Types of Philosophy

Types of Philosophy
There are many ways to express a philosophical idea; find what those ways are by reading this article!Philosophy is a branch of culture that takes pride in the fact that it promotes free thinking and it is by definition always open to new ideas. This aspect is also reflected in the many ways in which a philosopher can communicate his thoughts.

1. Oral philosophy - it is the oldest form of philosophy. Its main representative is Socrates, who never wrote anything. The advantages consist in the fact that the speaker can make spontaneous comparisons and at the same time he can be more convincing. However, there is the risk of mutating the information every time it is communicated to another person.

2. Philosophy as a poem - it has its origin in the fact that there was a time when everything was written in rimes. In this case we have the work of Parmenides. Advantage: it can appeal to a larger number of people. Disadvantage: the ideas may not be expressed in a clear manner due to the use of metaphors.

3. Philosophy as a dialog - it can be in either oral or written form. The main examples are of course Plato’s dialogs. It allows philosophers to develop literary works, because the language of a dialog needs to be expressive in order to convince. Also, a gradually built idea that during the dialog is always promoted can be more convincing to the reader than one that is simply exposed on its own. However, the demonstration is sometimes a bit forced because the creator already knows the idea and he is trying to justify it at any cost.

4. Philosophy expressed as an essay where the word comes from the French "essayer" which means "to try". It is a very spread form of philosophy. Here we have the works of Montaigne. A major drawback is the fact that it is difficult to separate it from other forms of essays.

5. Philosophy as a journal - it is the case of philosophers who present reflection on personal experiences. It is a subjective form of philosophy opposed to objective thinking which uses an abstract language and deals with man’s external world. Kierkegaard is famous for expressing his ideas in this manner. He believed that philosophy must reflect the individual’s experiences. The main purpose is to live an authentic experience. A written work regarding nature can never take the form of a journal because it searches an objective truth, while in a journal the author exposes his own truth. Moreover, a journal does not require a rigorous demonstration.

6. Philosophy as an aphorism - it is basically a thought expressed in few words. It is the opposite of philosophy as a system. It was used at the beginning of philosophy by the pre-Socratics to capture the profound aspects of the world or to illustrate in a more profound way something already known. But the aphorism was used, in parallel with other form, throughout history. The philosophers who used this form of expression gained fame because aphorisms have great literary value. However, in philosophy the aphorism is insufficient in the demonstration of an idea.

7. Philosophy in letters - there are not ordinary letters because they express important philosophical ideas that cannot be ignored or separated from the doctrine of a philosopher. It is worth mentioning that no philosopher has ever exposed his whole philosophy in letters, but only some aspects that cannot be organized.

Philosophy exposed mathematically - there is no secret in the fact that the majority of philosophers were seduced by the clarity and precision of the mathematical language. A very good example in this sense in Descartes who wanted to start from a few basic truths and then advance by using mathematical inspired method to reach other more complex truths.

8. Philosophy as a system - it is the form that captures the very essence of philosophy. The history of philosophy can actually be considered a succession of philosophical systems. Every philosophical system develops around a central general idea and tries to justify it. Some critics complain that philosophy as a system is too theoretical with almost no link to experience. However, every important piece of philosophical work tends to take the shape of a system.

Every form of philosophy presented above has its advantages and its limits. The most important thing is that whatever form is being used the essence of philosophy that separates it from other forms of culture must be protected and respected.

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