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The Basics

Introduction

What have been the two main subjects of Western philosophy?

Western Philosophy has always had two main subjects: the natural world and the human world. The natural world includes nature, physical reality, and the cosmos. The human world includes human beings, their values, experience, minds, ethics, societies, government, cultures, and human nature itself.

Philosophy of course occurs in all cultures and daily life; but Western Philosophy is a distinct way of thinking that consists of hypotheses and generalizations about what philosophers believe is important in the natural and human worlds. Western philosophers have not been focused on stories of the origins of peoples nor on events in time, like historians, and neither are they focused on individual lives, like biographers. Instead, they have sought to view events and lives in general and abstract ways that can tell us what is true of categories or kinds of events, and individual lives.



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