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Chapter
One
What is Philosophy and
What is Philosophy
of Man all about?
CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?


CHAPTER ONE
PHILOSOPHY AND THE PHILOSOPHY OF MAN

P hilosophy is not really a subject, it is an activity (Articulo, 2004).


One does not simply study it, one does it. The study of philosophy is
unlike the study of other subjects. No dates, formulas, or rules are needed to
be memorized. No field work is necessary, no technical equipment required.
The only prerequisite is an inquiring mind.

To have a philosophy is to have a view of man. Since philosophy is given


the task of discovering man in his totality and essence, man himself, according
to Gladstone (as cited in Fetizanan & Gajete, 2003) , is the crowning wonder
of creation, and the study of his nature is the noblest study the world affords.
Thus, knowledge of man should be the highest priority.

The study of philosophy facilitates the understanding of man. Since man


is the basis of existence in the world, everything on earth can only achieve its
meaning and its perfection in man.

This chapter is divided into two lessons:

Lesson I: Philosophy in General

Lesson II: Philosophy of Man

being HUMAN and being a PERSON 2


CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

Pretest 1

Philosophy and the Philosophy of Man

Name: ______________________________ Score: ___________


Date: _______________________________ Time: ___________
Year Level: ___________________________ Course: __________

Direction. Write T if the statement is correct and F if the statement is


incorrect. Write your answers on the space provided after each statement.
Answers with erasures will be marked wrong. (For the teachers, these questions
could jumpstart the discussion for the entire chapter).

1. A philosophically minded person is flexible and self- 1._______


aware.
2. How man develops is the primary interest of philosophy 2._______
of man.
3. Philosophy searches for the ultimate reasons, causes and 3._______
principles of things.
4. Philosophical questions have answers and their answers 4._______
are left loose and are open-ended.
5. Philosophy seeks understanding and enlightenment 5._______
rather than shorthand answers.
6. Philosophy of man looks into the wholeness and fullness 6._______
of human existence.
7. Philosophical knowledge is attained through the 7._______
abstractive power of reason enlightened by faith.
8. Philosophy pursues answers rather than questions. 8._______
9. The normative approach to the study of man is interested 9._______
in describing man’s nature and personhood.
10. Loving wisdom makes one a philosopher. 10.______
11. Science is about knowing facts. 11.______
12. Philosophy considers correct answers as more important 12.______
than correct questions.

being HUMAN and being a PERSON 3


13. A person has science when he knows the reason for and 13.______
cause of facts
14. Man can philosophize even without the use of technology 14.______
15. Wisdom is the knowledge of the immediate causes. 15.______

____________________________ /__________
Name and Signature of Professor / Date
CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?


Lesson 1
PHILOSOPHY IN GENERAL

G enerally, people tend to think of philosophy as somehow extremely


complex intellectual activity; the most abstract of all subjects (it is
set apart from the affairs of ordinary life); or the most abstruse. Consequently,
they are inclined to imagine a philosopher as somebody who sits pondering
questions of the ultimate significance of human life while others only have
the time or the energy to live it.

Let us thus attempt, through careful and critical examination of the term,
to work out some general, systematic, coherent, and consistent pictures of all
that we know and think.

LEARNING OBJECTIVES

After finishing this lesson, you should be able to:

1. explain the etymological and technical definitions


of philosophy;
2. discuss the misconceptions about philosophy;
3. compare and contrast the material and formal
objects of philosophy;
4. explain the importance of philosophy; and,
5. distinguish theoretical and practical philosophy.

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CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

A. WHAT PHILOSOPHY IS. The word philosophy can be looked


into in two aspects: its etymological and its technical definitions.

1. Etymological Definition of Philosophy. Philosophy comes from
the two Greek words philo meaning “love” or “friendship” and sophia
meaning “wisdom.” Thus, philosophy means “love of wisdom.” Love is
an urge or a drive of a will towards a particular object. As a drive, love
always seeks unity with its object and desires to posses its object. On the
other hand, wisdom means the application of knowledge. Thus, wisdom
cannot be dissociated from knowledge.

