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Philosophers and Relevancy

Updated: Jun 28

The thing that is so amusing about philosophy is this. No matter from which era or century a philosopher has come, they could always be relevant. Even if we were to move 100 years into the future with a time machine, it's most likely that people will still talk about the philosophers of old, just as they do nowadays. Therefore, a good, living philosopher, is one who aspires not only to philosophize, but also to remain as relevant to the world, regardless of time.

In fact, those who seek to immortalize themselves as philosophers, such as myself, might get insulted if told that they are irrelevant. So I've been told by someone who I once held dear to my heart. I know that some may disagree with me on this endeavor, but one day I hope to prove to her otherwise. Prove to the world, that I am a good philosopher.

How can we know that we are relevant philosophers? If you have a site or blog like mine, abstain from having activities there on your behalf, as a test. See whether or not people will come there nonetheless. If people seek to read your material, even on a day when you did not work on that material, then it needs to be told that you are indeed a relevant philosopher.

A philosopher that no one cares about, is a philosopher who is, so to speak, "good as dead". That isn't because their lives are worthless, but because philosophy is meant to be shared with the world. The reason is that philosophy can contribute and enrich lives. Not only theoratically but practically, too. It's why Socrates sacrificed his life in the name of the Athenian people, it's why Diogenes sacrificed his self-dignity, and it's why Nietzsche sacrificed his mental health. It's all in the name of not remaining forgotten in the abyss of the past.

And those who remain forgotten, can forever be lost in the dust of history. Thus, memory deserves to be a very sacred value to those who wish to be public.

If you're a philosopher, here's my tip for you. Collect as many testimonials as you can, from people who, of course, want to give them to you voluntarily, without necessarily requesting that they do so. That way, you'll know that your material comes before you. For a philosopher without recognized work can easily be questioned as such than otherwise.

Once you've gathered enough of them, feel no shame in sharing them with the world, as they serve as evidence to the fact that your job as a philosopher goes as well as any other job. Monetized or otherwise (volunteering work).

As long as you're alive, you're in a race against time. Should you not reach a state where your name is relevant, then there will be two results. Either you'll be relevant only after your death, similar to artists such as Van Goch, or you will not be relevant at all, and will remain forgotten. A philosopher's greatest enemy, is the possibility of being forgotten by people and by time. I have such fear, myself. Being forgotten is another testimony to the declining relevance to philosophy. Hence why philosophers are extensions of the craft, and not just themselves, necessarily.

And, you're not alone in this. There are other competitors, and the attention of readers, as with readers themselves, is limited. As with any other field which is served for the public. You don't have to be number 1, but you should aspire to reach as high as possible, as long as you're graced with life and with the ability to philosophize. That can apply to any industry as well in a capitalist economy.

The thing is, even if you're a very competent philosopher, there is no justification for you to reach "immortality". By "immortality" I refer to recognition that is independent of your lifespan. This is an unfair world, where shallow videos of less than a minute will get far more attention than articles such as this. Viewer-base isn't based on socialist methodology. There is no equal share of attention for those who truly deserve it. Hence, it's your job to create this justification for yourself, and rally the readers into reading your material and appreciating your philosophical material. Nowadays, with so much competition on attention, simply writing or speaking isn't enough if you wish to reach the immortalization of those before you. You need to work hard earning it. And those who refuse to work hard, might easily fall to get-rich-quick schemes.

A few final words about relevance in philosophy. The "path of sin" is to turn your words into a cult, something that Pythagoras and Osho did during their lifetimes. However, by making your philosophy a cult, you will severely increase your chances of having your reputation stained by others, even by the media. Therefore, you shouldn't become a cult leader. You should become a philosopher with a community of viewers of equal status as yourself.

The path between philosophership and cultist condescension is, unfortunately, quite thin. Avoiding cultist organization would mean that your philosophy might be more respected than otherwise. That's because many people may think in an ad-hominem matter. They won't necessarily distinguish between the philosopher's life and his work. Ruin your reputation as a person, and your work's reputation can be ruined as well, by people who don't properly understand that philosophy is an exchange of ideas. It isn't an exchange of the people who create and discuss said ideas.

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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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