Sunday, October 16, 2011

Derek Parfit's raison d'becoming a philosopher

I love the following from the beginning of On What Matters:

"My debts to Sidgwick are easy to describe.  Of my reasons for becoming a graduate student in philosophy, one was the fact that, in wondering how to spend my life, I found it hard to decide what really matters.  I knew that philosophers tried to answer this question, and to become wise.  It was disappointing to find that most of the philosophers who taught me, or whom I was told to read, believed that the question 'What matters?' couldn't have a true answer, or didn't even make sense.  But I bought a second-hand copy of Sidgwick's book, and I found that he at least believed that some things matter"(pg. 41)

This makes me like Parfit a lot, maybe he and Sidgwick can convince me that something matters, that would be cool.

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