Thursday, September 07, 2017

Philodoxy Does Not Equal Stupidity

One person, after reading my recent post on the structure of our current political life, accused me of believing of that all of the philodoxers are "too stupid" to form their own opinions.

But that is not the issue at all: the issue is one of objective, not of intelligence. The philodoxers are are not less intelligent (necessarily) than are philosophers; they have a different aim. The philosopher tries to conform his ideas to the truth, whereas the philodoxer tries to formulate opinions that make him liked and respected. Those opinions can be formed with a tremendous amount of cleverness; indeed, there are absolutely brilliant academics out there who use their brilliance in the interest of gaining kudos from their peers.

The fact that the difference here is one of objective, and not of intelligence, is why Plato spoke of the process of becoming a philosopher as a periagogue, a turning around of the soul, rather than as a process of becoming more clever.

It is why Jeremiah notes that, by hewing to the truth, "I am ridiculed all day long; everyone mocks me."

And it is why Paul, in Romans 12, warns us, "And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God."


1 comment:

  1. Gene, just because we ridicule you doesn't mean you're a philosopher!

    ReplyDelete

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