Truth is the ultimate object of knowledge. Philosophy is absolutely


committed to the truth, “the whole truth and nothing but the truth.”
Hence, truth is being shown and practiced by a man of wisdom. Now,
if philosophy means love of wisdom, to philosophize, therefore, is to be
in quest, or to have a desire towards loving and living the truth (Babor,
2007)

2. Technical Definition of Philosophy. Its real definition can be


stated as: scientia rerum per causas primas sub lumine rationis naturalis.
We may translate this as: “the science of beings in their ultimate reasons,
causes, and principles acquired by the aid of human reason alone (Bittle,
1984).”

a) Philosophy is a science.*1The word science comes from the


Latin verb scire, which means “to know”. Thus, science is about
possessing a certain kind of knowledge. Some people say that science
is about knowing facts. Science is much more than that; for everyone
knows certain basic facts, such as “leaves are green” that “people get
cancer” but that doesn't make them scientists.
*Philosophy is a science but its being a science is totally different from other sciences. Other
sciences, like mathematics, chemistry and physics, have fixed answers. In philosophy, answers
are left loose or are deemed open-ended. It leaves the questioner the answer to his question.
Thus, in philosophy what is important is the question, not the answer since answers can become
questions themselves. Philosophy considers correct questions as more important than correct
answers because the latter are just the consequence of the former. This gives room for creativity
and avoidance of intellectual paralysis or bankruptcy of thinking (Babor, 2007).

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CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

Thus, a person has science when he knows the reason for the fact,
such as why leaves are green, or the cause of the fact, such as what is
the cause of cancer.

Science is about reasoned facts. In other words, one has science


when he knows the reason for or the cause of the fact. That is why
science is fundamentally a knowledge of things through their proper
causes and reasons. Clearly there is a difference between knowledge
and wisdom. Some people have a great deal of learning, but very
little wisdom.

WONDER QUESTION

Which Came First, the Chicken or the Egg?

What comes to mind for many people when they


think of philosophy and of philosophical questions is
either both of these inquiries: “Which came first, the
chicken or the egg?” and “If there is nobody around,
does a tree falling in a forest make a sound?”

The first question is not particularly philosophical and, in the


light of evolution, is not especially difficult: the egg came first.

The second question is often supposedly resolved by


distinguishing between sound viewed as the mental experience of
certain waves contracting certain sensory organs and sounds as the
waves themselves. If sensory organs are absent, it is said, there can be
no sound-as-waves. Philosophy, however, asks not simply whether
a tree falling in a forest makes a sound if no one is there but rather
if nobody is there, is there even a forest? Is there even a universe?
In other words, the question, for philosophers, is whether things
depend on their existence for being perceived and, if so, how do we
know that (Moore & Bruder, 2005).

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CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

Wisdom is a kind of science, and so it too is a knowledge of


things through causes. But, more precisely, wisdom is a knowledge
of the highest causes. It is the intellectual virtue by which a person
judges in light of the highest or first causes. That is why we
sometimes find wisdom in older people, for they have had the years
of experience to "see the larger picture", so to speak. They have
encountered many kinds of people throughout their lives, they have
been deceived before, lied to, have been pleasantly or unpleasantly
surprised by things they weren't aware of, they've made mistakes,
have had time to reflect upon their mistakes and the mistakes of
their friends, associates, and family, and they have come to learn how
to distinguish the genuine friend from the false friend, they know
something about what marriage really is as opposed to what they
thought it was when they first married, they understand what love
really is and what it is not, they understand that they knew very little
when they thought they knew a lot, and so they know something
about human limitations, which they didn't quite appreciate when
they were younger. Such people are wise as a result of experience,
honest reflection, and the ability to reason. Accordingly, one has no
need of a microscope in order to be wise. But one cannot do biology,
for example, without a microscope. And so philosophy, which is the
love of wisdom, does not require technology. (McManaman, 2007).

b) Philosophy is a science of beings. It is the science of beings,


i.e., of all things which can be reached by the human mind. This
includes man, the world, God, everything that is, or becomes, or is
known. Thus, as one philosopher has put it: “Philosophy’s center is
everywhere and its circumference nowhere (Ponty, 1964).”

c) Philosophy searches for the ultimate reasons, causes and


principles of beings.*1This means that philosophy studies the
ultimate whys and wherefores of beings. To illustrate: philosophy
does not investigate plant life, or the physiology of an insect, etc.
A reason is the sufficient ground or explanation of something. A cause is that which contributes
in any positive manner toward the production of a thing. A principle is that from which something
proceeds. The other sciences give the proximate causes of beings, while philosophy searches for
the ultimate reasons, causes, and principles.

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CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

Rather, philosophy would seek an answer to the question: “What


does it mean to be a living thing as opposed to a non-living thing?”
The philosopher is not concerned with the nervous system of a rabbit
or the DNA of a frog. Rather, philosophy would like to know what it
means to be an animal, or what it means to be a species as opposed
to an individual of a species, etc.

Philosophical knowledge is the knowledge of things through


their first causes. For instance, the cause of the blue in your eyes is a
secondary cause, for you cannot have blue eyes unless you first have
an eye which is alive, and you cannot have a living eye unless you as a
whole are alive. The first cause is that which accounts for your being
alive, the secondary cause accounts for the blue in your eyes, or the
brown in your hair, etc. (McManaman, 2007)

d) Philosophy uses the power or natural light of reason. Philosophy


is the knowledge acquired by the aid of human reason alone. This
means that philosophy does not base its knowledge on authority, but
solely on the reasoning power of the human mind. Divine revelation
is therefore formally excluded as a source of information although it
can and should assist the mind of man by pointing out the proper
direction for the philosophic solution of a problem along purely
natural line.

