The logo of the American Mathematical Society includes (or used to include) the slogan that was supposedly found at the door of Plato's Academy in Athens:
ΜΗΔΕΙΣ ΑΓΕΩΜΕΤΡΗΤΟΣ ΕΙΣΙΤΩ ΜΟΥ ΤΗΝ ΣΤΕΓΗΝ
—Let none ignorant of geometry come under my roof. This would be an entirely inappropriate slogan for a university, whose purpose is to dispell ignorance, not to drive away people who for the moment may happen to be ignorant. I suppose the AMS chose the slogan as a reminder of the value of mathematics to philosophy.
In the introduction to The Idea of Nature, Collingwood decries the separation of science and philosophy; I would do the same for mathematics and philosophy:
Before the nineteenth century the more eminent and distinguished scientists at least had always to some extent philosophized about their science, as their writings testify. And inasmuch as they regarded natural science as their main work, it is reasonable to assume that these testimonies understate the extent of their philosophizing. In the nineteenth century a fashion grew up of separating natural scientists and philosophers into two professional bodies, each knowing little about the other's work and having little sympathy with it. it is a bad fashion that has done harm to both sides…
Here I have gathered some more-or-less philosophical materials that are (or have been) useful to me, or that I have had a hand in creating.
- Julian: remarks by Edward Gibbon on the philosophical training of the last Pagan emperor, in honor of whose visit to Ankara, a column still stands in the city
- Kant (not very useful, for now)
- Freud: his essay “On the Universal Tendency to Debasement in the Sphere of Love” (taken from an art-history professor's site and formatted in LaTeX and edited by me)
- Collingwood (my favorite philosopher)
- Herman Wouk (a novelist, not a professional philosopher; but I was interested in the philosophy of the passage discussed here)
- Robert Neidorf (tutor at St. John's College: his lecture, “Biological Explanation,” delivered in Santa Fe in 1968)
- Robert Pirsig (see also my comparison of
Pirsig's Lila with Collingwood's
- Descartes's Meditations (Latin, French and English).
- Translations of the Quran: