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To those without roadmaps

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Cmac19
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To answer the question “is philosophy important” one may simply give a brief and certain “yes” as an answer. However, to prove that “yes” one must examine the nature of philosophy and the nature of existence. Imagine that your life is a long journey that takes place on a massive and interconnected serious of roads and that leads to any destination you may choose, be it productive worker, family man, house wife, murderer, thief, drug dealer or world leader. In this journey that is your life your body is that vehicle you drive, your mind is its driver and the roadways are all of your decisions, words and actions. Now, since you were not born with, nor were you ever taught, a complete knowledge of every roadway and its destination in reality; so you were not born with, and were never taught, a complete knowledge of every roadway of life or its destination. The truth is that some of these roads do truly lead to happiness, to a life which you fervently wish to live, however, many of these roads lead nowhere at all, and some of them lead only to cliffs. Life is a dangerous journey, and in order to properly navigate the many twists and turns of the roads of life what one needs is a proper roadmap. This map is philosophy. A philosophy is merely and integrated system of ideas and the truth is that everyone has one. You may call it your belief system, your ideals, your moral code, but everyone has some form of philosophy. The contents of your philosophy, of your belief system, your ideals, your moral code, dictates the range and the accurate nature of your roadmap. Many philosophies were designed without knowing the true nature of the road system or where it led, and some were designed specifically to lead you to and over the cliffs. Your choice of what to believe, what ideals to hold, what moral code to follow, of a philosophy, dictates whether you will reach the destination you desperately desire, or only a short drop after the cliff, or whether you will trudge on endlessly, with a growing sense of bitter resentment at the hopelessness of your quest, and die somewhere on the endless maze of roadways leaving only the rusted hulk of your vehicle as a monolithic reminder of your lifetime of achievements. Those who choose an irrational philosophy may, by blind luck, wind up at some kind of destination which they may grudgingly settle for, but those who choose not to even think about the subject, and to leave the contents of their philosophy in the hands of others, are throwing out their roadmap, and are doomed to wander through the roadways of life until they reach the edge of a cliff or shut down by the side of the road.

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That's a good metaphor, I think. So many of the people I deal with on a daily basis hold that philosophy is of no importance to their lives--and they never stop to wonder, "Now how did I come to believe that? Is it valid? How do I know?"

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A philosophy is merely and integrated system of ideas and the truth is that everyone has one.

I agree with you that humans need to be guided by a philosophy. Most choose the religious route, while there are some who chose to wing it, by not choosing a specific system of principles, and hoping that they make the right choices. Not may people have the courage to step up the plate, and live rationally.

Good analogy by the way.

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In most cases I would agree, except that I have one friend who I regularly argue philosophy with. He's a very intelligent person and he studies philosophy fervently, however, he has not chosen to truly accept any philosophy as far as I know. He seems to be the ultimate skeptic, and I would call him one except that he has openly denounced skepticism. However, as I said, for most people this is 100% true

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In most cases I would agree, except that I have one friend who I regularly argue philosophy with. He's a very intelligent person and he studies philosophy fervently, however, he has not chosen to truly accept any philosophy as far as I know. He seems to be the ultimate skeptic, and I would call him one except that he has openly denounced skepticism. However, as I said, for most people this is 100% true

I find the anti-skeptic comment ironic.

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In most cases I would agree, except that I have one friend who I regularly argue philosophy with. He's a very intelligent person and he studies philosophy fervently, however, he has not chosen to truly accept any philosophy as far as I know. He seems to be the ultimate skeptic, and I would call him one except that he has openly denounced skepticism. However, as I said, for most people this is 100% true

A skeptic denouncing skepticism may very well be consistent.

The mystic "just knows" whatever he wants to believe; the skeptic "just doesn't know" whatever he wants not to believe. The operative term and guiding force here is "wants," i.e., feeling.

In other words, they appeal to faith.

Continuing, he points out that the skeptic has faith that the mind's certainties are not certain.

In a contrast between 'God' and 'doubt', a 'God' susceptible of proof and a 'doubt' susceptible of objective validation would both be finite, undermining either.

To acknowledge and embrace skepticism is actually an anathema to the skeptic. By embracing skepticism as a philosophy, it serves to become the very 'proof' that it seeks to avoid.

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