Philosophy as Artistic Interpretation Part 1


Philosophy is a lot like the interpretation of art; except in the case of the philosopher he isn’t sure if there is an artist or not.

I have heard “the hand of the artist is seen in the art” or something of that sort; but the inexhaustibility of interpretation of any piece of art kind of makes a sham of that.

Rather the “self of the spectator is seen in the art” would be more appropriate.

Even if it were the case that the philosopher knew there was an artist it wouldn’t matter.


Because whenever anyone approaches anything; be it statements, paintings, the world, or ideas; they always come to it with assumptions they have gathered through past experience. These assumptions colour their interpretation.

For example: The realization that we cannot be certain of anything.

For some people this is a terrible idea because it means “What’s the point to thinking about these things if there is no definite answer I can get to by thinking about them!”

Can you see the assumption that has coloured this interpretation of the concept relativism? It’s that there has to be a point, a goal, a purpose in order to justify doing whatever it is they are doing.

Well does there?

Who says so?

For me relativism is a brilliant realization because I see philosophy as a playground. I enjoy the freedom to hop from perspective to perspective that relativism allows.

 It may be that relativism is “false” but from our subjective perspective it’s the best we have and I’m jubilate (lovely word that. It comes from the word jubilation which was a year in the Jewish calendar when all debts were cleared and the slaves were freed) in this fact.


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