November 28, 2022
Should Buddhists Be Social Activists?
Buddhism is widely admired in the West for its commitments to progressive social activism. But is this really in the spirit of true Buddhism? (more...)
October 15, 2022
The Accented Philosophy Podcast
For many, quietly quitting work is the only answer to a job that is exploitative, meaningless and empty. But is quietly quitting really the best way to reclaim our lives? (more...)
July 31, 2022
Can AI write philosophy?
How Jasper AI will shake up education
I tried out Jasper AI, a computer program that generates natural language text. It turns out that it can create near-perfect output that would easily pass for a human-written undergraduate philosophy paper. (more...)
July 15, 2022
Am I irrational?
And how would I know?
People as well as large-scale events, for example the Durch Tulip Mania or the technology crash in the early 2000s, are sometimes said to be irrational. But what exactly do we mean by that? (more...)
July 1, 2022
What’s Wrong with The Passion Economy?
Adam Davidson’s “The Passion Economy”
Adam Davidson describes the “Passion Economy” in a book released in 2020. This article shows why Davidson’s proposal is not a sustainable solution to fix our current relationship with work. (more...)
June 23, 2022
When Is an AI System Sentient?
Blake Lemoine and LaMDA AI
How can we tell whether an AI program “thinks” or “feels”? In the recent debate of Blake Lemoine’s claims about LaMDA, a functionalist approach can help us understand machine consciousness and feelings. (more...)
May 21, 2022
The Ultimate Guide to Epicurus
Biography, ideas, books
A comprehensive overview of Epicurus’ philosophy of happiness. Epicurus is one of the few ancient philosophers who are more relevant today than they were in their own times. Learn all about him right here. (more...)
April 17, 2022
The Ultimate Guide to the Philosophy of Erich Fromm
Biography, ideas, books
A comprehensive overview of Erich Fromm’s philosophy of happiness. We discuss his life, his ideas and his main works, both in their historical context and how they are still relevant for us today. (more...)
March 18, 2022
Philosophy and Nuclear Weapons
In 1964, Bertrand Russell wrote that the philosopher’s duty was now to forget philosophy and to study “the probable effects of a nuclear war.” (more...)
I’m depressed and it’s all your fault!
Separating depression from sadness
Are we driving ourselves insane? And have we been doing so for over a hundred years? To understand this, we need to understand how we came to think of ourselves as depressed. (more...)
The Dialectic of Enlightenment
Horkheimer, Adorno and the Frankfurt School
The Frankfurt School is generally taken to mean a lose collection of thinkers who first congregated around the Institute for Social Research in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. (more...)
Nothing Matters. Or Does It?
What exactly do we mean when we say that “nothing matters”? More than sixty years ago, the British philosopher Richard Mervyn Hare attempted to answer this question in an early essay. (more...)
Luis de Miranda on Esprit de Corps
Luis de Miranda is the founder of the Philosophical Health movement, author of Being & Neonness (MIT Press) and Ensemblance (Edinburgh University Press). (more...)
Three Modern Hermits
Following one’s own way
We visit three very different hermits: Agafia Lykova in remote Siberia, Mauro Morandi on a Mediterranean island paradise, and Lincolnshire nun Rachel Denton. What unites them and gives their lives meaning? (more...)
Roman Yampolskiy on the dangers of AI
Dr. Roman V. Yampolskiy, professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of Louisville, speaks about the future of AI. (more...)
Wael B. Hallaq on Islamic Law and Human Rights
Wael B. Hallaq (وائل حلاق) is a leading scholar of Islamic law and Islamic intellectual history at Columbia University. In this interview, we ask his opinion on the tension between Western and Islamic conceptions of governance and human rights. (more...)
August 23: Happy Birthday, #hashtag!
Where would we be without the hashtag?
The symbol #, which we today call the hashtag, has had a profound influence on our culture, from IRC and Twitter to #MeToo. It was invented on August 23, 2007. (more...)
Luca Possati on Transhumanism
Luca M. Possati is researcher at the University of Porto, Portugal. Educated as philosopher, he has been lecturer at the Institut Catholique de Paris and associate researcher of the Fonds Ricoeur and EHESS (Ecole des hautes études en sciences sociales). (more...)
