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31
votes
1answer
824 views

Friends, we are not philosophers

I wanted to try to make something of a positive statement about our definition and scope, since admittedly it can be somewhat difficult to get your arms around. It was certainly difficult enough for ...
23
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11answers
652 views

Is this site for doing philosophy or discussing philosophy? [duplicate]

Does this community intend to support and engage in potentially original philosophical inquiry, or are we going to limit ourselves to discussing previously published philosophies and/or philosophers? ...
14
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7answers
385 views

Should we restrict this site to academic questions only, or target a more casual audience?

One of the issues that other Stack Exchange sites (such as Mathematics and Computer Science) have faced in defining the scope of their site is whether to allow questions from the casual reader/...
14
votes
5answers
610 views

Do we accept answers based on sacred texts (on theological questions)?

Lately there have been some flags on answers citing sacred texts to theological questions. Examples include this and this, but it is not restricted to western religions (this for instance). At first, ...
14
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0answers
281 views

FAQ for Philosophy.SE

Community FAQ For Philosophy.SE, a site in the Stack Exchange 2.0 network You may also wish to review the community FAQ for all sites in the StackExchange network. Content Asking questions What ...
11
votes
7answers
323 views

What is considered off topic?

What is one domain or example question that you consider to be off topic? (Please post just one per answer.) Return to FAQ index
11
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4answers
445 views

NOT READY FOR PUBLIC BETA — What is this site about?

We decided to keep the Philosophy Stack Exchange in PRIVATE beta a bit longer until we can get a clear statement (and enforcement) of one major issue: What is this site about? In particular, there ...
10
votes
2answers
283 views

Sin-and-guilt preaching…

Newbie (on Philosophy) here. I’ve been reading questions to get a feel for how this site works. I notice there’s at least one user who seems to take every opportunity to strongly preach a Christian ...
9
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2answers
117 views

How should questions expecting truth values be handled?

One of the early questions on this site asked whether humans have souls: Do humans have souls? I lean towards Dan Dennett's views on souls in which humans don't have a soul that lasts forever. ...
9
votes
1answer
165 views

Is Philosophy SE being trolled, and why exactly aren't these questions closed?

So I went onto Philosophy SE main looking for good substantive questions, and Instead I find: Is Gravity The Fundamental force? The question seems like an obvious joke, so I said, and scrolled down....
8
votes
1answer
87 views

Do we do peer reviews here?

In light of this meta-question: Do the people that closed this post totally understand the subject matter of formal proofs of mathematical logic? I think it might be a good idea to spell out our ...
8
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2answers
167 views

Are questions about literature on-topic?

The community was recently asked an interesting question about the meaning of a line from Joyce. Is this question on topic? How about questions on literature in general? So more generally, do we ...
7
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6answers
342 views

Is Atheism/Agnosticism (proposal) on topic in Philoshophy (here)?

There is a proposal in Area 51 to create an Atheism/Agnosticism site that is going through the final checks to move forward in Area 51. Regardless of what you feel (this is important) about the ...
7
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3answers
110 views

'Where do I start…' Questions. Should we encourage them?

It seems to me there are a lot of 'Where do I start if I'm interested in X?' or 'What authors should I read if I want to get into Y?' questions. For example: Where can I start to learn about the ...
7
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1answer
166 views

Do questions have to be answerable?

If one were to post a thought-provoking question which there might not be an answer to, other than "there is no answer and could never be and here's why", should this question be seen as off-topic? I'...
6
votes
5answers
149 views

Add a close reason for zero effort homework?

It's pretty common for us to get homework questions here. I don't see anything automatically wrong with that per se. But sometimes there's no demonstrated effort whatsoever. I think we should add a ...
6
votes
2answers
277 views

What is this site about?

What is the core mission or "elevator pitch" of this site? What is a concise statement of what it is about? Return to FAQ index
6
votes
1answer
29 views

Can we ask about best translations or critical/scholarly editions here?

I'm often at a loss as to which translation of a text I should read, if I haven't been specifically recommended an edition by a professor. For instance these two questions of mine hinged on bad/...
5
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3answers
138 views

Are questions that are “just” about Christianity on-topic?

I have migrated this question to Christianity.SE where it has (already!) been edited into shape and has received several upvotes, which I think is a better fate than it would likely have received on ...
5
votes
2answers
77 views

Asking a series of questions to create an online resource

I am beginning to read 'Being and Nothingness' by Sartre and I am relatively new to philosophy and the text is obviously difficult. I was wondering if it is permitted on this site for me to ask ...
5
votes
1answer
68 views

Are confirmation of analysis questions desirable?

I have a major essay coming up in my philosophy class, and our teacher has asked us to consider what we want to write about before we actually get the details of the assignment. The general idea, he ...
5
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5answers
116 views

When is a question about “definitions”?

I often see questions such as this one that are downvoted because: Questions on the definitions or semantics of words or phrases are off-topic here as they are already well-answered elsewhere. ...
5
votes
1answer
58 views

I have trouble understanding why some questions are closed

For example this: Difference between a sentence and a proposition in philosophy For me that's a perfectly good and interesting question and a typical puzzle for beginners in philosophy. And it also ...
5
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2answers
82 views

New to Philosophy and learning how to ask good questions

I've asked a few questions recently and am posting the ones with no upvotes and some query in the comments under them about whether they are on topic. I know it's not usual to post and dissect ...
5
votes
1answer
59 views

Is this site appropriate for questions about the current state of the human condition?

Are questions like: "What is the state of monogomy in western culture?" or "What is the current culturally normal image of a man or woman?" appropriate for this site. Are these questions too social ...
5
votes
3answers
152 views

Can we please have a “Why do things matter?”/“What is the meaning of life?” question?

