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Publisher's Summary

In this cogent and accessible introduction to philosophy, the distinguished author of Mortal Questions and The View from Nowhere sets forth the central problems of philosophical inquiry for the beginning student. Arguing that the best way to learn about philosophy is to think about its questions directly, Thomas Nagel considers possible solutions to nine problems - knowledge of the world beyond our minds, knowledge of other minds, the mind-body problem, free will, the basis of morality, right and wrong, the nature of death, the meaning of life, and the meaning of words. Although he states his own opinions clearly, Nagel leaves these fundamental questions open, allowing students to entertain other solutions and encouraging them to think for themselves.

©1987 Thomas Nagel (P)2021 Upfront Books

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  • Michael Simpson
  • 17-02-21

Boring and naive to the point of obtuse

I haven’t finished this and probably won’t. Not because it’s hard to understand, there’s just nothing new, interesting or in anyway useful here. I understand that it may have been targeting the novice philosopher but that doesn’t excuse the glaring omissions such as the proclamations of those who claim to have realized a state that transcends waking In such cases such as the mystic poets(Rumi,Kabir,Rilke) and the Brilliant Buddhist and Advaitic Sages. Since you don’t and can’t know what is true via the mind you, as the mind, why diddle your mind at all. It’s literally a form of masturbation. The Sages say be silent. Let go of the mind and stop vomiting meaningless claptrap.