On the difference between personal and scholarly philosophy

Personalphilosophy is bound to particular individuals or to an individual who takes a conscious attitude toward reality, how it is constituted, what is most important in our existence, and what we can reasonably think about the world. Scholarly philosophy deals with the analysis of concepts and the difficulties that appear in the attempt to mould a personal philosophy. The ultimate aim of scholarly philosophy is thus to be of use to people in shaping and improving their personal philosophies. What I here call "personal philosophy" I have sometimes called "natural philosophy", that is to say philosophy that emerges naturally in our personal lives. Some of us deliberately try to develop such a philosophy, others do not. But many philosophers – among them Aristotle and Sigurður Nordal – have thought that it is natural to us to cultivate philosophy.

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