Friday, 21 June 2019

Philosophizing as...

The other day while listening to a paper on Schelling, and his efforts at recognizing and addressing the alienation of humankind from nature, it was interesting to hear a particular nuanced approach that lies at the heart of the issue.  Schelling says that in order to restore the lost connection, one has to become a philosopher of nature.  And how does one become one? 

Among the other ways and descriptions of what and who a nature philosopher is, the author was stating that it is not so much about a person doing 'philosophy of nature' rather it is philosophizing as nature.  In the former instance, of doing 'philosophy of nature' or 'philosophizing about nature', the person is still maintaining a separation between nature and oneself.  There is already a disunity, right at the outset of one's effort at rectifying the brokenness.  The latter perspective, of 'philosophizing as nature' is whereby one realizes oneself as part of nature, not separate or disunited from.  Humankind is part of nature.  In so far as this is true, it is nature philosophizing nature!

This perfectly sums up what Taylor is trying to say about language.  We have no vantage point outside of it, so as to speak about it.  If we do so, we are already alienating ourselves from our own reality.  Language is to be understood from the inside, not from the outside - unless one is merely doing philosophy of language. 

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