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Skidonti said:
Jay520 said:
Skidonti said:

Philosophy is a highly reasoned and logical approach to behavior and creating a system of values for oneself and for society in its government; it is key to having an examined life.



The thing is, these skills can be obtained without ever formally studying philosophy.

A whole lot of skills can be obtained without formal study. Formal study is supposed to accelerate the process so you can come up with new stuff.
But I'm not talking about the value of learning philosophy in university for skills (I wouldn't be a philosophy major either), I'm talking about the value of philosophy in general to a person.  A person should reason their ethics and ideal behavior for themselves, and come together to reason it for their society, and that IS philosophy.

I'd say the thing Neil Degrasse Tyson wants more than anything, if he hasn't stated as such himself already, is for every up and coming bright young mind to be a scientist. Or, it seems more specifically, a scientist dedicated to advancing technology. Without putting together a defense right now, I just don't think that's... reasonable. Or necessary.



Yes, that is philosophy. But I'm pretty sure Tyson isn't claiming that reasoning one's ethics and ideal behavior is useless. Considering the context, it seems that he's talking about the formal study of philosophy...it would be quite silly if he advocated against reasoned thinking in general.

As for that first sentence, I would argue otherwise. You can't learn mathematics without actually studying mathematics, you can't learn astronomy without actually trying to study astronomy, etc. This isn't so much the case with philosophy: you could learn critical thinking skills via mathematics, an argumentative writing class, etc. Hell, you could even develop it by studying astrophysics, which is even more evidence that Tyson isn't advocating against the critical thinking developed by philosophy...as he would be advocating against his own field of study.

I don't think Tyson wants every bright kid to be a scientist, at least not by profession.