Real Men are Philosophers

A real man is a philosopher.

While it’s certainly important to be a man of action, a real man also takes the time to ponder the important questions of life.

Why am I here? What am I accomplishing? What’s important? How will I be remembered? How can we make the world a better place? Why is there suffering in the world? How is the world changing and how should we respond? Why is there a very distinct hierarchy (Taco Cabana, followed by Taco Bueno, followed by Taco Bell, followed by Taco Mayo) among fast food Mexican restaurants? What are the important ideas of my time?

I think you get the point.

A real man is a big picture thinker. He somehow sees his role in the world as a bit larger than it really is, and yet in doing so, the philosopher in him often inspires the problem solver in him to create a reality that is more in line with the way he thinks things ought to be.

Some of the greatest men of history were also philosophers. Benjamin Franklin, philosopher. Winston Churchill, philosopher. Teddy Roosevelt philosopher. Martin Luther King Jr., philosopher. The list could go on and on.

Try to imagine a world without the men above. Does it look different? Is it better or worse? While all of the men above were men of action, they weren’t bulls in a china closet (well maybe Roosevelt was). They were men of purpose whose actions were obviously the result of a deliberate and rich life of the mind.

Without philosophers, the status quo wins out every time and no progress is ever made.

The philosopher is just naive enough to under-estimate the scope of most problems while over-estimating his own ability to solve them. The manifestation of this quality, while at times both dangerous and humorous to observe, is responsible for the creation of more man-made good in this world than just about any other quality I can think of.

No matter what other strengths a real man brings to the table, it is his ability to see a problem combined with his (sometimes errant) view that he’s big enough to do something about it that ultimately ends up having the greatest impact on our world.



2 thoughts on “Real Men are Philosophers”

  1. Agreed. However, we’d also need to add a third sub-ranking for those that serve breakfast a la Cabana and Bueno.

  2. Michael – I love your Real Men posts. I especially liked this one. And, the taco hut hierarchy is so true. Except – Taco Mayo cinnamon chips rank second only to Taco Beuo’s because the other two don’t have them. So I’d like to propose a sub-ranking tree on the cinnamon chips. That is all…

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