The Manhunts idea in the movie The War of Kids

The movie The War on Kids by Manhunt reveals the past American education trends under which schools were perceived as the source of torture, punishments and a place from where nothing of interest was thought to be attained from. In this movie, the idea of Manhunt to bring in to focus the kind of administration public schools adopted in the past few decades was based on the misuse of power and authority leading to the overreaction by school administrators and consequently an interruption of the coherence expected within the learning process. More specifically, Manhunt in his movie draws the attention of the untold suppression and down pinning of various individuals by school administration within public schools.

The Manhunts idea from the movie The war of Kids
The Manhunts idea from the movie The War of Kids is rooted on the brutality of school administrators within the American education system for the past few decades where schooling seemed to be of no interest especially under the initial levels of learning. From the movie various scenarios depict the idea of the misuse of powers and authority, as a way of instilling discipline among the learners especially during the initial levels of learning. Further, the movie expounds on the idea of rule by force under which the running of public schools in America during that time was based on the use of force to instill discipline among the learners. More so, the brutality by the police to school teachers stresses this idea of rule by force which led to the learners reacting against such inhumanity among the teachers within the lower ranks who seemed to team up with the learners (Catsoulis, 2009).

The movie further unveils the suppressive policies which were adopted within the running of public schools, leading to the lack of coherence within the running of school activities as the school system was out of touch with its stakeholders. More specifically, Manhunts main idea within the movie was to bring in to attention the massive inefficiency within the school system due to the oppressive and harsh policies adopted within the American education system in the past leading to most learners lacking interest in schooling (Kim, 1994).

The relationship between Manhunts idea and Foucaults Discipline and Punish
The problem of schooling system in America in the past can be referred to Foucaults Discipline and Punish. Perhaps, the idea of Manhunt in the movie The War on Kids has a very close link to the Foucaults ideas within the book Discipline and Punish considering the way various incidences unfold within the movie. In fact as Foucault brings out the public governance system as being brutal and malicious, the same ideas are generally carried during practice within the education system in America as the movie The War on Kids depicts. More specifically, the book Discipline and Punish portrayed the overall administration of public governance as being oppressive and as using prisons as the key institution useful in instill discipline among the people in which the movie The War on Kids reflects similar administrative policies within the school system (Santa, 2009).

In addition, the Manhunts idea of bringing in to focus the misuse of power and authority in public schools is directly linked to the Foucaults ideas in which they both bring in to attention the oppressive and harsh policies adopted in most public administrative systems. As the movie The war on Kids depict, the school systems had been turned in to prisons where the learners had no rights to express their feelings and ideas freely an instance where subsequent punishments were administered to the learners who came out to advocate for their rights. In this respect, the idea of Manhunt is closely related to the Foucaults idea on the massive powers by the public governance in torturing, punishing, disciplining and the imprisoning of people who went against the suppressing public governance policies without compromise (Foucault, 1975).

Lastly, Manhunts idea to bring out the American compulsory education system as meant to produce individuals like civil servants, the military and internal soldiers among others who would be very much submissive to the government. As it usually happens, the public governance practice pursues to developing education systems which would yield citizens who are sycophants to the public administration so as to enhance further oppression of the public in general. In this perspective, Manhunts idea goes hand in hand with the Foucaults idea of the public administration to harshly and brutally deal with those people who go against the oppressive public administrative policies so as to intimidate people to be loyal to the prevailing public administrative system (Catsoulis, 2009).

Generally, the Manhunts idea within the movie The War of Kids is based on the oppressive administrative policies which were adopted within the American compulsory education system in the past under which brutality and the misuse of power was greatly practiced in the lower levels of education. As it is revealed from the movie, various counter-reactions by school kids to advocate for their rights and liberalization from such oppressive policies within the education system were made. More specifically, the main idea from the movie is to bring in to focus the need for a liberated education system which will help enhance the free expression of feelings and ideas by scholars. This is the case as it will help make schooling more interesting thus enhancing the cultivation of special talents and skills among individuals.  

A History of Metaphysics Definition and Approach

The term metaphysics is first found in the Aristotelian treatises, which defines it as ta meta ta physica, literally meaning what comes after the physical. There is an inherent ambiguity within this definition, as it may both refer to the works of Aristotelian that come after the physical works dealing with material science, or a study that deals with things that come after the physical. There has been considerable debate over the actual meaning of this phrase, and the term that was later derived from it  metaphysical.

Buhle, in the 18th century after a close reading of Aristotles metaphysics, came to the conclusion that it is used primarily as an editorial term like appendices, cataloguing works that come after the physical.
However, most future philosophers would summarily disagree with such a definition, as there is neither proof nor rationale behind it. Parmenides of Elea undertook a study of astronomical bodies and the cosmos in the fifth century BC, and tried to explain the being of these bodies. This formulation established the meaning of the word being in Greek philosophy, which meant that which was permanent and immutable, not subject to change. This was opposed to becoming, which meant objects that are of a temporary and changeable. As such, metaphysics  the study that dealt with being, was well established within the Greek tradition even before the term was coined by the disciples of Aristotle.

Plato placed the things of immutable nature within the scope of Ideas, the permanent and unchangeable entities, of which all sensible things were mere shadows. The highest type of science, according to Plato, was the study of Ideas. Aristotle wrote in the same tradition, and believed that for every changing and mutable object, there is a permanent and immutable correspondence in the realm of the supersensible. Aristotle expanded this doctrine to state that the study of separate substances was the primary science, and in being primary it was also universal. This kind of study dealt in a focused way, with the study of the supersensible but since the supersensible contained everything, this study also included the general characteristics of everything. This made it the supreme science, because it tried to explain the highest causes behind the material, sensible world.

This location of the metaphysical in the realm of the supersensible raised many questions among subsequent philosophers. Particularly, after the Christian era there ensued a scriptural debate, as Christian philosophy considered God as the first principle and as the First Principle, which transcended the human logical approach. Reactions to the Aristotelian view also came from the Middle East, as Arabic thinker Avicenna distinguished between a study of the highest God who transcended philosophy and the study of the unity of beings in general and the supersensual level. Averros, a century later opposed this to state that metaphysics most rightly belonged to the realm of the supersensible. Among Christian thinkers, Siger of Brabant had reservations about considering God as a proper subject of this investigation, and a study of human beings as the subject of metaphysics, and God should be wholly kept out of it. However, whatever pure human reason could obtain about God was considered to be a part of metaphysics. This conception laid the foundation for the battling ground between traditional Aristotelian concept of being and Christian theology, particularly with relation to creation. According to the Christian doctrine of creation, the immutable was not only permanent, but its creation also had to be significant and contingent in some way. The discussion that followed throughout the Middle Ages became a jumble of contrasting theological views, from among which no consensus seemed possible.

Francis Bacon was the first to divide the traditional differences of metaphysics in such a way as to include only the study of common axioms and the essences of materials. The study of God, angels and other supersensual beings were relegated to the realm of Natural Theology. This division set the course for metaphysics in subsequent Western philosophy. For Descartes, for example, metaphysics included an investigation of the first principle, though the original principle was cogito and not the sensual things like Aristotle. This stream that dealt with human mind, God and the general axioms, were categorized by him as First Philosophy. Spinoza included it under the general head of ethics, and Leibniz created a separate discipline for the study and defense of the Christian God, and arguments for and against it, which he termed as theodicy. By the beginning of the eighteenth century, the subject matter of traditional metaphysics was again in a muddle, leading Christian Wolff to systematize it into four heads  ontology dealing with being in general  which meant notions about things and not things directly, general cosmlogy dealing with the sensible universe, psychology dealing with the study of the human soul, and natural theology, which would devote itself to the study and philosophical enquiry about God. We find a return to Wolffian metaphysics by neo-scholasticism who try to maintain the divisions. Their inability to fit in the Cartesian cogito within the Wolffian categories has lead to the development of a separate science devoted to it, called epistemology.

The Wolffian categories, however, faced serious criticism in the hands of Immanuel Kant, who attacked each of the categories for fallacies and stating emphatically that human thought only belongs and relates to its own sphere, and nothing outside it. Kant, moreover, relocated the term metaphysics to include scientific investigation of human thoughts, and even hinted at a practical application in his Metaphysics of Morals. Hegel, disturbed by the complete negation of metaphysics in Kant, tried to relocate it within the mainstream of philosophy in the form of a logic of the internal necessities of ideas, leading to many grandiose systems of idealistic metaphysics in the nineteenth century (Owens, 1985, p.9), most of which ended up being a futile search. It elicited strong reaction from many quarters.

Postitivists dismissed it, pragmatists laughed at the lack of rigor, logical positivists shunned it because it was not verifiable, linguistic analysts clearly expelled it from the purview of science, mathematical logic thought it to be an indulgence into a logically impossible procedure. It was summarily thought to belong more to the domain of fiction and poetry rather than philosophy. Some of its proponents wre Bergson, Collingwood and Existentialists who all tried to relocate it within mainstream philosophy in different ways.

The brief historical survey makes it clear that there has been as many ways of thinking about metaphysics as there have been schools of thought. However, what cannot be denied is that every thinking individual has a strain of thinking on a line that has been traditionally been designated as metaphysical.

