SOUTH SOLIHULL U3A PHILOSOPHY GROUP
There are two groups: one group discusses general topics in philosophy and the second looks at topics with scientific theme. The groups meet monthly, usually on the third Friday and the second Tuesday of the month respectively, starting at 10:30. You can see dates & details of the next meetings and what we have been discussing on our Philosophy Blog, or just contact Richard Batchelor. New members always welcome - most of started with no previous formal education in philosophy and you are welcome to just come and see what it's like if you might be interested. It's a good time to join: in the main group we're starting again with Ancient Greek philosophy.
We meet monthly to discuss Philosophy. We read about what questions various philosophers have addressed, the subject areas of philosophy and tools and methods. We have some set basic texts, but everyone is encouraged to explore other books or the internet and bring anything further of interest to share at the discussion. It may sound very intense and cerebral, but actually we are just looking for readily accessible ways to get hold of the best attempts to answer the questions that have been asked through the ages and still puzzle us now.
ACHIEVEMENTS TO DATE
vv.We watched and discussed a series of podcasts on Ethics by Marianne Talbot of Oxford University. Then we decided we wanted a broad if fairly shallow study of philosophy, so we chose to work through Nigel Warburton's "Little History of Philosophy". We then identified "The Philosophy Book" published by Dorling Kinnersley and read from that to take our studies into the modern and contemporary era. We moved on to "The Philosophers Toolkit" by Baggini and Fosl, and then we read and discussed various philosophical topics and gravitated through Aesthetics and the philosophy of beauty and art to Identity and Personhood. We completed a MOOC on Modernism and Postmodernism and are now looking at Indian Philosophy. A second group studied the Philosophy of Science and then discussed various science oriented topics - The Mind, Time, a scientific approach to religion, and various issues in Bio-Ethics. We revisited the basics of philosophy of science in "50 Philosophy of Science Ideas you really need to know" by Gareth Southwell, We have read and discussed Richard Dawkins' "The Selfish Gene". We've completed an on-line course on "The Morality of Politics". We've worked through a book on the Philosophy of Maths. We have now gone back to the beginning and are studying Ancient Greek Philosophy. we've studied Plato and the Pre-Socratics and now we are looking at Aristotle. In the Science oriented group We've read Carlo Rovelli's "The Order of Time" and are discussing this year's Reith lectures on AI before moving on to Bioethics
As Alan Turing said:
“Once the machine thinking method had started, it would not take long to outstrip our feeble powers. At some stage therefore we should have to expect the machines to take control.”
“Success would be the biggest event in human history and perhaps the last event in human history.”
Summary Reports of our meetings and dates for our forthcoming meetings can be found on our Philosophy Blog page