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University of Toronto Scarborough
William Seager

PHL A10 - Exercise I 1. If you want to say what philosophy is, why isnt it enough to give a list of examples of philosophical problems? Simply giving examples is not enough to justify what philosophy is because citing examples does not explain what philosophy is. Philosophy is abstract and controversial. It encompasses varying subgroups -- ranging from science, art, religion, etc. -- which all have different values, but together, they help to explain how the world fits together. As stated by Sober, it is necessary to have a set of theories with merit along with examples, to support the definition of philosophy in order to truly define it. These theories include: fundamental questions of justification, solipsism, and clarifying concepts. Four central philosophical problems are God, knowledge, mind, and ethics. 2. Explain what philosophical skepticism is. Philosophical skepticism refers to a critical attitude, which systematically questions the notion that absolute knowledge and certainty are possible; either in general or in particular fields. Philosophical skepticism raises propositions about the limitations of knowledge, obtaining knowledge through doubt and continual testing, arbitrariness, relativity, or subjectivity of moral values, intellectual caution and suspended judgment, and lack of confidence in positive motives for human conduct. There is a difference between believing something and knowing something. Everyone has beliefs, and although some may be true, there may be a lack of knowledge. 3. What is the problem of free will? The problem with free will is that perhaps it is just an elaborate illusion. Perhaps the issue of freedom is used as a defense against the t
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