Examples of Equivocity in Language
Some schools of Early Metaphysics believed in the existence of essence of all material objects existing outside them.
The fragrance of the essence filled the ball room
Fire is the cause behind smoke
It is worth dying for a cause you strongly believe in
Marcus Aurelius was a man of deep knowledge and understanding
The battling factions finally reached and understanding
Examples of Univocity in Language
Some theologians believed God to be the ultimate source and destiny of all creation
For Plato, the Ideas were the ultimate causes behind all earthly entities
All monotheist religions propound the belief in a single, omnipotent God
The very existence of God was debated by the positivist thinkers in nineteenth and twentieth century
Chivalry appears to be a thing of the past
You may or may not believe in the existence of even such a thing as an angel

Definition A definition is a passage describing the meaning of a term, which can be a word, a phrase or a set of symbols. In philosophy, definition is of extreme importance, precisely because often normal, day to day words are rendered important through special definitions that are allotted to them.

Essence  The definition of essence lies in the aspect of indestructibility, immutability and constancy. It could mean the intrinsic or indispensable properties that serve to characterize or identify something, the crucial or most important ingredient of any object, and the inherent or unchanging nature of a thing or class of things. As such, it could also mean a spiritual or incorporeal entity. In philosophy, an essence of something can be defined as something that is distinct from, and logically prior to, its existence.

Argumentation An argumentation is the presentation and elaboration of an argument or arguments. It may refer to a debate or the deductive reasoning employed in debate. In Logic, it refers to the process of reasoning methodically.

Rational Rational can be defined as having or exercising the ability to reason. This faculty must be consistent with or based on reason, or logical.

Ultimate Ultimate in philosophy has two different significations. It can be defined as the last in a series, process, or progression and can also be defined as fundamental or elemental. In general usage it can mean of the greatest possible size or significance or representing the utmost or extreme possible development or sophistication of something.

Causes Cause is the one, such as a person, event or condition that is responsible for an action or result. It is a basis for an action or response. In general usage, it can refer to a ground for legal action, a goal o principle served with dedication and zeal or the interests of a person or group engaged in a struggle.

Effects An effect is something that is brought about by a cause or an agent, the result. It also refers to a scientific law, hypothesis, or phenomenon. It can also refer to bring into existence or the production of a desired impression or that impression in general.

Knowledge Knowledge would mean the state or fact of knowing familiarity, awareness, or understanding gained through experience or study. In philosophy it would also refer to the sum or range of what has been perceived, discovered, or learned about a particular aspect of investigation.

Belief It is the mental acceptance of and conviction in the truth, actuality, or validity of something. It is accepting something as true. It refers in particular to a particular tenet or a body of tenets accepted by a person or a group of persons.

Religion Belief in and reverence for a supernatural power or powers regarded as creator and governor of the universe. It can also mean a personal and institutionalized system grounded in such belief and worship. A religion can also refer to a cause, a principle, or activity pursued with zeal or conscientious devotion.

God A being conceived as the perfect, omnipotent, omniscient originator and ruler of the universe, the principal object of faith and worship in monotheistic religions. He is a force, effect, or a manifestation or aspect of this being. He is believed to be in possession of supernatural powers, is widely believed in a widely worshipped by people, is usually a male deity and is believe to control some parts or whole of reality.

Empirical Any branch of study relying on or derived from observation or experiment. An empirical knowledge is usually verifiable, or can be proved to be probable by means of observation or experiment. An empirical knowledge usually depends on practical experience and not on theory, particularly in medicine.

Supersensible Anything beyond the perception of senses

Qualitative Procedure Classification and study from a viewpoint of sensibly observable characteristics is called Qualitative Procedure. We can example of this methodology in sciences like Botany and Zoology, where a database is created on the basis of colors, sounds, odors, tastes, temperature, hardness and other such features that are sensually verifiable, through which materials appeal to human cognition in the most immediate way.

Quantitative Procedure This is related directly with the aspect of measurement. Quantitative procedure was applied with mathematics, astronomy, harmonies and Optics.

Thing A thing refers to an entity, an idea, which can be perceived, known, or purely thought to have its own existence. As such it can be a real and concrete substance of an entity existing in time and space, or any inanimate object.

Faith A faith is a confident belief in the truth, value, or trustworthiness of a person, idea, or thing. It is a belief that does not rest on logical proof or material evidence. It can also refer to allegiance and loyalty.

Science Science is the observation, identification, description, experimental investigation, and theoretical explanation of phenomena. It can refer to any methodological activity, discipline, or study or any activity that appears to require study and method.

Understanding understanding is the quality or condition of one who understands, and can also refer to the faculty by which one understands i.e. intelligence. In normal parlance, it can refer to a reconciliation of differences and reaching a state of agreement.

Explanation it refers to the act or process of explaining, something that explains, or a clarification of disputed terms or points reaching to a reconciliation of disputing ideas.

Proximate Very near or next, as in space, time, or order. However, in philosophical discussion it can be defined as approximate.

Experience Experience is the apprehension of an object, thought, or emotion through the senses or mind. It can also refer to the knowledge or skill derived from direct and active participation in events or activities.

Wisdom The ability to discern or judge what is true, right, or lasting. It refers to insight, and often to good judgment.

Tabula Rasa The Tabula Rasa refers to a mind before it receives the impressions gained from experience, or a need or an opportunity to start from the beginning. In philosophy, it refers to the unformed, featureless mind implied by John Locke. It literally means a clean slate.

Innatism It is a philosophical doctrine that holds that the mind is born with ideas knowledge, and that is directly in opposition to the clean slate theory of John Locke and early empiricists. It asserts that not all knowledge is obtained from experience or gathered through the senses.

Terrorism and Civil Disobedience

Anybody can bear me witness that, the history of mankind has been nothing short of protests against certain acts that we perceive to be wrong or morally degrading. These protests have resulted to acts of terrorism and civil disobedience which have brought up devastating effects to innocent people. This paper will discuss hybrid law approach to terrorism and provide an understanding of civil disobedience as perceived by Martin Luther King Jr. Thereafter a focus is given to opinions and reasons as to whether terrorism and civil disobedience are morally justified. The paper will also provide the utilitarian and deontological justification of terrorism and relate either of them with Nagels argument.

The second part will discuss positive and negative eugenics and provide examples on the same as provided in the Engineering American Society article on top of highlighting the eugenics social agenda as described in the article. Towards the end of the paper we shall evaluate whether the positive and negative eugenics lead to any form of discrimination. Finally, the paper will discuss the video who should decide and provide the moral issues as depicted from the case in the video.

Terrorism is one subject that has so far not gained globally acceptable definition. This is the case because different jurisdictions have adapted different definitions on the same thus slowing down the process of acquiring a globally and legally acceptable definition of the crime. For the purpose of this paper we shall adopt the definition of terrorism as defined by the FBI. According to the FBI, terrorism refers to the unlawful use of force to coerce a government or a certain segment of the population to act in accordance to your social or political objectives. We can also choose to adopt the definition as per Poland. According to Poland, terrorism is a pre-planned mayhem which is meant to intimidate the innocent by instilling fear into them. By so doing, terrorists are able to influence their audience and fulfill their political and social motives.

Terrorism can manifest itself in different forms. They range from threats, assassinations, kidnappings, hijackings, bomb scares to cyber attacks. Terrorist attacks are of different types. They range from chemical, mechanical, radiological and biological terrorism (Stevens, 2009). Of interest in this research paper is the biological terrorism which is commonly referred to as bio-terrorism.

The term bio-terrorism is used to refer to the deliberate distribution or release of bacterias, viruses and fungi among others. The probability that a particular biological agent will be used by a terrorist depends on its availability. According to the U.S Centre for disease control and prevention Bacillus anthracis is more available than other agents and thus have a high potential of being used by terrorists. Currently, numerous bio-terrorism acts can be applied by terrorists groups and anyone with an ill-motive. They range from the use of Bacillus anthracis, Clostridium botulinum toxin, Yersinia pestis,Varola major, Francisella tularensis to Burkholderia mallei.

Gradually, we have witnessed the emergence of several groups which seek to justice terrorism. By justifying we mean an act of defining the motive of the terrorist groups. Worth noting is the utilitarian justification of terrorism. This group is of the opinion that racial and ethnic groups have a right to resort to armed struggle whenever they are denied off their equal participation in matters of political and social life. Still we have the deontological justification of terrorism. This justification is based on the Principle of Non-Combatant Immunity (PNI) prohibits the intentional killing of non-combatants. At the same time PNI prohibits counter terrorist activities aimed at killing or causing severe injuries to non-combatants. An argument presented by Nagel seems to be consistent with the utilitarian justification of terrorism. According to Nagel, terrorism is no crime as long as the objective is important enough. He goes ahead to provide example of issues that may justify terrorism. For instance Nagel cites that terrorism is justified when one wants his enemy to withdraw from his territory, be granted independence or to force an enemy to cease hostility. He however cautions that in delivery of such operations care should be taken to minimize the amount of risk that the innocent people are being exposed to.

Of late, there has been concern over how liberal democratic states should respond to the security threats posed terrorism as well as non state political violence. Some of the counter measures include use of military force or prosecution of the criminals after subsequent investigations are conducted. However, the counter measures depend on the group that the state may be dealing with and the extent of their operations. This has consequently led to the hybrid law approach. This approach seeks to prosecute terrorists on charges of murder under the domestic law. The hybrid law approach is applicable irrespective of whether it was the murder of civilians or the military personnel. However, a philosopher by the name of Luban is opposed to the hybrid law approach. According to him the hybrid law approach is based on the relationship that prevails within states, while the war model is based on the relationship that prevails between states. He goes further to assert that the hybrid law approach upholds some community values. On the other hand, he presupposes that the war model has the assumption that mankind do not live in a single community with some ethical principles to be held.