Inventing the New World
Can AIs have intellectual property?
For the first time in history, an AI called DABUS has been granted a patent in South Africa. This article analyses the metaphysics of attributing inventions to non-human agents. (more...)
The hidden influencers
In a book published in 2008, R. H. Thaler and C. R. Sunstein define nudges as “any aspect of the choice architecture that alters people’s behaviour in a predictable way.” (more...)
Agency in the Anthropocene
How much choice do you actually have?
If we are natural beings who evolved with everything else, why have we had such a hugely detrimental impact on that biosphere, which also happens to be our home? (more...)
Is Data Science Evil?
What does “Don’t Be Evil” really mean?
Computers have a long history of being associated with evilness. Machine minds without emotions suggest cruelty, unflinching execution of inhuman orders. (more...)
Luis de Miranda on Philosophical Health
Luis de Miranda lives in Sweden and is a philosophical practitioner, founder of the Philosophical Health movement. (more...)
The Uncontrollability of AI
The creation of Artificial Intelligence (AI) holds great promise, but with it also comes existential risk. (more...)
The Rhetoric of Refuge
On the wish to retreat from the world
The rhetoric or metaphor of refuge from the world has largely disappeared from religious, social and ethical debate. The contrast with the past is striking. (more...)
Living Epicurus Today
What is a 21st century Epicurean?
So has Epicurean living become so expensive today as to exclude most of us from practising it? Does one need to be rich in order to be able to afford the simple life? (more...)
Does size or shape matter most?
We’ve heard it all our lives — size matters and bigger is better. But David Velleman wants you to believe that shape can matter more! (more...)
What is Luddism?
The challenges of modern technology
Luddism is the thesis that technology must serve human life and that often the use of technologies does not make for better or happier societies. (more...)
The Accented Philosophy Podcast
In this episode, Ezechiel and Andy discuss the ethics of employing violence as a means of politics. Are we ever justified to use violent means in pursuit of political goals? (more...)
Selling Happiness, One Chump at a Time
We are not water pills. We are highly scientific magic pills based on an ancient organic recipe. (more...)
Stephanie Mills: Epicurean Simplicity
Is a simple life the key to happiness?
In her book “Epicurean Simplicity,” author and activist Stephanie Mills analyses what is wrong with our modern way of life. (more...)
The Utility Monster is... other people!
Imagine waking up every evening, putting on your happy face, walking over to your immaculately laid out recording studio and… Enthusiastically unwrapping that mysterious package someone just sent you… You have no idea what it is, no really! (more...)
Death Penalty: Right or Wrong?
The Accented Philosophy Podcast
In this episode, Ezechiel and Andy discuss the ethics of the death penalty, and particularly the question whether other countries have the right to withhold the drugs used in US executions. (more...)
Friends with benefits
If you explain to a friend that Hedonistic Egoism advocates the pursuit of one’s own pleasure, the first reaction you may get is: “so why not kill a person, steal his money and buy a new phone?” If you do get this reaction, it may be time to get a new friend. (more...)
Chimeras: Animals as hosts for human organs?
The Accented Philosophy Podcast
In this episode, Ezechiel and Andy discuss the complex ethics of growing human organs in animal hosts. Are we in danger of creating human-like animals? Could such animals claim human rights? And are we sufficiently respecting the dignity of such animal hosts? (more...)
Who Needs Cash Anyway?
The ethics of a cashless society
A cashless society seems convenient, but it has severe drawbacks, especially for the least privileged in society. (more...)
You Know You Want It
According to Psychological Hedonism, we are all just looking for fun. Psychological Hedonism is a theory about motivation. (more...)
Who Owns Space?
The Accented Philosophy Podcast
The relevant philosophy podcast with Dr Ezechiel Thibaud and Dr Andreas Matthias. Two philosophers with cute accents and their guests discuss the intricacies of modern life. Brought to you by daily-philosophy.com. Every Tuesday. Today: Who owns space? (more...)
What to Do When People Talk #$!!~#
The importance of meaningful disagreement
Can two people’s experiences and outlooks on life be so different that meaningful communication between them is impossible? Recent events suggest so. (more...)
If it feels good, does it matter whether it’s real?
