Hardcore Philosophy

Hardcore Philosophy

Philosophy is for everyone. It can expand, uplift, and improve us. But so much of philosophy today is focused on deconstructing our lives, removing meaning, and dividing groups of people.

This is not what I'm doing. Because the goal is not simply to have knowledge, but to make it useful.

The Hardcore Philosophy podcast is built upon the best traditions and aimed at our highest potential. Philosophy, psychology, history, religion, science, culture, politics, and the greatest stories ever told. From Aristotle to Zarathustra.

This is the #1 podcast made entirely with a hammer.

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    eR 31 | An Epic of Masculinity II: King

    Is civilization technology or idea?

    Obviously, it is a bit of both. But in our modernity – surrounded by big data, cameras, and supercomputers that fit into our pocket – it is easy to see that we tend to favor technology and forget ideas. While at some level it is difficult to imagine "civilization" without basic technologies. From food, water, shelter, security, and reasonable personal autonomy, we do need a foundation of material to distinguish civilization from our more prehistoric past.

    But once that foundation is set, what is it, technology or idea?

    Again, I believe it is both, both matter and have equal value. What is important is keeping them in balance, and today, ideas are falling behind, if not outright ignored.

    Nowhere is this more true, or more significant, than in leadership. Nowhere is leadership more taught, and more explored, than in the stories of kings, and the philosophy of kingship.

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    eR 30 | An Epic of Masculinity

    When good men sit down, bad men stand up. When masculine virtues are ignored, masculine vices reign. When kings are told to go away, tyrants take their place. This is not just a description, but a strategy.

    This results in a world where a plurality of masculine figures without virtue are in leadership positions in governments, companies, and organizations. This structure is incentivized to forward and repeat the societal talking points whereby masculinity is defined as toxic. This narrative helps prevent good men from rising up.

    The toxic masculine narrative is the norm, of both history and today.

    I'm going to crush this status quo, by uplifting masculine idealism.

    It is a simple formula. Competence + Ethics. This is the masculine ideal.

    We are a species that doesn’t do well with nuance. We see so many bad men in the world and in the news, and we drift towards simple answers: men are bad. With this we forget that our last and best hope against tyranny is the development of masculine ideals and virtues.

    It is for this reason that stories about the positive masculine (and omens about the negative masculine) have survived and thrived for thousands of years.

    I’m going to crush the historic and modern status quo that defines all men as toxic, not by offering my critique of their position, but by offering the alternative. The alternative are these stories and lessons from history, philosophy, and idea. These stories have one purpose: uplift the positive masculine, and teach masculine ideals.

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    eR 29 | The Story of Philosophy


    Philosophy is often viewed as a field of isolation, or the literal ivory tower. The word is seen as a big word, a fancy word, used by the elite, arrogant, and out of touch.

    That’s not what I’m doing here.

    Philosophy is the story of humanity and the history of ideas, and it’s meant for everyone.

    This episode is my attempt to answer three basic questions about philosophy.

    What is Philosophy? • object, and subject – 1:50 • the line, and the glue – 5:04 • letters and representation – 6:50 • if it is not anything… – 8:11

    How is Philosophy Useful? • we always face this choice – 10:02 • yet we exist in two worlds – 11:20 • recurrence, and rise – 13:02

    Why is Philosophy Important? • if why, then anything – 14:47 • a foundation – 17:34 • time… – 19:29 • … and space – 20:58 • the road to heaven – 23:03 • so look down – 24:29 • and look up – 24:57 • vine, and fig tree – 25:27

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    eR 28 | Victory as Educator

    It is said that immature artists copy, and great ones steal. This is an excellent maxim. But who do we steal from? And what do we steal from them? The first part isn't too complicated - steal from those who have won, those who are successful, and those who have made it. Learn from the experts and the champions, not the amateurs and those who have lost. The second part is more complex, what we steal is what is defined as good, but what is good?

    This episode explores these questions and more, all through the inspiration of the World Cup.

    If you would like to support the podcast, please visit https://patreon.com/eRochefoucauld Full notes to the show can be found on our Trello board at https://trello.com/er_podcast

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    eR 27 | Kierkegaard's Leap of Faith & The Power of Belief in Sport

    The Leap of Faith is a very abused and taken advantage of maxim. But yet it is a maxim. It is a truth we experience, in so far as all action is the conclusion of degrees of uncertainty. But therein lies the point: action. Because the leap of faith is not simply a metaphysical concept. It is not under the domain of inspirational memes and imagery. It is at its very core, the leap itself. Thinking serves doing; ideas serve action; God, or Truth, or our highest of desires, is something we perform, not simply something we articulate. And of course, there is perhaps no event quite like the World Cup, where reason defying leaps of faith are made by billions around the world. So welcome back to this series of Hardcore Philosophy, featuring the World Cup.

    If you would like to support the podcast, please visit https://patreon.com/eRochefoucauld Full notes to the show can be found on our Trello board at https://trello.com/b/0nyFLE4H/27-world-cup-faith

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    eR 26 | The passions of sport and "The Football War" of 1969

    There is a quote often attributed to Plato that says "you can learn more about a person in 1 hour of play, than 1 year of work."

