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Philosophers Analysis (Compare/ Contrast) - Essay Example

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Philosophers Analysis (Compare/ Contrast)

All of us will inevitably build ourselves a vision for life, a personal philosophy that is beyond philosophical systems. It is in this vital human activity that the Pope unveils the relevance of theology because it affirms the dignity of human intelligence by which we are made in His image and distinguished from the rest of His creation. In the face of seemingly complex philosophical systems that seem to offer only pragmatism and dogmatism, the Church offers a corrective measure that relates reason and philosophy to revelation and theology. Pope John Paul II states that "there is a indissoluble and profound unity between the knowledge of faith and knowledge of reason". There is no reason for competition of any kind between reason and faith because it contains the other.
According to the Pope, a philosophy of life based on reason alone gives only a pale, vulnerable and undeveloped understanding. When revelation is absent, those of good will and right reason will be subject to self-deception, mistakes and sin. In the Pope's words, "faith asks that its object be understood with the help of reason. At the apex of its searching, reason acknowledges that it cannot do without what faith presents." Without reason, faith tends towards untutored feeling, emotion and intuition and without faith, reason leans towards unrestrained self-interest, the current 'isms' and our transient and personal satisfactions.
Pope John Paul's belief in the relationship between philosophy and theology can also be found in the questions of Socrates in Euthyphro. In this account, Socrates forwards the notion of a "natural theology". While rituals and belief in the divine are considered to be product of ignorance by philosophers, there is something "natural" in man that compels him to be united in such matters even when his intellect would rebel at the thought. According to Socrates, the power of man that allows him to integrate all of the diverse elements that the philosophers divide is his experience of the holy. It also corresponds to the idea of St. Thomas Aquinas that while humans are rational beings, it is the soul which enables him to conduct intelligible operations. However, Kierkegaard argues that reliance on faith would produce like-minded, stereotyped individuals incapable of making their own existential choices and breaking from socially imposed identities. In other words, relying on theology so as to reconcile and address philosophical conundrums would only be futile as it would not lead to the discovery of the truth but an imposition of truth.
2.0 Socrates and Knowledge
Meno's paradox involves a question on the need of dialectical discussion. Basically, it states that if you know what you are looking for, then inquiry is unnecessary and if you don't know what you're looking for, inquiry is impossible. The solution proposed by Socrates is to acknowledge that we already know what we need to know, the doctrine of recollection. This doctrine basically states that our knowledge comes from acquaintances with eternal realities during a previous life. Aside from supernatural explanations, what is important to note is that Socrates was trying to make us appreciate that the goal of discourse is not to convey new information but rather to elicit awareness of something that an individual ...Show more


According to Pope John Paul II, Philosophy aims to discover the truth but should not be limited to academic circle and discussion by university professors. The Philosopher Pope emphasizes that while debates of professional philosophers are indeed noteworthy, all people are capable of conducting philosophical enquiry at some stage in their lives…
Author : tcrooks
Philosophers Analysis (Compare/ Contrast) essay example
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