In series three of ‘Game of Thrones’ there is a subtle but clever illustration of a criticism of the idea of God that was made by German philosopher Ludwig Feuerbach . Feuerbach thought that theology was essentially anthropology, that is to say that when people speak of ‘God’ they are in fact speaking of some reflection or perhaps amplified ‘projection’ of what the know of humankind. He says:
God is man, man is God.
The idea is that the infinite Geist of Hegel is not something that originates outside of us but something that is grounded in our wishes, desires and understandings of ourselves.
In Game of Thrones this idea is particularly clear during the wedding ceremony of Edmure Tully and Roslin Fray (above). The icon at the front of the ceremony is the seven pointed star and the wording of the wedding vows include:
In sight of the seven.. say the words “Father, Smith, Warrior, Mother Maiden, Crone and Stranger, I am hers and she is mine…
It’s almost as though the whole concept of The Seven and even the concept of ‘everythingness’ has its origins in the experience of living in the seven kingdoms.
happy thought for a friday… just heard this for the first time the other day – think it’s been lurking on my ipod for ages…. you could use this for an IA considering materialism, mind/brain identity theories, parfit – almost anything… por afterlife stuff??
I wanted to walk through the empty streets
And feel something constant under my feet,
But all the news reports recommended that I stay indoors, Because the air outside will make
Our cells divide at an alarming rate
Until our shells simply cannot hold
All our insides in, And that’s when we’ll explode
And we’ll become silhouettes when our bodies finally go
To my shame I only watched this recently and it was, in my humble opinion, a quite brilliant picture. Each of the main characters would be more than sufficient for an Internal Assessment or even an Extended Essay in IB philosophy.
Where to start though…? Again, this is the sort of film that will draw one’s own philosophical persuasions to the surface, but I would expect that most philosophically literate members of the audience will be prodded into reflecting upon existentialism. Perhaps because of my own areas of particular interest, I found myself thinking about the relationship between Sartre and Kierkegaard. Kevin Spacey’s character undergoes a change. He realises he is free to do what he chooses and he begins a journey towards living authentically. Despite initial impressions, there is also an ethical dimension to this change; this is most noticable when he decides not to sleep with his daughter’s friend. This authenticity is placed in stark contrast with the Colonel, who moves in across the street. He is clearly deeply unhappy and (partly due to his belief in the Divine) is an emblem of the inauthentic life – lying to himself about even his own sexuality.
There are also a number of characters living by systems, or what Kiekegaaard would have called ‘ethical frameworks’. These people spend every part of their energy trying to realise a self-created goal. This, as the Dane points out, is a project doomed to failure: either one realises the goals and find this unsatisfactory (causing despair) or spends a whole life struggling and never reaching (equally as bad). Anyway before I feel myself being drawn into my own essay I will stop. Watch it.
This would make a sweet internal assessment. And you could do it on almost absolutely everything we have talked about in the core theme, and some of the stuff from the ethics section. Most obviousLy you might want to look at the point where “Ceaser” becomes a person. Clearly the makers of the film think it has something to do with communication, but this far from solves the question as he is able to communicate long before the climatic moment where he utters his first word.
And then there’s the moment where Ceaser asks through sign, whether he is The opening sequence almost reads almost like a recent telling of John Locke’s…
In Family Guy Season 6, Episode 2 a talking parrot appears. Of course most people will already be thinking about John Locke but unfortunately (as so often in FG) it turns out that the parrot isn’t a person in the sense of Locke’s parable – it’s just that Peter is an idiot!
Still this could be the start of an excellent internal assessment. You could think about Brian (who clearly seems to make Locke’s point) too.
so I know I sometimes see one thing I like in another thing I like…. this may be nothing more than that but it does seem to capture some of the spirit of what we’ve been reading…
the dawn of a new age… can you imagine a time where truth ran free… we are all short of glory…
Into the night, Desperate and broken,The sound of a fight….We were the victims of ourselves…. We stole our new lives, Through blindness… The age of man is over, A darkness comes….These lessons that we’ve learned here, Have only just begun….
Finn’s girlfriend has been using her power to make him exactly who she would like him to be… At first he objects, but then realises to keep her – this will be the only way… His friends object, giving little credence to his protest that he like being ‘better than he is’…
This isn’t you, this isn’t who you are!
Finn: “We were happy.”
Jess: “It was bullshit and you know it! Stop Lying to yourself.”