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On The Path of Philosophership -- Recognition

Updated: Mar 21

AI image by Mr. Elad Muskatel

(This is part of a mini-series on Philosocom on becoming a philosopher. The rest of the material is in this directory).

Ms. Tamara Moskal's Synopsis

A philosopher craves recognition and respect from others. Their authority comes from philosophizing, not from memorizing books. A philosopher's ideas must be distinctive yet resonate with people's minds to raise and keep their interest.
A philosopher is a creator and doesn't need a diploma to prove their worth. You can learn how to think logically online, contemplate in solitude, and support your theories by research. A degree is only relevant if you intend to work in academia. Philosophy is a field where broad agreement is difficult. There are only a few rules: be existential, logical, and persistent. You earn the title of philosopher through your intellect. Practicing philosophy is work and requires sacrifices.


Why Philosophers Must Earn Their "Sovereignty" From Anonymity

Philosophers, as presented in part of intellectualist misconception, can easily be seen as some pompous figures whose authority is questioned as much as they question reality itself.

Yet, unlike your run-of-the-mill "authoritarian", the philosopher craves not dominion over others, but dominion from them – a power forged in the fires of recognition, respect, and, dare I say much intrigue. In this age of gilded certificates and bias of prestige, philosophy stands awkwardly out of step.

One can memorize the dusty tomes of ancient thinkers and their methods until their beard turns grey make a philosopher distinctive or even important to others. No, the true philosopher's authority springs not from the solitary halls of libraries, but from the very act of philosophizing itself – the occupation with uncertainty, the attempt to understand the mysteries of existence, the relentless, often-solitary quest for meaning in a universe that might not care either way.

That is what turns the philosopher from the philosophy student or even a philosophy professor: Their minds are distinctive that it is a "brand" of sorts, like any brand of a corporation you may know today. Socrates, Aristotle, Kant -- by their own intellect they forged a brand of their own that distinguishes them by their own mentality, for good, and for bad. In theory there is not much that isn't a double-edged sword in some way, but I digress.

Think of it, if you will, like the difference between lecturing about airplanes and actually flying them. One can point out facts about wing sizes and fuel capacities and whatever. And yet, until you've piloted the aircraft the wind, you haven't truly grasped the essence of flight.

Being capable of altering our minds, as it has been doing with my own mind, philosophizing on a constant basis gives 1 point to empricism over rationalism because it's an act that has the power to transform you and make you more unique as an individual.

What is recognition without distinction? You cannot recognize something over other things, if it is not distinctive enough. Contrary to my devised reverse-individuality theory you won't be recognized as a philosopher if your average ideas will get overlooked.

Your claims hold weight only as long as they resonate with other minds, determined enough to bother reading you frequently. They could, at the same time, spend their free time playing a free-to-play mobile game, but the fact that they can choose you over an addictive phone game, speaks much of what you're capable of.

Earn your sovereignty from the ceilings of anonymity through the sweat and blood of genuine inquiry. Let your ideas take flight, and not as echoes of past intellects. On the powerful currents of your own critical thinking you can, perhaps, gain dominance over an empire of thought, to secure it for generations to come, long after your departure.

Proving Your Philosophical Genius Regardless of Diplomas

A philosopher is necessarily a creator, and not merely an observer of things that have already been created by others throughout history. We need to understand that understanding is an active process of information, and that we don't just passively retain information like a memory databank. The way schools teach us is largely incompetent because we may lose so much of what we learn.

How come? We need to improve our process of information so we could understand it better. Testing us for informtion we simply need to memorize isn't enough for us to even understand it enough. This is one of the things that lead to the illusion of knowledge, while in reality, which Socrates admitted, he, and we, know "nothing".

Likewise, the fact that an airplane pilot just graduated from his or her school doesn't necessarily make them a skilled pilot if they ended up being incompetent as a pilot (this is merely an analogy). Getting several A's in class for writing several essays on Jewish history doesn't necessarily make me an expert on Jewish history. Expertise is much more profound than the paper certificate/s which aim/s to validate it.