    There doesn't seem to be any record of Plato saying this. Quote investigator places it as a derivative from some English educator in the 16th century. Ultimately, it's a fake quote. But it doesn't have to be, because it's a good idea. So let's just attribute this quote to all of us. From our experience as children, to our experience in life. We learn more about each other through play, through games, through a cooperative competition, than in any other form.

    Nowhere is this more true, or more impactful, than a global game. And there is no global game quite like the World Cup.

    Now sport is often scoffed at from, well, I suppose people that have Philosophy podcasts!

    But as the record shows, the history of the World Cup is filled with stories of the best and worst of us. And new stories are being made as I speak. So join me in this brief series of Hardcore Philosophy, featuring the World Cup.

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    eR 25 | A Philosophy of Trash, Garbage, and Waste

    As the world becomes wealthier, more connected, more educated, and more metropolitan - we create more trash. And our population is growing, faster than ever. From the American Revolution, to the end of WWI, our world population grew by 1 billion. From the day the World Trade Center Towers fell, to the day Osama Bin Laden was killed, our population grew by the same amount. Every day, we produce more waste than the day before. So what are we going to do? Now I'm an optimist about our future. I quite agree with Steven Pinker and his book Enlightenment Now. I know I've already made the controversial statement of admitting my fondness for people, and yes this includes my neighbor and the people who voted differently than me. So, I suppose I won't do too much damage by agreeing with Pinker and saying that the world is fantastic. We have certainly progressed. But that is part of the point - waste is endogenous to progress. Inefficiency to efficiency. Failed attempts to successful ones. But we can't simply wave our hands and brush garbage under the rug with the answer that it is here to stay - at some point quantity matters and as it stands there is only one earth. So, let's talk about trash, waste, and garbage, and think about how awful the world would be if we don't find a way to deal with this problem, and paradoxically, how awful the world would be if there were no trash at all.

    This is Hardcore Philosophy.

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    eR 24 | Ratatouille: How to be a True Revolutionary

    A philosophy that can’t be lived is like food that can’t be eaten and a kitchen isn’t a storehouse for food, any more than philosophy is a museum of ideas. A great movie to match this, in both philosophy and food-analogies, is the 2007 film, Ratatouille. This is an excellent film that explores many important themes as well as deep, archetypal representations and philosophies. The film offers an answer to many questions, like how do you live your truth? How do you harness your talent and follow your dreams? How do you overcome and identify those who oppose you? And ultimately, how do you create change in the world? Each character offers important lessons, and the story line throughout is a drama that mirrors anyone trying to walk the hero’s path. If you would like to support the podcast, please visit https://patreon.com/eRochefoucauld Full notes to the show can be found on our Trello board at https://trello.com/b/YSnFna6e/24-ratatouille

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    eR 23 | Maps: From Ptolemy to GPS

    This episode is about maps - physical, metaphysical, and existential; as well as their representations, abstractions, and ontological incompleteness. In 1620, Francis Bacon wrote that three inventions had changed the course of history: the printing press (for ideas and communication), gunpowder (for warfare), and the compass (for navigation). With the printing press you can mass produce maps. With gunpowder you very effectively redraw their lines. And with the compass you can more easily navigate with them and fill in the unknown, the terra incognita, of the world around us. 400 years after Bacon, we have GPS or satellite navigation. No invention has had a greater impact on the distribution and popular utility of maps as this. In every phone, on every computer, the side column of every google search - a GPS map is given. And with it, turn-by-turn directions wherever we want to go. Exact distance, alternative routes, estimated travel time, even potential traffic delays. If only this were a description of life... Yet, we are surrounded by these maps. But more and more, I find that people don't know how to actually read maps. They can follow directions, sure, but not read the map. This is a problem, because being able to understand and read maps has less to do with driving on roads, and more to do with navigating life.

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    eR 22 | Harris, Peterson, Zizek, & Haidt - Through the looking glass of ideological fiefdoms and metadata walls

    Our species has a long history of living in tribes and fiefdoms, and we still do. Only now our fiefdoms are often created and maintained by hashtag, linguistic signaling, and online cookies. We've also spent a good amount of time building walls to create safe spaces. The irony of today's chant in the United States is that the wall is already here, only it is made of metadata, preference settings, and block lists. The now well-known graphic that shows the lack of dialogue or connection between the left and right on twitter is shocking to say the least. But more than connections in name between opposing camps, we need the spirit of dialogue. Which means a group of people who are willing to exercise a bit of intellectual doubt and show honest curiosity to how other people might form an opinion about political, social, and cultural phenomena. We all know the adage, that to know someone requires us to walk a mile in their shoes. We also know that things are easier said than done. Now I believe that philosophy is positioned to be a type of glue between competing ideas, like science, religion, history, and politics, and most certainly so during times of complexity and uncertainty. This is such a time. Because at the end of the day, philosophy is neither science, religion, history, or politics, but if it is not consulting these subjects, and more, it can never hope to be more than what Nietzsche described in Beyond Good and Evil - a species of unconscious autobiography. If you would like to support the podcast, please visit https://patreon.com/eRochefoucauld Full notes to the show can be found on our Trello board at https://trello.com/b/3TaimmHF/22-hashtag-fiefdoms-and-metadata-walls

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