So, I ask myself the question: "What is the meaning of life?" Since I've been on SE for a few days, even before joining the philosophy branch I'm fully aware that this is a bad subjective question. ...
5
votes
1answer
72 views

Is the Philosophy SE a reasonable place to ask about research methods?

I have been trying to find a good fit for a question about meta-analyses. The validity of general scientific research methods seems to be either a question suited for "academia" though apparently that ...
5
votes
2answers
76 views

Are questions regarding the personal history of philosophers allowed?

Often times, to better understand a philosopher's position, it helps to understand their circumstances. To what extent is it acceptable to ask about the history of philosphers? For example, I know ...
4
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2answers
72 views

Can I ask questions about political ideologies and forms of governments?

Are questions about political ideologies and forms of government considered on-topic for Philosophy.SE?
4
votes
2answers
195 views

Thoughts for our moderation policy?

What are your thoughts for a serious moderation policy for this site? In particular, what questions would you like answered at the meeting?
4
votes
2answers
87 views

Aren't non-religious posts about God's epistemology on topic?

Placing this post on hold seems inconsistent with guidance provided in Philosophy Meta (examples: here and here) as well as other posts relating to God and epistemology which are not getting closed (...
4
votes
1answer
68 views

Should I delete my question?

So, I asked about psychics and auras. I figured it fit right in with the on-topic stuff about applied philosophy, specifically as applied argumentation, or at the very least, in the etcetera category. ...
4
votes
4answers
87 views

Are experimental questions with a strong bearing on philosophy acceptable?

I posted this question on the main site yesterday and (although this is likely in part because it has had a grand total of 20 views in that time) it has lingered on 0 votes, having been neither up or ...
4
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0answers
48 views

Are questions on reasoning & argumentation on-topic here?

For example, I believe that the particular passage from Malcolm Gladwell's Outliers contains faulty reasoning (obviously I might be wrong): The striking thing about Ericsson’s study is that he and ...
3
votes
4answers
151 views

Should religious discussions or those about God be allowed on Philosophy?

It seems that many people are trying to close my question (What is good and what is evil?) that makes explicit mention of God. For example, one of the commenters says: I think this question is ...
3
votes
3answers
222 views

What's the difference between “ask/answer philosophical questions” and “do philosophy”?

I've been told that "this site is not a site for doing philosophy. It’s a stack exchange site for answering questions about philosophy." I just can't see any difference between asking/answering ...
3
votes
1answer
54 views

Is the use of the word “philosophy” a topic for philosophy SE?

The present question has been inspired by a question in philosophy SE which has been put on hold as off topic, to my surprise. My question is however general in character, and does not pertain to one ...
3
votes
3answers
186 views

Questions about philosophy of physics

This question Is the unobserved universe quantum mechanical? was closed as off-topic with the rationale in the comments that it is more about physics than philosophy. There were comments in the thread ...
3
votes
1answer
102 views

Should we have a Silly Season?

Summer is a slow season for us. School is out; people are taking vacations, or doing retreats or sabbaticals... I also think our audience may skew a little younger over summer. We catch a lot of ...
3
votes
1answer
66 views

Where lies the distinction between “whatenever I am thinking about” and “proper” philosophy?

In the comments of a question I asked on veganism, there was some discussion on whether my question was philosophical. User Rex Kerr wrote in a comment: Well, I know that there are philosophers who ...
3
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0answers
83 views

Could we have a silly season - again?

Last Summer, the idea was floated around that we have a silly season, were people could ask fun or humorous questions? Can we try that this year?
3
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2answers
88 views

Why was the question about Socrates' possible influence on Jesus closed?

I'm having trouble understanding why Did Jesus try to copy Socrates? got closed. I read it as a question about the influence of a philosopher on 'something else' (and that 'something else' is ...
2
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3answers
83 views

Defference of a Biology/Taxonomy question to Philosophy

What are the sufficient criteria that make an entity a living homo sapiens? [on hold] It is sadly common to see OPs not really understanding that terms definition is a question of philosophy. Unless ...
2
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2answers
69 views

Regarding unhelpful and weird comments by some user with a big reputation

I have recently asked a question about Physicalism and if there are any useful thought experiments against the concept , like Mary's Room and Searle's Chinese Room ; I think it was Jobermark who ...
2
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1answer
47 views

Should we have some rules about mathematical logic problems?

A recent question: Calculus for Higher Order Logic has me wondering (and I honestly don't have a strong opinion on it either way). We do answer a lot of questions with the logic tag here on ...
2
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2answers
77 views

Are philosophical questions about non-academic literature on topic?

Prompted by: What did Frank Herbert mean when he said “humans do not have equal ability”, concerning equality? No subject matter can be said to be the exclusive purview of its own academic domain. ...
2
votes
2answers
66 views

What are the rules of this site on definitions?

What are the rules of the site on definitions? I asked a question on how four terms are different, and it was swiftly closed, despite having enough context to make sense. There's probably hundreds ...
2
votes
1answer
76 views

Why the definition of life isn't a question of philosophy?

I wrote a question asking what is the definition of life about 2-3 weeks ago. It got first put on a hold, I pledged it's a legitimate question but nobody heard me and it eventually got deleted. The ...
2
votes
1answer
47 views

Are questions of the following form appropriate?

Consider a question of the following form. I have an idea about XXX... ---Description of Idea--- Can you spot anything incoherent, illogical, or especially problematic about this idea? ...
2
votes
1answer
38 views

Are questions about philosophy education on-topic?

We have many questions on the main site on the philosophy of education - pedagogical imperatives, ethics of student discipline, etc. These are fundamentally philosophical questions that happen to be ...