By Diana Hsieh
Every Saturday, I post the news of the week from my primary work, Philosophy in Action, where I apply rational principles to the challenges of real life. Here's this week's update.
Upcoming Radio ShowsPhilosophy in Action Radio broadcasts live over the internet on most Sunday mornings and Wednesday evenings. Below are the episodes upcoming this week. I hope that you join us! More upcoming episodes can be found here: Episodes on Tap.
Sunday morning, 24 November 2013: Q&A on Change in Islam, Appearance, Suicide, Atheism, and More
I'll answer these four questions on the live broadcast of Philosophy in Action Radio on Sunday morning, 24 November 2013.
- Question 1: Positive Change in Islam: Can Islam change for the better? Many critics of Islam claim that the religion is inherently totalitarian, violent, and repressive – and hence, that change for the better is utterly impossible. An Islamic reformation or enlightenment will never happen, they say. Is that true? More generally, what are the limits of a religion's ties to its own scriptures?
- Question 2: Self-Esteem and Appearance: How is a person's appearance related to self-esteem? Should a rational person care much about his body – including height, weight, musculature, beauty, and so on? Is that second-handed somehow? How much effort should a person exert to make himself look the way he wants to look? Should a person's looks affect his self-esteem? Do a person's looks reveal his character or self-esteem to others?
- Question 3: Rational Suicide: When would suicide be rational? What conditions make suicide a proper choice? Are there situations other than a terminal illness or living in a dictatorship – such as the inability to achieve sufficient values to lead a happy life – that justify the act of suicide?
- Question 4: Deep-Down Atheism: How can I convince myself, deep-down, that God does not exist? I was raised Catholic, although I was never deeply religious. Now, many years later, a friend is showing me Ayn Rand's philosophy of Objectivism. I can see its benefits, but my religious upbringing still lingers in the back of my head. So part of me still thinks that God exists, even though I don't really believe that any longer. It was just engrained in me from such a young age that I can't seem to let it go. Can I change that? If so, how?
Recent PodcastsThe podcasts of last week's radio shows are now available. Check out the full collection of past radio shows in the archives, sorted by date or by topic. Be sure to subscribe to the podcast RSS feed too.
17 November 2013: Q&A on Moral Responsibility, Statism's Wreckage, Privacy in Marriage, and More
I answered these questions on Sunday's Philosophy in Action Radio:
What is the relationship between free will and moral responsibility? What are the most significant values destroyed by statism? Should I leave my inmate boyfriend? Are spouses entitled to privacy with each other?
You can listen to or download the podcast below, and visit the episode's page for more, including audio files for individual questions.
- Duration: 1:07:07
- Download: Enhanced M4A File (24.1 MB) or Standard MP3 File (23.1 MB)
- Tags: Communication, Culture, Economics, Ethics, Free Will, Government, Honesty, Independence, Marriage, Moral Judgment, Moral Luck, Relationships, Responsibility, Rights, Romance
Recent Blog PostsHere are last week's posts to Philosophy in Action's blog NoodleFood, ordered from oldest to newest. Don't miss a post: subscribe to NoodleFood's RSS Feed.
- November 17: Activism Recap
- November 18: NoodleCast #258: Moral Responsibility, Statism's Wreckage, Privacy in Marriage, and More
- November 18: Paul Hsieh PJM Column: Will Tomorrow's Medical Innovations Be There When You Need Them?
- November 19: Paul Hsieh Forbes Column: Legalize Real Health Insurance
- November 19: Depeche Mode's "Everything Counts" with Dad and Kids
- November 20: New Questions in the Queue
- November 20: The Affordable Relationship Protection Act
- November 21: Preview: Sunday Radio: Change in Islam, Appearance, Suicide, Atheism, and More
- November 22: Proof That Persistence Is Not a Virtue
- November 22: Sensory Overload in Open Offices
- November 22: Link-O-Rama