Archive for the ‘Subjectivity’ Category

Philosophy, faith, dogma and authority

September 28, 2008

On Philosophy asks What Is Philosophy, And What Can It Do For You?

I don’t find the answers satisfying, but I will only pick on a few things.

religion is built on faith and dogma while philosophy is not

I can’t accept this dogma on faith.

Philosophy embraces the idea that claims are to be argued for, or at least motivated in some way, and that every theory is subject to criticism and revision. Any satisfactory definition of philosophy will at least rule out faith and authority as a source of philosophical theories.

Such a satisfactory definition would rule out all philosophy, because the fundamental assumptions of any philosophy cannot be proven, only assumed (tentatively). We must trust ourselves as authority in using these assumptions for philosophical investigation.

Philosophy must not pretend to have a completely objective, God’s eye view of the world. When it assumes it does, it has lost credibility in its ultimate purpose of questioning the world and providing answers – answers which must ultimately be accepted on faith.

Many philosophers do not take seriously the idea that philosophical theories are ultimately grounded in faith. Many are unwilling to admit that extent to which they have trusted the theories of others on authority. It is time to get real; to admit that God-like objectivity is impossible; to admit a certain degree of subjectivity.