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Learn to answer fundamental questions about life with our philosophy short courses online & in Sydney.

Philosophy means 'the love of wisdom' and the search for knowledge. Philosophy concerns itself with the fundamental questions of our existence and the nature of the universe as a whole. This course focuses on the nature of consciousness or mind and its relation to the human body, the nature of the material and biological universe, whether human beings have a soul, whether there is life after death, whether there is a God and what the relationship would be between a God and humanity. All the above are subjects in metaphysics, which is the foundation of philosophy and a central focus of some of the most influential Philosophers throughout humanity.

In this Philosophy short course you will cover the major theories of the great philosophers, primarily in the western tradition (beginning with Pythagoras and Plato) - however you will also discuss the philosophies of the east, including Hinduism and Buddhism. This philosophy course aims to make philosophy understandable to students, in such a way that they can apply its insights to the meaning of their own lives. Discussion and debate will be encouraged in all classes.

Learning outcomes

By the end of this philosophy course, you should be able to:

  • consider and evaluate the views of the greatest philosophers on the nature of the universe, human beings, and on the transcendent issues of human existence and how they relate to the meaning of life.
  • use and apply key philosophical concepts, especially in metaphysics and ethics, to the examination of different theories.
  • think about the importance of philosophy in determining the meaning of life and the relation of philosophy to science, art, religion, psychology and socio-political behaviour.

What is covered in this philosophy course?

Week 1: The Beginning

  • Pythagoras – The universe in harmony
  • Heraclitus – The world of becoming
  • Parmenides – Absolute being

Week 2: Plato

  • On love, beauty and the good
  • On the creation of the universe

Week 3: Taking off from Plato

  • The early Christian philosophers
  • The Gnostics: metaphysical knowledge

Week 4: Eastern Philosophy

  • The Bhagavad Gita
  • The Philosophical foundations of Buddhism

Week 5: The Renaissance

  • Descartes: I think therefore I am
  • Spinoza: God and nature as one

Week 6: The Master - Immanuel Kant

  • The human mind in relation to the universe
  • The metaphysical foundations of morality

Week 7: Hegel and Conclusion

  • Understanding the self and the absolute spirit
  • On philosophy and the meaning of life

Who is this philosophy course for?

This philosophy course is for anyone interested in using critical thinking and logical analysis to understand the guiding principle for human behaviour. If you are open to concepts about the mind and the nature of consciousness and want to use the tools of logic and reason to help you understand our place within the world then this course is for you!

About your tutor

Dr Andrew Theophanous has a B Litt in Philosophy from Oxford University and a PhD in Philosophy from Melbourne University. Andrew has lectured at universities in the United States and Melbourne. He is the author of three books including Understanding Social Justice: An Australian Perspective. He has published more than 20 articles in Philosophy and Social and Political Theory. Andrew delivers his courses as lectures and encourages students to participate in group discussion and debate. Andrew is a passionate teacher of Philosophy and believes the wisdom in Philosophical thought should be accessible to everyone.

This course has no current classes. Please join our waitlist and we will notify you when we have places available. Join waitlist for Philosophy Course: The Great Philosophers

This course has no current classes. Please join our waitlist and we will notify you when we have places available. Join waitlist for Philosophy Course: The Great Philosophers

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Course testimonials:

  • said: Well delivered content at the right level of complexity for thought provoking ideas without being too onerous

  • said: The tutor is very knowledgable and passionate. I will definitely enrol in another class.

  • said: the tutor was incredibly knowledgeable person and explains things in an easy to understand way - a rare combination indeed. He is also not afraid to discuss theological issues and relate them to philosophical ones - overall great course.

  • said: Had a fantastic tutor. Great passion and interest.

  • said: Course is very interesting. Tutor is very knowledgeable. Every week the material is professionally structured and presented well with passion.

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