Luban goes further to produce a theoretical objection to the hybrid law approach to terrorism. He states that it is unprincipled to separate and recombine the law and the war model since it is to the interest of the Americans. Finally, Luban asserts that the war on terrorism is not clearly defined. In that, it lacks a defined point of termination. This leads him to the conclusion that the war on terrorism regardless of which model is applicable will only increase the violation of human rights (Gehring, 2003).

Since the issue of terrorism has grown to be an immense one, numerous guidelines about how to deal with the same have emerged incase one is a victim. Of interest in this research paper is the ticking time bomb scenario. The ticking time bomb story goes something like this. A bomb which is about to explode is planted in a hidden locality within an American city. In your custody you have the man responsible for the bomb who would not even say a word of the whereabouts of the bomb. Under such condition the well safeguarded ethical principles should be compromised. In that, the guy should be subjected to torture in order for him to reveal crucial information about the whereabouts of the bomb. This will definitely go a long way towards saving the innocent lives of many. However, Luban is opposed to the whole ticking bomb story. According to Luban the ticking bomb story is not to happen in the near future. In addition, Luban presumes that despite subjecting the suspect to torture it is not guaranteed that he or she may be having the information that is desired by the relevant authorities. The bottom line according to Luban is that torture should not be accepted under any circumstance.

Civil disobedience
According to Rachaels, civil disobedience refers to the refusal of an individual to abide by the law and the government orders without necessarily resorting to any form of physical violence. Generally, it is a non-violent form of resistance from disgruntled individuals. Civil disobedience differs from terrorism because terrorism is normally a violent form of protest to the government as opposed to civil disobedience which is non-violent (Rachels, 2010). He further cites this as the same view given by Martin Luther King, who saw civil disobedience is a form of protest to the government over some unjust laws. He goes further to make a distinction between the just and the unjust laws. To his understanding, an unjust law is normally not in harmony with the moral law. At the same time, an unjust law contradicts eternal and natural law and degrades human personality. On the other hand, just laws are those that are consistent with the law of God and the moral law and uplifts human personality. This leads us to the opinion part of the paper.

In my opinion, terrorism is by no measure justified. In that there is no point of claiming the innocent lives of many for the sole intention of gaining political or social recognition. I can only justify terrorism whenever dialogue between the warring groups has failed. On the other hand, civil disobedience is justified since there is no form of physical violence involved. At the same time, civil disobedience is for the interest of all since it does advocate for the scrapping of the unjust laws and the upholding of the just laws.

Part 2
Moral issues in genetic technologies
Overtime, different technologies concerned with genetics have emerged the human race. Notably, there has been the emergence of Eugenics which applies genetic principles and agricultural breeding in a bid to improve human race. Of interest in this research paper is the positive and negative eugenics. By definition positive eugenics refers to a form of eugenics which advocates for marriage and breeding between two individuals who may be considered desirable. This was evident in the article from the Engineering American Society article where Galton tries to improve the human race through selective breeding. This led to the degeneracy theory which shared the idea that the unfit in the society are products of bad environment and they are responsible for the degenerate off-springs (Micklos, 2000).

On the other hand, we have the negative Eugenics. By negative eugenics we mean the attempt to scrap off the defective germ-plasmas that may be present in the society. This involves the employment of such measures as sexual separation, sterilization, and immigration control and marriage regulation among others. Negative eugenics is depicted from the article where there was an attempt to stop any further spread of faulty genes. This came after studies revealed that over 700 petty criminals, prostitutes and paupers could trace their heredity from Margaret, the mother of criminals. The positive and the negative eugenics paved way for the eugenic social agenda.

The Eugenic social agenda was directed at improving the human race through scientific progress. A large percentage of the middle class citizens shared the opinion that human being was a defective species which was needed some form  of pruning in a bid to maintain its viability. To achieve .the American eugenicists succeeded in lobbying for eugenic social legislation. The social legislation was directed at minimizing the number of immigrants into the European Nations to prevent any further racial mixing. As if the immigration restriction was not enough the eugenicists went further to sterilize those that they viewed to be genetically unfit.

The whole issue of eugenics has brought about some moral issues. It has widened the gap between the rich and the poor. This is because the two groups cannot be allowed to freely intermingle. In my opinion, regardless of whether it is positive or negative eugenics, they both lead to discrimination. This is because the poor and the genetically undesirable cannot be freely allowed to choose their breeding partners.

Who should decide
The movie who should decide focuses on the numerous parenting issues that parents have to go through. It features on the lives of Suzie and his brother. The brother to Suzie identifies that a problem exists between them and the parents and he chooses to address them by writing a masterpiece. He writes an open letter to all the so called unappreciated and misunderstood sons and daughters. On a Saturday afternoon, a bunch of Suzie friends are going skating .Suzie had also prepared a nice lunch for her date. Trouble started when Suzies friends came to pick her up with a car. This was however not a big issue since the boys in the car were good drivers. The issue driving Suzies mum crazy was that the driver was actually a no one in the society and Suzies mum was worried of the influence that he would have on her daughter now that they were going over 25 miles from home. The mum was quite reluctant to let her daughter go despite the fact that she had attained the age of consent. Eventually, it was evident that she would not actually let her go. The question at hand is who should decide the kind of friends that your sons and daughters should interact with.

Suzies brother has issues too. His father is doing some paint works in the kitchen and he expects his son to help out. In response, the son asks whether it is acceptable that he gets a painter and he gets to pay him from his own pocket because he dislikes painting. The dad accused him of not being part of the family. The son is however inquisitive about whether he has a right to decide over what kind of work he should be involved in while in the house. He is also unsure whether the dad has a right to decide what he is to do with his life. Things even gets worse on him after he went with his girlfriend fro a movie date. This did not go down well with his father who was expecting him back in the house by 11.00 p.m. However, he feels that since he is old enough he has a right to decide when he comes back to the house. The movie date ended quite early but he deliberately chose to be late just to prove to his dad that he was old enough. When he finally got home he was treated as a public enemy since no one would dare talk to him. In summary, the movie brings out some moral issues. For instance, it brings into right that the kind of friends we interact have some influence on our lives. Finally, it depicts that we as the youth should help out in the household chores.

Kierkegaard on Life

A major thrust of Kierkegaards Concluding Unscientific Postscript is the rejection and criticism of Hegelian system. Hegel had claimed to have established a comprehensive system, and even attempted to incorporate philosophy into the realm of science. Furthermore, Hegel argued against the self and subjectivity, something that was strongly rejected by Kierkegaard. The main theme in this paper is a criticism of Hegel as advanced by Kierkegaard. It goes a step further to establish the flaws in the objections raised by Kierkegaard. The term bracketing in this paper is intended to mean the intentional act of setting aside ones preconceived ideas in order to engage in a certain undertaking.
Kierkegaard was actually reacting against Hegelian determinism and Speculative thought. For him, the possibility of real happiness can only be attained subjectively. Hegel thought it was possible to attain absolute reality, a claim that was strongly opposed by Kierkegaard. He observed that it was impossible to establish a system of living, mainly due to the subjectivity of truth that he so deeply attempts to explain.

For Hegel, reason was the only vehicle capable of taking humanity to absolutism. In this he introduces the idea of progression from levels of truth to absolute truth. Kierkegaard strongly refutes this, arguing that religious faith has a central role not only in the attainment of deeper inwardness necessary for the attainment of truth subjectively, but also as the highest form of existence possible.

However, while it seems clear that both Hegels and Kierkegaards positions have strong foundations neither is complete on its own. Each stands in need of the other for completion.

The whole of Kierkegaards criticism of Hegel is based on the premises that Hegel seems to write from outside his system. Kierkegaard raises several issues with the Hegelian system, questioning its very foundation. One of the most notable of his attacks on Hegel was regarding his emphasis on rationalism. His disagreement with Hegel was not just that it was a disagreement with any systematic approach to knowledge.  For this reason, it would be fitting to say that Concluding Unscientific Postscripts marked what can be called a turning point in philosophy. Hegel had created, or claimed to have, a comprehensive thought system purely on the basis of reason and abstraction. In this he claimed that truth is progressive, with the end as the absolute truth. God in this case, becomes this absolute truth.  Accordingly, the Hegelian view on the human persons was that each is viewed in relation to the other. Furthermore, whatever is considered mans greatest good is not his, but belongs to society. Thus, properly put, Hegels main emphasis was the whole, rather than the part. Kierkegaard strongly differed with these Hegelian views. He observed that this system was incomplete. He saw that Hegels claim that truth was in the whole was not true because it was not complete itself.  Abstraction as such requires the one involved in the process to bracket ordinary connotations of two important existential as well as metaphysical terms being and nothing. Kierkegaard asserts that suspending all assumptions, which is considered the beginning of speculative thinking, would also mean forgetting that pure being as such results from abstraction. As indicated,

Kierkegaards Critique of Hegel
The Hegelian claim of a comprehensive system prompted Kierkegaards sharp criticism.  He found great fault in the very beginning of the system. The question he poses to Hegel is that after having abstracted everything, with what can one begin Worth noting is the fact that Kierkegaard claims that the Hegelian system begins with nothing. Kierkegaard points this as a major flaw in Hegels argument. Kierkegaard notes that the reflective process is per se and in se an infinite one. This is because in order to bring a reflective process to finitude, it must involve a conscious reflection that one seeks an end, so that this process would need to stop itself. This according to Kierkegaard is impossible. On the same vein, abstraction as a process can only bring itself to finitude by abstracting itself from itself. This would have to continue ad infinitum. This argument challenges the thought of purely immediate being, on which the whole of Hegelian philosophy is hinged. Kierkegaard says that it is possible to subjectively decide to interrupt ones own thought process, in order to reflect upon a certain thing. An objection to Kierkegaard is that he largely fails to note that his so conceived subjective decision to interrupt the reflective process in view of pure being does not in any way interrupt that process. Kierkegaard did not seem to realize that even the decision itself is a reflective process. Although there is a presupposition of decision in logic, this does not prevent such an undertaking from being logical.

