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Arthur Schopenhauer
Arthur Schopenhauer by J Schäfer, 1859b.jpg
Born(1788-02-22)22 February 1788
Died21 September 1860(1860-09-21) (aged 72)
NationalityGerman
Education
Era19th-century philosophy
RegionWestern philosophy
School
InstitutionsUniversity of Berlin
Main interests
Metaphysics, aesthetics, ethics, morality, psychology
Notable ideas
Anthropic principle[4][5]
Eternal justice
Fourfold root of the principle of sufficient reason
Hedgehog's dilemma
Philosophical pessimism
Principium individuationis
Will as thing in itself
Criticism of religion
Criticism of German idealism[6][7]
Schopenhauerian aesthetics
Wooden iron

This follows Kant's reasoning.Kant's reasoning.[184]

The task of ethics is not to prescribe moral actions that ought to be done, but to investigate moral actions. Philosophy is always theoretical: its task to explain what is given.[185]

According to Kant's transcendental idealism, space and time are forms of our sensibility in which phenomena appear in multiplicity. Reality in itself is free from multiplicity, not in the sense that an object is one, but that it is outside the possibility of multiplicity. Two individuals, though they appear distinct, are in-themselves not distinct.&

According to Kant's transcendental idealism, space and time are forms of our sensibility in which phenomena appear in multiplicity. Reality in itself is free from multiplicity, not in the sense that an object is one, but that it is outside the possibility of multiplicity. Two individuals, though they appear distinct, are in-themselves not distinct.[186]

Appearances are entirely subordinated to the principle of sufficient reason. The egoistic individual who focuses his aims on his own interests has to deal with empirical laws as well as he can.

What is relevant for ethics are individuals who can act against their own self-interest. If we take a man who suffers when he sees his fellow men living in poverty and consequently uses a significant part of his income to support their needs instead of his own pleasures, then the simplest way to describe this is that he makes less distinction between himself and others than is usually made.[187]

Regarding how things appear to us, the egoist asserts a gap between two individuals, but the altruist experiences the sufferings of others as his own. In the same way a compassionate man cannot hurt animals, though they appear as distinct from himself.

What motivates the altruist is compassion. The suffering of others is for him not a cold matter to which he is indifferent, but he feels connectiveness to all beings. Compassion is thus the basis of morality.[188]

Schopenhauer calls the principle through which multiplicity appears the principium individuationis. When we behold nature we see that it is a cruel battle for existence. Individual manifestations of the will can maintain themselves only at the expense of others—the will, as the only thing that exists, has no other option but to devour itself to experience pleasure. This is a fundamental characteristic of the will, and cannot be circumvented.[189]

Unlike temporal, or human justice, which requires time to repay an evil deed and, "has its seat in the state, as requiting and punishing",[190] eternal justice "rules not the state but the world, is not dependent upon human institutions, is not

Unlike temporal, or human justice, which requires time to repay an evil deed and, "has its seat in the state, as requiting and punishing",[190] eternal justice "rules not the state but the world, is not dependent upon human institutions, is not subject to chance and deception, is not uncertain, wavering, and erring, but infallible, fixed, and sure." [191] Eternal justice is not retributive because retribution requires time. There are no delays or reprieves. Instead, punishment is tied to the offence, "to the point where the two become one."... "Tormenter and tormented are one. The [Tormenter] errs in that he believes he is not a partaker in the suffering; the [tormented], in that he believes he is not a partaker in the guilt."[191]

Suffering is the moral outcome of our attachment to pleasure. Schopenhauer deemed that this truth was expressed by Christian dogma of original sin and, in Eastern religions, the dogma of rebirth.

He who sees through the principium individuationis and comprehends suffering in general as his own, will see suffering everywhere, and instead of fighting for the happiness of his individual manifestation, will abhor life itself since he knows that it is inseparably connected with suffering. For him, a happy individual life in a world of suffering is like a beggar who dreams one night that he is a king.[192]

Those who have experienced this intuitive knowledge cannot affirm life, but exhibit asceticism and quietism, meaning that they are no longer sensitive to motives, are not concerned about their individual welfare, and accept the evil others inflict on them without resisting. They welcome poverty and do not s

Those who have experienced this intuitive knowledge cannot affirm life, but exhibit asceticism and quietism, meaning that they are no longer sensitive to motives, are not concerned about their individual welfare, and accept the evil others inflict on them without resisting. They welcome poverty and do not seek or flee death.[192] Schopenhauer referred to asceticism as the denial of the will to live.

Human life is a ceaseless struggle for satisfaction and, instead of continuing their struggle, the ascetic breaks it. It does not matter if these ascetics adhered to the dogmata of Christianity or Dharmic religions, since their way of living is the result of intuitive knowledge.