B. WHAT PHILOSOPHY IS NOT. Having said something about


what philosophy is, let us now go straight to what philosophy is not. We
will need to discard these misconceptions before we proceed any further.
Here are some of the most common misconceptions about philosophy.

1. Philosophy does not make real progress like the sciences. This
goes with the idea that philosophical questions are unanswerable. Now,
progress comes in many forms. It does not happen only when questions
are answered. Questions can be clarified, subdivided, and found to rest
on confusions. They can be partially answered. These are all forms of
progress. Even when a question is abandoned as unanswerable, that too
is progress.

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CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

Earlier answers to a question can be inadequate even if the final answer


isn’t in, and that’s progress as well (Moore & Bruder, 2005).

2. Philosophy is not just stating your personal opinion.


Philosophy is providing arguments to support to your opinions, and
arguments against objections to your views. The best philosophy always
includes a kind of point – counterpoint format. Don’t just state your
views. Argue for them and anticipate the kind of objections that will
probably be raised against you countering them in advance (Solomon &
Higgins, 2010).

3. Philosophy is one’s view in life or other matters. In popular


parlance, the word philosophy is used in a loose and misleading way.
We find football coaches explaining their “defensive philosophies” before
the game, or grandfathers telling grandchildren about their “philosophies
of life.” And sometimes people explain their “philosophy” as mere
collection of saying or witty insights about human nature or life in
general (McHenry & Higgins, 2003).

Philosophical views are often carefully worked out and emerge only
after criticism, revision, and years of study. Truth does not come easy, so
it is unlikely to be captured in some simplistic and haphazard fashion.
We all live in the world and operate with a set of beliefs about it, but the
continual quest to challenge those beliefs and improve them requires a
particular kind of dedication.

4. Philosophy is light reading, something you relax with in


the evening, after all the serious work of the day is done. In reality,
philosophical writing generally takes time and effort to understand.
Often it seems to be written in familiar, everyday language, but that can
be deceiving. It is best to approach philosophy with mental preparedness
and alertness appropriate for a textbook in mathematics or science. You
should expect to be able to read an entire novel in the time it takes you
to understand just a few pages of a philosophy book. To understand
philosophy, you have to reread a passage several times and think about
it a lot.

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CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

If your instructor assigns what seem to be short readings, don’t celebrate.


It takes time to understand philosophy (Moore & Bruder, 2005).

C. THE OBJECTS OF PHILOSOPHY. Every science does two


things. First, it treats a certain subject matter. Second, it treats its subject
matter in a certain way and with especial definite aim (Glenn, 1957).
Thus, there are two objects to the study of any field of science: Material
Object and Formal Object.

1. Material Object. Material Object is the subject matter of a science


- the field in which the science works (Glenn, 1957). For instance, in
cosmology the material object encompasses the whole universe, from the
largest galaxies to the minimal subatomic particle.

2. Formal Object. Formal Object is the special thing for which the
science seeks in that field, that is to say, the special aim, end-in-view,
point-of-focus that the science has in dealing with the subject matter
(Glenn, 1957). For instance, in cosmology the special point-of-focus,
for which it seeks in the study of the universe, is its origin, evolution,
structure, and by extension, humanity’s place in it. Its two subdivisions,
viz., the formal object QUOD and the formal object QUO can clearly
illustrate its meaning.

a) Objectum Formale Quod of Philosophy. Objectum Formale


Quod is the special or immediate viewpoint from which a thing is
considered. For example, a tree may be considered from a viewpoint
of its color or its shape, whether it is material or living, whether it is
a being as opposed to nothing, etc (Reyes, 1988).

b) Objectum Formale Quo of Philosophy. Objectum Formale Quo


(or the medium) is the light or vehicle by which the science studies
its object. For instance the formal medium for color is light; for
sound, air; and, for scientific knowledge, reasoning (Reyes, 1988).
In the case of philosophy, the material object is all beings. The formal
object quod is the first causes and the highest principles of beings.

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CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

The formal object quo is the natural reason alone and, specifically,
the abstractive power of reason. See the objects of philosophy as
diagrammed (compared to the objects of particular sciences and theology)
in Table 1 below.

