This article posted on one of the news sites that I am regularly following certainly deals with a common problem, a question that must have been posed multiple times during the history of philosophy. The article starts with the recent statement of the famous slovenian philosopher Slavoj Zizek, in which he “endorsed” Trump as president – though with a lot of restrictions, so to say. See here. The article then continues with a brief recap of the historical interaction of philosophers with public affairs, identifies the point when the path of direct interaction was left, and finally dwells on several problems in modern-day philosophy that led to the under-representation of philosophy in public affairs. Interestingly, the article clearly outlines the same structural problems of the scientific world that are commonly criticised, and that almost everyone trying to gain foothold in science has encountered, not even mentioning the early critics of these methods. In this case meaning that the intense pressure to publish something new and showing off your skills in abstract fields distracts philosophers from focussing on the understanding of things that may be simple, but are of the greatest importance to humanity’s perception of and interaction with the world.
As someone highly interested in philosophy who always tries to see how it could be relevant for practical life, even if “practical” simply means modifying your brain to different paths of thinking, I enjoyed the approach the author of this article has taken. And in general I sincerely hope that philosophy, or the art of thinking, will soon regain some levels of impact.
It’s about time, don’t you think?