Philosophy versus Philosophizing

Some might say that a more grammatical title for this blog would be "Random Philosophy", but I think their is a substantial difference between the two nearly-synonymous alternatives "Philosophy" and "Philosophizing". For one thing, -phy focuses on the entire body produced by philosophers since ancient times up to the latest neuroscience-inspired zombie theory of non-consciousness. -Phizing, on the other hand, is less weighty--much less, in fact. It's what happens when you realize omigod, there's a there there that's always been there but I never noticed it before. One might say that philosophizing is philosophy unzipped.

There's another difference, too. -Phy has a kind of permanence to it. Sometimes this is more of a hope chez le penseur than something that is actually realized in actuality, but it can't be denied that philosophy contains many structures "built to last", as it were. -Phizing, on the other hand, is much slipperier. In particular, random philosophizing of the type this blog is anticipated to contain is almost ethereal, nuageux--intended to reflect the writer's thought of the moment. Perhaps one way to express the difference is that -phizing is a nominalized verb form, while philosophy has no apparent derivation from a verb (the verb philosophize, whence -phizing is derived, is derived from -phy, as far as I know). This difference in derivation represents syllogistically the difference: -phy is noun-like, and -phizing is verb-like.

Well, actually they both are nouns, except in answer to the question, "What were you doing in the bathroom for 30 minutes?", you can say "I was philosophizing". You can't say "I was philosophy" unless you were in an unusual, possibly drug-inspired hallucinogenic ecstasy, in which case the whole like-a-noun, like-a-verb question is probably going to be pretty uninteresting to you (or perhaps extremely, intensely interesting).

You see?

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