Hesperus is Bosphorus

A group blog by philosophers in and from Turkey

Getting Emotional?

with 4 comments

Last week’s DIE ZEIT has a huge title in its front page “Philosophen entdecken das Gefühl” (“Philosophers discover the Feeling”) with a crying Plato bust, and claims that there is a shift from  “the brain”  to  “the heart” among philosophical research. 

The article made me think further what I always wondered: is it the case that the more you are in the business of research in philosophy the less rigour you seek or whether it is because of the times we live in, the less logical rigour is being sought after in general? (The times we live in: very roughly we can say,  in one sense-“after Gödel” – where a logical system can never be good enough for itself/ or in another sense the times that the interest in eastern philosphy by masses increased)

My utmost interests have always been mathematical objects and mathematical reasoning since the times I  took the path of philosophy after studying mathematics. When I first started my research in MA, I was trying to explain numbers by logical formulations. Even my PhD thesis claimed in the beginning that we can give a purely logical explanation for numbers as Frege claimed in 1884 and similar to what  Frege admitted in 1924, I had to conclude at the end that we need something other than logic in mathematics in my PhD thesis. Now I use visual explanations, non-logical but objective communication tools (still controversial), the innate ability to form geometrical propositions (only used in cognitive tests) to explain mathematical objects and mathematical reasoning. So, either because of the Zeitgeist I changed my direction and am convinced this time for real that logic will not be enough to explain the actual mathematical reasoning and objects, or because I and many tried and failed to prove that there was a logical way to explain them which, I guess, kind of contributes to the the Zeitgeist anyway. 

I am wondering about your experiences and thoughts: If you started  with the analysis of rigorous foundations did you question this motivation later on? Do you think it’s about the years spent in this area or the times we live in that forces us to leave the defined logical rigour? Or do you think at all that there is a tendency for leaving the defined logical rigour?




Written by Ozge Ekin

September 13, 2012 at 1:30 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Tagged with , ,

4 Responses

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  1. Before I saw this writing today, I’d seen an illustration explaining what the two parts of the brain are; left is for logical business and right is for emotional stuff, as we all know so far. And I thought to myself again, such a complicated being that humans are: stuck on a transparent line between two ways of absorbing and analyzing the world.

    During my 4 years of philosophy (out of 6 years of university) education, I had some conflicts about admiring the philosophers as well as I had conflicted by myself. I guess the case was not admiring some philosophers’ thoughts but understanding how I really see the world. Usually I count myself as coldblooded, rarely crying and seeing the world as a terrain of analysis. I had even a kind of misanthropy when I was younger. It was such an interesting journey to try to ‘’decide’’ what I actually am because I was 18 in the beginning of my studies and now I’m 24. At the beginning, you might hear philosophy students saying they are materialists, Marxists, Muslims or atheists… we had even a joke when we were at the 3rd grade; saying now we have all become agnostics.

    I think it is not the zeitgeist of turning our back on to the logic. It has always been so, during human history. There should always be an open window and a pliable base. I have never had such pleasure when I was reading De Anima and trying what Aristotle says about the soul and in the end not saying such a certain thing about it; than I was reading Plato’s dialogues; more obscure and symbolic than Aristotle, but more realistic and helpful to understand my inner world in the end.

    Finally, I don’t remember who said it, but I guess it is true that the more we enlarge our perspective the more we grow away from absoluteness.

    Ilgın Deniz Akseloğlu

    September 14, 2012 at 2:18 pm

    • Beautifully said Ilgin. And interesting meta approach to De Anima.

      Ozge Ekin

      September 14, 2012 at 9:23 pm

  2. Check this out. It is fun, highly informative, and very relevant to the topic.

    Christine Lopes

    September 14, 2012 at 11:16 pm

    • This is SO good. It explains rationality and intuition in such an effective way!! Thanks for posting this Christine..

      Ozge Ekin

      September 15, 2012 at 10:30 am

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