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Old 07-11-2016, 05:16 PM   #21
Kale
 
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Default Re: [Basic] Skill of the week: Philosophy

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In my main fantasy world the elves are not governed by genetics like humans they are instead molded by their philosophy instead. The elves require a philosophy to adapt to the world and and different "races" of elves are represented by different philosophies. It seemed appropriate that a magically created unaging race had a different mechanism for evolution.
That's brilliant! It also gives a pretty good justification for all the different flavor of elves that are in popular fantasy fiction.
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Old 07-11-2016, 05:33 PM   #22
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Default Re: [Basic] Skill of the week: Philosophy

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I'm reluctant to agree with this, because there are religions where the ethical framework (which isn't always what I'd consider sound ethics) is just "the founder told us to behave like this, so we do." There isn't really any analysis, just rules with religious force.
That would be my first objection, too. If you get a systematic explanation, like "Existence is suffering. The cause of suffering is attachment" and so on, it looks like Philosophy to me. If you get "Thou shalt have no other gods before me," it doesn't.

The other thing I'd say is that Law isn't doing the same job. Law is in the business of spelling out all the rules, in detail. On one hand, it may be argued that you have an ethical obligation to obey the law (though it could also be argued that sometimes you have an ethical obligation to break it), or that proper law embodies ethical principles; those are part of Philosophy, I think. Or of Theology, if the argument is "God has appointed your king to rule over you." But on the other hand, there are all sorts of laws that are purely technical or administrative, and have no special ethical content.

In British law, for many centuries, there were courts of law, which judged according to the exact words of the statutes; and there were courts of equity, which originally were supposed to appeal to what was right or fair, and short cut the technicalities, though I understand that they accumulated their own weight of fixed rules. Equity seems to have originally been as much Philosophy as Law.
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Old 07-11-2016, 07:31 PM   #23
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Default Re: [Basic] Skill of the week: Philosophy

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But on the other hand, there are all sorts of laws that are purely technical or administrative, and have no special ethical content.
Saying anything has no ethical content is a philosophical position and usually when looked at another way such laws turn out to be making an ethical statement. Traffic laws make the statement that, "The use of public property shall be shared justly". Property surveys say, "Money for public use shall be gathered by laws applicable to all, with recorded values enabling gatherings to be appealed in a court of law."

Now on the other hand and if the law says, "Only nobles may wear brocade" the fact that brocade specifically is chosen is arbitrary other then brocade being expensive(which is not the point because if it was there would be no need for a law). However it is conveying the meaning that, "The state recognizes ascribed status."

Other technical meanings for laws or policies can be thought of. "The US Army used artillery to an unusual degree in World War II" is a function of, "The US Army represents a government beholden to a citizenry which holds it accountable for the lives of personal more then for the expenditure of ammunition." And of course laws in the United States during World War II will in fact reflect the high demand for artillery ammunition(such as encouraging recruitment of women in munitions factories, rationing of strategic materials, etc).
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Old 07-11-2016, 09:39 PM   #24
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Default Re: [Basic] Skill of the week: Philosophy

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In my main fantasy world the elves are not governed by genetics like humans they are instead molded by their philosophy instead. The elves require a philosophy to adapt to the world and and different "races" of elves are represented by different philosophies. It seemed appropriate that a magically created unaging race had a different mechanism for evolution.
I do something similar but they still have a Divine origin.
Elves are based off the Chinese 5 Element system.
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Old 07-11-2016, 10:27 PM   #25
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Default Re: [Basic] Skill of the week: Philosophy

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Saying anything has no ethical content is a philosophical position and usually when looked at another way such laws turn out to be making an ethical statement. Traffic laws make the statement that, "The use of public property shall be shared justly". Property surveys say, "Money for public use shall not be gathered by laws applicable to all, with recorded values enabling gatherings to be appealed in a court of law."
The fact that the speed limit is X rather than Y, or that the voting age is P rather than Q, or that a jury is a dozen jurors, doesn't seem to me to have specific ethical content; any of those could have a different value and not be less ethically acceptable. Likewise the fact that marriage records are kept by the county government rather than the city or the state government.
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Old 07-11-2016, 10:43 PM   #26
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Default Re: [Basic] Skill of the week: Philosophy

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The fact that the speed limit is X rather than Y, or that the voting age is P rather than Q, or that a jury is a dozen jurors, doesn't seem to me to have specific ethical content; any of those could have a different value and not be less ethically acceptable. Likewise the fact that marriage records are kept by the county government rather than the city or the state government.
True, but the fact that there is a speed limit(and therefore consideration for safety) or a voting age(and therefore voting) or a jury(and therefore a rejection of vendetta) is. The keeping of marriage records by the county can be interpreted as a concession toward the principal of subsidiarity.

