Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Philosophy

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Errors in the Public Philosophy Article[edit]

The article on Public Philosophy has been revised at some point and now contains errors. Firstly, it confuses the definition of "public philosophy" under which it is philosophy that is undertaken in a public venue with the position that the public should be only be educated by philosophers and not interacted with. Secondly, it confuses the definition of "public philosophy" under which it means philosophy that addresses issues of public importance with the view that the public must be interacted with. So, for instance, the project undertaken by Essays in Philosophy special issue on public philosophy (Vol 15, issue 1, 2014) is completely misrepresented. The fact that the issue was organized under the first definition, under which "public philosophy" is philosophy in a public venue, is taken as indicating that the authors are committing themselves to the view that public philosophy should "merely" aim to educate the public. Yet not one of the authors in the issue commit themselves to this position. Indeed, a philosopher can only interact with the public in a public venue.

Condition (philosophy)[edit]

Hey all! I recently stumbled upon Condition (philosophy) while looking through articles tagged as needing sections. The article feels like a personal essay, but this certainly isn't a topic I'm familiar with. If the article looks fixable, some cleanup would be much appreciated. If not, perhaps we could propose it for deletion. Any thoughts are much appreciated. Thanks! Happy editing! Ajpolino (talk) 19:36, 17 March 2017 (UTC)

Proposed article for deletion via WP:PROD. As always, feel free to object by removing the template. Happy editing! Ajpolino (talk) 01:09, 20 March 2017 (UTC)
Moved to WP:AfD. Discussion is here. Comments are most welcome. Ajpolino (talk) 04:49, 16 May 2017 (UTC)


FYI. I changed Logicians from this to this. I hope everyone agrees this was a needed change. I do not know much about the formatting and requirements of disambugation pages, so if I did something wrong, please let me know... --David Tornheim (talk) 17:20, 24 March 2017 (UTC)

Looks like a good start, but I'm not sure it's finished. Normally, we like to see the redirect for plurals point to the singular, but since Logician itself is a redirect to Logic, that approach might be problematical here. Perhaps raise the issue at Wikipedia Talk:WikiProject Disambiguation? — jmcgnh(talk) (contribs) 22:05, 24 March 2017 (UTC)
I don't like this solution as it stands. It's counterintuitive for logician and logicians to take you to different pages, and the latter is currently too much about the word "logicians" (Wikipedia is not a dictionary).
I would propose:
  • For now, both logician and logicians should be redirects to list of logicians. Then put a hatnote at the top for the Chinese philosophical school.
  • That's a stopgap; someone should write an actual logician article about the profession. Then logicians should redirect to that article, which should have a hatnote for the philosophical school. --Trovatore (talk) 01:55, 25 March 2017 (UTC)
I pretty much agree with both of you here and especially like the idea of an article dedicated to logician(s). I'm sure you both agree that the way it was when I found it (this) was a bit shocking. Even more bizarre is it had been that redirect for 10 years with no dispute! I didn't know just how justified that redirect was, so I made it so it was not completely lost until a long-term decision could be made. I'm glad we are pretty much on the same page. Can we cut and paste this discussion to the talk page of the article? I think it should be moved all at once, but I am afraid to do that without your permission. I opened a section at the article talk page here: Talk:Logicians#Changes.
Also, I think that if we are all in agreement we can make some of the changes you guys proposed without having to go to Wikipedia Talk:WikiProject Disambiguation. But if either of you want to post there, please feel free. My only real concern is how justified the original redirect was and whether it truly needs to be preserved, that might be worth asking at that page.
Wow. The School of Names had 1,820 views in the last 30 days [1]. Based on that, I am thinking maybe we should go to Wikipedia Talk:WikiProject Disambiguation after all. --David Tornheim (talk) 03:43, 25 March 2017 (UTC)
Well, the question is, would the searches/links specifically by way of logicians be comparable to people looking for an article on the profession. I can't say for sure no, but I really doubt it. I think searches for and links to the search term "logicians" are overwhelmingly going to be for the profession, and searches for the philosophical school can be handled via a hatnote, per WP:PRIMARYTOPIC. (Note by the way that 1820 views is not really a lot — for comparison logic had 76K, though of course that doesn't mean that "logician" would.) --Trovatore (talk) 04:15, 25 March 2017 (UTC)

