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The problem of scientism in philosophy

So, being the science about the general and universal, philosophy on the one hand becomes a regulator and orientation beacon to other sciences and on the other hand it loses, as at least it seems, the possibility to have its own firm ground in order to become a really strict science with perspectives of the real development and progress in time. In real, philosophical questions are the eternal ones, every new generation of thinkers answers them in their own way. As for a fleet acquaintance with, the philosophy appears as an endless set of various repeated answers the same questions, as a going by circle, like a kind of cemetery for ideas. But it's only for the first fleet glance.

The progress in philosophy nevertheless exists. Although it is not a progress in accumulations of facts and working out a common structure, but a progress in improving and perfecting the means of argumentation analyzing and conceptualization. We can see farther, standing on the giants' shoulders. I.e. now we philosophize being based on the philosophical systems of our predecessors. These systems are models for developing our own systems. However, we quite rarely use their results or repeat their way of reasoning exactly. They are only a start-point for us and no more. Herein is the main difference in research means between philosophy and other sciences. In consequence of it it's possible to say that the philosophy is not a science at all but some kind of art, some likeness of literature. The similar point of view was supported, for example, by a modern French philosopher Jiles Deleuze. He called philosophy a creative work of concepts. A philosopher works with concepts in the same way as a writer works with artistic images.

But on the other hand, in order to explore some branch of reality it's needed to have a set of concepts, in net of which this branch will be laid in, and of principles that will allow to connect the concept in the net, means of orientation and so on. This all is a sphere of philosophy. No science can begin without it, i.e. without philosophy. That is the philosophy precedes all other sciences in time as well as rules and coordinates their development. So it becomes the science of all sciences.

These are two polar views about the philosophy's nature. There are a lot of intermediate ones between them. There exist many different philosophical systems and some of them are nearer to one, the others to another pole. So philosophy is simultaneously both the science of all sciences and not a science at all but some sort of art. This peculiarity of it raises a question of scientism in philosophy. Philosophy can be scientific and non-scientific. What sort of it is acceptable for us? There are supporters of both views. The supporters of a scientific philosophy say that the philosophy should work out its own strict conceptual base akin to those of the nature sciences. In the modern philosophy scientism is represented mainly by the positivistic philosophy, the adherents of which directly bind philosophy and nature sciences and assert that the latter should compound a basis for philosophy. The proper philosophy is reduced to some sort of general methodology or a critique for nature sciences. According to them, this is the only philosophy as a science, i.e. strict and rational means of reasoning.

The adherents of the second view say it would emasculate philosophy and make it not a philosophy but an auxiliary discipline, like some sort of errors theory. The rational part of this approach is represented mainly by the so-called phenomenology, referring all the rational statements, because of that we canít say something determine of the outer world, grounding exclusively on the reasoning, to the inner world of our consciousness phenomena. The phenomenologists pretend to make a bridge connecting rational and irrational modes of philosophizing as well as scientific and non-scientific approaches of it. The philosophy becomes a science that joins together different elements of human experience.

The problem of scientism in philosophy also may be displaced onto the surface of correlation between the rational and irrational. The scientific philosophy is the rational one. Itís quite clear. But a rational philosophy isnít obligatory the scientific (as it has been said above). The scientific philosophy is only a part of philosophy in general and the same may be said of the rational philosophy. The irrationality can spread not only on the context but also on the mode of expounding itself. Philosophy may be expressed not in words but in some other activity. For instance, in the traditional China it was spoken of the philosophy on the tip of a painting-brush (i.e. the philosophy by means of painting). A painter should not simply paint a landscape or portray a person similar to original but carry out something invisible comprised in it (some mystery placed in the landscape or the personís character through some characteristic features of its appearance). When in the XIX-th century the Europeans, having penetrated into China and made acquaintance with the Chinese painting specimens, tried to acquaint the Chinese artists with the European one, those, looking at, said ĎNothing especial, it was pictured by a mediocre painterí. For no invisible was demonstrated there. A painter is, beforehand, a philosopher who discovers some mystery, something Divine in the ordinary. Thus, the painting and the art in general may be also a sort of philosophy, of the philosophy by other means [1, p. 25 Ė 31].



Date: 2014-12-21; view: 651

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