[[ Read Reading ]] Really Really Big QuestionsAuthor Stephen Law – Entrecielos.co

REALLY, REALLY BIG QUESTIONS is an unusual and fun introduction to philosophy that explores life s important but often unanswered questions Readers will be able to explore the history of thought and the great thinkers and learn how to think rationally for themselves Mind teasers, optical illusions and thought experiments make this philosophic journey unforgettably fun

10 thoughts on “Really Really Big Questions

  1. P. M. Fernandez P. M. Fernandez says:

    The unconsidered life is not worth living Sometime between the cradle and finishing education, one hopes that people will start to reflect on the meaning of life, the universe and everything There s little evidence to show that books such asSophie s World A Novel About the History of PhilosophyandIf Minds Had Toeshave a substantial impact on the thoughtfulness of people but perhaps at least for those children who read them, it provides some reassurance that the questions they are asking are significant, and their consideration is healthy.This book pitches at a younger audience bright children at the top of primary school, or early in secondary school although the general tone of the discussion would actually make it a useful starting point for any reasonably bold person who wanted a thought provoking discussion over a meal table.The range of philosophical subjects is covered ethics Is it OK to eat animals , epistemology Can I make something true by believing it , metaphysics Did someone design the universe as a series of questions and discussions Not really answers the lack of definite answers is likely to irritate both those religious who have never seriously reflected on their beliefs and those of a philosophical naturalist persuasion under the influence of Dawkins, for example.Some lines are drawn for example, alien abduction and astrology both receive shrift that is at the short end of the spectrum And if the book even manages to get a few young people to apply critical thought to such matters, then in my opinion, that would justify its existence

  2. Ben Saunders Ben Saunders says:

    This book is billed as the Really Really Big Questions and that just about sums it up The questions are largely philosophical, although occasionally scientific, and touch on issues such as the origins of life and thought, the nature of morality and the universe, and knowledge.It s a big book, in terms of cover area, but quite thin and doesn t have much writing for each section rather, pages are often filled with pictures and just a very brief, teasing piece of text The back cover suggests that it s suited to key stages 2 and 3 ages 7 14 , although personally I d say that at least in terms of presentation it s really aimed at a younger audience In my experience, children can be quite philosophical, always curious until taught to take things for granted.This book isn t really a solution to that curiosity it s rightly described as a book of questions, rather than answers, but it can encourage children to think about things for themselves At its best, it presents opposing points of view on a controversial matter often drawing implicitly on the work of influential philosophers from Descartes to Nagel and beyond , but invites readers to make their own mind up about which side they believe though sometimes it appears to lead the reader towards a particular conclusion.I found a few of the discussions rather disappointing for instance, the last one Do Fairies Exist simply recounts the story of the faked Cottingley photographs For the most part, however, this looks like an interesting attempt to introduce philosophy to younger children Those thinking about serious study at A level, or even GCSE, however, would require something much rigorous.

  3. Sensible Cat Sensible Cat says:

    Children are natural philosophers Nobody s told them that some questions are too big or too controversial to ask And philosophy seems to be getting a bit of a makeover these days perhaps the triviality of celebrity culture soundbites is finally beginning to get to us.Dr Stephen Law already has a track record in making philosophical concepts accessible to older children and young adults The Philosophy Files so he is a natural choice for Kingfisher to write this introduction to the subject for the 7 12 age group It s an idea whose time has come, but presenting such abstract ideas clearly and entertainingly is quite a challenge.He kicks off with the biggest questions of all What is nothing Try to imagine absolutely nothing Not an empty space that s something It s much harder than it sounds Where did the universe come from What is the meaning of life The emphasis throughout is that these are not the questions science alone can settle Instead, readers are given the tools and examples to conduct their own intellectual enquiries and there is no definitively right or wrong answer He debunks the myths that have led to sloppy thinking saying that we have 96% of our DNA in common with chimpanzees isn t the same thing as saying they re our ancestors, for example As we move on to the contentious subjects of evolution and intelligent design, he states that most scientists support evolutionary theory, but he also mentions creation myths and, as always, encourages us to make up our own minds, with the very important caveat that what really matters is not whether a story is strange and wonderful, but whether it is true.From there we move on to ethical problems Why is stealing wrong If someone could take a pill that would convince them they d given a lot of money to charity, would that be as good as actually giving the money If not, can we logically argue that we are altruistic because that makes us happy Can a robot think, and if you killed a sentient robot, would that be murder Are designer babies wrong Is astrology true Can people bend spoons with their mind Finally, we examine what knowledge is and why it matters A brief tour of well known optical illusions reminds us that the evidence demanded by Sherlock Holmes is not entirely reliable unless we factor in the human tendency to see what we expect to be there.All this is presented within 80 pages in a retro Jetsons style format It s a very accessible book the paragraphs are kept short and to the point and there s plenty of space on each page the distracting, image heavy layouts used in so many children s non fiction books nowadays are avoided, letting the thoughts connect with the readers brains directly a welcome change Kingfisher are to be congratulated for producing such an accessible, yet stimulating little book Let s hope it inspires a few intelligent conversations this Christmas.

  4. Penny G Penny G says:

    The whole book is filled with wonderful information even adults will love.

  5. Chris Chris says:

    Amazing book My 8 year old girl loves it Gets your children thinking It s honest with children Raise a rational thinker

  6. Elle G. Elle G. says:

    This is a great book It poses challenging questions and mysteries, and encourages original thought I haven t gotten through the whole book yet, but the first section has been wonderful It immediately tackles the subject of existence, matter, how the world came to be, natural selection, and what we re made of The concepts are great for kids of all ages, but the language may need to be simplified for children younger than 9 or so I usually adapt my reading for my 4 year old anyway.The view of the book is scientific, creative, and open minded I can imagine fundamentalist religious finding this book threatening as it is scientific and clearly not biblical However, even modern and contemporary believers will enjoy this book as it encourages original thinking and doesn t condemn any ideas.Children are encouraged to think about life and the world around them, developing their own ideas and identity as they ponder really big questions We are using each mini chapter as a bed time story, giving their minds and curiosity something constructive to muse about while they drift off to sleep.

  7. UrglTheGnome UrglTheGnome says:

    Great resource for kids Lots of good info inside.

  8. Alexander Halavais Alexander Halavais says:

    Kid enjoyed reading and discussing Very nice presentation.

  9. Keith Hoopes Keith Hoopes says:

    The answers to the BIG questions are so clear and concise, that even an adult can understand them My favorite example is the analogy of a puddle in a pothole.

  10. KDS KDS says:

    I purchased this book for my 10 year old daughter after seeing it listed as a recommended book by our Bishop The book covers a very wide range of topics in a few pages each and asks open ended questions to the reader My daughter is enjoying the book, and I was impressed at how well these very weighty topics, ranging from philosophy to science, were presented.