Sartre: Existentialism 1. Human nature is not something that is determined beforehand, but is something that is invented/created as we make the decisions that come to constitute our lives. We define ourselves as we go along. No prior definition. Hence we are free. 2. Existentialism : Existentialism is the view that existence precedes essence – subjectivity is the starting point . What does this mean? The old concept implicit in all of western philosophy is that essence precedes existence. For example, take the Platonic concept creation. Something is created from out of the IDEA of that thing. This is partly what we learnt in the divided line analogy. The idea is the higher truth, of which the material things are copies. This Platonic notion is present in Christianity as well. God as the creator is a similar idea. God creates human beings out of his own image etc. 3. But Sartre says if God does not exist, there is no concept or idea of human nature, into which human existence fits.The Platonic-Christian model fails. Man first shows up in the world, is literally "
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Meaning of life, Philosophy of life, Existence precedes essence