Posts Tagged ‘Philosophy’

THE CONCEPT OF FORCE IN THE PHILOSOPHY OF PLACIDE TEMPELS: A CRITIQUE

April 10, 2017

Author: Ogbo Ignatius N.E
Department: Philosophy
Affiliation: Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka

The history of African Philosophy has been plagued with plethora of problems. Most of these problems came about as a result of the wrong impressions the western philosophers have about Africa and her philosophy. Among other things, they argued that African philosophy lacks depth, rationality, originality, coherency and that African philosophy is not true philosophy but ethnophilosophy. Amidst these problems, a Belgian Missionary, Placide Tempels who came to East Africa came up with his work “Bantu Philosophy”. In this work, he tried to show that Africa truly have their own philosophy. In an attempt to buttressing this fact he popularized the Bantu’s concept of force. He believed that this concept of force underlies the worldview not only of the Bantus but also of Africa. The problem here is that he tried to portray the Bantu concept of force as the overall belief of the whole of Africa. Again his contention anchors on a strict and narrow sense of philosophy which distances philosophy from being a collective enterprise. His position again does not in any way define Africa’s idea of being holistically. Moreover, his idea of Bantu philosophy is ethnophilosophy, a cultural display which has no solid foundation. Based on all these problems and findings we shall use the method of critical analysis to show that Placide Tempels did not approach the issue of African philosophy holistically viz-a-viz Bantu philosophy. This is absurd and not true in the African sense.

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GOD, CREATIVITY AND PROCESS: A CRITICAL EVALUATION OF THE PHILOSOPHY OF WHITEHEAD

April 6, 2017

Author: Ekemezie Ikechukwu B.
Department: Philosophy
Affiliation: Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka

Primordially, the concepts of God, creativity and process have been a subject of philosophical debate for ages. Deists and atheists alike are enmeshed in arguments and counter arguments concerning the proper conceptualization of the nature of God. Is God material or immaterial? If God is spiritual or otherwise, how does He relate to the cosmos? Is God part of nature or distinct from nature? How do we objectively conceptualize God as God? What is the relationship between the concept of God and the concepts of creativity and process? Is the concept of God subordinated to the concept of creativity in the ongoing process of reality? Alfred North Whitehead ushered in a revolution in philosophy when he used the concept of organism to replace the traditional concept of substance. In his magnum opus, Process and Reality, he sought to answer the question of the concept of God by proposing that God is part of the organic system of the universe. God in his contention is the supreme actual entity, and He perfectly exhibits all the functions of an actual entity. Furthermore, Whitehead reasoned that metaphysical coherence cannot be actualized by seeing God as an exception to the rules. On the contrary, God is the chief exemplification of the metaphysical principles by which all things are to be explained. Whitehead’s creativity is the basic principle and activity of self-creation generic to all individual actual entities. The self creative process by which an actual entity realizes its subjective aim includes unifying its many prehensions of the past and adding to them something new which is the entity’s own creative contribution to the cosmic process. In all these he argued that, the universe is characterized by process and change and therefore, the flux of things is the one ultimate generalization around which we must weave our philosophical system. This study critically evaluated the concepts of God, creativity and process in Whitehead’s Philosophy. It also consistently employed the analytic method of philosophy to unravel the tenability or otherwise of Whitehead’s proposition. This dissertation boldly disapproves the Whiteheadian notion, that, God has a dual nature and deduces that Whitehead’s concepts of God, creativity and process are laden with equivocation, inconsistency and ambiguity.

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A CRITICAL ANALYSIS OF SPACE AND TIME IN THE PHILOSOPHY OF ALBERT EINSTEIN

April 6, 2017

Author: Igwe Ugochukwu Dominic
Department: Philosophy
Affiliation: Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka

A critical analysis of space and time in the philosophy of Albert Einstein is our concern here. To achieve this, our thesis adopts the method of analysis. In a nutshell, the word ‘analysis’ which in other words implies ‘philosophical analysis’ is a general term for techniques typically used by philosophers in the analytic tradition that involve ‘breaking down’- that is, analyzing – philosophical concepts. To analyze here means to separate into constituent components or elements, i.e., to determine the essential features or characteristics that define the phenomena or concepts in question. Analysis is then a critical and reductive process. It is reductive in the sense that it reduces phenomena or concepts to their most basic components; and critical, in the sense that the process is rigorous, systematic and rational. ‘Critical’ here also suggests that analysis tries, in some sense, to discover the truth about the phenomena or concept in question. In short, the principal focus in philosophical analysis is on ideas and concepts. And this is exactly our methodology in this work. With this methodology, we shall finally arrive at the stunning conclusion that Einstein’s theory of space and time, far from its beauty and revolutionary grandeur, also stands at the grid point of both relativism and verificationist epistemology, which both brutally overturn the tables of our basic metaphysical and epistemological convictions.

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THE IDEA OF DEVELOPMENT IN THE PHILOSOPHY OF KWASI WIREDU: A PHILOSOPHICAL APPRAISAL

March 28, 2017

Author: Atueyi Afam Paschal
Department: Philosophy
Affiliation: Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka

Africa is regarded as a continent of third world countries: an identity which effectively designates her as an under-developed part of the world; and rightly so. After several decades of colonialism, ‘self-rule, imperialism and neocolonialism, Africa is still immersed in confusion as regards her future. There is hunger, poverty and immense suffering. In some parts of Africa, the situation has so degenerated that the fundamental needs and rights of human life have become far-fetched. Therefore, Africa needs direction on the best way to develop so as to surmount her numerous challenges. On the question of whether philosophy has a direct impact on development, Wiredu answers in the affirmative. This is why in his work “Philosophy and an Africa Culture”, he argues that development will be attained through rational methods that have penetrated thought habits. If this is true in other parts of the world he holds, it is also true in Africa, since logic, which according to him is the focal point of rational thinking, is the same for all parts of the world. With analytical method, this work philosophically appraises Wiredu’s thought on development in search of the panacea to this existent problem. This work discovers that development in Africa must be an index of rationality. Therefore, irrationality in whatever form will only delay Africa’s march to self-realization and sustenance. Nevertheless, all philosophical reflections promoting illogicality as Africa’s logic do a great disservice to the African continent.

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MAHATMA GANDHI AND THE PHILOSOPHY OF NON-VIOLENCE: LESSONS FOR NIGERIANS

February 15, 2017

Author: Abalogu Divine Madueke
Department: Religion and Human Relations
Affiliation: Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka

There is upsurge in oppression and injustice in Nigeria. This has been a source of worry and great concern to many well meaning people. A society where corruption has almost become institutionalized could not contend with high level of violence. There is an indication that violence in Nigeria has been on the increase and needed to be addressed sociologically. The thrust of this thesis, therefore, is to draw out lessens the apostle of non violence, Mahatma Gandhi could have had on Nigerians. Primary and secondary data were collected and interpreted descriptively and analytically. The social issues associated with non-violence showed that political, economic, social, psychological religious, spiritual and moral lessons point to the reality that under an atmosphere of non-violence, love, peace, unity, progress, transformation and harmony are achievable. These socio-religious and ethical values are responsible for sustainable development in Nigeria. There is a prevailing need for all Nigerians irrespective of Gender, creed, colour and political affiliation to join hands in embracing non-violence as a social index for growth and development in Nigeria.

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