How the art of philosophical inquiry leads to self-knowledge: A schema

A philosophical inquiry aims at a desideratum. That desideratum is announced or implied in the statement: ‘This is it!’ The ‘this is it’ is the conclusion of the inquiry and the end of the philosophical conversation.

The diagram below seeks to shed some light on this moment of self-knowledge. What distinguishes self-knowledge from other modes of investigation (e.g., scientific investigations) is that it seems to require a dialogic structure. What distinguishes self-knowledge from other intersubjective genres (sharing, chit chat, active listening, validation, etc.) is that it involves inquiring into we know not what in the hope of making some discovery that had hitherto been unknown to both guide and pupil.

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