The Word of the Day for Oct 30 is:
solipsism \SOH-lip-sih-zum\ noun
: a theory holding that the self can know nothing but its own modifications and that the self is the only existent thing
After learning about solipsism in Philosophy 101, Dan wondered if the things around him might just be products of his own mind.
Did you know?
Fans of René Descartes credit the French philosopher with introducing solipsism as a major problem of modern philosophy, but the word "solipsism" most likely sprang from a French satire called La Monarchie des Solipses written by Giulio Clemente Scotti in 1652 (two years after Descartes's death). The term wasn't used in English until the late 19th century, when "solipsism," a composite of the Latin "solus" ("alone") and "ipse" ("self"), was applied purely in the philosophical sense. Recently the word has taken on another, more general sense, suggesting selfishness or self-indulgence. Be careful not to confuse it with "solecism," which refers to a grammatical error in speech, or to a breach of etiquette.
*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.