It was believed that the gods were volatile and unpredictable and thus man was at their mercy because they controlled everything. Philosophers introduced a very different line of thought, divergent from the first assumption. They are referred to as thinkers, implying that they ushered in an era where man started to come to conclusions about the issues of life through reason and observation. Philosophy has grown over the years and has been subject to religious and ethical; considerations. This is because religion and ethical standards determine how people act and philosophy tries to explain why things happen and how people act in certain ways.
Philosophical history started to appear in ancient Greece in the 6th century B.C.in the city of Miletus (Russell 3). This early group of philosophers is known as the Milesian philosophers because of the city they came from.These early philosophers may have had findings that would seem odd today, such as some claims made by one of the Philosophers, Thales, that everything was made of water and everything is full of gods, but all the same, it was the gods that triggered man to shift from his earlier position and to examine other ways to explore why things happened the way they did and why man also behaved the way he did. Man started to observe life from a completely new perspective due to the influence of philosophers. Ancient Greece went on to produce some of the greatest philosophers in the western world, and this revolutionized the whole world in its way of thinking as man started to thirst for and seek wisdom (Kenny, 19). Philosophy has been referred to by some people as the love of wisdom. Philosophy is important to man because it looks at basic issues through reason and observation, and thus enables us to choose the way to do things and also how to live with one another in harmony in any given situation and grouping. It enables man to come to conclusion about issues from a point of knowledge. Today, philosophy has developed over the years and covers mainly for different areas which are logic, epistemology, metaphysics and axiology. Logic involves the obtaining of knowledge by looking at the evidence and listening to the arguments brought forth and analyzing them philosophically (Brown). People may say what they do not mean but a philosopher can bring out the truth through philosophical reasoning. Epistemology, which is a branch of philosophy, is the ability to support what we believe with facts about it. It looks at what conditions must be satisfied so as to assert that what we say is true about something. As man makes statements about issues, epistemology is very important. Metaphysics is the study of what things exist, their nature and the reasons why they function the way they do. It also deals with examining why people behave the way they do. It examines whether it is through their free will or as a result of other factors. This is an important shift from the pre philosophy period where all was attributed to the gods and other personalities. It enables man to know his world better and even integrate better. Axiology is the study of different types of values, and these are beauty and art, social and political aspects and ethics (Brown). Political philosophy has facilitated the setting up of good political systems while ethical behavior is important as people live with one another in the world because it examines right and wrong and good and evil.