Article/Publication Details

Jan Patočka: Philosophy as a Concept of the Caring of the Soul

(Original title: Jan Patočka: Filozofia ako koncept starostlivosti o dušu)
Filozofia, 2006, vol. 61, No 5, pp. 369-386.
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Abstract

The paper searches an answer to the one of the most topical question in contemporary philosophy, which is indirectly related also to other parts of the spiritual life: Is the history of philosophy over, or should it continue to exist further? If the latter is true, what are then the possibilities and the mission of philosophy and how philosophy should stand to them? In order to answer these question the author goes back to Socratian philosophy as preserved in the Platonian European tradition and as retold by Jan Patočka. Following Jan Patočka the author puts stress on two main motifs: on the idea of philosophy as knowing unknowing and on the principle of the caring of the soul as an intrinsic telos of the spiritual history of the Europe since the ancient times. This is also the basis of the examination of the relationship between philosophy and sciences resulting in the conviction that in Socratian conception the philosophy means always first of all searching for the meaning of life, being at the same time complementary to sciences. Philosophy of Socratian type represents an intrinsic, inner and deep human experience and controlling the world, which is always accompanied by a deep inner conversion of humans.

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