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CN Ideology and Philosophy




Folks, there is a difference between "ideology" and "philosophy." Often, people confuse the two on our beloved Planet Bob, marking their beliefs as "philosophy" when it would be more apt to describe them as "ideology." So what marks them apart? To be fair, they aren't mutually exclusive, but roughly you can describe philosophy and ideology as follows:

Philosophy: A system of thought that describes and explains an aspect or multiple aspects of the uni/cyberverse, and then makes recommendations on how to act accordingly. Examples in Planet Bob include Francoism (I'm using "The Meaning of Freedom" as my example as I think it explains the basic ideas the best) or Voxism. If one disagrees with a particular philosophy, one can take one of two approaches - to critique the underlying assumptions of the philosophy that determine how it explains the universe, or alternatively to critique the policy implications advocated for by the philosophy. Either way is a critique on the line of logic used by the author.

Ideology: An ideology does not necessarily try to explain the universe or solve a problem, but rather reinforce some principle that is assumed to be worthy of adhering to. On Planet Bob, the first notable ideology was Tygaism, with it's adherence to the notion of "respect." While an interesting piece for sure, it's not actually a philosophy as it does not attempt to explain any aspect of the Cyberverse. Therefore it's entirely possible to be a Francoist and a Tygaist at the same time: you can believe in the idea of the "state of nature" described by Francoism, but still adhere to the Tygaist line of thought for a guide on how to make decisions. Recently, a new ideology has sprung up, "Sithism." While I expect a description of inner workings to come from some of the CN Sith, the current document is more of an ideology rather than a philosophy. Again, someone could easily be a "Voxist" or a "Francoist" and also be a Sithist.

If you want to critique an ideology, you must examine the overlying philosophical argument that is being made - on what premise should we act in a particular way? If our understanding of how the world works is completely different than that of the author, acting in the way for which the author advocates may be entirely inappropriate.

With all of this in mind, I humbly ask those aspiring to be philosophers in the Cyberverse to kindly keep this in mind so that the nitpicky of us don't get a headache every time a new "philosophy" (read: usually "ideology") surfaces on the open world forums.



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Too often ideologies can act as blinders to other legitimate perspectives. It is for this reason, that I am wondering if Planet Bob would be better off without most ideological influences. One thing Bob has way too much of - moralist rhetoric.

As far as philosophies go, I appreciate the pragmatists of Planet Bob. The crazed ideologues tend to flame and never listen, unless you are reinforcing their opinions. However, a good pragmatist is willing to do just about anything and judges entities based on their beneficial qualities.

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I actually disagree about having too many ideological influences. Planet Bob, as it is, is really just the nation mechanics plus whatever else we make of it. I think adding ideologies and discussing moral behavior is a good sign that people are interested in looking deeper into our community, and I think it also adds flavor to the Cyberverse.

In the case of Planet Bob, I see ideologies as a stepping stone for philosophies, so long as people don't confuse the two.

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