Philosophy; Paper One

Philosophy; Paper One - Connor Scribner The Meaning of Life...

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Connor Scribner The Meaning of Life There is a certain point in our lives, regardless of the time, when we begin to ask ourselves a set of questions that challenge our existence on this earth. Was the human race created to wonder this world aimlessly? Or do we have a true purpose that we are destined to harness and attain? Why am I here? Like the rest of us, Thomas Nagel, Robert Taylor, and Raymond Martin have each made their own attempts to answer the question of the meaning of life and while doing so, each of the philosophers rendered their own solution to these universal doubts. Thomas Nagel explains that “to convey the absurdity of our lives often has to do with space or time: we are tiny specks in the infinite vastness of the universe; our lives are mere instants even on a geological time scale, let alone a cosmic one; we will all be dead any minute” (Nagel, 768-769). Nagel then defines absurd as “a situation that includes a conspicuous discrepancy between pretension or aspiration and reality (Nagel, 769). Translated, Nagel says that absurd is a situation in which life seems irrational and meaningless. Throughout his entire argument, Nagel hardly leaves room for a rebuttal to yield the answer to the true meaning of our lives. He suggests that we as humans have a special capacity to take a step backwards and observe the lives that we are “committed” to and call them into question. But, as he pointed out; while taking that backwards step we realize that the life that we are so “committed” to, ultimately represent absolutely nothing. We then seek our past actions to justify our rationale, only to find out that “the objections to that line of attack have already been stated; justifications come to an end” (Nagel, 770). Thomas Nagel goes further to explain that those who try to escape the
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Connor Scribner previous position are only setting themselves up for another philosophical defeat; “those seeking to supply their lives with meaning usually envision a role or function in something larger than themselves. They therefore seek fulfillment in service to society, the state, the revolution, the progress of history, the advance of science, or religion and
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Philosophy; Paper One - Connor Scribner The Meaning of Life...

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