Fundamentals of philosophy

From Wikiversity
Jump to navigation Jump to search

What is Philosophy?[edit | edit source]

A student once mused that philosophy is the study of unanswerable questions. While this may be intriguing to some, it holds the possibility of being frustrating and an outright turn-off to many. This statement merits further investigation and consideration. But, luckily for us, the statement is not as true as its author would hope.

Philosophy, famous today for tackling many of the "big questions" in life — questions, indeed, about the whole of life itself: "What is the meaning of life?", "Why are we here?", "What is truth?", etc. — is an attempt to satiate innate human curiosity with human logic and reason.

Why Study Philosophy?[edit | edit source]

This is lucky for us, as previously noted, because, through careful reasoning, many of the questions that philosophy long ago considered have found their way into the sciences. As Bertrand Russell, the notable 20th century British philosopher, notes in his work Why Study Philosophy?, the ancient Greeks wrestled with notions of the self, the good life, and other questions that remain unanswered today. But they also considered the Heavens, the mind, and the body.

Such curiousity, inquisition, and discovery has led to the fields of psychology, psychiatry, and astronomy. Russel notes that many questions that once fell into the realm of philosophy have since evolved into full blown sciences.

Many find it fulfilling to devote their life to the acquisition of knowledge through deep thought and reason. As noted on the main page, a philosopher is literally a lover of wisdom.

If you have ever wondered about these topics and questions, then we suggest that you consider investing some time in philosophy. The topics are broad, from ethics to knowledge and the inner workings of the mind, to the defense of anarchism.