Table 1 - The Science Chart

MATERIAL FORMAL FORMAL


OBJECT OBJECT QUOD OBJECT QUO
(Subject Matter) (Deals With) (Known Thru)

Immediate
Particular
causes, reasons,
Sciences
and principles
Reasoning
SCIENCES

All things

Philosophy
Ultimate causes,
reasons, and
principles
Faith and
Theology
Reasoning

As shown, the differences and similarities among philosophy,


particular sciences, and theology are due mainly to these salient points:
particular sciences study beings in its more immediate causes, reasons, and
principles using the natural light of reason; philosophy studies beings in its
ultimate causes, reasons, and principles using the natural light of reason;
and theology studies beings in its ultimate causes, reasons, and principles
using reason enlightened by divine revelation, that is, the supernatural
light of faith.

D. THE DIVISIONS OF PHILOSOPHY. Philosophy is classified


into practical and speculative. Man’s philosophical questions tend to fall
into any of the following fields:

1. Practical Philosophy is composed of philosophical fields


which study not only to obtain knowledge and wisdom but to use that
knowledge and wisdom for practical purposes (Ardales,1998).

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CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

It is a philosophy that also perfects the will by principles to be practiced.


It presents related data from which the directive laws or norms are
immediately derived. Its function is primarily directive. Its goal is not just
finding the truth but acting on it, applying the knowledge gained for the
benefit of mankind (Ardales,1987). For instance, the ten commandments
are not merely to be memorized and known; they must be understood
and lived (Artigas,1984). It includes: logic, ethics, axiology, aesthetics,
and semantics.

a) Logic (Questions related to Reasoning). The name logic comes


from the Greek word logike meaning “thought”. Thus, logic studies
the laws of thought. It is the science and art of correct thinking. This
covers the study of simple apprehension and ideas, judgment and
proposition, reasoning and arguments.

Logic attempts to resolve the following questions: “What makes


good arguments good and bad arguments bad?” “How can one tell
whether an argument is justified, believable, or convincing?”

b) Ethics (Questions related to Morality). The name ethics is


derived from the Greek word ethos meaning “character.” Thus, ethics
deals with development of a virtuous and moral character. It is the
science of the morality of human acts as ordained to the final end.
This covers human acts and principles of human actions, acts of man,
ultimate end of man, determinants of morality, law, and conscience.

Ethics attempts to resolve the following questions: “What makes


my action right or wrong, and how could I know it?” “How should
I determine whether I am acting rightly or wrongly?” “How should
I live my life?” “How should I treat other human beings and how
should I be treated in return?” “Is there a norm good and evil?

c. Axiology (Questions related to Values). The name axiology is


derived from the Greek word axios meaning “worth,” as well as logos
meaning “science.” Thus, it is the science of value. It is the study of
the origin, nature, functions, types, and interrelations of values.

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CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

This covers the study of all forms of value, including aesthetic


values, ethical values, and epistemic values. Axiology attempts to
resolve the following questions: “How are values experienced?”
“What are the kinds of value?” “In what sense can values be said to
exist?” “Is value in the quality of an object or an act, or is it in the
mind?”

d. Aesthetics (Questions related to Beauty and Taste). The name


aesthetics is derived from the Greek aisthetikos meaning “of sense
perception.” Thus, it is the science of beauty and art. Beauty means
the quality attributed to whatever pleases the beholder such as form,
color, and behavior. Art refers to man's creativeness and skill in
making or doing things that have form and beauty. It is the branch
of philosophy that deals with the nature of art, beauty, and taste,
with the creation and appreciation of beauty. This covers the concept
of creativity, expression, representation, form, and style.

Aesthetics attempts to resolve the following questions: “What


are the essential characteristics of beauty?” “Is beauty in the eye of the
beholder or in the object?” “What is aesthetic value?” “Do the arts
provide knowledge?” “Is there a special kind of aesthetic experience
or aesthetic perception?” “What makes something beautiful, sublime,
disgusting, fun, cute, silly, entertaining, pretentious, discordant,
harmonious, boring, humorous, or tragic?”

d. Semantics (Questions related to Meaning). The name semantics


is derived from the Greek verb sēmainōō meaning “to mean” or “to
signify”. Thus, it is the science of meaning. It is the philosophical
and scientific study of meaning in natural and artificial languages.
This includes the study of the relations of words to the objects
denoted by them, the relations of words to the interpreters of them,
and, in symbolic logic, the formal relations of signs to one another
(syntax).

Semantics attempts to resolve the following questions: “What


sorts of meanings do human grammars yield, and by what rules are

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CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

these meanings assembled?” “How do the meanings of expressions


relate to acts of using expressions, and to various aspects of cognition,
especially those deployed immediately in communication?” “How
does grammatical knowledge develop in children?”

2. Speculative Philosophy is made up of philosophical fields whose


main concern is the acquisition of knowledge without any thought of
applying it for any practical use (Ardales,1998). It is a philosophy that
enriches the mind by principles to be speculated upon or to be known.
It does not directly imply laws or norms for the guidance of thought. Its
function is primarily cultural. It directs itself to knowing things as they
are without thinking of the application (Ardales,1987). For example, the
sun is 93 million miles away; light travels at the rate of 186, 000 miles per
second; earth has only one moon (Arigas, 1984).

