When something is bound to be of little substance, or the discussion of it surely only giving rise to opinion or sophistry, sometimes the phrase "merely philosophical" is used.
In this article I'm composing, which is philosophical in nature, I should like to avoid the word "philosophical", since if preceded by "merely" it might be taken as belittling Philosophy, which is not intended.
At the same time I don't want to come on so strong as to claim that the topic is of little substance, only to make clear that any results will not elucidate the topic at hand.
I have looked for synonyms but not come up with anything suitable. I'm asking here in the hope that you will, as English is not my first language.
Article description: After settling on an etymological analysis of an account, I am trying to extract what knowledge the account can be said to convey, for the moment withholding judgment over any assertions of the purpose or intent of the account being recorded, as well as abstaining from addressing the larger context in which the account is presented.
Currently the sentence in question reads, "Arguments over the purpose of the account are merely philosophical (in the general sense)."
I would like to improve on this.
Note: It seems that I want to write something along the lines of, "merely philosophical/purely academic/just a scholastic exercise" without offending philosophers, academics, or scholars, which I respect and consider myself a fellow to, and of whose work I have partaken to write the article.
In all honesty, I don't think I'm weaseling something in here, though, but simply pointing out that work done by these fellows, however fine, will not affect the topic as it stands; that it must be treated as a stand-alone topic.
Perhaps there is no good way of telling anyone which battles to choose, and offending the sensibilities of my peers is inevitable, but I would like to avoid it if I can.