Values and beliefs


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Beauty and aesthetics Bioethics Comparative philosophy Cosmopolitanism Death Ethics History of ideas Knowledge Logic and probability Meaning and the good life Metaphysics Philosophy of language Philosophy of mind Philosophy of religion Philosophy of science Political philosophy Thinkers and theories Values and beliefs Virtues and vices

Photo by Raymond Depardon/Magnum

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Meaning and the good life
Indifference is a power

As legions of warriors and prisoners can attest, Stoicism is not grim resolve but a way to wrest happiness from adversity

Lary Wallace

Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty

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Gender and identity
Gender is not a spectrum

The idea that ‘gender is a spectrum’ is supposed to set us free. But it is both illogical and politically troubling

Rebecca Reilly-Cooper

Alan Watts: ‘Half monk and half racecourse operator.’ Illustration by Stephen Collins

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Consciousness and altered states
Off-beat Zen

How I found my way out of depression, thanks to the writings of the English priest who brought Buddhism to the West

Tim Lott

Illustration by Fumitake Uchida

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Logic and probability
Beyond true and false

Buddhist philosophy is full of contradictions. Now modern logic is learning why that might be a good thing

Graham Priest

Photo by Julian Calverley/Getty

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Ethics
Kids? Just say no

You don’t have to dislike children to see the harms done by having them. There is a moral case against procreation

David Benatar

Artist Jeff Koons with sculpture. Photo by Bob Adelman/Corbis

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Beauty and aesthetics
The great swindle

From pickled sharks to compositions in silence, fake ideas and fake emotions have elbowed out truth and beauty

Roger Scruton

Islamist fighters walk through the streets of Al Raqqah. The town is now the capital for the so-called Islamic State. Photo by David Rose/Panos

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Values and beliefs
ISIS is a revolution

All world-altering revolutions are born in danger and death, brotherhood and joy. How can this one be stopped?

Scott Atran

Former South African president Nelson Mandela revisits his prison cell on Robben Island, in 1994. Photo by Jurgen Schadeberg/Getty Images

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Values and beliefs
Beyond anger

Anger is the emotion that has come to saturate our politics and culture. Philosophy can help us out of this dark vortex

Martha C Nussbaum

At a café in Turin, Italy. Photo by Martin Parr/Magnum

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Food and drink
Joy in the task

Even the finest restaurants are serving coffee made with capsules. Have we lost faith in the human touch?

Julian Baggini

A family gathering near Tehran in 2017. Photo by Thomas Dworzak/Magnum Photos

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Values and beliefs
Human nature matters

The only way to construct a robust philosophy for life is to have a clear and realistic picture of what makes humans tick

Skye C Cleary & Massimo Pigliucci

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Philosophy of religion
Undercover atheists

Seduced by science and rationalism, yet tied to their families and communities, Hasidic atheists opt for a double life

Batya Ungar-Sargon

Illustration by Paul Blow

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Ethics
Cheeseburger ethics

Are professional ethicists good people? According to our research, not especially. So what is the point of learning ethics?

Eric Schwitzgebel

Photo by Carlo Allegri/Reuters

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Knowledge
Bad thinkers

Why do some people believe conspiracy theories? It’s not just who or what they know. It’s a matter of intellectual character

Quassim Cassam

Lion cubs in the Maasai Mara. Photo by Paul Souders/Corbis

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Biology
The kindness of beasts

Dogs rescue their friends and elephants care for injured kin – humans have no monopoly on moral behaviour

Mark Rowlands

Cult or religion? The Easter ‘Passion of the Christ’ procession in Comayagua, a small town in Honduras. Photo by Teun Voeten/Panos

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Subcultures
What is a cult?

Cults are exploitative, weird groups with strange beliefs and practices, right? So what about regular religions then?

Tara Isabella Burton

Photo by Rafael Marchante?reuters

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Ethics
Once and future sins

In 2115, when our descendants look back at our society, what will they condemn as our greatest moral failing?

Stephen Cave & Stefan Klein

Photo by Ernst Haas/Getty

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Values and beliefs
Slow Thought: a manifesto

We need a philosophy of Slow Thought to ease thinking into a more playful and porous dialogue about what it means to live

Vincenzo Di Nicola

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Meaning and the good life
Is it OK to have kids?

Your decision about whether to procreate is serious. That makes it philosophy’s business, alarming as that might sound

Richard Chappell

Riding the storms; detail from artwork by Kinuko Y Craft. Photo by National Geographic/Corbis

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Mental health
Learning to fall apart

My OCD had been creating vivid, painful rituals for years. So could Buddhist ritual give me a means to fight back?

Matt Bieber