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Raffael's School of Athens: According to conventional interpretation, which Rudolf Steiner has however strongly contradicted, the idealised representations of the founding fathers of Western philosophy. Although since Plato primarily a matter of written treatise, animated conversation remains an important part of philosophical life to this day.

Philosophy (Greekφιλοσοφία, Latinphilosóphia, literally "love of wisdom") attempts to interpret and understand the world and human existence with the help of reason.

It differs from other sciences in that it is not limited to a particular field or methodology, but is characterised by the nature of its questions and its particular approach to its diverse subject matter.

This article deals with Western (also: Occidental) philosophy, which emerged in ancient Greece in the 6th century BC. It does not deal with the traditions of Jewish and Arabic philosophy, which have a manifold connection with Western philosophy, or with the traditions of African and Eastern philosophy, which were originally independent of Western philosophy.

In antique philosophy, systematic and scientifically oriented thought developed. In the course of the centuries, the various methods and disciplines of understanding the world and the sciences differentiated themselves directly or indirectly from philosophy, in part also in distinction to irrational or religious worldviews or myths.

The core areas of philosophy are logic (as the science of logical thinking), ethics (as the science of right action) and metaphysics (as the science of the first reasons of being and reality). Other basic disciplines are epistemology and philosophy of science, which deal with the possibilities of gaining knowledge in general and specifically with the ways of knowing of the various individual sciences.


References to the work of Rudolf Steiner follow Rudolf Steiner's Collected Works (CW or GA), Rudolf Steiner Verlag, Dornach/Switzerland, unless otherwise stated.
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Index to the Complete Works of Rudolf Steiner - Aelzina Books
A complete list by Volume Number and a full list of known English translations you may also find at Rudolf Steiner's Collected Works
Rudolf Steiner Archive - The largest online collection of Rudolf Steiner's books, lectures and articles in English.
Rudolf Steiner Audio - Recorded and Read by Dale Brunsvold - Anthroposophic Press Inc. (USA)
Rudolf Steiner Handbook - Christian Karl's proven standard work for orientation in Rudolf Steiner's Collected Works for free download as PDF.