Philosophy 101- Arthur Schopenhauer- The emptiness of Existence Lecture

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Lecture on Schopenhauer- I apologize for the poor video quality AVS ruined my high definition VIDEO!! THE EMPTINESS OF EXISTENCE. This emptiness finds its expression in the whole form of existence, in the infiniteness of Time and Space as opposed to the finiteness of the individual in both; in the flitting present as the only manner of real existence; in the dependence and relativity of all things; in constantly Becoming without Being; in continually wishing without being satisfied; in an incessant thwarting of one's efforts, which go to make up life, until victory is won. _Time_, and the _transitoriness_ of all things, are merely the form under which the will to live, which as the thing-in-itself is imperishable, has revealed to Time the futility of its efforts. Time is that by which at every moment all things become as nothing in our hands, and thereby lose all their true value. * * * * * What _has been_ exists no more; and exists just as little as that which has _never_ been. But everything that exists _has been_ in the next moment. Hence something belonging to the present, however unimportant it may be, is superior to something important belonging to the past; this is because the former is a _reality_ and related to the latter as something is to nothing. The scenes of our life are like pictures in rough mosaic, which have no effect at close quarters, but must be looked at from a distance in order to discern their beauty. So that to obtain something we have desired is to find out that it is worthless; we are always living in expectation of better things, while, at the same time, we often repent and long for things that belong to the past. We accept the present as something that is only temporary, and regard it only as a means to accomplish our aim. So that most people will find if they look back when their life is at an end, that they have lived their lifelong _ad interim_, and they will be surprised to find that something they allowed to pass by unnoticed and unenjoyed was just their life--that is to say, it was the very thing in the expectation of which they lived. And so it may be said of man in general that, befooled by hope, he dances into the arms of death. Then again, there is the insatiability of each individual will; every time it is satisfied a new wish is engendered, and there is no end to its eternally insatiable desires. Life presents itself next as a task, the task, that is, of subsisting _de gagner sa vie_. If this is solved, then that which has been won becomes a burden, and involves the second task of its being got rid of in order to ward off boredom, which, like a bird of prey, is ready to fall upon any life that is secure from want. So that the first task is to win something, and the second, after the something has been won, to forget about it, otherwise it becomes a burden. That the most perfect manifestation of the _will to live_, which presents itself in the extremely subtle and complicated machinery of the human organism, must fall to dust and finally deliver up its whole being to dissolution, is the naïve way in which Nature, invariably true and genuine, declares the whole striving of the will in its very essence to be of no avail. If it were of any value in itself, something unconditioned, its end would not be non-existence. This is the dominant note of Goethe's beautiful song: "Hoch auf dem alten Thurme steht Des Helden edler Geist." That man is nothing but a phenomenon, that he is not-the-thing-in-itself--I mean that he is not [Greek: ontos on]--is proved by the fact that _death is a necessity_. And how different the beginning of our life is to the end! The former is made up of deluded hopes, sensual enjoyment, while the latter is pursued by bodily decay and the odour of death. No man has ever felt perfectly happy in the present; if he had it would have intoxicated him

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