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Hey, it’s good to have you here.
My name is Jonathon Hawkins. At 22 years old, I’ve just finished studying Philosophy at the University of Nottingham, and I’m currently navigating the world as a Freelance Writer.
I live in a small town just outside of Worcester (UK) with my family. …
I’ve always been quietly confident. I work damn hard to get the results I want and create plans to reach my goals. But until I’ve had confirmation that I’ve managed to pull them off, very few people know about them.
On the day of my driving test, I told everyone I was ill to explain my absence from work. On the morning of school results day, I told everyone I thought I’d failed; it was only after I got the result I wanted that I proudly told my friends and family.
I don’t like to count my eggs until they’ve…
Picture this. It’s 2016, and I’m in a Business Studies lesson learning about Herzberg’s Two Factor Theory of Motivation. I’m struggling to see how it would play out in the real world. How does an employer identify what motivates their employees? So I put my hand up and ask. To which my teacher responds:
“…I’m not really sure… I’ve never worked in a business.”
That’s when it dawned on me. Most of my school teachers spent their entire lives in education, with no real-life experience in their field.
“Humans are the most rational beings on Earth,” or so we think. According to the western world, the human race was once blinkered by myth and superstition. But the Ancient Greeks freed us, and the Enlightenment Period cemented rationality as a basic human trait.
But is this narrative accurate?
We like to think that we are logical beings, but that might not be true at all. According to Philosopher Justin E.H. Smith, humans are hardly ever rational, they just like to think that they are. Not just in academia, but in every aspect of life.
How do you perceive yourself? Are you ugly or beautiful? Intelligent or dumb? What are your best attributes? What can you do, and what are your limitations?
Is this account of yourself correct? Is it the same as the way others perceive you, or is it all in your head? Our self-concept plays a key role in our daily lives. It defines the choices we make, the way we perceive things, and even how we interpret the world around us.
Rewind to 1912, and the world record for the men’s 100-meter sprint was 10.6 seconds. If you had run at that pace during the 2009 world-championships, where Usain Bolt broke the record in 9.58 seconds, you wouldn’t even rank in the top 8.
The human race is constantly progressing and involving — building on the success and knowledge of the generations before us. The advancements in technology play a key role in the vast improvement in results of our predecessors.
Over the past 100 years, the average IQ has been slowly increasing. …
Social interaction is at the core of everything we do. Whether we’re heading to the pub, chatting in the office, or relying on someone when things get tough. The relationships we form influence our daily lives.
But we rarely question the reason why someone is friends with us. Do they genuinely care about us? When the going gets tough, would they be there? Or is the relationship superficial, are they using us to achieve some other end?
With most of these questions left unanswered, 4th-century Philosopher Aristotle explored what it means to have an authentic friendship in Nichomachean Ethics.
If you were emotionally immature, or intellectually irrational, would you even realize?
We rarely hold children accountable for their actions. With their lack of life experience, they struggle to recognize what they’ve done wrong. “They didn’t know any better,” we say.
Unfortunately, some people just never grow up — they're stuck acting this way long into adulthood. They fail to recognize their wrongdoings, have difficulty navigating social situations, and struggle to control their emotions.
Rewind twenty-odd years, and the news we saw was covered by well-established media outlets. Sure, what we read in newspapers wasn’t always 100% accurate. But these outlets abided by media regulation and legislation. When they deceived us, we were usually made aware of it.
But here in 2021, social media platforms have created a culture where anyone can contribute. We don’t get our information from newspapers anymore, we get it through word of mouth — and with enough agreement, we seem to accept anything. That’s why we’re so quick to believe viral news.
What constitutes “a good life?” What would need to happen for you to believe that your life was worthwhile?
Some of the world’s greatest thinkers have been grappling with this question for years:
Naturally, most of us think that happiness defines a good life. For those that commit to certain versions of Utilitarianism, happiness is the only intrinsic good — and anything else is only worthwhile in so far as it leads to it.