Understanding Philosophy, Branches of Science, and History

Definition of Philosophy –  Philosophy is a study of all human experience. What is in philosophy contains something that is used to build theories about humans and is served as a basis for belief. Besides that, philosophy also critically examines all things that can be used as the basis of a belief and attitude. However, what is the true meaning of philosophy?

Philosophy itself has many meanings, Readers , there are philosophical meanings that you can understand in general, there are also philosophical meanings conveyed by various experts. Even though they are different, all of these philosophical meanings have one thing in common. Apart from knowing the meaning of philosophy, Readers can also understand various branches of philosophy and their characteristics.

Well, for Readers who wants to know and understand the meaning of philosophy. Through this article. You can understand the meaning of philosophy both in general and from experts and you can also find out about the branches of philosophy and their characteristics. Come on, just look at the article about this philosophy, Readers !

The Meaning of Philosophy in General

Before Readers understands philosophy more deeply, you need to understand the meaning of philosophy in general first. Etymologically, the meaning of philosophy is the love of wisdom, while the person or actor who studies philosophy is called a philosopher. The person who first used the word philosophy, philosophy, or philosophy was Pythagoras (582-496 BC), a philosopher who came from Greece.

According to KBBI, philosophy or philosophy is knowledge and investigation with reason regarding the nature of all that exists, its causes, origins, and laws. Philosophy can also be interpreted as a theory that forms the basis of the mind or an activity, as well as a science that has the core of logic, aesthetics, metaphysics, and epistemology.

In general, this philosophy is a study of fundamental and general issues regarding various issues such as existence, knowledge, reason, values, mind, and language. In a broader sense, philosophy is an activity that people engage in when they are trying to understand fundamental truths about themselves, the world in which they live, and their relationship to the world and to one another.

Then not only that, according to Britannica the meaning of philosophy is a rational, abstract, and methodical consideration of reality as a whole or a fundamental dimension of human existence and experience. Philosophical inquiry is a central element in the intellectual history of many civilizations.

The Meaning of Philosophy According to Experts

Not only the meaning of philosophy in general, but Readers can also understand the meaning of philosophy that comes from the opinions of various experts. Yes, some experts reveal how philosophy is understood from their point of view that you can understand. The following is the meaning of the philosophy of these experts:

1. Plato

According to Plato (427-347 BC), philosophy is a science of nature. Philosophy is an attempt to gain knowledge and to know the real truth.

2. Aristotle

According to Aristotle (384-322 BC), the meaning of philosophy is a science of truth which includes logic, physics, metaphysics and also practical knowledge.

3. R. Berling

According to R. Berling (1968) the meaning of philosophy is a big thought inspired by the ratio of everything that comes from experience.

4. Bertrand Russell

The meaning of philosophy is nothing more than an attempt to answer various recent questions, not superficially or dogmatically as has been done by humans in everyday life and also in science.

5. WJS Poerwadar Minta

The meaning of philosophy is knowledge and investigation by using reason regarding various causes, all legal principles and so on of everything that exists in the universe or to know a truth and meaning of the existence of something.

6. Immanuel Kant

Immanuel Kant formulated philosophy as a science which is the base and culmination of all knowledge which includes four issues, namely:

  1. What can we know? (Metaphysics)
  2. What should be done? (Ethics)
  3. Where is our hope? (Religion)
  4. What is human nature? (Anthropology)

Philosophy Branch

It turns out that philosophy also has various branches that Readers can know and understand. This branch is useful for distinguishing one philosophy from another, such as for classifying types of philosophy. Here are the various branches in the world of philosophy:

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1. Metaphysics

Metaphysics is a branch of philosophy concerned with the analytical process of fundamental nature and its accompanying existence and reality. The study of metaphysics in general revolves around fundamental questions regarding the existence and various properties that encompass the reality being studied.

The meaning of metaphysics has various variations in each era and each philosopher certainly has a different view. In general, the topic of metaphysical analysis includes discussions about existence, possibility, actual existence along with its accompanying characteristics, space and time, relations between existences such as discussions about causality, and also other metaphysical discussions.

2. Epistemology

Epistemology comes from the Greek word ἐπιστήμη epistēmē; meaning “knowledge”, and λόγος, logos, which means “knowledge”. Epiatemology is a branch of philosophy that is concerned with or focuses on the nature or theory of knowledge. In the field of philosophy, epistemology includes various discussions regarding the origin, sources, value validity, scope, and also the truth of existing knowledge.

Epistemology studies the nature of knowledge, justification, and the rationality of beliefs. Epistemology is the subject of discussion in various fields, epistemology has been centered into four areas, namely:

  1. Philosophical analysis is concerned with nature and knowledge and how these relate to conceptions such as truth, belief, and justification
  2. Various issues of skepticism
  3. Sources and scope of knowledge and justification of beliefs
  4. Criteria for knowledge and justification..

3. Methodology

Methodology is a branch of systematic philosophy that deals with methods. Method is a procedure, technique, or way that has been designed and used in the process of obtaining knowledge of any type.

Methodology comes from the Greek yaj = kni “methodos” and “logos,” the word methodos consists of two syllables, namely “metha” which means through or passing and “hodos” which means is there a way or way. Method means a path traversed to achieve a goal and logos means science.