With or without certification, anyone can claim the title of "philosopher", just like anyone can make shallow content, gain social media subscribers across the world, and then call themselves "influencers". Overrated, isn't it?

But the "real deal", the Einsteins and Kierkegaards, they prove their worth with every daring dive into the abyss of thought, and actually doing something that's distinctive with it. So distinctive that they go above the heights of others, thus gaining themselves recognition like any other notable thinker.

If you want to learn how to think like a philosopher, there is no need to get a certificate to do so. Read online material, watch some videos, and contemplate extensively in solitude. Write your insights, make the necessary research to see if they align with reality (or what reality might become). Try to understand how you could be wrong, and not only how you are right.

This careful and delicate work, a combination of any component necessary for studying the truth, is the very activitiy that, even after years, can eventually get yourself a degree of relevence on a global scale. If to freely translate a specific saying in Hebrew: "The drop of water doesn't dig a rock by its power of impact but by its power of persistence".

Do any of this requires a degree? Only if you intend to be dominant in the academia. But why limit your audience of readers/listeners to the confines of luxurious institutions, in a world whose academic students find it harder and harder to afford their studies in them? Think for the long term. Plan ahead. Gatekeep yourself too much in the "ivory towers" of the academia and you'll be limiting people's own access to your material, which can do much good to the world.

Consider the fact that gaining recognition in this niche isn't instant and probably will never be an instant success. And you also might not necessarily become a "superstar" or whatever, considering how shallowness is in theory a necessary "evil". No. If anything, you're doing this to study reality in a way most people don't bother, and yet still go on claiming how knowledgeable they are.

Recognition's a double-edge sword in a world filled by toxic forums and the easy submission to the temptation of hatred. On the one hand, philosophizing is pretty easy once you practice contemplation on the existential level, and do so regularly. But, on the other hand, some people would call you a hoax, a fake, or a pretender simply because you don't have anything else to prove your position other than your own mind and logical reasoning.

Philosophy is a field where it is very hard to find wide agreement on many subjects where philosophy is involved. Thus, sometimes one's own credibility might be put in doubt. How come? Anything in philosophy can be doubted legitimately using the very means you used yourself in the name of the truth. Fail to prove the worth of your content to those who are too close-minded, and they might "sin" what I call "The Whole Person Fallacy", using the rationale that the mind behind the presented material, also matters.

There are no "universal" rules other than those two: Be existential (AKA aim for a profound understanding of reality) and logical, as much as you possibly can be. Work on them tirelessly using a "grindset" and like with many skills they can improve over time. You just be surprised of how much your brain is capable of once you put it under a training regimen. We have so much potential we can achieve, but we remain unaware of the true extent of our abilities.

Therefore, if you wish to practice philosophy publicly, you need earn your title through the sheer force of your intellect, the audacity of your ideas, and the unrelenting confidence in your own logic (unless proven otherwise, of course). You need to be a crusader for your own philosophies, a gladiator in the arena of thought, as you fight to gain the support of other like-minded, rational individuals.

It might be tiring as it might be stressful to be a philosopher. You might find yourself suffering from insomnia as your intellect confronts issues that leave you restless. How come? It is in the night where the intellects can ponder the most undisturbed, hence many of those who are more intellectual by nature, tend to be night owls.

But nevertheless, whether done in the name of having fun or in the name of other purposes, philosophizing -- and the attainment of your distinct recognition as someone who does it -- is work. A work of expanding one's perception to horizons many people don't bother considering much. As such, never underestimate the fact that the seeking of the truth requires sacrifice.

Have I already mentioned that influence and power can be seen for what they basically are: a means to an end?

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Tomasio A. Rubinshtein, Philosocom's Founder & Writer

I am a philosopher from Israel, author of several books in 2 languages, and Quora's Top Writer of the year 2018. I'm also a semi-hermit who has decided to dedicate his life to writing and sharing my articles across the globe. Several podcasts on me, as well as a radio interview, have been made since my career as a writer. More information about me can be found here.

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