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Re: Schopenhauer

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  • Jim
    Wil, Yes, I have The World as Will and Representation in the two volumes published by Dover. I ve now read all of Volume One apart from Book Four which I
    Message 1 of 33 , Feb 20, 2011
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      Wil,

      Yes, I have "The World as Will and Representation" in the two volumes published by Dover.

      I've now read all of Volume One apart from Book Four which I have just started.

      I have to say I am enjoying reading Schopenhauer and I am getting quite a bit out of it.

      I would say I am more sympathetic to Schopenhauer than you are these days, but I still think his view of the world and the self is deeply flawed.

      You have to remember he was writing in the shadow of Kant and roughly at the same time as Hegel, who he hated.

      I assume you know the story that Schopenhauer was invited to give a lecture course at Berlin University where Hegel was also lecturing. To make a point, Schopenhauer deliberately timetabled his lectures at the same time as Hegel's. This was utter madness on Schopenhauer's part as Hegel was at the height of his fame, and whereas hundreds went to Hegel's lectures, only a handful went to Schopenhauer's.

      Schopenhauer was humiliated and from them on kept very much out of academia.

      Yes, I agree Schopenhauer's idealism is wrong-headed, but he took it over from Kant. So we have to say that Kant's transcendental idealism is also wrong-headed. I'm prepared to say that as I am within the analytic tradition, and it is generally agreed that Frege and Russell put forwarded devastating arguments for the falsity of Kantian idealism.

      Schopenhauer's philosophy proved to be rather a dead-end. Only Nietzsche seems to have been decisively influenced by Schopenhauer, and Nietzsche's will-to-power seems very similar to Schopenhauer's will-to-live.

      I think Schopenhauer was influential in arguing that an appreciation of nature and art are aspects of the good life, if not, indeed, the means to salvation from the sufferings of human existence.

      Arguably, Schopenhauer is correct to say that the ordinary human condition is one where we restlessly seek satisfaction for our desires, then once they are satisfied and momentary happiness ensues, we are back with further desires that need satisfying. Only by forgetting about our petty ambitions and projects, and losing ourselves in the beauty of nature or of a work of art, can we be truly contented.

      I think there are other aspects of life that can make us happy, but I think Schopenhauer was correct to point to nature and art as sources of happiness. Indeed, for many who came after Schopenhauer, nature and art provided the means to happiness, which religion had done for those you came before Schopenhauer.

      Jim
    • Jim
      Wil, Yes, I have The World as Will and Representation in the two volumes published by Dover. I ve now read all of Volume One apart from Book Four which I
      Message 33 of 33 , Feb 20, 2011
      • 0 Attachment
        Wil,

        Yes, I have "The World as Will and Representation" in the two volumes published by Dover.

        I've now read all of Volume One apart from Book Four which I have just started.

        I have to say I am enjoying reading Schopenhauer and I am getting quite a bit out of it.

        I would say I am more sympathetic to Schopenhauer than you are these days, but I still think his view of the world and the self is deeply flawed.

        You have to remember he was writing in the shadow of Kant and roughly at the same time as Hegel, who he hated.

        I assume you know the story that Schopenhauer was invited to give a lecture course at Berlin University where Hegel was also lecturing. To make a point, Schopenhauer deliberately timetabled his lectures at the same time as Hegel's. This was utter madness on Schopenhauer's part as Hegel was at the height of his fame, and whereas hundreds went to Hegel's lectures, only a handful went to Schopenhauer's.

        Schopenhauer was humiliated and from them on kept very much out of academia.

        Yes, I agree Schopenhauer's idealism is wrong-headed, but he took it over from Kant. So we have to say that Kant's transcendental idealism is also wrong-headed. I'm prepared to say that as I am within the analytic tradition, and it is generally agreed that Frege and Russell put forwarded devastating arguments for the falsity of Kantian idealism.

        Schopenhauer's philosophy proved to be rather a dead-end. Only Nietzsche seems to have been decisively influenced by Schopenhauer, and Nietzsche's will-to-power seems very similar to Schopenhauer's will-to-live.

        I think Schopenhauer was influential in arguing that an appreciation of nature and art are aspects of the good life, if not, indeed, the means to salvation from the sufferings of human existence.

        Arguably, Schopenhauer is correct to say that the ordinary human condition is one where we restlessly seek satisfaction for our desires, then once they are satisfied and momentary happiness ensues, we are back with further desires that need satisfying. Only by forgetting about our petty ambitions and projects, and losing ourselves in the beauty of nature or of a work of art, can we be truly contented.

        I think there are other aspects of life that can make us happy, but I think Schopenhauer was correct to point to nature and art as sources of happiness. Indeed, for many who came after Schopenhauer, nature and art provided the means to happiness, which religion had done for those you came before Schopenhauer.

        Jim
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