Science consists of four principles:

  1. regularity (order)
  2. causation (determinism)
  3. simplicity (parsimony)
  4. observable (empirical) experience

With such scientific principles, it can be interpreted as there are many paths that can be taken to find the truth.

4. Logic

Logic is a branch of philosophy that deals with reasoning. Reasoning is a distinctive style of thinking possessed by humans from knowledge that is useful for obtaining other knowledge, especially as a means of solving a problem. Logic as a branch of philosophy that can be practiced in everyday life. In the field of philosophy itself, logic cannot be separated in the process of obtaining truth or validity.

Viewed from the side of logic as a science, logic studies the human ability to think in parallel, orderly, and precise ways. The material object used by logic is to think according to reason, while the formal object of logic is thought which is studied based on aspects of its accuracy.

5. Ethics

Ethics is a branch of systematic philosophy that discusses morality. Morality is a set of ideas about what is good and what is bad in human behavior and what is right and wrong in human action. Ethics is a science that studies good and bad, obligations, rights and responsibilities, both socially and morally, for each individual in his social life. It can also be said that ethics includes all values ​​that have a relationship with individual morals regarding right and wrong.

Ethics in general are rules, norms, rules, or procedures that can be used as guidelines or principles of an individual in carrying out actions and behavior. The application of this norm is closely related to the good and bad qualities of individuals in social life.

6. Aesthetics

Aesthetics is a branch of philosophy that deals with beauty. Aesthetics is the science that discusses how beauty can be formed, and how to feel this beauty. Further discussion of aesthetics is a philosophy that studies various sensory values ​​which are sometimes considered as judgments of taste and sentiment. Aesthetics is the branch closest to the philosophy of art.

History of Philosophy

The history of philosophy is a study of a particular period, individual, or school. This field is still related, but very different from the philosophy of history. The history of philosophy is a very broad field of knowledge and is the seventh branch of systematic philosophy and discusses the development of philosophy from the earliest times to the present.

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The development of philosophy developed on the basis of philosophical thought that had been built since the 6th century BC. There are two philosophers whose style of thought can be said to have contributed to philosophical discussions throughout the history of its development, namely Herakleitos (535-475 BC) and Parmenides (540-475 BC).

Periodization of western philosophy is divided into ancient times, medieval times, modern times, and the present. The streams that emerged and gave influence to philosophical thought were Positivism, Existentialism, Marxism, Pragmatism, Phenomenology, and Neo-Kantianianism and Neo-tomism. Periodization of Chinese Philosophy is divided into ancient times, assimilation, Neo-Confucianism, and the last is modern times.

The main theme in Chinese philosophy is the problem of humanity. The periodical division of Indian philosophy is the Vedic, Epic, Sutra and Scholastic periods. As for Islamic philosophy, there are only two periods, namely the Muta-kallimin period and the period of Islamic philosophy. For the history of the development of science here the discussion refers to philosophical thought in the West.

The period of Greek philosophy is one of the most important periods in the history of human civilization because at that time there was a change in the human mindset from various myths to a more rational one. The myth-myth mindset is a people’s mindset that relies heavily on myths to explain natural phenomena, for example, earthquakes and rainbows. Earthquakes are not seen as an ordinary natural phenomenon, but rather as the Earth God shaking his head. However, when philosophy was introduced, these natural phenomena were no longer regarded as activities of the gods, but became natural activities that occur causally.

This change in mindset may seem simple, but the implications are not that simple because so far nature was initially feared and shunned and then approached and exploited at the same time. Humans who previously tended to be passive in dealing with natural phenomena became more proactive and creative, so that nature was used as an object of research and study. From this process, science develops from the womb of philosophy, which in the end we can enjoy in various forms of technology. Therefore, the period of development of Greek philosophy is an important point in entering a new civilization for mankind.

So, the development of science as it is today does not take place in a sudden or sudden way, but occurs gradually and evolutionarily. Because to understand the history of the development of science, we inevitably have to do a division or classification based on the periodical, because each period has a certain characteristic in the development of science. Theoretical development of thought always refers to the Greek civilization. The periodization of the development of science starts from the Greek civilization and ends with contemporary times.

Philosophical characteristics

Not only the meaning of philosophy and also branches of philosophy, you can also find out the characteristics of a philosophy. Yes, these characteristics can help Readers to understand a philosophy. And here are the characteristics of the philosophy:

  1. It is universal or comprehensive, so it’s not just in one view or a certain aspect.
  2. Radicals are fundamental. Philosophy is a thought that is carried out in depth to get to the roots so that fundamental results are obtained.
  3. Systematic or sequential. In accordance with the pattern by using logic even though it can be interpreted as mere assumptions.
  4. A philosopher always has the nature to question everything.
  5. Philosophy describes all explanations accompanied by detailed descriptions, for example the reasons why something can happen.
  6. His thinking uses studies that have been researched carefully and in detail, including the basic concepts so that from these concepts other ideas about the world and life can be developed.
  7. Provide an assessment of all existing problems carefully and earnestly. Even from the results of the philosophy that has been made, it is necessary to re-evaluate with the aim of ensuring that it is closest to the truth.
  8. The study of philosophy in the form of parables, suppositions, and fiction. It is used to explore issues more broadly and without any boundaries.