What are the Effects of Well-Being and Curiosity on the Emergence of Philosophy?June 26, 2021
Although researchers, philosophers and historians of philosophy have counted many factors or conditions in order to explain the birth of philosophy as a widespread intellectual movement in a cultural environment, it can be said that two of these conditions stand out a little more, and are even considered necessary factors.
In other words, two things are required for science and philosophy to emerge as products of critical thinking and high culture. First of all, it is indispensable that the society in which philosophy can develop has reached a certain or high level of prosperity. In such a welfare society, the person who will deal with philosophy has to have free time instead of working to meet his material needs.
This first condition was more than fulfilled in the 6th century BC in Ionia, which is a crossroads where various trade routes converge and which has become very rich in various ways, primarily maritime, agriculture and trade. In this rich port city, with direct access to Egypt in the South, the Black Sea in the North, Mesopotamia in the East and all Greek cities in the West, people lived in an atmosphere of real wealth and a cultural atmosphere that was material and humanistic in general orientation.
On the other hand, the second condition necessary for the emergence of a critical mindset and philosophy is to be curious, not content with what has been taught or presented, but to try to understand why the beings and things in the world should be as they are. This condition was realized in the philosopher named Thales, who was originally from Ionia.
Thales did not content himself with the explanation offered by Greek religion or mythology, but tried to understand and explain why beings and things should be as they are. As can be understood from this, philosophy is not a matter of seeing or believing, as pre-philosophical thought did. Philosophy is about wondering, thinking, in other words, thinking, in short, the mind. Philosophy is an intellectual activity about being able to see the unity hidden behind the multiplicity of visible beings, the order hidden by chaos, and investigating the reality behind the appearance.
Source: Atatürk University Department of Sociology Lecture Notes for Grade 1 “Introduction to Philosophy” and “Introduction to Sociology” (Ömer YILDIRIM); Other Lecture Notes (Ömer YILDIRIM), “History of Philosophy”, Ahmet Cevizci