REPLY TO THE QUESTION: Does philosophy make us better?

I began philosophy because I read things like Bertrand Russell’s ON DENOTING and his neutral monism in THE ANALYSIS OF MIND, extracts from Whitehead’s PROCESS AND REALITY, and Nietzsche’s TWILIGHT OF THE IDOLS ECCE HOMO when I was 15, and I thought philosophy was beautiful, the reasoning, the concepts, the worldviews, the diversity. This impression of beauty has never left me.

I later came to see philosophy as important for my individuation, so I don’t know if it makes people better, but I would say that it makes people “meta-better”, i.e. more individually developed both in their good and in their bad traits and responses. An egoist with a rich articulated and intellectually refined mental world will still be bad news, and they will sometimes be worse than an egoist (or fascist or toxic partner) without such enrichment, but they will be meta-better for the same reason. And even more so for the philosophically enriched altruist.

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