Friday, May 24, 2019
ManÃ¢â¬â¢s Existence Defined by Being and Nothing Essay
I. IntroductionWhat makes a someone alive? Should humans be gear upd simply by a persons biological and physical ability to move and breathe? Is innovation proven by the spotless physical presence of a living person?Philosophers down the ages have advanced some(prenominal) theories of how human existence is defined. Some have advance theories base on the establishment of being after the fulfillment of a lifes purpose. Others opined that a persons fear or experience of apprehension and postcodeness defines existence. Some that believe that it is a combination of these yin/yang forces that define human existence.II. Discussions on Existence, organism and NothingnessPeople are defined as human beings in Biology. It is what separates humans as a specie from animals. But shouldnt the word human be enough? What is the significance of the verb be? some(prenominal) theories have been advanced to define the tangible things angiotensin converting enzyme sees in life but as philosoph er Martin Heidegger noticed, they have forgotten to ask what to be really is (Philipse. 1998. p18). The foreland of what defines human existence has intrigued philosophers over the ages. Theories have gone beyond the basic qualification of life as the simple and obvious ability to move and breathe. existential philosophy however, puts forward the more abstract concepts of defining ones being as influenced by boredom, freedom, commitment and alienation (Warnock.1970.p.4). It separates the human existence into being and nothing. What makes a human a being?According to Heidegger, a de-constructional view of existence is necessary to include the essence of humans being as hostile to the classical thought of the obvious and therefore unexplored being (Philipse, 1998.p.3).One of Heideggers main influences, Edmund Huserll (Grimsley.1960.p.37) said that philosophy should be described in the linguistic context of human experience and goals. People do and live in accordance with one plan or goal. Heidegger modified this with his theory of care, (Cochrane. 1956. p112) which, simply stated office that a persons priorities or what he or she considers authorised defines their existence. For him, it is the motivation and the individual needs that define a persons existence and thus shapes them into what they are.In his work Being and Time, Heidegger created the representation Dasein of the individual that seeks to answer the question as to why he exists. He states the Dasein is thrown into a population of possibilities and responsibilities, and to account for his existence, the Dasein must take responsibility for all these possibilities (Cochrane, 1956 p. 136).Another philosopher who advances the notion of a reality governed by consciousness, Rene Descartes in his Meditations on First Philosophy states that in human existence, the just thing that cannot be doubted is consciousness. Reality can have many illusions, but a human beings consciousness is eternal which ther efore makes it the only truth (Snooks, 1998.p 26).The famed German philosopher George Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel (Stace,1955. p. 44) summed it up in the statement the rational alone is real which presented the idea that everything can and will only be expressed in rational categories His various works reflected methods predominantly rooted in logic According to Hegel, the degree of comprehension of concepts is only circumscribed or expanded by the standards of knowledge a person possesses and the level of society he belongs to (Stace,1955. p. 46) .The ideas of existentialism contradict this. The definition of a persons existence is not dependent on rational thinking but rather their individual beings in the world they were born in. Reality in interview to ones existence is subjective. In Sartres Being and Nothingness, he defines the actuality of mans ideal of completion as the fulfillment of state of Being while nothingness is the failure or lack of this actuality (Schilpp. 1997.p.48 )Like Hegel, Sartre also used the concepts of Being in terms of in itself, for others, and for and in itself. Unlike Hegel however who defined these as organizational thought processes and logic in the individual, Sartre stated these terms with definitions done to identify and qualify the subjective and objective facets of human existence.Regarded as the Father of Existentialism, and one of Hegels greatest critics, Soren Kierkegaard (Malantschuk, 2003.p.11 )was a Danish philosopher who proposed that it is an individuals feelings such as dread and anxiety that lead to making choices that define a persons life. Kierkegaard believed that the difference between an individuals self-perception of being and nothingness stems from the individuality of a person and that includes emotions and passions. A persons existence therefore, is brought about by his fears.He cites a parallel of faith and atheism. In his theories that were viewed as anti-organized religion, Kierkegaard states that for a person to be able to make a leap of faith, one must first have doubt. Otherwise, one may not be able to differentiate faith from everyday emotions. In the resembling way, Being cannot exist without Nothing and vice-versa (Malantschuk, 2003.p.90)Kierkegaard also advanced the paradoxical theory of the Concept of Dread (Ussher, 1968.p. 52). According to Kierkegaards concept of Dread, it is only when one has experient total reverse that one can recognize and experience life and living.Only by being a sacrificial Isaac would he recognise himself for the pricy of Abraham and no miracle (he knew in the end) would intervene. (Ussher, 1968.p. 27).It is not unusual in todays times to hear the maxim You never know what you have unless youve lost it. The misery or anxiety at the thought of losing something makes one realize how much value they have truly assigned to something. The thought of this is echoed in German diarist Helmut Kuhns Encounter with Nothingness An Essay on Existentiali sm (1949) The question of existence is urged upon us chiefly by our interest. We raise it when we care for the existence or the nonexistence of something. When darkness closes down, we do get excited about the existence of light (Kuhn, 1949)Immanuel Kant presented a style of inquiry that takes to consideration the physiological and empirical facets of a persons state of Being. Kant believed that an introspective approach was necessary for one to understand and make sense of ones own being (Kant, 1965).Sartre, one of the strongest critics of Kantian theory argues that the notion that human emotions are insignificant and occasional situations that occur of an individuals behavior is unacceptable.Moreover, emotion must not be considered as a set of empirical facts gained through introspection or as a corporeal phenomenon , but rather as an organized piddle of human existence (Schilpp, 1997.p.13)As a persons existence and state of Being are subjective, so is the definition of nothingne ss.The lexicon meaning of the word nothing is given as 1 not any thing no thing 2 no part 3 one of no interest, value, or consequenceIn philosophy however, despite the many theories that sought to define existence, the definition of the word nothing seems to be universal. It simply means failure to disclose a state of Being through lack of fulfillment and failure at the attainment of purposes or goals.III. SummaryThe human being and existence is a complex and paradoxical concept. All the concepts are true in a sense, but were never really complete in describing or pinpointing the meaning of life. varied schools of thought range from describing human existence in a mathematical sense then evolving into the more abstract consideration of complex human emotions. undefiled philosophy in its rational and logical basis, says it is Mind over matter.Sartre, Hegel and Heideggers philosophies are summed up in the End justifies the Means.Kierkegaards neurotic view of the existence as a r esult of anxiety and dread is summed up in You dont know what you have until youve lost it.IV. ConclusionGiven the many points of view advanced, there remains a constant, and that is recognition of the human free will. It is the will that makes a choice that rational, experiential or pessimistic, influences the End that defines and justifies a persons existence.A persons experience of past and present in addition to his perception of what the future could be are subjective. The significance heap place on certain things is also subjective. Reactions are subjective. Life is subjective. One can choose to define existence in the manner of different philosophies. However, it is important to note that these schools of thought are not rules that encompass every persons experience of life.