Speculative philosophy includes: epistemology, theodicy, cosmology,


philosophical psychology, and metaphysics.

a) Epistemology (Questions related to Truth and Knowledge).


The name epistemology comes from the two Greek words
episteme meaning “knowledge” and logos meaning “science”. Thus,
epistemology is the science of knowledge. It is the science of true
and certain knowledge. This includes the statement and solution
to the critical problem, nature, origin, objectivity, and validity of
knowledge, truth and certitude.

Epistemology attempts to resolve the following questions:


“What is knowledge?” “What is fact?” “What is truth?” “How do we
know something is true or false?” “Is there objective truth, or are all
opinion relative?”

b) Theodicy (Questions related to God). The name theodicy


is derived from the Greek words theos meaning “God” and logos
meaning “science”. Thus, theodicy is the science of God. It is the
science of nature, existence, essence, attributes and operations of
God.

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CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

This covers the demonstrability and actual demonstration of


the existence of God, His essence and attributes, and His immanent
operations – intellection and volition, and His transient operations
creation, conservation, concurrence, governance, and providence.

Theodicy attempts to resolve the following questions: “Does


God exist?” “Why God allows evil?” “What are arguments or proofs
of his existence?” “Is there really God?” “Is God just?” “If He is, why
does the morally upright person suffer while evil men prosper?”

c) Cosmology (Questions related to Universe). The name cosmology


is derived from the Greek words kosmos meaning “universe,” as well
as logos meaning “science.” Thus, cosmology is the science of the
universe. It is the branch of philosophy which deals with the origin
and development of the universe with its parts, elements, laws,
especially its characteristics with regard to space, time, causality and
freedom. This includes the essential principles of natural bodies,
matter and form, change, motion, time, place, space, causality and
finality, generation and corruption.

Cosmology attempts to resolve the following questions: “How


did the world begin and where will it end?” “Is the world eternal,
that is to say, has it no beginning and no end?”

d) Psychology (Questions related to Soul). The name psychology


is derived from the Greek words psyche meaning “soul” as well
as logos meaning “science.” Thus, psychology is science of soul.
It is the study that deals not with man not only as a sensing or
thinking subject but also as a being composed of body and soul.
This covers the concept of life and its operations, the soul,
the sensation and appetition, the intellection and volition.

Psychology attempts to resolve the following questions: “Is there


really a soul?” “If a man has a soul, is it immortal?” “What argument
is there to show that man has or does not have a soul?”

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CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

e) Metaphysics (Questions related to Being and Existence). The


name metaphysics is derived from the Greek words meta meaning
“after” as well as physikon meaning “nature.” Thus, it studies the
nature of the mind, the self, and consciousness. It is the science
which deals with the nature of being, its attributes, constituent
principles, and causes. This includes the concept of being, its analogy
and fundamental attributes, problem of evil, act and potency, essence
and existence, substance and accidents, supposit and person, and
causality.

Metaphysics attempts to resolve the following questions: “What


is being?” “Why is there being rather than non-being?” “What is
existence?” “What is essence?”

Figure 1. Divisions of Philosophy

PHILOSOPHY

Practical Speculative

Logic Epistemology

Ethics Theodicy

Axiology Cosmology

Aesthetics Psychology

Semantics Metaphysics

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CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

E. THE IMPORTANCE OF PHILOSOPHY. According to Zunjic


(2011) studying or doing philosophy could be beneficial in many regards
out of which the following appear to be the most important ones:

1. Educationally and intellectually. Philosophy enlarges our


understanding of the world. It expands our intellectual horizons and
freedom of thought. Philosophy helps develop the capacity to look
at the world from the perspective of other individuals and cultures.
Perhaps it is not as effective as science and religion, but it is the most
free and valuable of all intellectual endeavors.

2. Socially and politically. By discussing political and social


issues philosophy raises public awareness and helps in forming
engaged and responsible citizens. By performing critical examination
of current social and political conditions it can enlighten people as
to the shortcomings of the current order. By viewing social practices
from the perspective of a better and more just future it can foster
necessary social change.

3. Morally and practically. Philosophy can increase our
sensitivity for universalistic moral values and stimulate our readiness
to stand up for the principles of justice and fairness. It provides tools
and opportunities to reflect on our basic values and concepts. It
proves very practical in defining our choices and acts.

Philosophy is practical in the sense that its questions pertain to


the value of our personal existence as well as personal relations with
others. Practical life, remember, is not necessarily an acquisitive life,
but life focused on self-reflection and ethical issues.