Another criticism of Hegelian philosophy by Kierkegaard was that in his system, the person involved in thinking is actually outside of the System. The main question here is who then is this individual who is a systematic thinker It seems that this individual is both outside of existence and in existence. It is he who is eternity and the totality of existence. This according to Hegel is God. Kierkegaard sharply criticizes him on account of assuming the role of God in that system. It is also not possible, according to Kierkegaard, to have the thinker outside the system.

Kierkegaard further points out that abstraction as understood in Hegel brings about a lot of problems, because this process is carried out sub specie eterni, meaning that it is conducted from an eternity point of view. This results in a disregard of the temporal and the concrete. As such, it simply eliminates the becoming of existence. The obvious issue here is rejecting the self and its concreteness also means rejecting truth as subjectivity.

Hegel had argued that truth was possible through science. For this reason, he had sought to reconcile philosophy with science. Kierkegaards objection was that existence itself was a system, but a system only for God. This is because conclusiveness corresponded with existence, and before a system concludes itself, it must necessarily be annulled in the eternal. Kierkegaard strongly emphasizes on man and his individual existence, a fact that leads him to subjectivity as the basis for truth. His understanding of existentialism is particularly interesting. He says that there is a relationship between knowledge and the knower. Furthermore, this knower has an essential individual existence, which means that there is a significant relationship between existence and all essential knowledge. Kierkegaard was reacting to the Hegelian claim that the whole was the most important.

As earlier mentioned, truth according to Hegel, is found not in the parts, but in the whole. Kierkegaard objects to this for the reason that any search for knowledge objectively, leads only to approximation. Here he rejects the call by Hegel to make philosophy a science and instead equates it to history. He says that just as no one can write a final history, no one can write a final philosophical system. For him, whatever is considered as knowledge is nothing but approximation.

Hegels system had asserted that everything is knowable.  However, Kierkegaard says that human existence as such, is marked by total uncertainty. As a matter of fact, his definition of truth attests to this uncertainty. He considers truth as an objective uncertainty, one that is attained only through a process of appropriation of passionate inwardness. He further argues that knowledge of the truth of personal existence is knowledge of uncertainty. He argues that whenever a question of truth is brought up in a manner that is considered objective, the direction of reflection is always towards the truth as the object related to the knower. This understanding of truth as implying a relational state of existence, rather than a set of propositions that should be believed in, is what makes it impossible for the development of a particular system of life. It is precisely this understanding that places faith higher than Hegelian reason.

 In conclusion, the claim by Hegel to have created a system has been strongly criticized. It is in the person of Kierkegaard that the most ardent criticism is found. Thinking out of a system cannot be conceived abstractly without invoking the idea of conclusiveness. Conclusiveness can only be attributable to the absolute being, and therefore, reasoning about the absolute would require that the thinker be the Absolute. This was a major flaw in Hegelian philosophy. A very noble observation by Kierkegaard is that in thinking of the pure being the thinker cannot be set apart as such from existence, meaning that the thinker is fully involved in existence, as he carries out the reflective process. However, it has been demonstrated that Kierkegaards conception of Hegelian thought is not entirely without error. The failure by Kierkegaard to recognize the fact that the decision to call to mind the idea of pure being is itself a reflective act is a remarkable thing. It seems however, that a synthesis of the philosophies of both Hegel and Kierkegaard would produce a more mature philosophy. In arguing against the Hegelian system, Kierkegaard recognizes two important aspects of truth the objective and the subjective. His explanation of these two terms brings into light the reasons for his objection to a particular philosophical system of life.

Article Critique

Critical Literature Review
Chopra, M., Galbraith, S., and Darnton-Hill, A. 2002. A Global Response to a Global Problem The Epidemic of Overnutrition, Bulletin of the World Health Organization 80, (12), 952-957.
Gostin, L.O.  2007. Law as a Tool to Facilitate Healthier Lifestyles and Prevent Obesity, Journal of American Medical Association 297, (1), 88-90.

Non-communicable diseases will soon be the leading causes of morbidity and mortality (Chopra, Galbraith, and Darnton-Hill 2002 952). This disease, which includes obesity and being overweight, should no longer be ignored, because of their harmful impacts on individual health and state medical expenses, aside from loss of productivity. Global Response to a Global Problem, by Chopra, Galbraith, and Darnton-Hill, argues for national and international mechanisms that can respond to the problems of overnutrition and undernutrition. Law as a Tool to Facilitate Healthier Lifestyles and Prevent Obesity by Gostin, on the other hand, stresses that the law can be effectively used to resolve problems of obesity and being overweight.  These articles indicate the importance of national and international binding and non-binding laws in curbing the immense appetite of many people for unhealthy foods.

Summary 1
Chopra, Galbraith, and Darnton-Hill (2002) argue that the obesogenic environment can be changed through legislation, public education, and proper marketing, under the guidance of the WHO and with the support of local governments (953). They cited national intervention programs that aimed to reduce non-communicable diseases, such as cardiovascular diseases and obesity. They argued for the importance of a global strategy as a prevention paradigm, through the leadership of the WHO. They also called for a stronger, but non-binding involvement of the state in educating the people about the impact of food ingredients on their health through clear food labeling, marketing controls for unhealthy foods, and taxing unhealthy food choices, among other policies. They stressed the magnitude of non-binding laws over binding laws, because the former are more flexible and can involve multisectoral participation, although their greatest limitation is their non-binding status. The authors conclude that the strength of organized food industries can hinder the pursuance of their recommendations and they assert that this can be resolved through collaboration and innovation from all concerned parties.

Summary 2
Gostin (2007), on the other hand, strongly argues for lawmakers to adopt a paternalistic approach in preventing and reducing obesity rates. He examines the pros and cons of each legislative measure that he discusses, namely disclosure, surveillance, regulation of food marketing to children and adults, taxation, school and workplace policies, the built environment zoning, and food prohibitions (i.e. trans fat ban). He provides a table that contains an overview of each legislative measure, definition of these measures, public health benefits, and the arguments for and against these public policies. He advocates for many of these legal interventions through stressing their function in protecting national health, especially the health and lives of children. He believes that it is the responsibility of the government to build healthier communities, where people have more opportunities to pursue an active lifestyle and have greater access to inexpensive and healthier food options.

This article is useful because it offers practical national and international measures that can prevent non-communicable diseases. On other hand, it does not discuss a more concrete and step-by-step framework for the suggestions provided. The article also comprehensively discusses prevention strategies, binding and non-binding legal arguments, and international instruments. However, there is lack of more in-depth discussion of the arguments of the authors for non-binding laws, in a way that readers would be truly convinced that they are better than binding laws. It is also hard to follow the flow of thought of the authors. There should be more specific transitions that guide their discussions and arguments.

Critique 2
This article is useful for people who want to support legislative measures for reducing obesity and other national epidemic non-communicable diseases. The arguments for and against each legal measure are explained in a simple and engaging manner. The author also uses persuasive and insightful language that supports the measures that he seem to favor more, such as taxation of unhealthy food and the built environment. The use of a table to summarize the legal interventions also helps to easily understand his main points. One weakness of the article is the absence of sector-based and additional forms of support for his personal views, wherein a survey, for instance, can show that many parents want greater school policies against unhealthy foods. These evidences should have helped strengthen the relevance and urgency of his arguments.

In conclusion, readers who want to understand the international and national measures that can prevent the increase of non-communicable diseases can use both articles for their review of literature. Chopra, Galbraith, and Darnton-Hill argue for national and international mechanisms that can respond to the problems of overnutrition and undernutrition, though not in a binding manner that Gostin supports.

Chopra, Galbraith, and Darnton-Hil explore these mechanisms adequately, although they are deficient in providing specific steps on how to achieve effective nonbinding measures. Gostin contends that legal measures can successfully lessen obesity, because evidently, the rising obesity rate shows that self-control is not enough. He shows that the government has a primary responsibility to step in and regulate the eating habits of its citizens, when national health, culture, and performance are at stake. These articles are informative and have diverse viewpoints, though they can be improved by providing particular steps and processes (existing or suggested) and other evidences that can prove that their arguments are relevant and critical to diverse stakeholders.


Socrates reads the works of Freud. After reading Civilization and Its Discontents, he embarked a journey to meet Freud personally so as to have a one-on-one dialogue with him. How would their ideas collide Who among these truth-seeking warriors will emerge unscathed from this cerebral combat In this essay let me explore this hypothetical scenario and generate a dialogue in how they wrestled with their brains to put up with their own philosophy.

