edX | MITx: Introduction to Philosophy: God, Knowledge and Consciousness: 24.00 About Video

CASPAR HARE: Is there a God? You may well have an answer
to that question. Most people have an answer
to that question. This is a matter of religion. Now ask yourself do you
know you’re right? Could you persuade a reasonable
person that you’re right? To answer these questions, we need an
understanding of what it is to know something, and of when it is reasonable
to believe something. And then we are doing philosophy. My name Caspar Hare, and I teach
introductory philosophy here at MIT. In this course we’ll cover several
big topics in philosophy. We begin with knowledge and God,
as I alluded to earlier. We’ll then move to talking
about consciousness. Some things are conscious. Some things aren’t. You’re watching this on a
machine of some kind. I don’t exactly know what. It isn’t conscious. You are conscious. What’s the difference between a thing
that’s conscious, like you, and a thing that isn’t, like your machine? We’ll then move to talking
about free will. Some things have free will. You have free will, or at
least you think you do. But how exactly can you have free will,
given that the matter in your body is pushed around by the immutable
iron laws of physics? And finally, we’ll talk
about identity. What sort of a thing are you? What is the basis of your
identity over time? These questions have been discussed in
some form or other for thousands of years by many great thinkers. We will read some of the great thinkers
in this course and try to draw from them. Our aim is not to celebrate and
appreciate and applaud these thinkers, but to use the insights
that they give us. The activity here is active
and not passive. This is the MIT way of
doing philosophy. Thousands of students here at MIT have
taken the course, although it’s available here online
for the first time. STUDENT 1: So probably the three words
that I would use to describe this course to a friend is
really stimulating. It’s really deep, because we cover
a lot of really important issues. And also, it’s quite comprehensive,
because we cover a lot of really fundamental topics in philosophy. STUDENT 2: You go to class and you
listen to the lecture, and it’s not even a lecture where you take notes. It’s a lecture where you become engaged
in the material and engaged in what he’s teaching, because
it matters to you. STUDENT 1: One of the main reasons why
should take this course is because you get to have a debate on these issues
that are really fun to talk about. STUDENT 2: Professor Hare
is just amazing. He really is. And you always hear, oh, the
professor makes the class. And this is absolutely true of 24.00. CASPAR HARE: I hope that this course
will help you to become a better thinker, more accurate, more
disciplined, and more creative.


  1. Ahmed Medhat

    June 26, 2013 at 11:50 pm

    Really looking forward for the course, and for even more Philosophy courses !

  2. Austin Newsam

    June 27, 2013 at 11:46 am

    Yep, I signed up.

  3. andreamoboe

    July 5, 2013 at 1:26 am

    Sounds really good. I will definitely sign up.

  4. Archimedes Bayquen

    August 4, 2013 at 8:50 am

    I have understood hundred percent of what is said. In fact, the song has some beneficial effect in calming my anxiety down to a certain degree.

  5. 洁古张

    August 18, 2013 at 12:53 pm

    The teacher's accent is highly enchanting. I love it so much.

  6. Marie Bent

    September 4, 2013 at 9:18 am

    I signed up and now quite excited at the prospect of this course.!

  7. Margaret Ernenwein

    September 6, 2013 at 2:40 am

    I signed up but don't have any info on reading materials schedule etc

  8. Martin Teshale

    September 12, 2013 at 12:43 pm

    I need to get this subject's webpage all or just please I kindly ask you to send me an attachment of it via my email:[email protected] or [email protected]
    With best regards;


  9. Skyler Myers

    September 25, 2013 at 7:50 pm

    It's pretty sad that we're still talking about 'God' (whatever what is) in the 21st century, but I'm excited about the rest of the course.

  10. usuario1234

    September 26, 2013 at 10:38 am

    Ok, the questions are very interesting, and what I expect from this course is to gain some enlightenment about our ancestors ideas and thoughts. That is well explain in the video, but…Why is that girl saying how awesome is the professor? Really?

  11. GARY Damon

    September 26, 2013 at 4:16 pm

    I don't see this sad at all, what I see sad is the unbeleivers about God!

  12. MenfinnaR

    September 27, 2013 at 9:39 am

    I'm waiting eagerly as well…

  13. someman7

    September 27, 2013 at 10:41 pm

    Maybe that's because what century you live in has nothing to do with the problem of infinite regression.

  14. Skyler Myers

    September 27, 2013 at 11:10 pm

    Except, we've known (that is, nontheists) that time comes to an end at the singularity, thus there is no infinite regression. We don't live in the times of Aristotle anymore.

  15. Skyler Myers

    September 29, 2013 at 3:07 am

    Why is people not believing in magic sad to you?


    October 19, 2013 at 11:33 am

    Without any doubt this course is obsolete.

  17. Bombtrack411

    October 21, 2013 at 8:39 pm

    Epistemology is one hell of a drug.

  18. Donato Saint Louis

    March 3, 2014 at 6:03 am

    I played in Band for 12 years.  I love the background Music. It has an aroma or an  international Flavor to it, reflecting the Mixing Bowl (Melting Pot) of ideas that are constantly "Baking in the Oven" at M.I.T.   

  19. Sakhile

    July 24, 2014 at 12:15 pm

    love philosophy 

  20. edX

    September 26, 2014 at 7:56 pm

    Is there a god? Do you know you're right? Could you persuade a reasonable person that you're right? Introduction to Philosophy: God, Knowledge and Consciousness from the @Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) returns on September 30th. http://ow.ly/BZiZ8

  21. ryanshaver

    May 1, 2015 at 6:41 am

    One shouldn't make exacting claims about computers not having consciousness…what would panpsychist thing?

  22. Benjamin Jaton

    May 19, 2016 at 4:49 am

    What's the song name?

  23. Donald Alexander

    February 27, 2018 at 3:18 am

    There a some basic fundamental concerns every thinking human should ask in order to begin to hopefully have a realistic thought of life itself .

  24. Alma Goh

    October 12, 2019 at 5:06 am

    I want my teenage daughter to learn about philosophy and I like the idea of an online discussion group but I see the course started on Jun 19. Is there gonna be another starting next semester or it's a yearly enrollment? Is it ok for a 13 yo to take? Thanks

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