4. Psychologically and personally. On a personal level,


philosophy can give one self-knowledge, foresight, and a sense
of direction in life. It touches upon our own existence (in a way
we are fully humans only if we are capable to reflect upon our
humanness) and tackles the questions of our personal identity. It can
lead to self-discovery, expansion of consciousness, and self-renewal.

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CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

Philosophy nurtures individuality and self-esteem and broadens the


range of things one can understand and enjoy.

5. Pragmatic Uses of Philosophy. While studying philosophy


does not help directly one’s job search, it has an indirect impact even
in nonacademic fields. Contrary to the wide spread view, employers
prefer candidates with general and flexible skills that could adjust to
new situations rather than high specialists. They look for and reward
many of the capacities developed by the study of philosophy, for
instance, the ability to analyze problems, to organize ideas and issues,
to assess pros and cons, and to boil down complex data.

SUMMARY OF THE LESSON

In this article we have discussed what philosophy is and


what philosophy is not. We have indicated the subject matter
of philosophy, i.e., all things and the point-of-focus that
it has in dealing with its subject matter. We have classified
philosophy into practical and speculative. We have seen how
studying and doing philosophy could be beneficial.

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CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

SUGGESTIONS FOR FURTHER READING

Baggani, J & Peter S. F. (2003) The Philosopher’s Toolkit. Malden, Mass:


Blackwell.
Craig, E. (1998) Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy. 10 vols. London and
New York: Routledge.
Cahn, S. M. (2000) Exploring Philosophy. New York: Oxford University Press.
Nagel, T. (1987) What Does It All Mean: A Very Short Introduction to Philosophy.
Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Palmer, D. (1994). Looking at Philosophy: The Unbearable Heaviness of
Philosophy Made Lighter. 2nd ed. Mountain View, Calif.: Maryfield.
Pojan, L. (1994) Classic of Philosophy. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Warburton, N. (998). Philosophy: The Classics. New York: Routledge.
Woodhouse, M. (1994) A Preface to Philosophy. 5th ed. Belmont, Calif.:
Wadsworth.

being HUMAN and being a PERSON 20


CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?


Lesson 2
PHILOSOPHY OF MAN

T he British philosopher sir Karl Raymund Popper (as cited in


Demetrio, 2001) theorized that man concurrently exists in three
distinct worlds: namely, (1) the physical world of nature, (2) the internal
world of ideas, thoughts, and emotions, and (3) the social world of inter-
subjectivity. The physical world of nature more properly belongs to natural
sciences, but the internal world of ideas, thoughts, and emotions as well as
the social world of inter-subjectivity belong to the jurisdiction of philosophy.
Hence, the primary interest of philosophy of man is to find out not how man
develops but what, who and why he is.

LEARNING OBJECTIVES

After finishing this lesson, you should be able to:

1. define philosophy of man;


2. distinguish the approaches to the study of man;
3. explain the importance of the study of man; and,
4. identify the division of the philosophy of man.

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CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

A. THE NATURE OF PHILOSOPHY OF MAN. Philosophy of


Man is as broad as life and as deep as human understanding, since it
looks into the wholeness and fullness of human existence. Hence, to set
the framework for this subject matter, this broad and inclusive definition
shall be used: Philosophy of Man is an inquiry into the what-who-and-
why of man, i.e, of human nature which pertains to the characteristics
that distinguish human from non-human nature, of human person which
refers to the characteristics that entitle an entity to be considered a person,
and of human life which consists of the philosophical purpose or goal of
being human and of an ideal human existence. The nature is that which is
given to man, that which is “at hand” for him. The person is he to whom
this nature is given and who has to use it for his purposes. Accordingly,
philosophy of man is one’s intense desire to know the what-who-and-why
of man as philosophy is an intense desire for wisdom.

B. THE APPROACHES TO THE STUDY OF MAN.


Understanding man as a nature (what), man as a person (who), man as
existing (why) is a no trouble-free project, it means breaking through the
mystery of our being. In attempting to explore this mystery, thus, the
following approaches are used: the descriptive (or scientific) approach and
the normative (or prescriptive) approach.

1. Descriptive (or scientific) approach asks about what is man as


person, as a nature, and as existing. It is merely interested in describing man’s
personhood, nature, and condition. It uses empirical method and explains
that there is no knowable reality beyond what one can see, hear, measure, etc..
It is concerned with and interested to distinguish man from animals, from
plants, and from properties.