When Socrates came, Freuds disciples were already gathered, excited to witness the encounter of two geniuses. Socrates was not known of giving lectures every time he engages into an intellectual battle. He used to brainstorm his opponent by throwing an avalanche of questions. Socrates startedYouve presented several interconnected ideas in your books which put religion as a form of madness, a mass delusion that is responsible of this human misery. Freud motioned Socrates to have a seat, which the latter obeyed. Religion is not the target.Freud said, while seated on his couch with a cigar in his hand.I did not point out religion as the source of the problem. It is civilization in which religion is a part. Yes, but let me ask you this question, Socrates retorted, this conflict between this so-called id and the superego (to use your jargon), what is the role of the ego in this conflict Socrates began his characteristic method of inquiry, a sort of free-wheeling philosophical cross-examination popularly known today as the Socratic Method.

The ego is the reality principle. Freud answered. The role of the ego is to give balance between the mandates of the id and the prohibitions of the superego. Freuds disciples were nodding their heads as gesture of support. Of these three structures, Socrates got his rejoinder, which is responsible for the formation of civilization There was a hush silence everyone was waiting for an answer. Freud gave his answer Civilization is formed as interplay of these three structures.  The disciples were smiling to one another so proud of their master who could easily answer the question. But one, as what youve said, Socrates bounced with a statement, makes decisions to weigh down the promptings of the two structures.  And it is

It is the ego Freud butted in, in response to the demands of the id and the inhibitions of the superego.

Feud was bombarded with a series of questions that lasted two hours then Socrates steered his question into something more direct and universal.We have gone so far, but the more questions I offer the more you bring me far from the core issue. Now let me ask this, when you formulated these ideas, these principles, all these theories youve presented what aspect of personality structure do you attribute as responsible in the formation of all these Everyone in the crowd was dumbfounded by such a question that nobody had asked before. Freud answered squarely So long as it is an intellectual activity, it is taking place in the ego in line with the accumulated sediments of civilization that is formed as the superego. The crowd made voices of applause as if someone had made three points in a basketball game. In your own case, Socrates asserted, youve mentioned all this mess and you seem to imply youve found a way out. I never offered any solutions. Freud answered. Religion offers a lot of answers to lifes purpose, and human misery persists. It is not a design in nature that man could be happy. How can there be happiness when there is a heightening of guilt The disciples were jubilant with this answer, but Freud gestured them to maintain silence.So whats the point of your therapies Socrates dropped his strongest contention as if it was his strongest card. Whats the point of your ideologies to go back to nature if you offer a morbid situation that nothing can be done to alleviate man out of this trouble Cannot anyone including your self, go beyond the stranglehold influences of this so-called civilization How By what principle were you able to assess the reality of all of these Everyone was taken aback by the question Freuds disciples began to listen seriously. Freud responded The powerful influence of culture may diminish if one is aware of its subtle manipulation.  Therefore, Socrates pushed his idea, you see it clearly that there must be something in man which is capable of going beyond, transcending the conflict of the mind and the biological urges towards something which is more significant and spiritual in nature. The capacity of learning exists in the soul already. You even mentioned in your writings that civilization distinguishes us from animals. So there is something in us which has produced civilization. All eyes and ears were now glued to Socrates. Yes, Freud replied, and that something which you have given a shroud of mystery and called a soul is actually an invention of a neurotic mind. It is this neuroticism in man which has created all these miseries including this so-called civilization. We organize ourselves into civilized society to escape suffering, only to inflict it back upon ourselves.

There was a commotion in the crowd as a sign, that disciples are now divided. Socrates Wait Lets go slowly into this. You said civilization is neurotic. But there is something in us that goes beyond our animal nature which is responsible for the creation of civilization. Is it your judgment that to go beyond our animal nature is neurotic Should we go back to our animal nature and get on with our instincts
At this juncture, Freud got irritated of Socrates disarming logic and excused himself politely, he said, he still has a patient to attend to, then left. Socrates continued in his argument ruthlessly like a raging lion which tears his victim into pieces. Freuds disciples which included Horney, Adler, Jung, Erikson, etc. were there listening and were impressed by the depth of his ideas.

Upon reading the Sermon on the Mount in the gospel of Mathew, Freud made his own comments The beatitudes (Mathew 51-12) is statement of acute rationalization, knowing the inevitability of lifes suffering, Jesus offered an escape from reality by attributing a meaning to our miseries. If we take a ride on the parable of the salt (Mathew 513), it should be noted that salt may provide taste to the food but what nutrition does it provide In fact, too much salt is damaging to the kidney. In the same way the baloney of meaning that was provided by religion is the root of misery because of mans attempt to get away from his nature. Man is light (Mathew 514-16), Man is salt these are statements to cover up human inadequacies.

Because of the inevitability of death, religion and its civilization has invented the afterlife and the promise of heaven (Mathew 520). The investment of heavenly treasures is another strategy under the theme of hope for the next life (Mathew 619-21). You are suffering today, you will be happy in the next life. You are a victim of injustice today you will be rewarded in the afterlife. Whatever tragedy that befalls you today, do not worry you will be rewarded in heaven. This is the supreme opium that man has invented in order to escape from the sting of existence. Drug addicts take drugs when they are sad drunkards drink alcohol every time they are in trouble. There is no difference between them and to a man who succumb to religious teachings to ease his pain.

It is taught that man must not bear grudges against anyone or else he will be punished in the next life (Mathew 521-26). It is human nature to get angry but religion has designed a teaching to disarm human in his own anger and to channel that anger into something socially acceptable by saying love your enemies (Mathew 544). Loving ones enemy is the most idiotic invention of religion. It is anti-human nature, and a desperate attempt to impart an image of a prosthetic god in us. Religion, because of its fear in human instincts, has invented teachings that would keep man away from his nature but what is nurtured in the process, is a perpetual conflict between his nature and the teachings. Man sees problems in almost everything he is into. If he gets angry, it becomes a problem because it is in conflict with the religious concept of love and forgiveness. Even sex becomes a problem to humans. To get sexually attracted to someone, even if that person is married, is but part of our sexual nature. We feel sexual urges and nurture sexual fantasies to fill in our longing for sexual fulfillment. This teaching on adultery (Mathew 527-28) is a reaction formation of a sexual paranoia.

You cannot serve two masters  God and mammon (Mathew 624). This teaching is irrelevant. People obviously serve for money, although in the name of God. Whos crazy to believe, after wielding much toil, and your boss will tell you Thanks for your labor God will give your pay in the next life

Do not worry about your lifeLook at the birdsyour heavenly Father feeds them. Consider the liliesGod clothes them. Seek first the kingdom of God (Mathew 625-34). These are very unrealistic analogies Man must toil in order to feed himself and survive. Our situation is different from the birds and the lilies. Wrong analogy Besides, to worry, to be anxious is hardwired into our mechanism for survival. It is part of day-to-day realities and experiences to be worried about things that disturb our security, be it in our jobs, in relationships, or our something to do with our financial necessities.

Whoever seeks, will find whoever knocks, the door will be opened whoever asks will receive (Mathew 77-8)  but what is found, what is opened, and what is received are all illusions projected onto our experiences. When a believer encounters something favorable in his life, he tends to attribute it as answer to his prayer.  The mind is tricked into believing his prayers are answered. This is where all the so called miracles sprouted.

Civilization is continually threatened with disintegration because of mans inclination to aggression. It invests great energy in restraining these instincts, and achieves this goal by installing within the individual a sort of watchdog agency. Society regulates individual aggression through the police force, but religion puts the police force inside the individual.

Philosophy of Fallacy

Newspaper articles present a wide range of arguments. After enlisting the various Pakistani links with global terror in the recent years, the article Terrorism and the economy published in the Dawn on 6.1.2010 uses as a premise the global isolation of the country and the failure of the international community to address the issues with grit and character as causes that may lie behind Pakistan becoming a hub of terrorist activities. As a strategy to come out of it, the author employs deductive argument isolation leads to escalated terrorist activities (the article implies it by stating the reverse), deduces that Pakistan is isolated, and concludes that further isolation would do it enormous damage.

An example of concluding signal word is found in the argument presented in This is the age of war among generations, author Anatole Kalestsky in a well prepared argument delving into the causes of the Greek economic crisis and the question of pensioners and retirees, clinches his second argument of reform with the help of the signal word as a result. The premise is that baby boomers are too numerous for politicians to ignore them, and older people are more likely to vote. The conclusion is that, this increasing number of pensioned retirees will hold democracies across the world hostage to their interests. The concluding signal word is as a result.

An example of introductory signal word for a premise can be seen in the article Prudential Shareholders in rebellion by Patrick Hosking. All power to their elbow, where he begins his premise with the signal word because, The rebellion was all the more remarkable because the Pru had taken the precaution of hiring many of the Square Miles most influential investment bankers as advisers, and then goes on to develop this argument.

An example of inductive argument can be seen at the conclusion of the same article. The premise states that The closure of guaranteed final-salary style pension schemes means millions of pension fund members are no longer insulated from the poor investment decisions of their agents. Reckless strategic decisions made by companies today mean smaller retirement incomes tomorrow, and then uses the specific case in its support that Last Friday, a senior executive from Standard Life stood up at HSBCs annual shareholder meeting and publicly rebuked the board for its overgenerous pay arrangements.
The seven logical fallacies include fallacy of accident, affirming the consequent, irrelevant Conclusion, denying the antecedent, begging the question, fallacy of false cause and fallacy of many questions (Tigert 241).