RFC on an AFD: this philosophy publication doesn't explicitly say that if it's peer reviewed or not[edit]

Down at the bottom - see comments by me. Requesting someone with good experience with philosophy journals to weigh in. K.Bog 23:49, 26 March 2017 (UTC)

Please note - to avoid any impression of forum shopping or canvassing, please comment here and not at the Articles for Deletion discussion. Exemplo347 (talk) 23:58, 26 March 2017 (UTC)
Regardless of one's point of view, this is indisputably the proper place to request comment for this topic. I don't think I'm falling afoul of any of the four criteria for canvassing. So I don't think comments would be inappropriate in the AFD. K.Bog 00:06, 27 March 2017 (UTC)
Ah, so this IS an attempt to solicit comments for the AfD? Exemplo347 (talk) 00:37, 27 March 2017 (UTC)
It's an attempt to solicit comments on the issue we discussed in your AFD proposal, for the purpose of resolving that discussion. I'm not sure how it could be any more transparent. K.Bog 00:41, 27 March 2017 (UTC)
Are you asking people to comment here, or at the Article for Deletion discussion? Exemplo347 (talk) 00:52, 27 March 2017 (UTC)
I am ambivalent. K.Bog 00:54, 27 March 2017 (UTC)
  • I'm not an expert in philosophy, but I dod know about academic journals. The question is whether it is considered a serious professional-level academic journal, not whether it is technically peer-reviewed; many journals in some fields of the humanities still have the older custom of being selected by a reliable editor. (Until recent years, neither Nature nor Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences was peer-reviewed in the usual sense; Albert Einstein refused to publish in any journal that was going to review his manuscripts.) What is relevant is the following:
1. Neither Columbia , Princeton, Yale, Harvard, UCLA, nor Berkeley have a cataloged copy of the journal (even though it is available free on the internet, they have apparently not decided to catalog it). Many other excellent universities do (Chicago, Duke, Indiana, Ohio State for example), but clearly it is not regarded as essential to a graduate philosophy program.
2. the publisher, Pacific University, is not a major research university.
3 The authors are typically philosophy faculty ay smaller universities, not senior faculty from the most famous departments,
4 The articles are written in a very slightly less formal and technical style than the usual academic philosophy journal.
1. It is indexed in the major index in the field, Philosopher's Index, and would therefore probably qualify as notable by the standards used at WP.
2. It is composed of a sequence of special issues on different topics and schools of thought. Typically such special issues are selected by the issue editor, who has the primary responsibility.
3 There is no reason to think this is primarily or in significant part a student journal, with editing and articles by undergraduate ofr graduate students.
4. The Board of advisors is very distinguished, but that is not necessarily meaningful DGG ( talk ) 01:29, 2 April 2017 (UTC)

RfC on the WP:ANDOR guideline[edit]

Hi, all. Opinions are needed on the following: Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style#RfC: Should the WP:ANDOR guideline be softened to begin with "Avoid unless" wording or similar?. A WP:Permalink for it is here. Flyer22 Reborn (talk) 23:00, 17 April 2017 (UTC)

Critical thinking category[edit]

‎Marcocapelle has been removing Category:Critical thinking from a range of articles that are virtually a catalog of tools often considered essential parts of the critical thinking toolkit, Occam's razor and Analysis being two recent examples. I've complained before about the state of the Critical thinking article and Marcocapelle is correct that these articles did not mention "critical thinking" by name.

I'm afraid I don't put much stock in the category system because the criteria for inclusion seem somewhat murky to me except when the categories are used for driving worklists. Would the correct action be to add a mention of the role these topics have in the general art of rationality or critical thinking and then re-add the category? And thank Marcocapelle for pointing out the omission? — jmcgnh(talk) (contribs) 21:02, 27 April 2017 (UTC)

@Jmcgnh and Marcocapelle: Ideally for any category someone can find a published list somewhere to use as a source. This is challenging for me, because I am not sure whether "analysis" or "Occam's razor" should be called critical thinking. I am not familiar enough with the subject matter to say, so I would depend on a source. What might be cited? Blue Rasberry (talk) 21:55, 27 April 2017 (UTC)
    • To be more precise, per WP:CATDEF, sources on e.g. the topic Analysis should consistently indicate that this topic Analysis belongs to Critical thinking. So this is not about sources on Critical thinking but the other way around. Marcocapelle (talk) 07:08, 28 April 2017 (UTC)

