Philosophies



[fi-los-uh-fee] /fɪˈlɒs ə fi/

noun, plural philosophies.
1.
the rational investigation of the truths and principles of being, knowledge, or conduct.
2.
any of the three branches, namely , , and , that are accepted as composing this study.
3.
a particular system of thought based on such study or investigation:
the philosophy of Spinoza.
4.
the critical study of the basic principles and concepts of a particular branch of knowledge, especially with a view to improving or reconstituting them:
the philosophy of science.
5.
a system of principles for guidance in practical affairs.
6.
an attitude of rationality, patience, composure, and calm in the presence of troubles or annoyances.
/fɪˈlɒsəfɪ/
noun (pl) -phies
1.
the academic discipline concerned with making explicit the nature and significance of ordinary and scientific beliefs and investigating the intelligibility of concepts by means of rational argument concerning their presuppositions, implications, and interrelationships; in particular, the rational investigation of the nature and structure of reality (metaphysics), the resources and limits of knowledge (epistemology), the principles and import of moral judgment (ethics), and the relationship between language and reality (semantics)
2.
the particular doctrines relating to these issues of some specific individual or school: the philosophy of Descartes
3.
the critical study of the basic principles and concepts of a discipline: the philosophy of law
4.
(archaic or literary) the investigation of natural phenomena, esp alchemy, astrology, and astronomy
5.
any system of belief, values, or tenets
6.
a personal outlook or viewpoint
7.
serenity of temper
n.

c.1300, “knowledge, body of knowledge,” from Old French filosofie “philosophy, knowledge” (12c., Modern French philosophie) and directly from Latin philosophia and from Greek philosophia “love of knowledge, pursuit of wisdom; systematic investigation,” from philo- “loving” (see philo-) + sophia “knowledge, wisdom,” from sophis “wise, learned;” of unknown origin.

Nec quicquam aliud est philosophia, si interpretari velis, praeter studium sapientiae; sapientia autem est rerum divinarum et humanarum causarumque quibus eae res continentur scientia. [Cicero, “De Officiis”]

[Philosophical problems] are, of course, not empirical problems; but they are solved through an insight into the workings of our language, and that in such a way that these workings are recognized — despite an urge to misunderstand them. The problems are solved, not through the contribution of new knowledge, rather through the arrangement of things long familiar. Philosophy is a struggle against the bewitchment (Verhexung) of our understanding by the resources of our language. [Ludwig Wittgenstein, “Philosophical Investigations,” 1953]

Meaning “system a person forms for conduct of life” is attested from 1771.

A study that attempts to discover the fundamental principles of the sciences, the arts, and the world that the sciences and arts deal with; the word philosophy is from the Greek for “love of wisdom.” Philosophy has many branches that explore principles of specific areas, such as knowledge (epistemology), reasoning (logic), being in general (metaphysics), beauty (aesthetics), and human conduct (ethics).

Different approaches to philosophy are also called philosophies. (See also epicureanism, existentialism, idealism, materialism, nihilism, pragmatism, stoicism, and utilitarianism.)

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