Scientific knowledge Moral, Social and Religious limitations

There is always value in knowledge just for the sake of acquiring knowledge. The wish to basically know and curiosity of what surrounds us, where we come from, what is there for us and what we are really made of is the major drive that makes us develop both as people and as species. Knowledge as many people would assert, feeds our inner desires whether it is material or immaterial. Most people agree that knowledge just for the sake of it have a major place in the world we live in.  Science always differs from other knowledge forms because of the content and properties that are atypical in it. Its objectives, background, methodology and concerns comprise of a unique system that possesses a typical epistemology in which dynamic, truthful, contrastable and rectifiable knowledge can be obtained. Therefore it is imperative to understand what entails scientific knowledge and whether or not it should have limitations on the grounds of morality, religious or social reasons.

Scientific work is usually a human activity that is meant to understand how exactly the world is structured and how it works. Why then do people seek scientific knowledge Science on its own cannot offer the answer. The response usually comes from comprehensive framework that is intended to define. Due to miseries that have been as a result of abuse of Science as well as its application most people feel there should be limitation on the extent of scientific knowledge.  It is often thought that scientific knowledge is attractive since its the main source of intellectual fulfillment since it also satisfies our curiosity on nature and its beauties and mysteries. The question on whether scientific knowledge is the best guide to societal life, most people acknowledge the fact that scientific knowledge is generally the only knowledge that is valid. Most philosophers like Bertrand Russell live the decision concerning this matter to the feelings and gives the moral issues a utilitarian role.

However, most people still believe that there should be limitations to scientific knowledge on the grounds that improper use of it leads to exploitation of the resources, gap widening between poor and the rich, pollution, undermining of the spiritual dimensions, mass destruction and enhancement of weapons and extinction of numerous species.

Science is usually driven by a search for what is termed as rational knowledge. Science is neither immoral nor moral and there have never been inherent morality as far as scientific knowledge is concerned. So limiting scientific knowledge on the grounds of morality is quite illogical. A scientific culture that has its drive on morality usually imposes external framework that is pre defined over its objectives and vision thus making it anti scientific. Whose morality is meant to drive science Logically, morality is applied and perceived subjectively and it is not everybody who believes in moral absolutism.
Since there are no inherent moralities to science, then any setting of boundaries on science as broad then it would have to be imposed on external science. Whose moral philosophy is applicable Kants Jesus Christs John Lockes Confucius Rousseaus Despite the fact that there is no definite outlook to morality as it is perceived by different people differently, scientists however, need to be led by professional code of ethics as well as standards that do set reasonable boundaries on the extent of application and methodology.

In order to actually justify morality of science, there are some principles that should be in place. First is the interest of the wider society, second is the interests of science and third the interests of the individuals. Though morality should be advocated, it also happens that scientific experiments and knowledge cannot be done without having to injure the rights of other people or interfering with their religious beliefs. Scientific knowledge has a major role in shaping the moral values as well as helping us in framing wise judgments. Most theists allege that if there is no religious foundation then everything else will be meaningless and there will be social chaos.

Scientific naturalists have a major belief that secular societies have developed responsible morals and reason and science have helped in solving moral dilemmas. Dramatic breakthroughs pertaining science, offers powers to human beings though they also pose some moral problems.  Should there be scientific discoveries like in vitro fertilization, making of designer babies and other known scientific discoveries Religious conservatives oppose stem cell research since they think they feel its violation of morals. Scientists on the other hand are appareled by this scientific research because they believe that the research cures lots of diseases and believe that those who are against it have ignored the welfare of people.

Most scientists have a common belief that science is autonomous and hence should be left on its own dynamics to decide on the way forward in defining scientific problems, the research that ought to be done and how the research should be conducted. The decisions should only be governed by scientific measures for example the theories that support the evidence. When the nonscientists, ethicists, policy makers, politicians, religious activists, and other groups interfere with science by regulating the research, setting the research priorities or by constraining the funding they are always seen as coming up with arbitrary research limits.  The aims and goals of science are interlinked with social, ethical and the political goals thus conducting science involves making rational judgments on how to pursue goals.

Though most people feel that they have a ground to limit the scientists in pursuing their knowledge, Thomas Hobbes an English philosopher feels that the human judgment is quite unreliable thus ought to be guided by the knowledge of science.  Most peoples judgment is usually distorted by pleasure, pain and self interests. It is only the work of science that provides reliable expertise of our future and usually overcome all the frailties of judgment. However for science to be effective it has to be influenced by other variables like economic, social, religious and cultural factors.

The major question on scientific knowledge and religious issues crops up. Most people feel that matters of religion should not limit scientific knowledge. Atheists have gone ahead to develop a critique based on religious systems and personal faith. Critics assert that religion does lack utility in the human society and believe that religion is completely irrational. They affirm that dogmatic religions are morally deficient and should not be used to limit scientific knowledge. On the other hand, most people claim that scientific knowledge is only possible through the help of God. Thus, scientific knowledge should be controlled. In the last century, it was globally held that there was a major conflict between belief and knowledge. This opinion had prevailed on advanced minds that it was a high time that belief ought to be replaced by knowledge. Any belief that does not rest on knowledge is superstition thus though there should be a limitation of science on religious grounds, it should be a rational limitation.

Though the major realms of science and religion are marked completely off from each other, nevertheless, there is existence of strong reciprocal dependencies and relationships. Though religion determines ones goal it has never learned from Science. Science is only created by those who are completely imbued with understanding and truth. Regulations ought to be there on extreme and irrational science. It is therefore rational to assert that science with no religion is usually lame and religion that does not consider science is equally blind. Conflicts always arise when religious society just insists on truthfulness of the bible. It is where conflicts between Darwin and Galileo as well as the church crops up. The major source of conflicts between religious and scientific spheres lies on God concept. It is the role of Science to come up with general rules to determine connection of events and objects in space and time.

Despite all scientific efforts, scientific knowledge can never be complete. Therefore it needs great understanding to know that there are major limits to what Science can finally offer us. An open minded and enquiring religion can be quite compatible with great Science.

For many years, the vision of science as the major pursuit of truth and goodness has been clouded as social, religious and ethical catastrophes have emerged from all directions. The ethical and social problems that are consequent upon scientific knowledge are the immense problems in the comprehension of Science. In response to problems, both outdated common sense comprehension of Science and the major scholarly science philosophy always shift their perspectives on what is basically real in the world of science. Though limitations of scientific knowledge is paramount, assessment of the quality of work that scientists do are a routine check as their work are judged basing it on the quality of the significant aspects.

Through academic period scientific knowledge has been portrayed and accepted as a good activity and productive. Recently, the image has forever tarnished and science is blamed for horrors of war, atomic bombs, abortion, environmental threats and other social evils. It is patent that science and scientific knowledge in general has declined from its pristine purity but the fact is they are helpful and an answer to most global problems.

Most philosophers believe that all the genuine problems that we have today are scientific catastrophes. Some of the controversial ethical problems in Science knowledge that make most people feel that science as a whole should be limited are cloning, genetic engineering, euthanasia, abortion, stem cell and other scientific developments that cause problems like atomic bombs. Most people assert that scientific evidence like that of Darwin is gross oversimplification and fraud. Albert Einstein asserts that, Science can only ascertain what is, but not what should be, and outside of its domain value judgments of all kinds remain necessary.  Basing it on scientific knowledge and the emergence of euthanasia, most people assert that scientific knowledge is unethical while others assert that it is not. Most people follow the utilitarian argument of happiness for all. Some religious activists says that life is sacred and is precious and for science to come up with mechanisms like euthanasia which is a slow killer or assisted suicide is completely immoral. The answers to ethical and unethical parameters is quite controversial as people have divergent views on morality and what ought to be defined as moral or immoral. How would life be without micro wave ovens, test tube babies, organ transplants, armory, iphones and CCTV

Thanks to science knowledge that we have them though sometimes they are detrimental to our health.  The major areas have been on nuclear weapons, experiments on certain animals, eugenics and the list has continued. The list of immorality and science has tremendously grown exponentially.  Reproductive biology as well as medicine has turned to be a major moral outrage. Other problematic areas are synthetic biology, nanotechnology, genomics and others.

To most scientists, moral aspects in their work are invalid. Science by its main definition is morally neutral thus any moral judgment on scientific knowledge reflects scientific illiteracy. Some of the moral reactions on science are quite irrational. But incase scientists are completely serious on tackling the bad decisions that cause harm and suffering then they should need more understanding and little condemnation. The problem in use of moral heuristics in judging science is harsh on popular perceptions of reproductive sector. For example IVF in combination of genetic testing helps in screening the embryo cells for specific gene implant. Most people view this as playing God. Most philosophers and scientists believe that scientific knowledge is the best guide in development. As scientists continue to be literate, their developments will be judged on a position of knowledge and not morality as morality is relative.

Science in itself is the pursuing of knowledge on nature. Then is pursuing knowledge immoral or religious bias Is the investigation of nature immoral It is immoral not to have the interest to pursue knowledge. Investigation of nature is equally moral. It is lucid that scientific knowledge is the answer behind most of the problems in the world but also a solution to the problems. Though, this is the case, there should be rational limitations on science on a logical perspective and not on a self interest based view. A world with no science will be void and almost pointless to live in. Science has helped in most developments though has led to emergence of problems that were initially unknown. It is therefore imperative for scientists, philosophers, critics, religious activists and the whole nation at large to work together and bring positive change. This is because, science cannot do without ethics and religion and religion also can never do without science. Therefore there should be minimal limitation based on rational reasoning of all parties concerned.

It is clear that scientific knowledge is extensive and only logical reasoning will counteract their knowledge for them to realize the effect they have on the nation. The extent to which there should be limitation will be guided on rational extent of their effects on the society. However, on a logical and rational point of view, scientific knowledge works at its best interest to help solve scientific problems on partial morality grounds. Only the right definition of morals and ethics and the right religious foundations will help in limiting scientific knowledge.

