Does it still make any sense to maintain dividing lines or boundaries between sciences or disciplines? In other words, are epistemological hierarchies still valid? Wouldn’t it be more productive, starting with teaching, that the narratives were free of barriers between them? As knowledge advances, themes expand and intertwine.To the point that we can affirm that the current knowledge ends up reflecting our ignorance much more than our answer to the various problems. In fact, the most profound questions remain open for discussion.
I believe this is a blessing in at least two ways. First, at any moment, new “truths” can be reached – albeit provisional, which can be translated by the classic expression of the Austrian philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein (1889-1951): “to point out the bottle”. Second, it is necessary to recognize that this unfinished search allows us to be rationally free from the dominion of other men. At this point, we can say, then, that philosophy is really just a process. In other words, philosophy does not give us knowledge, but understanding, and this can be frustrating, as Sir Anthony Kenny noted.
In turn, Wittgenstein takes this philosophical understanding more as the experience of a trip than as the arrival at a destination. (And travel is everything; that’s what we learn from Konstantinos Kaváfis’ poem “Ithaca”). In short, for Wittgenstein, philosophy is a process or activity. Finally, these reflections take us back to classical Greece. It seems that we are always coming “home” in philosophy. Therefore, we ask: does the search for the essence of things as a goal instigated by Socrates make any sense? After so many centuries, the founding stance seems to be losing its raison d’être. In any case, and here comes Wittgenstein’s suggestion, we need, perhaps, to understand philosophy or the search for knowledge as a search for clarity.
Therefore, meeting the longing for generality, we must conclude, with Wittgenstein, that it is no longer possible to neglect the particular data, but to consider that when assembling a model of description of the phenomenon or data under study, we have already done everything or almost everything that was possible to do right now. The always provisory characteristic of human investigation.
After all, Wittgenstein recognized that the logical structure of language could be visible on its surface. The Austrian sage did not want to propose theories. But describe in detail what is going on: this summarizes your analysis. In summary, it is up to the philosopher to “put things” clearly. The Wittgensteinian approach is, therefore, descriptive. His contribution to the history of philosophy focuses on method.