Philosophy and Dog Jokes
At this point in my life, I am resigned to the fact that I am a dilettante; I move from one thing to another, get very excited about it, make some progress, and then switch-- and while this methodology has it's obvious flaws, it's always exciting when the middle of the semester rolls around and I start teaching Philosophy Class again . . . I am seriously under-qualified to teach this course, and once it's over I generally forget that it's even on my schedule, but when it starts I'm always a ball of fire; this year, to prepare, I've been listening to a very informative (albeit nerdy) podcast called Philosophize This! and I'm reading a book called The Physicist & The Philosopher: Einstein, Bergson, and the Debate That Changed Our Understanding of Time . . . and I'm going to be candid here, because Socrates taught us that the first step to wisdom is realizing that you are not very wise and that you know far less than you think: before I read this book, I had no idea who Henri Bergson was-- his story arc is similar to Humboldt's, in that he was extraordinarily famous in his time, and then fell out of favor-- and I had no idea that Bergson and Einstein had an "explosive debate" that "transformed our understanding of time and drove a rift between science and the humanities that persists today," but now I'm starting to understand this, and I even read a Bergson excerpt from his essay "Laughter: An Essay on the meaning of Comic" . . . which got me thinking philosophically: do any animals ever laugh or make jokes or find things funny?