Thursday, November 17, 2016
Appreciation Does Not Equate to Dependence
(H3) Can you have a favorite philosopher without compromising your critical independence from him/her? I think you can have a favorite philosopher without adopting their ideas. There are plenty of philosophers that I respect, but with whom I disagree. I might like their ideas over one topic, but find another of their conclusions odd or inaccurate. I also might like their philosophy, but hate their delivery, which makes a huge difference in the perception and reception of their ideas, or vice versa. Also, just because I like the way a person's mind works and the conclusions they draw, doesn't mean I change my philosophy to mirror theirs. Having a firm grasp on what you believe can allow you to support a philosopher without adopting their ideas. While imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, adhering to one’s own independence and philosophy is even more admirable. Being able to understand and relate to someone else’s ideas and then use that to strengthen your own ideas, is a sign of true comprehension. Appreciation does not equate to dependence. I can appreciate a style of artwork, like minimalism or pop art, and still maintain my own style and voice. I can appreciate a certain type or genre of music and still have a favorite genre other than that previous type. The point is that having a favorite philosopher does not prohibit you from liking other philosophers and having your own ideas. Much like a favorite teacher in school, just because you like the way they teach or believe does not mean you are restricted to only thinking the way they think. We are each our own person, with our own philosophies. Our philosophies may change over time, based our experiences and accumulated knowledge, but they will remain unique to that person.