Nozick asked readers to imagine a machine produced by “super-duper neuropsychologists” that could give you any experience you could think of without you realising it was all a computer simulation. He called it the Experience Machine. (more...)
The Accented Philosophy Podcast
The relevant philosophy podcast with Dr Ezechiel Thibaud and Dr Andreas Matthias. Two philosophers with cute accents and their guests discuss the intricacies of modern life. Brought to you by daily-philosophy.com. Every Tuesday. Today: Should we legalise drugs? (more...)
Is Pleasure Good?
Don’t forget your safe word
Hedonists believe that pleasure is the only thing that ultimately makes our lives go well for us and that pain is the only thing that ultimately makes our lives go badly for us. If that’s true, why are so many hedonists into BDSM? (more...)
New: The Accented Philosophy Podcast
First episode: Ethics of vaccination passports
The relevant philosophy podcast with Dr Ezechiel Thibaud and Dr Andreas Matthias. Two philosophers with cute accents and their guests discuss the intricacies of modern life. Brought to you by daily-philosophy.com. Every Tuesday. (more...)
Erich Fromm’s New Society
Can we build a better world?
Philosopher and social psychologist Erich Fromm analysed the problems of Western, capitalist societies. We look at his ideas for the perfect society. (more...)
What is Alienation?
Karl Marx on how society fails us
One of his best known concepts of Marxism is the idea of “alienation” that describes how human beings get estranged from their work. (more...)
Erich Fromm: The Art of Loving
Do we need to learn how to love?
In his book “The Art of Loving” (1956) the psychoanalyst and philosopher Erich Fromm (1900-1980) discusses how love is often wrongly perceived as the passive “falling in love.” For Fromm, love is mainly a decision to love, to become a loving person. (more...)
How Much Money Do We Need?
The long tradition of finding joy outside of consumerism
From Diogenes and Epicurus to Erich Fromm there is a long tradition suggesting that we might be happier with fewer material goods. (more...)
Who Gets the Vaccine First?
Philosopher John Rawls on justice and privilege
How should we go about distributing a scarce vaccine? Philosopher John Rawls formulated two principles of justice that we can use to guide our decisions. (more...)
Decluttering the Mind
Erich Fromm on material possessions
If we want to declutter, we must, according to Erich Fromm, first change our relationship to the world. (more...)
Can the state force us to get vaccinated?
Vaccination ethics is a surprisingly rich field of philosophical inquiry, and it covers issues from all major moral theories, reaching into world politics, poverty, the role of the state and the morality of taxation and car seat belts. (more...)
To Have Or to Be
Erich Fromm on two different ways of living one’s life
Erich Fromm distinguishes between two modes of existence. One can live one’s life in the “mode of having” or in the “mode of being”. (more...)
Erich Fromm on Our Relation to Technology
Rediscovering ancient skills in everyday life
According to Erich Fromm, modern technology is to be blamed for constant surveillance, destruction of the planet, and widespread AI-caused unemployment. (more...)
Erich Fromm: Society, Technology and Progress
The false promise of unlimited progress
According to philosopher Erich Fromm, the dream of endless technological development has led to a depletion of natural resources and the destruction of nature. (more...)
Erich Fromm: Escaping from Freedom
The attractiveness of being unfree
Erich Fromm claims that freedom itself can sometimes be the cause of fear and anxiety, forcing us to find ways to “escape from freedom.” Authoritarianism, destructiveness and automaton conformity are three ways how we try to cope with the freedom we fear. (more...)
What Exactly are Affiliate Links?
Helping the sites you love - for free!
Affiliate links are just like normal Internet links, except that inside the link is embedded a little identifying code-word that says that this link was provided by the Daily Philosophy website. (more...)
Richard Taylor on the Creative Life
Real creativity is not only in art
Richard Taylor (1919–2003) thought that it’s creativity that makes us feel happy and fulfilled. According to Taylor, a life lived without exercising one’s creativity is a wasted life. (more...)
History of Robots: From Albertus Magnus to the Blade Runner
The story of our fascination with our own image
From ancient China and the European Middle Ages, to zombies, Frankenstein’s monster and HAL 9000, our literary tradition is full of robots – sometimes helpful, sometimes threatening, and always questioning what it really means to be human. (more...)