Absolutism and Constitutionalism in early modern Europe

The civilization of the early modern Europe was shaped by absolutism and constitutionalism as Europe and the larger West was struggling to come out of periods of religious wars and political disintegration. It is notable that in the 16th and 17th centuries, most of Europe experienced religious wars and revolutions. For instance France experienced wars of religion whereas England underwent the English revolution. There also existed a thirty years war in the Hoy Roman Empire which comprised of Germany and Austria. The political disintegration and religious wars were an aftermath of aristocracy versus monarchy rule. Even amidst all the disintegration, the European states needed to unite thus initiating a modern society. To attain this end, absolutism and constitutionalism were the best options available.

The rise and fall of constitutionalism and absolutism
Under the constitutionalism political system, there is no need for a written constitution. Nevertheless, this does not mean that the government is arbitrary. Instead, there are laid down rules which are supposed to be respected by the government. Also notable about constitutionalism is that the government has equal powers with its subjects who are the parliament as was the case with Britain. Despite constitutionalism being an important governance system in early modern Europe, absolutism was more popular in most European states (Halsall, para 5).

Absolutism was a different form of governance from constitutionalism in that power was bestowed to the King exclusively contrary to the equal power between the government and the parliament according to constitutionalism. This was a real change of governance from the former medieval monarchies in Europe since centralized power was now available and with it came centralized governance both in the army and the tax system. Although it is recognized that it absolute monarch enabled the establishment of state administrations as well as a strong and large armies, this political system had shortcomings in that it did not address the social welfare of the people thus it did not emerge totalitarian. Absolutism was largely endorsed by states such as France, the Holy Roman Empire and to some extent in Spain (Halsall, para 6-8).

It is important to note that having either system of governance was important at this time as exemplified by Poland which ended up as a failed state due to failure to enact either absolutism or constitutionalism. In Poland, Kings would be elected and any King had the power to sanction any law. This was politically disastrous for Poland as the central government ended up collapsing and Poland vanished from the map of Europe (Halsall, para 9). Absolutism was also attempted in Spain and it showed prospects of succeeding until Spain declined its dominance post 1600s. The absolute monarchy of Spain was led by Philip II who acted as the King then and the country enjoyed prosperity and military power. The government had a central control and governance systems were set up as a result of absolute monarchy rule (Halsall, para 10). The best example of successful absolute monarchy was France. Absolutism was the pillar to the French Revolution despite the fact that it is constitutionalism that established the Revolution.

France under King Louis XIV emerges as the best example of absolutism. As a wealthy nation and rich in culture, France was definitely a country of interest. It is to be remembered that France required a revolution considering that it faced religious wars between the Protestants and the Catholics. The wars had brought down the country as the rulers of the time (e.g. Henry VI) were lax and incompetent. A revolution was therefore necessary to establish a stable France. The rise of Louis XIV between 1643 and 1715 initiated the revolution and formed the peak of absolute monarchy (Library of Congress, para 1). Richelieus rule which extended up to 1642 influenced Louis XIV reign as a king who led an absolute monarch form of governance. Richelieu has initially abolished the nobles power and established the Kings law as the only law. The oppressive rule of Richelieu was propagated by Cardinal Mazarin and when the determined Louis XIV go into power fully in 1661, he was determined to continue with absolutism as he perceived himself to be a King. Louis XIV was egotistical but nevertheless he was able to establish a government with established bureaucracies which made his government became a form of the earliest modern governments. There were intendants in the provinces who made it possible to control the country centrally. Louis XIV became a powerful king who was able to institute a stable army which was successful in several wars (Halsall, para 13).

To deprive the nobles of their power, Louis would make sure that the nobles were in his court and they lived an expensive lifestyle. Different from Richelieu, Louis moved the cultural vitality from Versailles to Paris. He introduced new manners such opening a door and this seemed to impress many. Louis was greatly popular in Europe due to his outstanding rule. With the support of Colbert who was the finance minister, Louis was able to establish a mercantilism policy which did not put much weight on direct taxes. It is notable that the tax system was flawed in that it pardoned the nobles from paying taxes. Trade (including international trade) was however an emphasis of this governance. In as far as religion is concerned Louis XIV regarded the Church highly, and upheld the principle of Divine Right. In France the church was like a state within a state. Absolutism denied people liberty of conscience (Halsall, para 21)

In Russia, Peter the Great helped propagate the absolute monarchy governance. Peter upheld the principle of the state being superior to any individuals interests and therefore his actions were based on this argument. To stress the allegiance to the state, he required that the nobles be sworn to bear allegiance to him as the king and to the state, thus two oaths would be administered. It is considered that Peter as a Czar influenced Russia to embrace modernity through the absolutism rule. He led Russia to acknowledge and practice the Western lifestyle and welcomed improved technology from the West. As Peter died in 1725, he left Russia a powerful and larger empire, many times larger compared to France (History Doctor, para 34-35). It is important to note that neither constitutionalism nor absolutism is being practiced in current Europe. Nevertheless, both systems of governance feature in the current systems with constitutionalism having an upper hand.

In conclusion it is important to identify that absolutism and constitutionalism formed the pillar of modernization in Europe as these political systems brought to and end the era of religious war and political disintegration. Despite the fact that absolutism did not prevail for long, it benefited France through the French Revolution while Russia become more established by borrowing technology from the West. Indeed, early modern Europe required such political systems otherwise all states would have collapsed like Poland which never embraced either.

The life of Socrates and connect it with your own life

Socrates was a gifted thinker dedicated to careful reasoning that led to transformation in the entire way of approaching philosophy. He was the founder of western philosophy as he developed concepts through defense of his ideas against political enemies. His determination and intelligence in the aspect of seeking for knowledge and truth made Socrates one of the first critical philosophers. Several events occurred in the life of Socrates during the period of his trial. The trial of Socrates took a period of nine to ten hours in the peoples court at Athens. The trial began with a reading of formal charges against Socrates by herald.

The three accusers Meletus, Lycon and Anytus presented their claim within a period of three hours. The accused defended himself within three hours and the court herald asked jurors to render their decision by putting ballot disks in two marked urns. One was for guilty votes and the other was for acquittal. Each juror struggled to understand the case as the judges never gave instructions about interpretation of charges. Finally, the votes were counted and 280 jurors voted to find Socrates guilty and 220 voted for acquittal. Socrates was convicted by relatively close vote and this entered the trial to penalty phase. Socrates was accused of impiety, corruption of young and neglect of gods worshiped by the city.

Meletus accused Socrates of corrupting the youth of Athens to believe in other gods apart from God of the city state. Socrates defended by acknowledging past and present adversaries who were violent, ambitious and numerous (Atherton John, 1998). Socrates defended himself by accusing his enemies about their behavior of convincing listeners that his teachings were wrong. Through out the period of trial Socrates addressed true reason for his bad reputation.  Socrates challenged the allegations made against him and declared his accusers as people without reasonable claims. Socrates was not scared of death sentence and saw it as a blessing as his accusers were corrupting their own souls.

Socrates responded to the accusations by saying that the opinions and verdicts of his accusers will have no effect on his dead body. Participants in the trial thought putting him to death would rescue them from being exposed as ignorant. The council found Socrates guilty and sentenced him to death. Socrates proposed to dine at the expense of taxpayers but the council rejected his proposal and executed him through capital punishment. The behavior of Socrates teaches us that the accused lived a moral life without prioritization of material things and his soul was the reason for living. Socrates teachings include first, one should never fear death, material things are of no importance, the soul is very important and should be protected, and truth should be the guiding element in an individuals life.

Approaches to life in relation to the trial of Socrates
During the trial of Socrates four approaches to life arise, that offers his followers some advice. First, he argues that individuals should use modesty and humor when dealing with life. Human life is full of actions and every individual is bound to take risk of life or death. Socrates tries to show that he lived a simple life guided by truth, knowledge, justice, courageousness and religion. Second, an individual should never be afraid to ask questions relating to his or her own habits. In this aspect, Socrates tries to teach people that they should be confident and courageous to ask others about issues relating to their character, habits or way of life. An individual cannot be in a position to access him or herself perfectly as is reflected by Socrates sentiments. His behavior shows us how a person should be confident and daring to challenge accusations against him or her.

Third, an individual should be devoted to truth in all matters of life as a way of promoting peace and confronting false accusers. Socrates refused to be silenced about his philosophies even after being convicted by the jury. This strong character reflects about truth and knowledge. It is a very humble step taken by Socrates while he was defending himself about the accusations laid on him. It is difficult to cheat ones conscious and Socrates beliefs that an individual should bring moral potential of his or her soul to actualization (Griswold Charles, 1999). Fourth, it is important to use dispassionate reason and avoid being overemotional. After Socrates was convicted of death sentence, he never over reacted and was very calm when expressing his final views. This means that Socrates is a humble and focused man guided by the principle of calmness. Individuals should have the element of taking issues in a polite manner to avoid conflicts.

Application of Socrates approaches is an element observed by many individuals while others consider such measures as inappropriate. In my case, these ideas are always in mind and have made life to be quite easy. One of the major approaches I treasure most is devotion to truth. It is said that truth sets an individual free and this principle is a blessing to me as my soul is free from colony of material things. I find it easy to say the truth because it provides me with the capacity to set my soul free.

