I think that is how I use Quora. I answer questions I normally would not be concerned with, and I sometimes discover answers that I did not know previously. In fact, this is the main drive for answering questions on Quora for me. Certainly the feedback is pretty slim, and there are many undesirable things about Quora as it now exists, like some pretty poor questions that we have to twist to make something out of them worth answering. But I forge ahead mainly as a means of advertising my pseudo-academic work which is strewn across my websites. I can put in a plug for something I have already written here and there, not that there is much likelihood that many readers would be generated by this.
Lets face it. Almost everything on Quora is a lowest common denominator type of activity. It is a good test as to where people who think they are thinking are at. But of course we don’t see much self-discovery here, or at least it is not readily apparent. But we must start from where we are, and strive first to get beyond ego to self (in the Jungian sense) and then beyond self awareness awareness of the Other that goes beyond the self. And then perhaps on to some spirituality. Bodhisattvas need to be really patient, especially in times such as these. Nietzsche talks about the Last Man … blinking … blinking ….
Once we get a bit of self-Awareness, then we should really think seriously about Other-awareness. According to Hegel we can only be self-conscious via our comprehension of the Other. Hegel called his masterwork Phenomenology of the Spirit/Ghost/Mind. These three meanings of Geist sum things up fairly well. We first need to understand ourselves, and perhaps get some self-awareness, but that only comes to fruition by recognizing the ghost of the Other. Moving from The SELF that is all-encompassing to the Atman which encompasses the All, as they say that which looks though everyone’s eyes. We might call it the Meta-Self. Desan calls it Planetary Man.
Only when we have synthesized Self in the widest Jungian sense with the Other in the widest sense that we get some insight into Spirit and the absolute reason of its unfolding in history embodied by us.
It took about 100 years for Nietzsche to move beyond Hegel, and now it has been 100 years yet have we moved beyond Nietzsche yet. Heidegger made his contributions and tried to do that. Does self-awareness for instance include an awareness by ourselves of our own tradition, seems not. We have forgotten more than we ever knew. And we never knew what we have known in our history because it is not taught, and we have little interest to pursue the issue beyond what we ware explicitly taught. So generally we are worse off than we know because of what we no longer know that we once knew, but which we have lost in oblivion. Through self-awareness we can peek out of that oblivion, but only through other-awareness can we actually recover who we are beyond what we know of ourselves. Then we might escape the lowest common denominator mentality, and begin searching for the higher common denominators.
We are not understanding until we go beyond the information given as Heidegger says. We are not understanding ourselves until we go beyond ourselves. Self-awareness is not enough, we must have concomitant Other-awareness up to and including ourselves as Planetary Man. And then perhaps after that the Spiritual journey can begin.