Averroës

April 11, 2011

Averroës
His full name was Abu al-Walid Muhammad ibn Ahmad ibn Muhammad ibn Rushd. Born in Cordoba, Spain, Averroës was the son a judge. He studied medicine, philosophy and Muslim law (which has both moral and legal aspects). His commentaries on Aristotle were translated into Latin and Hebrew and influenced both Hellenistic Judism and scholastic philosophy. Averroes became a judge, chief physician for the caliph of Morocco and believed that the world has no beginning and no miraculous creation. God is “prime mover” of the universe and the human soul comes from Him. Averroes emphasized both reason and revelation so much so that his opponents referred to it as “double truth.”

Augustine

April 11, 2011

Augustine (354-430)
Aurelius Augustinus. Raised in a philosophically-mixed family (his mother was a Christian, his father was not), Augustine converted to Christianity as an adult. He advocated introspective meditation, denunciation of the flesh, and the importance of self understanding. Since true knowledge comes from God, examining the world is of limited value. For Augustine, the soul is composed of memory, understanding and will. Sometimes called the first of the Christian philosophers, Augustine’s views dominated western Europe for nearly 1000 years. Augustine believed that truth comes directly from God through introspective self-examination. For Augustine, the soul is a self-contained entity with no physical dimension. It is a trinity of memory, understanding, and will.

Aristippus

April 11, 2011

Aristippus (434-356 BC) 
Although a student of Socrates in Athens, Aristippus was born in Cyrene, so his philosophy is called Cyrenaicism. The basic doctrine was pleasure is all that matters. For Aristippus and his followers, the pursuit of happiness required the immediate gratification of any and every desire. People should control their circumstances, and not allow circumstances to control them. This Cyrenaic approach allowed no thought of the consequences because knowledge is unreliable, amoral and only exists in the sensations of the moment. Although Aristippus may have argued for restraint, for many Cyrenaicism was an excuse for sexual promiscuity and physical brutality.

James Angell

April 11, 2011

Angell, James Rowland (1867-1949)
Having studied with both Dewey and James, Angell developed the laboratory at the Univerisy of Chicago into a major training program. Coming from a long line of college presidents, Angell studied with Dewey (at Michigan) and James (at Harvard). After chairing the psychology department at the University of Chicago for 25 years, Angell became the president of Yale (1921).

Ambrose

April 11, 2011

Ambrose (340-397)
Ambrose didn’t set out to be a priest. Born in what is now Germany, he studied law in Rome and began his career as a civil service. When he was appointed governor of Aemilia and Liguria in 370, he made Milan his headquarters. He was such a popular ruler that four years after he moved there, he was asked to become Milan’s bishop. Ambrose accepted the position, became baptized, and then formally joined the church.

Robert Yerkes

April 11, 2011

Yerkes, Robert Mearns (1876-1956)  Best known for his work with apes, Robert Mearns Yerkes (1876-1956) was the premier psychobiologist of his time. Prior to founding Yerkes Laboratories of Primate Biology, he taught at Harvard and the University of Minnesota. Yerkes also was responsible for testing army draftees in WWI and the creation of Army Alpha and Beta tests.

Albert Weiss

April 11, 2011

Weiss, Albert P (1879-1931)   Born in Germany but raised in America, Weiss attempted to explain behavior in terms of atoms, electrons and protons. His emphasis on physiological processes and an organism’s interaction with the environment helped establish bisocial behaviorism.

Stoics

April 11, 2011

Since the universe is orderly, good and outside of our control, the Stoics asserted that we should be content with what happens. The Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius (AD 121-180) was a stoic.

Douglad Stewart

April 11, 2011

Stewart, Douglad (1753-1828)   Like Reid, Douglad Stewart was a Scottish common sense rationalist. In 1892, Stewart wrote Elements of the Philosophy of the Human Mind which included sections on perception, memory, imagination, language and thinking. It was still used as a text at Yale in 1824.

Baruch Spinoza

April 11, 2011

Spinoza, Baruch (1632-1677)
In contrast to Descartes’ separation of God, mind and matter, Baruch (Benedict in Latin) Spinoza proposed an integrated view. Not three separate entities; three aspects of one substance. Although raised in the predominantly Christian city of Amsterdam, and contrary to the teaching of his parents who were Portuguese Jews, Spinoza was basically a pantheist (God does not exist as a separate entity but is in everything). He believed that mind and body can’t be separated because matter and soul are the same thing but viewed from different points of view. Spinoza’s double-aspectism (mind-body are two sides of the same coin) was in contrast to the dualism of Descartes and others. Dualists held that the material mind and spiritual mind were independent but had to meet somewhere. Spinoza’s monism eliminated the conflict by reducing mind and matter to the same substance.

« Previous PageNext Page »