Devotion to truth is applied in many concepts of life such as when dealing with parents, employers or teachers. In the case of parents, I have developed a strong relationship with my parents because of saying the truth always. This is a blessing to me because they provide me with anything I need thus it is a way of promoting peace, harmony and stability. Socrates life teaches us a very important lesson relating to how we should face life with confidence and courage. This is because Socrates was a very courageous and influential thinker who transformed the entire way of approaching philosophy without fear.

Rene Descartes Meditations and The Matrix

Descartes Meditations on the First Philosophy is one of the most thought-provoking philosophical works during the Enlightenment in the 17th century. The Meditations centered mostly on a number of Cartesian principles such as Doubt, the Malignant Demon, the rational existence of God, and the existence of two kinds of substances res cogitans, or thinking substance, and res extensa, or physical substance. In a similar way, the 1999 Warner Brothers motion picture The Matrix gives life to the same principles on the big screen only that in here Cartesian metaphysics is fused with robotics and artificial intelligence. The Matrix is a movie where true reality is believed to be hidden from all except a few individuals and where access to the truth is controlled by an evil force, and that the movie is believed to be the exact replica of Descartes Meditations. However, the numerous parallelisms between the Meditations and The Matrix say otherwise.

The Doubt that Leads to Wisdom
One of the most striking similarities between Descartes Meditations and the movie The Matrix is the idea of doubt. At the beginning of The Matrix, Neo, the protagonist in the movie, literally wakes up to his computer telling him, Wake up Neo the Matrix has you (The Matrix). In the same way four hundred years ago, Descartes wakes up to the realization that there is nothing at all that he formerly believes to be true of which it is impossible to doubt (Descartes I).

Neos awakening is no other than the literal version of a spiritual awakening in him which somehow tells him that there could possibly be another world, which is entirely different from what he sees. This begins his journey towards the eventual discovery of the nature of the Matrix and the Real World, which are both shown to be constantly interacting with each other. Unlike Descartes however, there is not much realization to do on Neos part for he discovers the facts first-hand. Perhaps he may have gotten the idea of another world from his extreme fascination with computers and hacking. However, what is more significant is the fact that the other world that he may have perhaps once envisioned and turns out to be real is actually similar to the secret world of a computer hacker that he is living. This further proves the point that both the Matrix and the Real World are constantly interacting with each other.

In the same way, in the first book of Meditations, Descartes begins to doubt the existence of everything including God, for there is in him a deep curiosity on whether things around him do not exist otherwise than as he perceives them (Descartes I). Is everything around him, including his own physical body, nothing but the workings of his mind This doubt then develops into his theory later on that there are two types of material substances that, unlike the Matrix and the real world, are independent of each other.

The Not-so Malignant Demon
Descartes mentions in the latter part of the first book of Meditations that some malignant demon, who is at once exceedingly potent and deceitful, has employed all his artifice to deceive him (Descartes I). The reason why Descartes begins to believe in the existence of this malignant demon is simply the fact that he is in doubt. The moment of doubt in Descartes seems to be a moment of extreme discomfort and agitation and he does not believe that a sovereignly good God who is the fountain of truth is the one causing all this discomfort in him. That is why he puts the blame on this malignant demon. However, little does Descartes realize that the demon as the source of his doubt is the one who in fact leads him on to this metaphysical quest.

In The Matrix, Descartes malignant demon has an equivalent in the character of the agents, particularly Agent Smith, who seems to stand as their leader. However, while Descartes demon provokes him to doubt and consequently think, the agents in the movie, together with the police, seem to quell any form of doubt in every human member of the Matrix for perhaps they know that doubt could be the beginning of wisdom, which eventually leads to the knowledge of the Real World and consequently the destruction of the Matrix. Nevertheless, Agent Smiths statement that Human beings are a disease, a cancer of this planetand we are the cure (The Matrix) is perhaps a wake-up call that indeed the Matrix is not only real but also necessary. Moreover, Agent Smiths protection of the Matrix and the quelling of any form of rebellion do not necessarily mean that the Matrix is evil, false or manipulative. The Real World may in fact be the one which is rebellious and warlike, hence it is just proper that it should be controlled.

The Reality and Existence of Two Types of Substances and Two Worlds
The doubt caused by Descartes malignant demon eventually causes him to think of the possibility of two types of mutually exclusive substances, and consequently two worlds in general  the world that thinks, or res cogitans, and the world that is thought of, or res extensa. Nevertheless, when the philosopher himself mentions that his thought imposes no necessity on things and as he may imagine a winged horse, though there be none such (Descartes, V), he implies that the two substances are independent of each other. This is slightly different from the Matrix where both the Matrix and the Real World may at times interact as when some of the enlightened ones can slip through every now and then.

However, the question is Is true reality maliciously hidden from but a few individuals The opinions both in the movie and of Descartes are both inconclusive as to the allegation that true reality is in fact maliciously hidden.

One can see that although the movie The Matrix mentions the existence of the so-called Real World and several times throughout the entire movie has regarded the Matrix as false and manipulative, it still somehow contradicts Morpheus asking Neo rhetorically, What is real How do you define real (The Matrix). This means to say that what is real is actually undefined and that not even one person can pinpoint what is truly real, therefore Morpheus somehow contradicts himself when he tells Neo Welcome to the Real World (The Matrix)

In contrast with the seemingly inconsistent statements in The Matrix on the subject of reality, Descartes himself does not imply that there is one distinct reality for he believes in the real existence of two substances. This means that for Descartes, both the res cogitans, which may also refer to the unseen or the Real World, and the res extensa, which may refer to the one which is obvious or the Matrix, are actually both as real as they may seem. However, Descartes somehow implies that the res extensa, the corporeal world or the equivalent of the Matrix, is known with much greater distinctness than that he knows not what part of himself which is not imaginable (Descartes II), whereas the res cogitans or the cogito is more hidden and less obvious. Nevertheless, it is only the res cogitans or cogito whose existence Descartes is in fact certain about, as clearly stated in his famous Cogito ergo sum, which means, in Descartes words, that since I am the one thinking and in doubt, then I must exist.

Now, going back to the question Is true reality maliciously hidden from but a few individuals The Matrix answers a resounding Yes but with a poor defense based on the assumed falsity of the Matrix where people are actually slaves and the assumed freedom in the Real World where people live in an old ship and eat unsavory food. Descartes, on the other hand, answers Not necessarily for although he implies that the res cogitans, or the equivalent of the Real World, is less perceivable than the res extensa, or the equivalent of the Matrix, he does not imply that the former is maliciously hidden. Moreover, the fact that he can perceive the res extensa, or the Matrix, more readily may actually mean that this is in fact more real to him.

The Rebellious Struggle for Existence
The question remains now as to whether Morpheus is really teaching Neo in The Matrix how to fight and be free or just simply how to destroy the Matrix, which Morpheus and a few others unjustly consider to be false and malevolent In fact, the main reason why Morpheus summons Neo is that the former, with his colleagues, simply seek to make him destroy the Matrix, which they accuse as manipulative and evil, perhaps simply because of the fact that they have discovered another world for themselves. Morpheus defines the Matrix as the world that has been pulled over your eyes to blind you from the truththat you are a slave (The Matrix), making it sound like it is not real, and as he says Welcome to the Real World (The Matrix), one is compelled to ask him, Why What is real, Morpheus

How do you define real
What does Descartes have to say about this then in his Meditations Descartes somehow implies that a struggle for existence comes with the quest for the truth when he mentions, Let him deceive me as he may, he can never bring it about that I am nothing, so long as I shall be conscious that I am something (Descartes II). Descartes implies here that in order not to be reduced to nothingness, one should assert his existence in the realm of things by being conscious that I am something. However, unlike the theme of The Matrix, Descartes does not imply the destruction of the deceiver, and the destruction of the whole Matrix, which is what Morpheus and his colleagues thirst for. While the idea of struggle for existence in The Matrix is seemingly rebellious in nature, Descartes idea of the same thing is nothing but a personal quest to rise above the self, and this is where Neos personal quest comes in.

In fact, more than the idea of battling against the Matrix, the movie is all about Neos journey towards self-discovery. Neo is a modern Alice in Wonderland who, unlike the fairy tale character, brings back home more than just a load of experiences. In his philosophical journey, Neo learns about the Matrix, learns about removing his doubt and fear, and eventually learns how to make a choice and alter his destiny. In the movie, Neo is actually not the One, but he chooses to be the One and succeeds for a deceiver or any evil can never bring it about that he is nothing, so long as he shall be conscious that he is something, which is simply what Descartes mentions in his Meditations.

The movie The Matrix seems to be the brutal and violent version of the philosophical principles presented in Descartes Meditations. Despite the fact that both the Meditations and The Matrix consider doubt as the primary factor that eventually instills wisdom and opens up someone to another reality, the Meditations does not seek to destroy the Matrix and in fact considers it simply the other form of reality. Moreover, although Descartes condemns the deceiving and malignant demon, he does not seek its destruction, and only sees its purpose in his life, whereas Morpheus and his companions believe the agents to be the enemy. Lastly, despite the struggle with the malignant demon, Descartes puts his faith in a sovereignly good God who will somehow put everything in order, while the people who wish to destroy the Matrix seem to have put their faith in Neo and the war that they are going to wage against the Matrix. There is actually no new insight that The Matrix brings to Descartes Meditations except perhaps a version of it where a few rebellious people seem to be narrow-minded and seek to destroy what they regard as false and evil, instead of embracing it as another form of reality, just like Descartes once did. Descartes did embrace Dualism but Morpheus wanted to destroy it.