Erich Fromm on the Psychology of Capitalism
Our world is turning us into mass products. We should resist
Erich Fromm points out that capitalism, in order to work, requires a large population of identical consumers with identical taste. (more...)
Bertrand Russell on How to Find Happiness
The Conquest of Happiness
In his book “The Conquest of Happiness”, Bertrand Russell (1872-1970) presents a theory of happiness that is broadly Aristotelian. Russell thinks that what makes us happy is an active life, directed by a deep and sustained interest in the world. (more...)
The Conquest of Unhappiness
Bertrand Russell proposes happiness as an antidote to envy. Someone who is happy will be content with what they have and will not be looking to compare themselves with others. (more...)
The Conquest of Happiness and Why It Matters Today
Bertrand Russell on how to be happy
Bertrand Russell’s book ‘The Conquest of Happiness’ (1930) attempts to analyse the conditions for happiness in our modern world, focusing on the different mindsets of the unhappy and the happy person. (more...)
Is laziness a human right?
Being lazy, far from being something good, would be, for Aristotle, a total failure of a human being and the best way for someone to make sure that they will never reach true happiness. (more...)
How to Live an Aristotelian Life
Become happy through being good
Aristotle’s theory of happiness rests on three concepts: (1) the virtues; (2) phronesis or practical wisdom; and (3) eudaimonia or flourishing. (more...)
One Year, Six Ways: A Philosophical Experiment
Daily Philosophy has an idea for this year’s resolution: live your life like a philosopher. Come along to the One Year, Six Ways project! (more...)
Human Dignity and Freedom
Why restaurant menus may be destroying humanity
Erich Fromm and Richard Taylor on the perils of capitalism. (more...)
Epicurus and Luddism
Would we be happier without technology?
Technology, at least in the way that it is deployed in capitalism contradicts the essential simplicity of the ideal Epicurean life. (more...)
Hannah Arendt on work and being human
Labour, work and action
Hannah Arendt (1906-1975) distinguishes three types of work; Labor, work, and action. (more...)
The Ethics of Organ Transplants
Can you kill one to save many?
Are we ever allowed to kill one in order to save many lives? Utilitarianism would look at the overall benefit and conclude that this might be permissible. (more...)
Which Social Media Site Is the Most Ethical?
A case for applied utilitarianism
Social media affect our society in many ways: addiction, democracy, the decline of journalism, privacy, surveillance, and effects on friendships. (more...)
Is Whistleblowing Ethical?
...and why Confucius might disagree
Whistleblowing might be wrong because it violates one’s obligations to one’s friends, relatives, co-workers or superiors. (more...)
The Ethics of Eating Meat
Four moral theories and their views
Eating small quantities of meat that was grown in a sustainable way might be morally justifiable, while large-scale animal farming is probably morally wrong. (more...)
Erich Fromm on Being Productive
Are we active, or just busy?
For Erich Fromm, true activity means to fully use one’s talents in order to grow as a person. The mere display of business is not a sign of productive work. (more...)
St Augustine on the Function and Pleasure of Sex
The real cost of pure pleasure
For St Augustine, the pleasure inherent in any activity is good as long as the activity is performed because of its intended function. (more...)
Aristotle and the Roots of Deep Ecology
Modern ecological ethics reaches back to Aristotle and his idea that the flourishing of any one thing is dependent on the flourishing of everything else. (more...)
September 23: Happy Birthday, Kublai Khan!
Xanadu, poets, pop singers, and a day devoid of significance
Did you know that singer Olivia Newton-John is the granddaughter of the famous physicist Max Born, one of the two people who claimed to have discovered the uncertainty principle in quantum mechanics? (more...)
Let’s Talk About Love
The complexities of understanding love
Love is a very complex phenomenon that encompasses sex, friendship, self-love and selflessness, as well as God’s love in many religious traditions. (more...)
Freedom is always the freedom to think otherwise
Rosa Luxemburg today
Rosa Luxemburg (1871-1919), socialist revolutionary, once said: “Freedom is always and exclusively freedom for the one who thinks differently.” (more...)
August 21: Happy Birthday, Sergey Brin!
Are we allowed to be evil now?
Today marks the birthday of Sergey Brin of Google fame and the first public presentation of William Burroughs’ calculating machine in 1888. (more...)