Philosophy, Society and Sapience
Updated: May 21, 2023
In my opinion, society should always value philosophy and philosophers in general. The problem is that the term "philosophy" is not well-known in its fullest sense. Some people may have never heard of this term before, or think that philosophy is "the theory that questions the meaning of life" and so forth, while in reality, philosophy is much more than that, and it is not even a definitive theory. I would claim that the majority of people do not understand what philosophy actually is: deep, complex, and logic-based contemplations on everything that is possible to be thought of.
So, if people are to claim that studying philosophy is worthless, let alone philosophizing on a daily basis, then it is like saying that using deep, complex, and logic-based contemplations on everything possible to be thought of is worthless. Have we, those whose name is "homo sapiens" which stands for "the wise humans," have really reached a point in our evolution where using deep, complex, and logical-based thinking is worthless?
If we are indeed to discard philosophizing from its importance as one of the unique and core abilities we humans have developed during our evolution, is it really possible to claim that we are indeed evolving, at least on the intellectual level? Have we really reached a point where complex thinking is no longer necessary? Do you understand the magnitude of this claim on our very definition as "homo sapiens," as the most victorious, advanced, and world-conquering species? It is therefore insane to think that philosophizing is no longer necessary!
It is the job of philosophers, regardless of how valued they are by society, to make sure that society does not decline in intellect due to cognitive idleness and the age of simplicity in which we live today. It is the duty of the philosopher to save society from blind faith, blind belief, and intellectual inferiority by showing them the heights of human intellect through philosophizing. Just think about it: only humans have the ability to philosophize, and not just specific humans—all humans, even the mentally disabled, can philosophize. Philosophizing is what makes us human, as a sapient species.
Therefore, appreciating philosophy is equivalent to appreciating the heights of human intellect. Philosophy is more than just "worthless mumble" as portrayed by modern-day slang—philosophy is the height of human logic and verbal complexity. If we are to discard philosophy, we are to discard our ability to oppose the tyranny of social norms, traditions, dogmas, and anything else which is usually taken for granted. Philosophizing is the human key to liberty from illogic and intellectual dullness.
In a world where the term "philosophy" would be fully understood by the majority of people, who are currently unaware of this technique, the following could be possible if such appreciation and the constant practice of philosophizing were to occur:
The logical skills of many would be enhanced, allowing fallacies to be discovered, and dogmas would be less likely to be widely accepted.
The intellectual skills of many would be improved, allowing the ability to indulge in verbally complex discussions and issues on a regular basis.
People would start asking more questions, instead of taking many things for granted; an ability which allows clarity and better understanding of possibly everything!
Complex verbal skills would be preserved from a potentially mind-simplifying, intellect-idling media. People would read and write much more than many do currently.
The cognitive skills of many would be improved, allowing better problem-solving abilities and to practice high-order skills on a regular basis.
Brainwashing, power-hungry, and manipulative cults would be less likely to exist because philosophizing allows people to think complex thoughts on their own, instead of letting others do that for them.
There would be more philosophers, allowing for bigger and more colorful intellectual discussions.
All of these occurrences are only what I came up with now; there could be more impacts, simply if we are all not only to appreciate philosophy, but also practice what philosophy actually is: philosophizing. This practice is not only universally possible, but can be, as said before, used on every subject possible to the human mind. Think of the potential many of us are missing simply by ignoring the merit of philosophizing!
Think of the existential emptiness our modern age has set us in.
A new world can open in front of our very eyes; a world which is embodied in this world, which is, technically, the world itself. We ignore this world by shutting our reality-clarifying philosophizing, by not putting things in doubt and in analysis, and by taking things for granted. If we are to philosophize, we are to actualize the optimality of our sapience.