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18072Re: [existlist] Cheater!

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  • Lorna Landry
    Apr 2, 2003
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      Eduard, Eduard, Eduard!

      You skipped to the end of the book? That's crazy! My comments below:



      yeoman <yeoman@...> wrote:
      Lorna et al,

      Well, I skipped ahead to the Conclusion section of Being and
      Nothingness. Here is a sampling of the text on page 785:

      "..., we found ourselves confronting two radically distinct
      modes of Being: that of the For-itself which has to be what
      it is --- i.e. which is what it is not and which is not what
      it is -- and that of the In-itself which is what it is."

      or try this, from the bottom of the page:

      "Our research has enabled us to answer the first of these
      questions: the For-itself and the In-itself are reunited by
      a synthetic connection which is nothing other than the
      For-itself itself."

      Does anyone understand any of this?? I mean, if this is
      part of the conclusion, then can we get anywhere with going
      through the entire book?? Granted, one may say that you
      need to read the whole of the book in order to understand
      the conclusion, but is it worth the time and trouble??

      LL******Yes, I know when I read the end of a big philosophical text before I read the beginning, it doesn't make much sense to me either! Sartre is a worthwhile read, and maybe I'm at an advantage having read the book before, but here's my take on the 2 quotes you give above:

      1. For-Itself and In-Itself:

      I am for-itself and the objects in the world are the in-itself. The in-itself is what it is. We can define it with an unchanging definition and it has no possibility to be anything other than what it is. Once a brick wall, ALWAYS a brick wall.

      The for-itself is that hole in being (consciousness) that is not what it is (you can try to define me - like the brick wall - but you cannot because my consciousness makes it such that I am always confronted with the possiblity to be OTHER than what I I am) I am also that which I am not because my choice directed toward the future (which does not yet exist) defines the meaning of all my actions now. I want to knit a sweater; the act of knitting only has meaning when we visualize the end - a completed sweater that does not yet exist.

      2. For-Itself-In-Itself:

      The synthetic conclusion Sartre talks about. This is what we all strive to be but cannot because its a logical impossibility. We cannot be both for-itself (that which we are not) and in-itself (that which is what it is). For Sartre, this is god (which we are always trying to be), and god does not exist.*******



      I am
      wondering if there is some other avenue that we can take. I
      have an Encyclopedia Britannica article on Existentialism
      which might be a subject of discussion.

      LL*******I'm not fond of reading encyclopedias as philoshical text. I think we should stick to the text.********

      Or perhaps others
      who have read more widely will be able to suggest something.
      Perhaps we could use some of the material on Chris's
      website.

      eduard



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