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The ugliness of philosophers

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• Is the world eternal? YES
• Do humans have contra-causal free will (i.e., can humans do otherwise)? NO
• Is beauty in the eye of the beholder? YES
• Do humans have souls? YES
• Are there natural rights? YES
• Is it morally permissible to eat meat? NO
• Is the unexamined life worth living? NO
• Is truth subjectivity? YES
• Is virtue necessary for happiness? YES
• Can a computer have a mind? YES
• Can humans know reality as it is in itself? YES
• Is hell other people? YES
• Can art be created accidentally? NO
• Can we change the past? NO
• Are numbers real? NO
• Is it always better to know the truth? YES

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Andy Martin article called “The Phenomenology of Ugly” on why so many philosophers are ugly and how philosophy can save us from our ugliness.

“It is no coincidence that one of our founding philosophers, Socrates, makes a big deal out of his own ugliness. It is the comic side of the great man. Socrates is (a) a thinker who asks profound and awkward questions (b) ugly. In Renaissance neo-Platonism (take, for example, Erasmus and his account of  “foolosophers” in “The Praise of Folly”) Socrates, still spectacularly ugly, acquires an explicitly Christian logic: philosophy is there — like Sartre’s angelic curls — to save us from our ugliness (perhaps more moral than physical).”


1 Comment

  1. Michael Thomas says:

    I am impressed by the economic potential here. Perhaps profound thinkers are more likely to ask awkward questions if and only if they do not sate some human need prior to the need to investigate.

    Anecdotally, there are not many super-model caliber accountants. I reject the hypothesis that says the genetic marker for modeling precludes ability in figuring. However, as one chooses a career the ease with which one attracts people willing to photograph one’s self for cash interrupts other types of human capital investment. We know that football quarterbacks are smart, but the lower frequency with which they become Rhodes scholars seems to be explained by scarcity of time more than by the lack of a specific genetic ability.

    Is there such thing as a beauty curse?


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