If the field is abandoned for whatever reason it will definately narrow the scope of that most beutiful and wisdom loving discipline that is philosophy. Kelvin
I see the analysis of religion as a discipline (sociology, psychology and biology) as being useful and in no danger of being abandoned. Taking the mystique and fantasy elements of faith-based nonsense seriously (philosophy) is another matter.
I find that most arguments for religion and from religion to be non sense as well, i am an atheist for a good reason, i only wish to warn others not to have a narrow view of philosophy, the study of religion from a philosophical lens i do not find dangerous, on the contrary the study of the philosophy of religion could possibly be used as a weapon by us. It can help us further understand the religious mind and analyze it in a way that other disciplines say psychology for example cant do. I am not defending mysticism or religion but the philosophical analysis of it, one might argue that giving it attention is bad and that it acknowledges religion and God as something that is ok, i do not think it is ok to have belief without evidence, but i also do not think it to be ok to be dismissive of something that is dangerous, e.g. religion.
Notice that I asked if philosophy can create testable models. If it can, is it still philosophy? Now there's a philosophical question.
Philosophers ask questions, but so does everyone else, including Dominicans and idiots. The trick is to have a tool that works in response to a question and, alas, science seems to be the only thing that works for us. The rest is fantasy and other quirks of our mammalian brain; fun, but you can't get to Mars with them.
You can only experience a strawberry as a human can experience it. Vultures get excited at the prospect of a four-hour old sheep carcass. I guess we'll never know the reality of that experience. But we can, in practical terms, understand it, having some background in biology and other disciplines.
I agree that any bloke can ask a question but it takes an educated person, if it be a scientist or a philosopher to ask a pertinent question or one of any sort of importance. I also agree that science seems to be working for us and i appreciate its practical value as well as other values it has, but your comment that everything else is fantasy and quirks of our mammalian brain sounds dismissive to me, as if practicality was the only thing of value.
I also agree that we can only experience the strawberry as humans just as much as i can only experience the strawberry for myself. That is no reason to leave the experience of another human or being unquestioned no matter how impossible it may seem to gain knowledge of certain things we should always strive for it. Practicality is important but it isn't the only thing of value in my opinion. As for your metaphysical question it is one i must think about.