The details of the laws are in a sense arbitrary. But they reflect philosophies on which they are based and if the philosophy was different the law would be different. For instance there are no sumptuary laws of the traditional sense in America and no longer any in UK because ascribed status is theoretically unrecognized by the law in America and theoretically cosmetic in UK. There are laws that have the effect of sumptuary laws but are theoretically applicable to all.
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Old 07-12-2016, 07:22 PM   #27
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Default Re: [Basic] Skill of the week: Philosophy

When stat NPCs, primarily Allies and the like, and on the rare occasions I get to be a player, I have a habit of including a lot of background skills, not always at a useful professional level.

A lot of skills have uses which involve everday tasks at +4 to +5 TDM, after all.

I gave my newest character, in a THS campaign, Theology (Islam) and Philisophy (Sufism).

He only has skill 9-10, through the Dabbler Perk, and I admit it was more for accurate modelling of what I imagined his background being than any perceived utility.

I wonder, however. Are there any 'adventuring'uses (in the broadest sense) for Philosophy or Theology which call for rolls at positive TDMs?
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Old 07-13-2016, 02:09 AM   #28
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Default Re: [Basic] Skill of the week: Philosophy

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I wonder, however. Are there any 'adventuring'uses (in the broadest sense) for Philosophy or Theology which call for rolls at positive TDMs?
One possibility is explaining to your family or friends why you need to go and do something dangerous. Provided, of course, that it is actually consistent with the Philosophy or Theology you subscribe to: the TDMs get much tougher if it isn't.
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Old 07-13-2016, 06:37 AM   #29
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Default Re: [Basic] Skill of the week: Philosophy

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One possibility is explaining to your family or friends why you need to go and do something dangerous. Provided, of course, that it is actually consistent with the Philosophy or Theology you subscribe to: the TDMs get much tougher if it isn't.
Good point.

Would rolls against Philosophy (Sufism) and Theology (Islam) at +4 work in basing a Public Speaking or Propaganda argument on Sufism philosophies, without claiming a bonus for Supplementary Skill use?

The game effect would be a slight Reaction bonus for those with traits where sympathy or belief in a Sufism flavour of Islam was established and a corresponding Reaction penalty for those with traits establishing Intolerance or other form of aversion or dislike against Sufism specifically or Islam generically.
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Old 07-14-2016, 03:34 AM   #30
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Default Re: [Basic] Skill of the week: Philosophy

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Would rolls against Philosophy (Sufism) and Theology (Islam) at +4 work in basing a Public Speaking or Propaganda argument on Sufism philosophies, without claiming a bonus for Supplementary Skill use?

The game effect would be a slight Reaction bonus for those with traits where sympathy or belief in a Sufism flavour of Islam was established and a corresponding Reaction penalty for those with traits establishing Intolerance or other form of aversion or dislike against Sufism specifically or Islam generically.
Maybe. I could see several variants on this, for different situations.

If it was necessary to use an argument based on Philosophy or Theology to get anywhere - say one were talking to a group of Imams - then I might just ask for those skills and possibly Public Speaking as a complimentary skill.

For persuasion based on rhetoric, that worked better on those sympathetic or closer to Islam, Public Speaking with a complimentary skill of Philosophy, Theology, or their average, would be correct.

Is your tactic trying to get some use out of Philosophy and Theology skills that are a bit low to trust as complimentary skills? As far as I can see, you aren't trying to use them that way, but only hoping to push the result of the Influence roll to a bit better than Good for believers, at the expense of modifying it down for non-believers?
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