last weekend a group of p4c / pwc practicioners and members of SOPHIA joined the annual meeting, on zoom (and toucan!). this was our second meeting held online, after 2020's "philosophising in lockdown".
we all miss "in real life" meetings and conferences, but the truth is that "show must go on" and the zoom format makes it possible for people to join from all around the world, spending less money and time (well, there are some advantages!). the Board even arranged for coffee corners on toucan!
in pandemic times what can philosophy do for us?
Eef and Jelle gave the meeting an ECO start sharing the EcoZoo project: who owns the earth?
how do we approach climate change issue on a philosophical dialogue without being normative? - this was one of the questions that came up from the interactive presentation given by Jelle and Eef.
Mihaela and Topsy talked about #P4Cthursday (or thursday inquiry): each week a group of facilitators from all over the world get together on zoom to philosophize and to practice philosophy sessions by videoconference.
this is one of the best days of the week for me, because this group is really a community of people committed to engage in philosophical dialogue without "methodocracy". we are free to try new things, people help you out figuring out next steps, we can be vulnerable and share our doubts about our practice, we can also share the achievments. it's a safe place.
after a talk about "how to develop emotional metacognition in philosophy classes", by Emma and Peter , children joined the meeting to participate in a philosophical dialogue. the dialogue was facilitated by Peter with the co-facilitation from Mihaela. the children have been participating in philosophical dialogues at the Club de filosofie cu copiii (Romania).
this was a good chance to see how a facilitator can use some of the tools that Peter proposes in his last books - Corrupting Youth and 100 ideas for Questioning. we had a great opportunity to think about aporia, "the power of i don't know", discomfort and also about the thin line between an interrogation anf being interrogative.
toucan was such a great idea because it allowed us to network and to build on the questions and answers that came up during the presentations.
at the day II of the meeting it was my turn to talk about creating time to think. i shared my own personal experience, motivations, doubts around running p4c workshops online with children, teenagers and adults.
after my presentation Danielle challenged us to think about philosophy and extremism. Danielle's presentation got us thinking about the danger philosophers may face by thinking that a rational argument can make the world a better place.
at the end of the meeting we had a meta session about the questions that we gather during the two days of meeting:
- Should philosophy be dangerous? Should philosophy be safe?
- Are there questions philosophy shouldn’t / can’t ask?
- What is normal thinking?
- Which tools are helpful to identify extremism?
- What is NOT a philosophical question?
- Are we asking philosophy to do too much?
- Is voting for questions an opportunity to practise extremism?
- Can an extremist be brilliant at critical thinking?
yes, i hope that next year we can have one of those "old school" meetings, where we have to travel somewhere to hang out with people, meet new places and have coffee (and beer!) together. 2020 has taught me to have low expectations so i will hope that we can be able to live with the pandemic challenges, keeping ouserlves healthy and engaged in philoosophy.
see you soon - or ZOOM!
if you are engaged in philosophy for/with children and if you want to know more about SOPHIA, please visit the website or the FB group - or drop a question in the comments.
pictures: Tugce, Mihaela and myself (twitter and facebook)