men to think in a “spiritist way” means to lead them to the highest level of consciousness, which implies to update their own potential, to develop and expand their intellectual and moral horizon in connection with the High Spirits who lead human destinies. (Sonia Theodoro da Silva).
(1) This course adapted its literature to make the acquisition and/or consultation easier for the students abroad. You can also try to download the books mainly the Spiritist’s ones. The books of History of Philosophy in general can be used – we indicate some of them. Therefore, none of them can be dogmatic or to express religious thinking or even theologies, since they are not applicable for this course.
(2) Although we have sometimes used some philosophical expressions, it is important to remember that Spiritism have already developed its own expressions and conceptual language (see the Lesson of Language and The Spirits' Book, INTRODUCTION I).