Visualizin’ Philosophizin’

Philosophical Blogging

Many of us bloggers philosophize.  Some of us are outright professional philosophers, some of us sloppily slip out philosophical claims in the midst of our dairy-like posts, and then there is everything in between.  Recently I envisioned a way to simply illustrate two important aspects of philosophical thinking — systematization and knowledge.  I have quickly crafted this taxonomy of  Philosopher Types which categorizes according to both degrees of systematization and depth of knowledge.

This visual taxonomy goes with the caveat that none of us is just one type of philosopher.  We all have different philosophers living in us depending on the time of day, our company and the subject matter.  On a good day, I like to think of myself as a solid casual philosopher.  However, when I read the smart guys, it makes me feel like that is a bit of an arrogant over-estimation ! 🙂

Questions for readers

  • Would you add or correct any categories?
  • What axises would you like to see on a philosopher taxonomy chart?
  • How do you see yourself when it comes to your blogging philosophy or theology?

Chart Wars

Finally, below is a fun video I saw on “Graph Wars” which illustrates the importance of visual thinking — both deceptive and productive uses.  It also secretly evangelizes the great Flying Spaghetti Monster (pbuh) and speaks of the infamous pirates.

Vodpod videos no longer available.
HT: Experimental Theology


Filed under Philosophy & Religion

8 responses to “Visualizin’ Philosophizin’

  1. Ian

    Superb video, I loved it!

    I’m always a bit wary of taxonomies. I think they are excellent tools for abstraction, and you only can think of big things if you’ve abstracted away the small stuff. But so often the little stuff you’ve abstracted away is the more interesting and important stuff.

    I’m not sure that wikipedia junkies are really right up there with professional philosophers though. I know all the encyclopedia can tell me about Kant, but after several times of trying I still don’t *get* Critique of Pure Reason 😦

  2. societyvs

    “How do you see yourself when it comes to your blogging philosophy or theology?” (Sabio)

    I am a casual philosopher – I dabble in some things deeper than in others. Philosophy always seemed, to me, to be about a way of understanding the world around us and all the ideas that inter-connect. I even think politics are philosophies on life.

    I am a theologian of some sort – I just hate to make something sound a lot smarter than it really is though. I have always loved people that can take a tough idea and break that down into something almost everyone in society can relate to. This is something I try to do – since sounding smart is nice – being relatable is even better.

    Philosophy, when I first read some of the writers in the field brought such enthusiasm to me…something about this field of study and the seeking going on in it speaks to my very limited and rationale human experience that I have.

    I am a casual philosopher…I philosophize as much as I blog – and I usually refuse to go too deep into philosopical questions since I am all about ‘what works and what doesn’t’ – and knowing if God can or can’t make a rock bigger than Himself is quite absurd. Those types of things just kind of do little in all reality.

  3. No idea what kind of philosopher I am.

    depending on the time of day, our company and the subject matter.

    But I know for sure you missed a stage. I definitely think differently around that time of the month. Shall we call it hormones?

  4. For Confused Pedestrians, the more systematized the less knowledgeable?

  5. Sorry, LB, I don’t follow your question.

    Confused Pedestrians: low knowledge + low syst.
    Armchair: low knowl. + high syst.

    Make sense? Do you have a suggestion?

  6. The shape of the blob representing CF indicates that the more systematic a CF’s philosophy is the less knowledge he has. The shape is downward trending along the x-axis.

  7. I am not sure you are looking at this sort of chart correctly. I am not sure what you mean by “CF”.
    But let’s talk PC (“Pedistrian Confusion”)
    The chart says:
    The more systematization a PC gets, the more chance they have of morphing into a Casual Philosopher or Armchair Pseudo-philospher depending if knowledge also increases.
    I hope that makes sense.

  8. Yes, I meant PC not CF, and yes, now it makes sense. I think the edge of the blobs should be touching (perhaps feathered into each other). The white space confuses me, indicating to my mind that certain coordinates don’t belong to any group.

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