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Is it emotionally difficult to be a professional philosopher? Sometimes philosophical questions and subject matter seem so disturbing and intense, that it must surely be taxing psychologically. Does non-philosophical subject matter become pale and boring in comparison? Are professional philosophers socially isolated because of boredom with the non-philosophical, concomitant with the disturbing nature of the philosophical (so that it may not be acceptable in non-philosophical company)? Thanks.

I'll have to admit that most of the Sturm und Drang in my life hasn't got a lot to do with what I think about professionally. Questions like "do quantum states support measurement counteractuals?" or "does indeterminism serve any real function in Professor X's account of libertarian free will?" or "is there an acceptable notion of objective probability that explains how probabilities can be action-guiding?" aren't exactly the stuff from which high monthly psychoanalysts' bills are made. All of those questions are very interesting (No. Really!) but they aren't high on the angstometer. And I have a feeling that if you thumbed through the typical philosophy journal, you'd find much the same for much of what you saw. This isn't a criticism of my chosen profession and first intellectual love. Many of the questions that philosophers wrestle with are deeply fascinating if you have the taste for them, but they often abstract, often not very closely connected with the things in the world that really worry...

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