I've noticed a trend in people's idea of what philosophy is, and it almost always centers around interpretation of the "great" philosophers, as if philosophy is some relic frozen in time. As if no one could ever do work as meaningful as that which was done before. Hardly anyone has heard of most contemporary philosophers and we certainly didn't study them in school. When I cite philosophy as an interest on dating apps, men inevitably ask me who my favorite philosophers are. None, is the answer. Or, more accurately: the Ancient Greek sceptics, Socrates (who never wrote anything and may never have even existed), and a few things David Hume said. I can take or leave pretty much everyone else. Learning about the philosophy of others is only a tool to develop your own ability to think and, frankly, a lot of the canonical philosophers were engaged in thought I find to be utterly devoid of practicality and totally masturbatory and inaccessible. I fight against the idea that philosophy should be this abstract amalgamation of difficult made-up words to represent concepts we could never apply to our lives. That was never the point. But men of old loved to feel that they were doing important things and those on down the line like to feel that they are reading important things and on and on. Most of the philosophy students I speak to are engaged in deconstructing and studying the thoughts of other philosophers. Why? What are your thoughts? Why has philosophy suddenly become the study of other philosophers instead of the doing of philosophy ourselves? We are the thinkers who matter right now. Understanding the thought that has come before is a tool upon which we can build or one which we can systematically disassemble. It's a way of understanding the world that we inherited, not a loop on which to get stuck. Get inspired by the thinkers who came before you, but don't get mired in them.