Something teleological is related to a thing's design or purpose.
In other words, teleological stuff involves using something's final effect or function to explain how that thing came to be.
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Part of speech:
(Adjectives are describing words, like “large” or “late.”
They can be used in two ways:
1. Right before a noun, as in “a teleological argument.”
2. After a linking verb, as in "Their argument was teleological.”)
teleology, teleologic, teleologically, teleologist
"Telelogical" looks like "television," "telepathy," and so on
because "tele-" means "distant,"
which is closely related to the root we see in our word today:
"tel-" or "telo-," meaning "end, goal, or result."
How to use it:
"Teleological" helps us get to the root of our logical arguments and philosophical disagreements with our friends. If you believe that nature or the universe has a purpose, or that a powerful god with a plan is in charge of the world, then your beliefs are teleological. And if you disagree--if you are unconvinced that nature or God is designing things, giving them a purpose, or giving them a function--then you dismiss that kind of thinking as teleological. (If your friend's thinking is teleological and yours isn't, or vice versa, then you'll never, ever convince each other. And it's useful to have this word to explain why.)
So, talk about teleological proof, teleological questions, teleological disputes or claims or arguments, teleological beliefs or ethics or points of view, teleological interpretations and explanations, teleological optimism, and so on.
From a teleological perspective, it can be a struggle to accept the apparent randomness and heartlessness with which bad things happen to good people.
Witnessing the incredible complexity and power of nature pushes some of us toward teleology and some of us away from it, which I find fascinating.
Look away from the screen to explain the definition in your own words. You’ll know you understand what "teleological" means when you can explain it without saying "related to the outcome" or "pertaining to the purpose."
Think of your own perspective on teleology, and fill in the blank: "I generally (accept/reject) teleological arguments because I think _____." (Or: "Whether I'll accept or reject teleological arguments depends on _____.")
Example: "I generally reject teleological arguments because I think it's weird to say that an effect is its own cause."
Spend at least 20 seconds occupying your mind with the game and quote below. Then try the review questions. Don’t go straight to the review now—let your working memory empty out first.
Playing With Words:
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A Point Well Made:
Turkish proverb: "If you speak the truth, have one foot in the stirrup."
1. The nearest opposite of TELEOLOGICAL is
A. PHENOMENOLOGICAL (pertaining to events/experiences)
B. ETIOLOGICAL (pertaining to causes/origins)
C. HELIOLOGICAL (pertaining to the sun)
2. Her abiding teleological belief was that _____.
A. for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction
B. everything happens for a reason
C. love conquers all
Answers are below.
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Disclaimer: Word meanings presented here are expressed in plain language and are limited to common, useful applications only. Readers interested in authoritative and multiple definitions of words are encouraged to check a dictionary. Likewise, word meanings, usage, and pronunciations are limited to American English; these elements may vary across world Englishes.
Answers to review questions:
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