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Why people find philosophers annoying

Discussion in 'The Philosopher' started by Norsemaiden, Feb 19, 2008.

  1. Norsemaiden

    Norsemaiden barbarian

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    http://www.morehouse.edu/facstaff/nnobis/papers/ed.html

    A philosopher should be like a dog with a bone. They grab hold of the problem and won't let go.

    I am put off from arguing this way because I used to make my father really angry taking apart his argument, trying to show him what it is that he seems to be saying and why it seems flawed to me and so on. I am tempted do this in various forums that I frequent, but fear that it is taken as being offensive to the person I am debating with. I appreciate it if someone would debate with me in that way, just so long as they are not constantly playing "devil's advocate" as that really is annoying!

    What do you all think?

    I am not sure which, but at least one of the ancient philosophers really annoyed those he was debating with - probably Socrates did at least.
     
  2. Donnie Darko

    Donnie Darko Destroyer of False Metal

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    People find philosophers annoying because philosophers question constantly & people don't like to be questioned or made to feel like they don't know what they think they know. Thats why Socrates had problems. People today are also often turned off & afraid of what they do not understand
     
  3. Blowtus

    Blowtus Member

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    A lot of people seem to have some level of ego / self worth attachment to 'being right', and feel threatened when any situation arises that may burst their bubble. I think 'philosophers' (anybody interested in understanding really) are more likely to have the self worth attachment to 'using the right method / trying to understand' instead of the actual specific 'result' of the method at any point in time, as such. There is a knowledge and acceptance that we will all be wrong and lack understanding at times - our methods of inquiry and desire to use them express their power at the very times when we are wrong / unsure.
     
  4. Donnie Darko

    Donnie Darko Destroyer of False Metal

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    Very true
     
  5. morierdeity

    morierdeity New Metal Member

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    I agree with the statement regarding people's ego and feeling annoyed or angered when someone questions what they feel is right. A very good book to read is How to Win Friends and Influence People. In one part of this book it looks at how the other person's ego is crucial to any conversation. There is a sort of "I've finished my grand point, now u should agree with me thing" that all people do, so to continue to question them makes them more hostile because the recognition and agreement they expect from you doesn't take place. I love to hear someone make their grand point, say "interesting" and then drop the topic, why? because by pounding them with my views i go nowhere. But, if I've said my piece, then shut up, they may not agree but their not pissed and it also is in the back of their mind. And if the occasion arouses where my way turns out true, they realize "hey, he was right" and they don't have a hurt ego.

    Please excuse all punction and grammer errors, I suck at typing.
     
  6. Donnie Darko

    Donnie Darko Destroyer of False Metal

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    Its very true. If you study Socrates at all, he spent his time in public places talking to people and trying to prove that they actually dont know anything. This did not make him very popular & eventually he was put on trial & sentenced to death.
     
  7. BlackMetalWhiteGuy

    BlackMetalWhiteGuy Manly Man!

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    I think it would be a tad hypocritical to state any resentment toward philosophers, since they're by nature, not that much different from me. While I'm not personally interested in "philosophy," for lack of a better term, I would certainly describe myself as a thinker, I just have different interests, so I spend my time thinking about different things. The study of philosophy does annoy me to a degree though, because of the expectation that we should appreciate each philosophy as unique or extraordinary when many of them are redundant or mundane.

    I remember when I was a kid, I independently developed my own sort of quasi-existentialist theory, when thinking about an argument that I had with my mom earlier that day. She said that I had to eat. I didn't argue with her about it at the time, but was later thinking to myself that people didn't really have to eat, just like they didn't really have to breath. Of course, they would die if they didn't, but they would all die anyway, so the outcome was the same and even as a small child I realized that. Obviously I didn't put as much effort into the thought as a true, learned philosopher would have, but that doesn't mean I would have either, because even at that young age, I had the insight to realize (or at least assume) that everyone else already knew what I knew and had accepted it, so naturally I didn't think it was worth talking about. That and I couldn't read or write.

    So naturally I'm just a little bit irritated that a professor would see it fit to spend an entire week's worth of class discussing what I thought we've all known since childhood. On the other side, I do enjoy making some really lame ass jokes, such as a couple weeks ago when one of my friends said he had to read a book about existentialism before class the next day, to which I replied "you don't have to read it." Then my ex was like "what's existentialism?" and I was like "I just told you." Then the guy said that he probably should read it because he didn't attend the previous class and I replied once more that from the professor's perspective, he was probably the one student who "got it."

