Wittgenstein and the practical man
In a previous status, I quoted Wittgenstein thus:
Wittgenstein:Don’t get involved in partial problems, but always take flight to where there is a free view over the whole single great problem, even if this view is still not a clear one.
Now, W. is giving a philosopher’s attitude to problems. He is performing what Marx called the tasking of knowing the world.
What about what Marx calls changing the world?
That is not the job of philosopher-in-himself or for-himself.
There comes the practical man. If the job of a philosopher is to take the view of “the whole single great problem”, the job of the activist is to attend to “the partial problem” in the light of “the whole single problem”, that provides him a perspective in which he place the partial problem. Changing the terminology, one might say, he looks at the particular in the context of the universal, to see the ocean in a drop, but to focus on the drop.
This involves evolving a strategy and tactics to resolve the partial problem.
Take an example. Suppose I am considering how to improve the sanitary condition of my ward. I should place it in the global context; this will involve my philosophy as well. Then consider how I can contribute to the global compulsions and desirables by changing the condition of my ward. It will involve what is possible and how it can be achieved, what compromises are needed to be made, etc.
When I was learning politics and its activity, I remember my friends and I had to consider how to make levi (لئی) to poster the Lower Mall, where to get paper from and the burshes (بُرش) etc and how to cover our tracks etc. All that only سنوریا، تیرے لئے۔