With four trays of pizza, a couple bottles of soda and some insightful and spirited conversation, the Temple University Philosophy Society was revived in a meeting last Friday in Anderson Hall Rm. 706.
As a crowd of 21 students gathered in the classroom, Dr. Paul Crowe led the meeting with a discussion titled “The Nature of Philosophical Study at the Undergraduate Level.”
Serving as an introduction to the study of philosophy, Crowe’s lecture delved into the history of philosophy, stating, “there is no textbook that can teach you all there is to know about philosophy, instead, know the history.”
After covering the timeline of philosophy from Plato and Aristotle to Martin Heidegger and Ludwig Wittgenstein, Crowe moved onto a dialogue concerning what students can do with philosophy.
“Philosophy is the most basic education you can receive,” Crowe said. “It teaches general skills that can be applied anywhere and the ability to think and manage.”
As Crowe’s lecture drew to a close, many students began an informal chat that boiled down to a simple question-and-answer session. Within this conversation, students seemed to want to know more about what sparked his interest and the potential move to graduate school after college.
In an attempt to answer the questions, Crowe told the eager listeners about how he developed an interest in philosophy.
“After reading The Plague and The Myth of Sisyphus by Albert Camus, I found myself becoming a bit of an existentialist,” he said.
The topic soon transitioned to Crowe talking about going to law school but then leaving to attend graduate school in Belgium.
“In law school, your primary concern is understanding the law and what judges say about it. In philosophy, you are freer to formulate your own arguments and ideas,” he said.
With that in mind, the true goal of TUPS is brought into focus.
“Our aim is to promote interdisciplinary dialogue on a wide range of issues,” senior political science and philosophy major Joseph Kim said.
In addition, the open forum environment will allow undergraduates, professors and graduate students to gather and share their works and experiences with one another.
In the spirit of this open forum, senior philosophy major Matthew Angle presented his essay titled “Is Strictly Material Resurrection of the Body Possible?”
Throughout his paper, Angle discussed whether material resurrection has any viable methods that could make the concept a reality. Such methods included anything from simple bodily regeneration to what he referred to as “the body-snatcher theory.”
True to the principles of an open environment, nearly every student at the meeting had something to say, whether it be a new question posed by the paper or simply constructive criticism. It’s discussions like these that the society hopes to have on a regular basis.
The main objective of TUPS is to have diverse conversations on just about any topic imaginable, but one particular attribute that makes the society shine is how it is open to any and all students.
“We’re taking the definition of philosophy very broadly and thus, encourage a broad range of majors to participate,” said Kim, who also serves as an executive board member for the group.
For more information, visit the society Web page at tuphilosophy.wordpress.com or attend one of the weekly Friday meetings in Anderson Hall Rm. 706 at 3 p.m.
Mike Revak can be reached at email@example.com.