It is safe to say that modern men and women are obsessed with happiness. Of course this is hardly a unique situation. Every generation and community is concerned with happiness in one way or another, although it is important to remember that not every culture has defined happiness in the same way; not ever culture defines happiness in terms of wealth and satisfaction. Indeed, the great philosopher Aristotle had much to say on the matter.
Few beliefs are more deeply engrained in the modern mind than the primacy of democracy. Indeed despite the radical divisions and non-stop friction that characterizes modern America, almost everyone agrees on one thing: democracy is always the best form of government. Now to be sure, one can make a case for democratic government and there are important historical reasons for the American commitment to democracy — although it must be recognized that democracy now and
When I introduce students to philosophy, I frequently insist that they read significant passages from Plato’s Republic. This is not because I am a Platonist. Indeed, in the end I am sympathetic to Aristotelian and Thomist criticisms of Platonism taken as a whole. Nevertheless, Plato teaches us many invaluable lessons that Christians and all of those interested in right reason would do well to heed. Chief among these lessons is the need for permanent and
HOW YOU CAN OVERCOME MANIPULATIVE RHETORIC WITH ANCIENT WISDOM? The manipulative use of emotional rhetoric and fallacious reasoning is nothing new. In fact, opposition to the abuse of reason goes back to the very origins of ancient philosophy. It is well known that Socrates is the father of ancient philosophy. What you may not know is that many of Socrates’ early opponents were masters of rhetoric called “sophists.” Literally “sophists” means “wise ones,” but the
Avoiding the Success Trap: The Radical Alternative of Value-Centered Living Whether we like it or not we receive an endless stream of unsolicited advice or images related to success. Success sells: it has the appearance of competence, mastery, cleverness, and daring. Successful people are “doers,” who are oft described as “killing it.” (One wonders what or who is being killed). Rarely is this sort of success defined, and when it is, one usually hears something vague
Often freedom is extolled and insisted upon, but rarely is it defined. But just what is freedom and why is it so important? What is freedom? We are right to value freedom highly, but should we esteem every exercise of freedom? Does freedom just mean the ability to do whatever we want? If you freely choose to lie, cheat on your spouse, or dishonor your country should you be praised? Should we be free to