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no philosophy equals big risk

learning productivity multipliers (such as philosophy) ASAP is most efficient by far. i think that's something worth aggressively optimizing.

for example, some people prioritize their career ahead of philosophy. so then they do all kinds of career stuff which they could have done twice as fast if they were better at philosophy and a few other skills. like they have to learn some skills for work, and they learn them slowly, whereas if they knew more about learning they could have learned it a lot faster.

or people start dating and get married before learning about romance philosophy. big mistake.

besides philosophy first being a more efficient order (if are ever going to learn to learn faster, the sooner you do that the more efficient, since you get to use it in the most cases), it also helps deal with mistakes of various kinds (like marriage. marriage shouldn't be done at all at any speed).

how is one to know whether he's making a big picture mistake he'll regret later, without knowing lots of philosophy? i think it's a serious risk. this includes both risks of doing things badly out of order so it's really inefficient and also risks of doing something that shouldn't be done at all in any order.

so learn a substantial amount of philosophy ASAP or huge risk of disaster. those are the only choices.

put another way, you should start on the beginning of infinity track, now. that means thinking, learning, aiming for lots of speedy progress. you've gotta start making progress now, not at some indeterminate point in the future. and if you're trying to make rapid progress as your standard way of life, then to do it well you've gotta learn what's known about how to do that (which is called "philosophy").

ppl often seem to think the risks of doing their life as-is and meeting current preferences are low. they think that things seem to be going pretty well, how bad can it be? maybe they even know some philosophy and fixed some mistakes, and think there can't be too many more (uhh what? how do you know how many more there could be? we're all alike in our infinite ignorance!)

i think basically anything but doing quite a bit of philosophy is extremely risky. also i do and know more philosophy than you and i'm telling you it's risky. so why are you doubting me when you have no criticisms of my philosophical positions? and since you do way less philosophy, how would you even evaluate the risk? it takes philosophy to evaluate how much danger there is and to do anything about the danger. so how can you decide it's an ok risk to take when you lack the knowledge to even understand the risk?

Elliot Temple on September 9, 2013


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