I don’t mean to imply here that philosophy should be rejected. I was just thinking of doing a series where I respond to objections to various things, such as liberalism, technology, religion, and so on.

Mind you, I don’t think philosophy is for everyone. In fact, it’s likely fit only for an intellectual minority. As I say, philosophy tends to become antisocial, the more you study it.

That’s an interesting challenge you raise, of considering what the world is like prior to any conception of it. The philosopher of pessimism, Eugene Thacker, has written about this neo-Kantian problem. He distinguishes the world-for-us (the mundane, pragmatic, anthropocentric view of things) from the world-in-itself (the world as it’s objectively, scientifically explained) and the world-without-us, the latter being the inhuman meaning of the gulf between the other two worlds. The world-without-us is the world as it would have been if no life had ever evolved, which is simultaneously the way the world really is right now, since it’s indifferent towards life, given the objective, naturalistic explanation of it.

That opening line of the Gospel of John is actually an anthropocentric description of the world-for-us, since it projects human concerns of order and understanding (Greek philosophical connotations of “Logos”) onto the origin of nature. A more objective account of things would humble philosophy rather than indulge in metaphysical idealism, solipsism, or theism.

Philosophy wasn’t there in the beginning, at the “moment” of the Big Bang. On the contrary, the universe’s origin in something like quantum mechanics is wildly counterintuitive and largely unfathomable to the human mind. Philosophy is a form of human (glorified-mammalian) flailing to grapple with the real world’s inhumanity. As such, philosophy dehumanizes the true philosopher, the authentic lover of knowledge and despiser of political correctness, feel-good opinions, and of other betrayals of the cold business of philosophy.

Knowledge condemns. Art redeems. I learned that as an artistic writer who did a doctorate in philosophy. We should try to see the dark comedy in all things.

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