@MjolnirPants: can you take a look at this discussion and the Critical Thinking article? I'm not all that impressed with that article, and I am curious if you have a similar take. Looking at the article will help address the questions regarding the categories that should apply to critical thinking. --David Tornheim (talk) 09:55, 11 May 2017 (UTC)

Having glanced over the article, it looks okay, but not particularly good. Logic and rationality seems to be desperately in need of sources, some of which I can scare up. Many of those sources can also be used at Critical thinking. I know for a fact that there are academic works on critical thinking, so I'm a little surprised at the relative sparsity of sources. All that being said, every single aspect of logic is, at least tangentially connected to critical thinking because critical thinking is, in a nutshell, the habit of relying on logic effectively. So I strongly disagree with removing the category from logic-oriented articles such as these without a better rationale. I've watchlisted this page and the pages I've linked to. I'll start poking at them as I can. ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPants Tell me all about it. 01:57, 12 May 2017 (UTC)
@MjolnirPants: Thanks. I thought you would know what to do! --David Tornheim (talk) 14:14, 14 May 2017 (UTC)

Mathematical universe hypothesis[edit]

Edit war here about a writer who may be a crackpot; someone with subject expertise please take a look? —swpbT 17:07, 5 May 2017 (UTC)

Said editor (Dchmelik) is promoting Mike Hockney's fringe theories (Hockney is the author of The Armageddon Conspiracy). This editor is clearly conducting original research here on Wikipedia and most of his edits should be reverted per WP:NOR, WP:SYNTH, WP:RS and WP:FRINGE. --Omnipaedista (talk) 19:58, 9 May 2017 (UTC)
Swpb is apparently not even a WikiProject Philosophy member, but hoping to get people to push his anti-philosophical view. What I wrote is not original research, but cited, and is not fringe, but groundbreaking academic material. The fact that Hockney wrote The Armageddon Conspiracy novel has nothing to do with his non-fiction. Is rude sophistry of the ad hominem fallacy, rather than reading the material, the best you can both do?!--dchmelik (t|c) 09:03, 10 May 2017 (UTC)
Reminds me of the discussion about mathematicism. I haven't looked carefully, but from looking at the first two references, they do not appear to be independent secondary sources. Can any of it be merged to mathematicism? I do find these Platonic ontologies interesting, even if they usually have serious problems. It's amusing how scientists (who think their knowledge of the scientific method some how makes them experts on epistemology, which they frequently know little about) try to reinvent the wheel with stuff like in What the Bleep Do We Know!? rather than spend some time studying philosophy and not waste our time with crack pot theories that have already been considered long ago without such naivete and superficiality. --David Tornheim (talk) 09:39, 10 May 2017 (UTC)
I just reverted Dchmelik's last edits ([2], [3]). @Dchmelik: Could you please provide independent secondary sources? The burden (see WP:BURDEN) to prove the notability and academic relevance of Mike Hockney's work is on you. --Omnipaedista (talk) 11:07, 10 May 2017 (UTC)
They're secondary sources on Tegmark and on MUHs. As David Tornheim pointed out, actually the MUH article doesn't even start with secondary sources. You're just worsening that problem--dchmelik (t|c) 11:08, 10 May 2017 (UTC)
First of all, please stop restoring your version until this discussion is over. Your edits have been questioned by more than two editors so you are going against consensus. Furthermore, the burden to prove the academic relevance of your sources is still on you. Tegmark's work has been published by Random House and Annals of Physics. Hockney's (a self-professed member of the Illuminati! (see here)) The God Game is self-published (official publisher is "Hyperreality Books"; no further details about it are known). --Omnipaedista (talk) 11:17, 10 May 2017 (UTC)
Is unknowing sophistry of the argument from authority fallacy, rather than reading the material, the best you can do?! Many intellectuals (philosophers, scientists, mathematicians) over millennia didn't have a degree (though Hockney apparently has at least an Masters in Communication) or (famous) publisher, but that didn't stop them from writing some world-changing ideas, that are all over Wikipedia. He says he's a member of the Pythagorean (also Leibnizian) Illuminati (philosophers of Platonic enlightement, as in Plato's Republic,) which aren't in that article, but as such, they are of interest in contemporary Neopythagoreanism & Neoplatonism (and modern German Idealism, such as Leibnizianism, that continued Classical Greek ideas.)--dchmelik (t|c) 11:47, 10 May 2017 (UTC)
Our personal views are irrelevant. This is an encyclopedia; we are supposed to provide detailed citations to reliable sources. The whole sophistry-talk is an obvious red herring. --Omnipaedista (talk) 12:26, 10 May 2017 (UTC)
A source's material or accuracy, not perceived authority, makes it reliable. As for red herring, not really, as this isn't a formal debate. Formal reasoning fallacies apply in any case, but ones that apply to formal debates only apply to those.--dchmelik (t|c) 12:35, 10 May 2017 (UTC)