The Christian mystic and the teacher of the Vedanta philosophy agree in this respect also, they both regard all outward works and religious exercises as superfluous for him who has attained to perfection. So much agreement in the case of such different ages and nations is a practical proof that what is expressed here is not, as optimistic dullness likes to assert, an eccentricity and perversity of the mind, but an essential side of human nature, which only appears so rarely because of its excellence.[192]

PsychologyPhilosophers have not traditionally been impressed by the necessity of sex, but Schopenhauer addressed it and related concepts forthrightly:

... one ought rather to be surprised that a thing [sex] which plays throughout so important a part in human life has hitherto practically been disregarded by philosophers altogether, and lies before us as

... one ought rather to be surprised that a thing [sex] which plays throughout so important a part in human life has hitherto practically been disregarded by philosophers altogether, and lies before us as raw and untreated material.[193]

He named a force within man that he felt took invariable precedence over reason: the Will to Live or

He named a force within man that he felt took invariable precedence over reason: the Will to Live or Will to Life (Wille zum Leben), defined as an inherent drive within human beings, and all creatures, to stay alive; a force that inveigles[194] us into reproducing.

Schopenhaue

Schopenhauer refused to conceive of love as either trifling or accidental, but rather understood it as an immensely powerful force that lay unseen within man's psyche, guaranteeing the quality of the human race:

The ultimate aim of all love affairs ... is more important than all other aims in man's life; and therefore it is quite worthy of the profound seriousness with which everyone pursues it. What is decided by it is nothing less than the composition of the next generation ...[195]

It has often been argued that Schopenhauer's thoughts on sexuality foreshadowed the theory of evolution, a claim met with satisfaction by Darwin as he included a quote of the German philosopher in his Descent of Man.[196] This has also been noted about Freud's concepts of the libido and the unconscious mind, and evolutionary psychology in general.[197]

Schopenhauer's politics were an echo of his system of ethics, which he elucidated in detail in his Die beiden Grundprobleme der Ethik (the two essays On the Freedom of the Will and On the Basis of Morality).

In occasional political comments in his Parerga and Paralipomena and Manuscript Remains, Schopenhauer described himself as a proponent of limited government. Schopenhauer shared the view of Thomas Hobbes on the necessity of the state and state action to check our species' innate destructive tendencies. He also defended the independence of the legislative, judicial and executive branches of power, and a monarch as an impartial element able to practise justice (in a practical and everyday sense, not a cosmological one).[198]

He declared that monarchy is "natural to man in almost the same way as it is to bees and ants, to cranes in flight, to wandering elephants, to wolves in a pack in search of prey, and to other animals."[199] Intellect in monarchies, he writes, always has "much better chances against stupidity, its implacable and ever-present foe, than it has in republics; but this is a great advantage."[200] On the other hand, Schopenhauer disparaged republicanism as being "as unnatural to man as it is unfavorable to higher intellectual life and thus to the arts and sciences."In occasional political comments in his Parerga and Paralipomena and Manuscript Remains, Schopenhauer described himself as a proponent of limited government. Schopenhauer shared the view of Thomas Hobbes on the necessity of the state and state action to check our species' innate destructive tendencies. He also defended the independence of the legislative, judicial and executive branches of power, and a monarch as an impartial element able to practise justice (in a practical and everyday sense, not a cosmological one).[198]

He declared that monarchy is "natural to man in almost the same way as it is to bees and ants, to cranes in flight, to wandering elephants, to wolves in a pack in search of prey, and to other animals."[199] Intellect in monarchies, he writes, always has "much better chances against stupidity, its implacable and ever-present foe, than it has in republics; but this is a great advantage."[200] On the other hand, Schopenhauer disparaged republicanism as being "as unnatural to man as it is unfavorable to higher intellectual life and thus to the arts and sciences."[201]

Schopenhauer, by his own admission, did not give much thought to politics, and several times he wrote proudly of how little attention he paid "to political affairs of [his] day". In a life that spanned several revolutions in French and German government, and a few continent-shaking wars, he did maintain his position of "minding not the times but the eternities". He wrote many disparaging remarks about Germany and the Germans. A typical example is, "For a German it is even good to have somewhat lengthy words in his mouth, for he thinks slowly, and they give him time to reflect."[202]

The State, Schopenhauer claimed, punishes criminals to prevent future crimes. It places "beside every possible motive for committing a wrong a more powerful motive for leaving it undone, in the inescapable punishment. Accordingly, the criminal code is as complete a register as possible of counter-motives to all criminal actions that can possibly be imagined ..."[203] He claimed this doctrine was not original to him. Previously, it appeared in the writings of Plato,[204] Seneca, Hobbes, Pufendorf, and Anselm Feuerbach.

Races and religions
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