Practical philosophy concerns itself mainly with subjects that have applications in life, like the study of values, norms, politics, art, etc.[1] The modern division of philosophy into theoretical philosophy and practical philosophy[2][3] has its origin in Aristotle's categories of natural and moral philosophy.[4] The one has theory for its object and the other practice.[2]

Subjects of practical philosophy

Examples of practical philosophy subjects are:

Philosophical counseling

Main article: Philosophical counseling

Practical philosophy is also the use of philosophy and philosophical techniques in everyday life. This can take a number of forms including reflective practice, personal philosophical thinking, and philosophical counseling.

Examples of philosophical counseling subjects include:

University education

In Sweden[5] and Finland courses in theoretical and practical philosophy are taught separately, and are separate degrees. Other countries may use a similar scheme—some Scottish universities, for example, divide philosophy into logic, metaphysics, and ethics—but in most universities around the world philosophy is taught as a single subject. There is also a unified philosophy subject in some Swedish universities, such as Södertörns Högskola.

See also


  1. ^ "Practical Philosophy". Department of Philosophy. Lund University. 2021-11-19. Retrieved 21 Feb 2024.
  2. ^ a b Immanuel Kant, Lectures on Ethics, Cambridge University Press, 2001, p. 41 ("On Universal Practical Philosophy"). Original text: Immanuel Kant, Kant’s Gesammelte Schriften, Band XXVII – Moralphilosophie, 1. Hälfte, 1974, p. 243.
  3. ^ Albert Schwegler, A History of Philosophy in Epitome, D. Appleton, 1877, p. 312.
  4. ^ Aristotle, Metaphysics, Book 1.
  5. ^ Department of Philosophy, Stockholm University