What Is The Meaning Of Life In Schopenhauer

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Schopenhauer, in his early book that sums up all of his philosophy The World as Will and Representation, is interested in answering central questions like: what is the meaning of life? What motivates the human being to live and carry on living? What do we mean by life in society? Do we mean that innate tendency to seek the company of our fellow human beings? Can the human relationships fulfill our being, displaying our intellectual and moral virtues, and therefore live happily? Schopenhauer’s answer is simple though with deep connotations: the will to live. The will to live is not something rational and already planned, it is rather the sum total of all the basic irrational desires, the irrational forces to resist and continue existing, an instinctual urge to stay alive. We are slaves to our own will to live for to realize such will, one must disturb someone else 's will to live. Living seen from this angle is an inevitable violent war. In order to avoid such a war, one needs to find a place where he/she can minimize its pains. Schopenhauer believes that solitude is that appropriate place. It is the right place for : “those who strive for true holiness; throwing away all possessions, abandoning every home and all relations, deep and total solitude spent in silent contemplation with voluntary penitence and terrible, slow self-torture to completely mortify the will.” Schopenhauer asserts that there is indeed a "social instinct" but in order to live in society, everyone must

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