From Wikipedia:

A philosophy of life is any general attitude towards, or philosophical view of, the meaning of life or of the way life should be lived. The term is generally used in an informal sense, meaning a personal philosophy whose focus is resolving basic existential questions about the human condition rather than an academic philosophical endeavour

In the physical science there is knowledge of the layman and knowledge of the ones who studied a subject in university (or on their own). Their knowledge is a specialized elaborated and sophisticated form of layman knowledge. Can the same be said of life philosophies? Is there layman philosophy? Is a philosophy of life layman philosophy?


1 Answer 1


Philosophies of Life can be, and have been, produced by academic philosophers. There is a tendency within academic philosophy to focus on smaller scope problems than those of "what worldview should one have", "what is good and moral action" and "how should I live my life". But one can find some of the giants of philosophy even today writing books advocating for a particular worldview, moral perspective, and approach to life. Some examples:

Bertrand Russell's "Why I am not a Christian", "New Hope for a Changing World, and "The Conquest of Happiness".

Karl Popper's "The Open Society and Its Enemies", "Conjectures and Refutations", and "the Unfinished Journey".

Daniel Dennett's "Breaking the Spell", "Freedom Evolves" and "from Bacteria to Bach and Back"

So no, philosophies of life can be and are part of academic philosophy.

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