That's simple. What his or her intentions are. If you are Sir Francis Galton, and your intentions are to demonstrate how the British royal family deserves everything they have and more as they are surely the highest evolution of man - then I think that you're a crap philosopher of no repute at all.
If you are Jesus of Nazareth, and your intentions are to teach people to love each other regardless of it all, then I think that your philosophy is a thousand times more valuable than the father of eugenics.
I have to go with what Socrates did when the Oracle At Delphi called him the wisest... a great philosopher admits that he doesn't really know anything and goes around asking questions.
Not a simple question. A good philosopher must do his best to honestly answer and ask questions. Avoid the rhetoric and aim for the truth. No easy task. Personal feelings are to be put aside and efforts towards the truth, whatever that means, must be made.
That being said a GREAT philosopher, at least to be acknowledged as great, must create/discover/realize some truth or possible truth/idea and spread the study of that idea. Plato did this by opening his academy. Aristotle did so inadvertently by leaving us his lecture notes. Many more modern philosophers left great texts for others to stud and follow their line of thinking.
What made these men great was the power of their ideas and of their minds that created them. I would say that even if they did not leave behind these idea they would be great philosophers, merely attaining such ideas and understanding shows them to be great, but we can recognize this because of their writings.
It takes a great mind to make a great philosopher. A life of effort and pursuit of Truth are the paths one must take to reach this greatness. No matter if the Truth is found or not, any progress that can better the understanding of what truth is or where it comes from will make a philosopher great.
A great philosopher is a person whose words are much wiser than foolish, though persons who are more foolish than wise are sometimes considered to be great philosophers.
A great philosopher is one that have gain and experienced enough in life to have a conclusion about it. And then comes the ink and the paper and great thoughts of writing it down from a focus intellect. That is the measure of a great philosopher.
There is more to the peanut......than just the peanut.
An open, questioning, intelligent mind ~
A lack of any obligation (financial or moral) to organized belief systems be it religious, scientific, and/or academic ~
Disengagement from social conditioning ~
A commitment to following the Truth where ever it may lead ~
An unwavering pursuit of higher consciousness ~
Those are just a few qualities that come to my mind! Blessings, Earth Angel!
P.S. Paraphrased just now from a very wise man I admire: "An untarnished connection to the deepest inner Source of wisdom ~ "
It is that he can philosophize the system required to measure his possible greatness.
A philosopher has to follow the philosophies in actual life. If he merely preaches, after reading various text books, he becomes a paper tiger. A great philosopher is one who first practices his philosophy, find out the validity and then tell others or teach them.
A great philosopher thinks big; Thinking big is not about people and incidents; he thinks on ideas why things are the way they are and how things come to be and how to improve them for the good of everyone; he interrogates the beginning and the end of things that exist in the universe and those that transpire in-between. All his thoughts are creative and productive for others to follow on and produce something useful for all from such idea.
Well to begin with anyone who thinks outside of the accepted norm of what everyone else thinks is normal. Then to have the intellect to place all of this gained knowledge to the right place.
the patience to understand, the desire to be closer to G-d than man, and most of all the wisdom to see the difference.
After that a great philosopher is just someone who knows how to use all that has been given to him/her for the betterment of themselves. The greatest change to be affected is the change of yourself to someone who makes a difference in the lives of others.
"A wise man will squander more oppertunitys in his lifetime than he creates."
A great Philosopher is one who pushes the limits. One that doesn't side with society for the sake of siding with society. He decides what is true for him, and then defends those truths by what he preaches. A great Philosopher is also one that is often misunderstand, because he goes against the status quo. As Emerson beautifully stated, "to be great, is to be misunderstood."
One who speaks truth with wisdom! This is what a great Philosopher is to me.
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex... It takes a touch of genius - and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction.
Einstein's quote leads me to say that a great philosopher is one who, understanding the complex, can communicate the paradox of any argument, in the negative and the positive without prejudice and in humility, to the common man so he can make a decision that will benefit all humanity.
it is almost "impossible" to answer as "good" is according to each of our own unique values. since none of us have two value systems, we will can generally only come close to what is good or not even if we agree on things.
when you look at the etymology of the word, most know "philo(s)" is the "love of" and sophia (or sophis) is wisdom or knowledge. So someone who loves both knowledge and wisdom might have a "track record" of results of helping others that may be a measurement of their greatness.
"the greatest amongst you is the servant of all". bill gates became great financially as he found a way to serve the masses with software/hardware. most would not consider him a great philosopher i would guess.
makes me curious what is the barometer of becoming or being considered a philosopher in the first place?
From my experience, children are the wisest people on our planet. they live in the moment, they do not drag their pasts along with them, (generally that is) and are focused on fun at any given moment. They do appear to live in the moment best.
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