2. Normative (or prescriptive) approach asks what man as a person, as


a nature, as existing is suppose to be. It sets up a standard of what man ought
to be. It uses the reflective method and views that there lies beyond what one
can see, hear, and measure. It deals with the philosophical aspects of man
like the transcendental realities, (i.e., goodness, love, justice, freedom among
others) realities that only philosophy can unveil. The normative approach is
concerned with what man must possess to be man.

being HUMAN and being a PERSON 22


CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

C. IMPORTANCE OF PHILOSOPHY OF MAN. Philosophy of


man is especially important for the following reasons:

1. It provides guidance in better understanding man’s nature and


personhood.
2. It enables man to appreciate the diverse views on the ideals of
full humanness.
3. It tells man the similarities and differences among man, plants,
and animals.
4. It enables man to appreciate the nature of life and the meaning
of his existence.
5. It opens the way for better relationships among men, others,
and God.

D. DIVISION OF THE PHILOSOPHY OF MAN. To establish


direction as well as facilitate the understanding of philosophy of man, we
therefore develop our treatise according to the following plan:

Chapter I. What is philosophy and what is philosophy of man all about?


Chapter II. What are you?
Chapter III. Who are you?
Chapter IV. Why are you?

SUMMARY OF THE LESSON

In this very brief lesson we have given the primary


interest of philosophy of man by clarifying the jurisdiction
of philosophy and natural sciences. We have noted various
approaches to the study of man. We have identified the aspects
where philosophy of man is predominantly relevant. Finally,
we have presented our treatise plan.

being HUMAN and being a PERSON 23


CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

SUGGESTIONS FOR FURTHER READING

Beunaflor, L. E. (2006). THE MEANING OF HUMAN EXISTENCE: A


Historical Approach to Philosophy of Persons. Mandaluyong City: Books
Atbp. Publishing Corp..
Castro, F. C. (2005). PHILOSOPHY OF THE HUMAN PERSON: A
Phenomenological Approach. Mandaluyong City: Books Atbp. Publishing
Corp..
Cruz, C. L. (1995). Philosophy of Man. 3rd. ed. Mandaluyong City: National
Book Store, Inc..
Fetizanan, L. L. (2003). WHO ART THOU: A Philosophical Study of Man.
Quezon City: Great Books Trading.
Mendoza, C & Edgar M. A. (2008) PHILOSOPHY OF MAN: Towards
Perfection. Mandaluyong City: National Book Store, Inc..
Nery, MI. N. (2007) Philosophy of Man. Mandaluyong City: National Book
Store, Inc..
Tubo, D. V. (2006) PHILOSOPHY OF MAN: Existential-Phenomenological
Approach. Rev. ed. Mandaluyong City: National Book Store, Inc..

being HUMAN and being a PERSON 24


CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

Po s t t e s t 1

Philosophy and the Philosophy of Man

Name: ______________________________ Score: ___________


Date: _______________________________ Time: ___________
Year Level: ___________________________ Course: __________

Direction. Identify the division of philosophy which investigates the


following fundamental concepts:

1. Nonbeing and nothing 1. _______________


2. Moral, immoral, and amoral 2. _______________
3. Deism, agnosticism, theism, and nature of
3. _______________
God
4. Skepticism, rationalism, agnosticism 4. _______________
5. Moral judgment and moral dilemma 5. _______________
6. Value and value judgement 6. _______________
7. Act and potency, essence and existence, and
7. _______________
substance and accidents
8. Sensation and appetition, the intellection
8. _______________
and volition
9. Creativity, expression, and representation 9. _______________
10. Simple apprehension, judgment, and
10._______________
reasoning
11. Origin and end of the world 11. ______________
12. Opinion, fact, truth and certitude 12. ______________
13. Problem of God’s existence 13._______________
14. Matter and form, change, motion, time, 14._______________
place, space
15. Sound thinking and good argumentation 15._______________

____________________________ /__________
Name and Signature of Professor / Date

being HUMAN and being a PERSON 25


CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

Po s t t e s t 2

Philosophy and the Philosophy of Man

Name: ______________________________ Score: ___________


Date: _______________________________ Time: ___________
Year Level: __________________________ Course: __________

Direction. Circle the letter of the correct answer.

1. The study that poses the questions about objective truth, fact, knowledge,
and opinion.
a. Cosmology c. Ethics
b. Epistemology d. Metaphysics

2. Which of these is NOT a speculative philosophy?


a. epistemology c. metaphysics
b. logic d. theodicy

3. Which among the these are examples of practical philosophy? a. logic b.


ethics c. psychology, and d. cosmology
A. a and b C. c and d
B. c and a D. a, b, c, and d

4. Aesthetics attempts to resolve the following questions, EXCEPT:


a. What is reality? c. What is beauty?
b. What is a work of art? d. Does art have any moral obligations?

5. The following are typical metaphysical questions, EXCEPT:


a. What is reality? c. Are moral principles universal?
b. What is the self? d. What is the meaning of life?

