As the blog title suggests, this blog is founded in philo-therapy a relatively new and fairly uncommon form of therapy that uses philosophy as a means of counselling and therapy.
The first time I heard this term was in dialogue with Dr. Frantisek Anderko, a self proclaimed philotherapist from Europe. He introduced philotherapy as an alternate title for philosophical counselling because it expressed a love (philo) for therapy. Which I identify with completely and have thus adopted for myself as well.
But what is philotherapy or philosphical counselling? Well, just as philosophy is foundational in reasoning, logic and the pursuit it entails (hence the “love of wisdom” that the literal translation of the Latin terms “philo” and “sophos” suggests), philosophical counselling uses said reasoning and logic to identify the initial premise upon which one’s thoughts, beliefs, values and assumptions are founded. The thought processes of an individual are followed and “examined” for fallacies or inaccuracies; just as a logician would follow premise after premise to determine the validity of the conclusion and wherein the discrepency, or discrepencies lay/lie.
It seems like a rather analytical approach, but in order to accurately “treat” the distress facing the individual, it is necessary to validate and address the cause of the distress. Philosophical counselling attempts to resolve the core issue, not the symptoms or other issues that attempt to mask the core issue.
Philosophical counselling has been treated as a last resort for many, primarily due to skepticism (which anything “philosophy” related is often subjected to), unfamiliary and the time committment required to pursue this method, and level of understanding. Moreover, we live in a society where there are enough pills to provide quick fixes, and enough things to keep us distracted and disillusioned in our ever-so-hectic and oh-so-busy lifestyles, that to dedicate the time to something we are unfamiliar and perhaps uncomfortable with, is less than appealing and often avoided.
Nonetheless, through this blog, alongside the few associations and groups that have formed in pockets within Canada and internationally, the intent is to generate a little more awareness as to the applications of philosophy and their relativity in everyday things.
Philosophy should no longer be written off as the questioning of “why” but the solutions as to the “how.”