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is philosophy pointless in modern society? and if no why did it die?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/24/2018 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 493 times Debate No: 111399
Debate Rounds (3)
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against if you think philosophy isn't pointless.
pro if you think philosophy is pointless.

I don't think philosophy is pointless but surely that's flawed logic when the art has died.

is philosophy pointless in today's Society when science is now answering the questions that would usually be answered by philosophers ? I'm for philosophy in fact I love philosophy, but as a tool philosophy has failed to keep up to date with people and if you have to force the tool upon people then people are not at fault it's the tool, right ? so my question is:
1 is philosophy pointless ?
2 if not why is it not as prominent ?
3 will philosophy make a comeback with the moral questions regarding our new technology such as self driving cars ?
as it is philosophy feel free to go off in a tangent.


Hello there!

Well I happen to be a physics student who is also doing a few history and philosophy of science units just to break up the monotony of countless streams of equations and numbers so I thought I'd give it a shot.

1. Philosophy is certainly not pointless. This can be ultimately seen by the fact that our society is built upon it. The most prolific Greek philosophers ( Plato, Aristotle and so many more) were forgotten and lost for many thousands of years until the founding of trinity college Cambridge in the 13th century or so, whereupon they were rediscovered in the search for teaching material. As one may be able to guess, this was the tail end of the dark ages, and the philosophy itself is the reason this was the tail end. The heretical ideas of a universe working without a god, the promotion of free thinking outside of the church's tyrannical limits, lead to the renaissance, and beyond until the modern western society. We built on their foundations.
Philosophy is and always will be useful for the thinking it promotes, especially in a time of crisis such as the dark ages. It is the concept behind the thinking of the why's and how's of everything. Pure philosophy might be slightly diminished but only because it's ancestors, as in the sciences, mathematics and humanities, have branched off, but all of these things were discussed by the philosophers and any of them would consider them an extension of philosophy rather than a replacement.

2. Philosopher was a term first really used to apply to the Athenian upper classes who as such were only allowed to think and not use their hands on experiments as that was beneath them, so there were never very many to begin with. There are more philosophers now than ever, even in the pure sense of the word. The other main reason is the branching off into physics, which stayed with Newton solving Plato and Aristotle's long debate of the movement of the heavens. Newton's work was a direct answer, in a very similar spirit, to those philosopher's. Philosophy is everywhere, but the "how" of everything has gone to science, whilst the why has remained with the philosopher for the most part.

3. Damn right it will! We are entering a new stage. A new renaissance. We have built so much so quickly in the last century but we haven't stopped to ask the why and now we have global warming and a serious renewable and sustainable energy problem. We didn't stop to ask why, because it wasn't an obvious question. Now however with the looming rise of AI, AR, VR and a host of many more terrifying acronyms, the questions simply can no longer be avoided.

That's my round one! Any thing you wish to challenge, then please do so and I'll get back to you in the next round.
Debate Round No. 1


That was a delight to read, I am hoping you do win this, but I will try to debate further.

Though philosophy has been a very useful thing in the past I have found that it's only really survived fragmented. Society has been built around philosophy ever since Socrates was killed in ancient Greece, though I've often found that anyone arguing that philosophy isn't pointless discusses events dating back thousands of years and surely in a way that shows how outdated it is when no recent philosophical breakthroughs have been made in the public eye? I'm certainly sure breakthroughs have been made, but they are unappreciated by most. This in a way is made worse when you consider that there are far more philosophers today, surely it should be more prominent with the number of philosopher's. I find myself often questioning existence and self awareness because it is a truly incredible thing, but when I attempt to share views on mass media such as Facebook they are mostly overlooked. Most of society doesn't necessarily care for the why's and how's of it as long as it works. Saddening as it may be currently I feel like philosophy in its purest sense is dead. Philosophy is at its greatest when it is most needed.

Though I can see your point that science could be considered a branch of philosophy I feel like that isn't always a shared view, look at Stephen Hawking he claimed that philosophy is dead. Science is mainly based on maths and logical analysis, string theory etc. where philosophy isn't necessarily. My views are quite torn on this which is why I quoted Stephen Hawking. Is science a branch of philosophy?

I do believe philosophy will make a comeback with the questions regarding our technology, maybe that is the beauty of philosophy and it comes and goes when it's needed. do you think it's needed now? if so why hasn't made a major comeback?

I hope I was able to provide a different point of view.
I look forward to your response.
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Debate Round No. 2
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Debate Round No. 3
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by shivambam 3 years ago
philosophy is very important part without asking basic question of existence how can you live.
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