(outdent) Mike Hockney, The God Game, Hyperreality Books (actually Lulu Press, an online print-on-demand, self-publishing and distribution platform, according to Google Books), 2013. chapter 1 (The Illuminati): "This is one of a series of books outlining the cosmology, philosophy, politics and religion of the ancient and controversial secret society known as the Illuminati, of which the Greek polymath Pythagoras was the first official Grand Master. The society exists to this day and the author is a senior member, working under the pseudonym of "Mike Hockney"."

Dchmelik's edits (insertion of citations to Hockney's work): [4] and [5]. --Omnipaedista (talk) 12:42, 10 May 2017 (UTC)

If you mean Hyperreality Books is Lulu Press, no, they are separate. Lulu Press publishes thousands of separate people's books, and Hyperreality Books published (no longer publishes) ebooks on, Lulu Press,, Google Books, iTunes, and maybe others. Now that you've quoted that, one can see why some science article editors may not read to the actual science/math material in the ebooks (despite Pythagoras or his teacher Thales being two of various people called 'the first scientist') but I'm sure you've made these Neopythagoreans more interesting to people at this WikiProject who edit articles on such schools of thought.--dchmelik (t|c) 12:53, 10 May 2017 (UTC)
See also [6] and [7]. In my view, these threads should be deleted per WP:FORUM: "material unsuitable for talk pages may be subject to removal per the talk page guidelines". Those threads are not about improving Wikipedia but an invitation to original synthesis/original research. --Omnipaedista (talk) 14:10, 10 May 2017 (UTC)
That's not true; you're misreading/misrepresenting what I said. Swpb (who edits the article) said ‘WP:BRD: bring concerns to talk, w/sources,’ so I did that (only summarazing/paraphrasing and stating why ideas are relevant... in addition, academics have publicly, later, used Hockney's term 'philosophical mathematics' the same way as he does, with MUHs either based on his or using some same ideas, cited now on the talk page.) On your first link just above (actually to a different article's talk page!) I just asked if people knew about some other material relevant to the topic, describing what I may have read or thought. If they cite sources for that, of course, they can't use what I thought unless some reliable source says the same thing. Anyway, I clarified that comment now.--dchmelik (t|c) 01:44, 11 May 2017 (UTC)
Who says that Tim Maudlin took the term 'philosophical mathematics' from Hockney? You keep inserting original research to Wikipedia articles which is unacceptable. --Omnipaedista (talk) 14:53, 13 May 2017 (UTC)
That's a different article, and I didn't say that, though they are using the term the same way and Hockney should be credited as the originator of the contemporary term and one relevant theory.--dchmelik (t|c) 00:37, 14 May 2017 (UTC)

Citation overkill proposal at WP:Citation overkill talk page[edit]

Opinions are needed on the following: Wikipedia talk:Citation overkill#Citations. A permalink for it is here. Flyer22 Reborn (talk) 07:00, 9 May 2017 (UTC)

Graham's number[edit]

There is a discussion on the talk-page concerning whether the current first sentence (including its footnote) is correct, encyclopedic, and appropriately supported by citation. More voices would be welcome. --David Tornheim (talk) 08:55, 11 May 2017 (UTC)

Three Upbuilding Discourses, 1843[edit]

Anyone on this project care to check this one out? It all seems very odd, but perhaps a Kierkegaard expert will understand it. Philafrenzy (talk) 19:16, 20 May 2017 (UTC)


Massive edits by IP turned the article, especially the lead, to be about Synergetics. Could use anther pair of eyes. El_C 08:29, 24 May 2017 (UTC)