Monday, November 27, 2006

Dallas Philosopher's Forum

You speak so soft but in your heart you’re cold
In a tower of glass you got a mountain of gold
Yeah, you talk real sharp but we’ll soon cut you down
You’re still a little too smart for a big dumb town.
-Stan Ridgway

The Dallas Philosopher’s Forum meets this season at China King Super Buffet located at LBJ and, Midway, on the second and fourth Tuesday of each month. Tuesday November 27th, the Forum was host to Mark Hebert, Assistant Professor of Philosophy, Austin College. His topic: What is the Good Life?

It was an entertaining and engaging lecture. General points: happiness generally relies on an individual’s religiosity, social ties, and family (specifically, being married). Happiness seems to be less dependent on income, health, and where you live. I’m not so sure about this. Living in Cambodia under Pol Pot might influence your happiness. Being in a marriage with Leona Helmsley might influence your happiness in the opposite direction. Having your arms and legs blown off and being diagnosed with terminal cancer might influence your happiness as well. These were, of course, addressed by Mr. Hebert. There are always extremes. But, generally speaking, he says, the above three were better indicators of someone’s happiness than other factors.

The Dallas Philosopher's Forum has been functioning for twenty years now. I asked a guest about it and I believe he said since 1981. He said it was started by a couple theology professors, or something along those lines. (I really have my facts straight on the history and founding of this organization.) It’s impressive to see a room crammed above fire code specifications for a lecture on the Ontological proofs of God. Getting mentioned on 90.1 KERA never hurts either.

Come on by and enjoy greasy Lo Mein and a discussion on Kant's ethics.


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