KOLAKOWSKI'S STRUGGLES WITH PHILOSOPHY (Kołakowskiego zmagania z filozofia)
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This paper discusses Kolakowski's metaphilosophical views. Although Kolłakowski was always deeply interested in the nature of philosophy, he expressed his views on this topic rather occasionally, usually in his historical works; in fact, he published only one metaphilosophical essay, 'Zakresowe i funkcjonalne rozumienie filozofii' (The Extensional and Functional Understanding of Philosophy), 1962. Kołakowski defined philosophy by its functions in culture. He opposed any reduction of philosophy to science or another field of culture (art, religion, etc.). At the beginning, he defended a radical rationalism. Since he was afraid that this kind of rationalism implies relativism, his later view became more absolutistic. On the other hand, it is unclear whether this absolutism was genuine. Kołakowski considered uncertainty as a fundamental feature of human fate. He looked for ideas which could help people in overcome uncertainty. Thus, we should speak about images of something absolute rather than the Absolute in the traditional philosophical sense. This seems the most appropriate interpretation of Kolakowski's view about philosophy.
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