World philosophy day : History, Significance, and facts

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World philosophy day is celebrated on every third Thursday of November every year. This year it will be celebrated on 18th November. But, only a few people actually care or know about it. This is kinda sad, especially if you’re a philosophy student or have a keen interest in it. 


Today, I’ll be explaining everything I could in very specific and summarised form so that you grasp more in less time consumed. More knowledge in less time. That’s my philosophy. 

Starting with the very basic and obvious question.

What does philosophy mean?

Like every complex word, the word ‘philosophy’ also comes from the Greek language, which literally means ‘the love of wisdom and that pretty much says it all you need to know about the subject. 

But if you look broadly…

Philosophy is the study of existence and reality of nature, which includes everything from what’s wrong to what’s right, from what’s moral to what’s immoral, from ethics to the meaning of life. 

When was the first world philosophy day celebrated?

The Idea of the day was first introduced by UNESCO in 2002 but for god knows what reasons the implementation took some time. Well, by some time I meant 3 complete years. 

Finally, in 2005, UNESCO’s general conference decided that every third Thursday of November will be celebrated as ‘World Philosophy Day’ to give a tribute and respect to the beauty of the subject and its scholars. 

So, Technically 16th November 2006 was the very first ‘World Philosophy Day’ the world ever celebrated. Since then, the tradition continued. 

The next obvious question that might be in your mind after reading the above paragraph is…

Why did UNESCO create this day?

Now we are cooking. Well, there are a number of reasons behind the step but there’s this one philosophy behind UNESCO’s decision that influenced the creation of this day.

You know, if you think it through, philosophy is a big deal. Let me explain. For thousands of years, people were following and doing what they were told to. It didn’t matter whether what they were doing was wrong or right. They were doing it anyway. Widows were burning themselves along with the dead bodies of their husbands. Girls were considered a burden for centuries. No one ever questioned these thoughts and, as a result, there were no signs of personal and societal development. 

It was a philosophy that gave people the liberty to question the customs and rituals. It was through principles of philosophy that people got rid of past thinking and adapted what’s right and fruitful for them. If you connect the dots, philosophy is the first step to development. As you may have heard, “Every empire started from a thought”.

World Philosophy Day celebrates the importance and role of philosophy in our lives and It encourages us to share with each other our philosophical heritage.

Fun Fact

During last year’s celebration, there were 4 top-notch roundtable games organized in which philosophy scholars from all over the world were invited to share their findings and thoughts. 

What role does this day play in the fraternity?

For a philosophy scholar, student, and for people who are interested in philosophy, this day means a lot. It’s like Christmas for them. 

This day renews the national, regional, and communal commitment to the subject. It raises awareness among people about the importance and usefulness of philosophy. It encourages new scholars to work hard and come up with fresh and better solutions to human problems. And, the best part, it encourages new people to join the line of work and learn the principles of philosophy.

World philosophy day
World philosophy day

Final Words

That was it guys. I really hope that I made it really easy for you to know the story, importance, and reason behind ‘World Philosophy Day. And if I’ve made my efforts right, then you won’t have to go anywhere else after this article to know about this day at all. 

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