    EDIT: My humor is very dry.

    EDIT2: I just remembered that I also independently came up with the notion that I don't know that other people and the environment around me really exist and that I can't prove that other people actually are autonomous beings. Strangely, I even remember where I was and what I was doing when this occured to me. I was in kindergarten, it was a beautiful sunny day, the school day had just ended and I was walking toward my school bus.

    Out of curiosity, did everyone else have such active minds when they were that young, or am I just strange? It seems to me that most adults don't expect or even believe that kids can be deep like that.
     
  8. Killbot

    Killbot A Killer Robot

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    I think part of the answer is in the title of this sub-forum - Intelligent (and mature) discussions only.
    To someone who's never studied it, philosophy does not appear to have any practical use and thus they see it as pretentious, I think this is why they find philosophers annoying.
     
  9. kmik

    kmik Member

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    I don't understand what you're trying to say. Nobody hates philosophy. People don't like engaging and losing in debates in general and most also don't enjoy abstract, useless discussions. I don't think it has to do with personal reasons because nobody is going to become a different person after he rejects the idea of a private language or the popperian theory of science. It has been said that philosophers are asking childish questions and that is certain, but people with no experience and I suppose people with no academic background but an interest are included, have no ammunition to answer too board, radical questions, and these are indeed impossible to answer without writing a book or something. Personally I like questioning my assumptions and reading both the rhetoric I agree and disagree with it as long as it's thoughtful and quality. Understanding something without the need to accept it is the mark of a mature and developed mind.

    But of course the subtext here is along the lines of 'It's impossible for anyone to disagree with me on grounds other than personal fear and insecurity'
     
  10. derek

    derek Grey Eminence

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    Having worked in an academic context with philosophers, taught some of them and now teaching next door to them, I can accurately say the reason many people dislike them has little to do with the philosophy, but rather than alot of them can be absolute tossers.

    Hardly very scientific, but my empirical experience leads me to believe it...
     
  11. Justin S.

    Justin S. Member

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    derek's right, "philosophy kids" are the worst... I know, I'm trapped in a department full of them :).
     
  12. Black Friday

    Black Friday Member

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    Well, you don't really need to question them from every possible angle. Just watch and observe. In fact, I find that if you simply be quiet, and say a few veiled probes, they won't even really know that you're trying to figure out their intentions.
     
  13. Nile577

    Nile577 Member

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    I'm English; I study literature; I study rampantly Continental philosophy, and I enjoy poetry.

    In short... I'm fucked.
     
    #13 Nile577, Feb 23, 2008
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2020
  14. WeAreTheLastMen

    WeAreTheLastMen Metacom

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    I haven't ever met anyone who I would classify a "philosopher" as opposed to a scholar or a student. But I'll say that I find parts of philosophy forum really annoying, mostly because of some overbearing asshole who make ridiculous assertions such as "There's OBVIOUSLY no afterlife, but there is OBVIOUSLY a God. Are you guys retarded or something?"
     
  15. Vimana

    Vimana Member

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    The only thing I find annoying about this forum is how long some people make their posts when they could easily be shorter. Just my opinion.
     
  16. Seditious

    Seditious GodSlayer

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    I agree with pretty much everything said here.:)
     
  17. waif

    waif Member

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    One reason people find certain "philosophers" annoying is that they can be arrogant and pretentious.
     
  18. Silver Incubus

    Silver Incubus Dead Hands Justin

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    That includes some people on this board because sometimes I think they forget that this is a metal forum first and philosophy second. Sure it is fine to rip apart someones argument if it is full of holes, but from what I have experienced in this forum, is that sometimes these pretentious people lose civility.
     
  19. waif

    waif Member

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    That wasn't explicitly intended to be a jab at anyone, but yeah, definitely. Although I feel that the pretentious part applies more to this forum than being obnoxious.
     
  20. BlackMetalWhiteGuy

    BlackMetalWhiteGuy Manly Man!

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    No, the TabIt forums are pretentious. This place is friendly and comparatively humble, at least in my experience.
     

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