6. The philosophical study of values and value judgments.


a. Metaphysics c. Ethics
b. Logic d. Axiology

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CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

7. It is the inquiry into the origin and development of the universe with its
parts, elements, and laws.
a. Metaphysics c. Ethics
b. Logic d. Cosmology

8. Which branch of philosophy is being referred to when the lesson touches


on the concept of life and its operation, the sensation and appetition, the
intellection and volition.
a. Psychology c. Axiology
b. Ethics d. Logic

9. This focuses on the analysis of moral dilemmas such as sex change,


contraception, pornography, suicide, euthanasia, etc..
a. Logic c. Ethics
b. Epistemology d. Cosmology

10. Philosophy of Man is as broad as life and as deep as human understanding,
since it looks into the wholeness and fullness of human ______________.
a. problems c. nature
b. existence d. person

____________________________ /__________
Name and Signature of Professor / Date

being HUMAN and being a PERSON 28


CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

Po s t t e s t 3

Philosophy and the Philosophy of Man

Name: ______________________________ Score: ___________


Date: _______________________________ Time: ___________
Year Level: ___________________________ Course: __________

Direction. Answer briefly the following questions. Write your answers


on the space provided.

1. Why is philosophy considered as the most free and most valuable


of all intellectual endeavors?

2. Do you agree that without philosophy, man would be little


above animals? Explain.

3. Compare and contrast the discipline of philosophy and


particular sciences.

4. How would you compare the descriptive and normative


approaches to the study of man?

____________________________ /__________
Name and Signature of Professor / Date

being HUMAN and being a PERSON 29


CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

CLASS ACTIVITIES

1. Ask students to spend some time listing 10 questions which they seek
to answer to and to classify them into philosophical inquiry or scientific
inquiry. Then, share their reason(s) with another student or with the class.

2. Have students think of a question which they are most curious about,
then allow them to classify the questions into any of the philosophical fields.
If possible do not allow duplication of questions to egg on creativity and
improvement. Then, let them explain why they are curious about it.

3. Let students compare these questions: (a) “Where can I find peanut
butter?” and (b)“Where can I find happiness?” Then, ask them to answer the
following: In what ways are these two questions similar? In what ways are
they different? Which question is easier to answer? Which question is more
important?

being HUMAN and being a PERSON 31


CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

GLOSSARY

Aesthetics is the branch of philosophy that deals with the nature of art,
beauty, and taste, with the creation and appreciation of beauty.
Art refers to man's creativeness and skill in making or doing things that have
form and beauty.
Axiology is the study of the origin, nature, functions, types, and interrelations
of values.
Beauty means the quality attributed to whatever pleases the beholder such as
form, color, and behavior.
Cause is that which contributes in any positive manner toward the production
of a thing.
Cosmology is the branch of philosophy which deals with the origin and
development of the universe with its parts, elements, laws, especially its
characteristics with regard to space, time, causality and freedom.
Descriptive (or scientific) Approach asks about what is man as person, as
a nature, and as existing. It is merely interested in describing man as a
person, as a nature, and as existing.
Epistemology is the science of true and certain knowledge.
Ethics is science of the morality of human acts as ordained to the final end.
Formal Object is the special thing for which the science seeks in that field,
that is to say, the special aim, end-in-view, point-of-focus that the science
has in dealing with the subject matter.
Logic is the science and art of correct thinking.
Love is an urge or a drive of a will towards a particular object.
Material Object refers to the subject matter of a science - the field in which
the science works.
Metaphysics is the science which deals with the nature of being, its attributes,
constituent principles, and causes.
Normative (or prescriptive) Approach asks what man as a person, as a
nature, and as existing is suppose to be. It sets up a standard of what man
ought to be.
Objectum Formale Quo is the light or vehicle by which the science studies
its object.

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CHAPTER ONE: What is Philosophy and What is Philosophy of Man all about?

Objectum Formale Quod is the special or immediate viewpoint from which


a thing is considered.
Philosophy is the science of beings in their ultimate reasons, causes, and
principles acquired by the aid of human reason alone
Philosophy of Man pertains to an inquiry into a human being as a nature
(what is man?), as a person (who is man?), and as existing (why is man?).
Practical Philosophy is the philosophy that also perfects the will by principles
to be practiced.
Principle is that from which something proceeds.
Psychology is the study that deals with man not only as a sensing or thinking
subject but also as a being composed of body and soul.
Reason is the sufficient ground or explanation of something.
Science comes from the Latin verb scire, which means "to know". It is about
possessing a certain kind of knowledge.
Semantics is the science of meaning. It is the philosophical and scientific
study of meaning in natural and artificial languages.
Speculative Philosophy is the philosophy that enriches the mind by
principles to be speculated upon or to be known.
Theodicy is the science of nature, existence, essence, attributes and operations
of God.
Wisdom refers to the application of knowledge.

being HUMAN and being a PERSON 33


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