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Re: [Sartre] Please respond asap. thank you.

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  • Gary C Moore
    O. K. You asked for it: First of all, Sartre is a Cartesian rationalist to all intents and purposes, so all action is futile would be the conclusion of a
    Message 1 of 1 , May 28 11:39 PM
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      O. K. You asked for it:
      First of all, Sartre is a Cartesian rationalist to all intents and
      purposes, so "all action is futile" would be the conclusion of a specific
      line of argument, not simply the bon mot of a novelist or playright. I do
      not remember this phrase myself, but it sounds entirely consistent with his
      thought.
      Another phrase I have always liked is, "Man is a futile passion". He
      means by this: 1) if passions are magical, then they have no rational goal;
      2) any passion, like any action, involes a decision which, if taken from the
      point of view of the authenticity of the pre-reflective cogito, MUST be a
      descent into "bad faith" from that authenticity because it must a) be
      rationally arbitrary; b) more than likely based on the already invalid
      emotional valuations of the past, which means "dirty hands"; and c) the
      reification of philosophical concepts which in reality cannot be resolved.
      Another quote that grounds both "All action is futile" and "Man is a
      futile passion" is "God is man's project". Even if we put aside Sartre's
      atheism, such a phrase would mean that man's goal is ABSOLUTELY OUTSIDE
      ITSELF and therefore not its ownmost. In other words, man's fundamental goal
      is 'over there' and will always remain 'over there' completely unreacheable.
      But even with God deleted, Sartre means what he says. To say "God is man's
      project" is to say being-there has no inherent meaning in itself. That if it
      wants a meaning, it must choose. But that any choice, especially when you
      know the real situation in authenticity, is automatically a choice in "bad
      faith".
      Another quote I think he means quite literally but comes from a play
      and is therefore 'suspect' as a philosophical statement is "Other people are
      Hell". When you get involved with other, not only do you make choices in
      "bad faith" but you realize they are not the proper goal of your actions
      even on that level, that each person has their own project that has nothing
      to do with yours fundamentally. Therefore your inauthentic values find
      themselves necessarily bypassed by others that you necessarily need a) as
      the goal of those values, and b) as an audience that recognizes your efforts
      as valid. They can't be goals, they can't recognize the meaning of your
      efforts (that is entirely yours alone), and, in actual practice, they don't.
      So any action in the world of people is futile.

      Gary C. Moore, Box 5081, Midland, TX 79704
      ----- Original Message -----
      From: <kimmy_p_l@...>
      To: <Sartre@egroups.com>
      Sent: Sunday, May 28, 2000 10:03 PM
      Subject: [Sartre] Please respond asap. thank you.


      > Does anyone have any opinions/quotes on Sartre's belief that "all
      > action is futile"?
      >
      >
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