The Project Gutenberg EBook of The World As Will And Idea. (Vol. 1 of 3) by Arthur Schopenhauer. This eBook is for the use of anyone. The Project Gutenberg EBook of The World as Will and Idea. (Vol. 3 of 3) by Arthur Schopenhauer. This ebook is for the use of anyone. THE WORLD AS WILL AND. REPRESENTATION by. ARTHUR SCHOPENHAUER. Translated from the German by. E. F. J. Payne. In two volumes: VOLUME I.
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The Idea Subobdi- i nated to the principle op sufficient reason: the Object of Experience and Science . SECOND BOOK. The World as Will— First Aspect. Cambridge Core - European Literature - Schopenhauer: 'The World as Will and Representation' - edited by Christopher Janaway. Contents. Frontmatter. pp i-iv . Access. PDF; Export citation. Contents. pp v-vi. Access. PDF; Export citation. Arthur Schopenhauer's Die Welt als Wille und Vorstellung is one of the most important philosophical works of the nineteenth century, the basic statement of one.
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Pleasure, though a real phenomenon, is merely the temporary absence of pain in a sea of suffering consisting of myriad pains with their eternal recurrence. Existence is the phenomenal objectification of the Will; each of us is subject to the overwhelming desires of the Will. We are Will deluded, thrown, disciplined by the Veil of Maya.
Death really comes to nothing. We are encapsulated in our pluriform individualities, subject to the insatiable appetites of the Will, spending our existence seeking to satisfy or quench them. Even if desire attains its object, before long another desire craves a different fulfilment.
We are like bubbles which burst upon the surface of a raging ocean. Existence is a war between various assertions of the Will fighting among [themselves], as It tears at its own flesh. We are incarcerated in the excession of the Will through the ceaselessly repeated ritualisations of our attempted individuation.
This is our situation until we die, and then there is nothing — nothing but Will.
Suicide is dismissed as futile, as what is killed off is merely the mask, the makeshift dwelling that sheltered the Will for a season. If our existence is an anarchic battle of insatiable needs and hence, a system of suffering, an impossible system , then existence itself, the life or flux of the Will, is essentially futile and should be halted.
As long as we live, however, there is no escape from the facticity of primordial restlessness, from this drive. We now return from the end to the beginning of The World to discover Schopenhauer's method.
We orient ourselves amidst a narrative multiplicity that tells a story of something that is paradoxically singular and timeless.
Though we will eventually understand our emergence from Will, we are now operating under the Principle of Sufficient Reason 1 hereafter, the Principle and its network of relations that controls the surface of appearances.
In this domain, we are always only projections on the surface; all accounts which rely on the Principle, such as causal explanation or aetiology, and thus science as such, concern only the surface.
We excavate deeper levels, but still remain only on another surface, separated from the inner truth of existence. Indeed, with Kant we grow sceptical of there being any knowledge possible though not a thinking of such a deeper, inner truth. It is this experience of exteriority — exile and incarceration on the surface of existence — that to a pure gaze provokes the question of interiority, of an inner truth to existence. Since I am, however, there must already be an elsewhere, a transcendence, that is somehow simultaneously here.
Of course this too, in its first aspect, is merely a representation, like any other object for a subject. There is another kind of awareness associated with the body, however, one that exposes a limitation to the Principle in its claim to exhaust the real.
We would never be able to formulate such a principle if we did not have an experience already of the beyond, that in this case is the inside, the inner truth of the world. We will discover, however, that the answers provoke still deeper questions.
We may embrace another, caress her, but except perhaps for the intimacy of eroticism as Bataille muses or of laughter or sorrow we do not, from the perspective of exteriority, feel or know her inner truth; we do not know what she knows, feel what she feels.
Schopenhauer World as Will and Representation
In the midst of the regime of individuality, we are not her, though this judgement never seems to satisfy. We grasp her, but within the horizons of the Principle. We still remain only on the surface.
At the same time, however, we have privileged access and experience intimately our own bodies — more accurately, my body. I can thus penetrate to a sense of the inner truth of existence as my disposition and my feeling. We are initiated into the secret cult of the self that abides behind the mask of the body, amid its dissimulations and postures. It is these feelings for our own body, of the inside, that intimate the inner truth of existence.
Moreover, we have the sense that others abide this secret as well.
The World as Will and Representation
Amid this bodily phenomenology of pleasure and pain, Schopenhauer asserts that the Will is stirred, aroused, provoked — summoned to reveal itself as the inner truth and being of existence. It signals its existence and communicates its power through the bodies of those who incite it.
Thus the body as the immediate object of the will discloses itself as the topos of the Will, the site of its discovery as the inner truth of reality. Such a universalisation through reflection, however, remains at the surface level.
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The discovery of the will can thus be regarded in two ways — as a representation, communicated in language and gesture, and in the practical experience of the body and its experience of willing. Before and beyond the merely reflective universalisation of the will, therefore, there lies the practical, existential topos, an ontological rooting of the individual will in the Will itself.
It is not, however, tamed by this sublimation. Further, this knowledge is regarded as immediate and certain for the ego through a direct experience of the will and of consciousness given by Nature herself. We must turn to Schopenhauer's aesthetic phenomenology to open these topics. This indicates that it is not an aesthetic within space and time, but rather a phenomenological aesthetics of human existence.
The condition under which the two constituent parts appear always united was the abandonment of the method of knowledge that is bound to the principle of sufficient reason, a knowledge that, on the contrary, is the only appropriate kind for serving the will and also of science. It is through contemplation of Art that Ideas spring up and impinge on our awareness. Instead we go or are thrown towards them, towards the things themselves.
We here catch our first intimation of the meaning of the denial of the Will, and how Schopenhauer's ethical judgment has shaped this site of decision. It is through the loss of individual will that we begin to fathom the Will itself through a phenomenology of its deeper manifestations in Art and music; moreover, this expression has been sublimated through a quieting or suppression of the individual will, and thus of the Will itself.
As with the Will itself, beyond the jurisdiction of the Principle, each idea retains only the universal form of representation, that of an object for a subject. These are distinct in that they are expressions of the primordial strife at the heart of the Will, a strife that in turn grounds the Principle without itself being aware of this unconscious a priori, first intimated by Schelling.
Contemplation is the falling away of individuality, and, for Schopenhauer, cannot be taught through the procedures of the Principle, just as morality cannot be taught via commandments, catechisms and ethical codes.
Instead, contemplation is seduced by the beautiful and the sublime in distinctive ways; it is openness to such seduction that is the measure of genius.
While the Artist displays the Ideas in concreta, accessing them through the expression of his own character, the philosopher contemplates the work of art in such a way as to disclose individuality as merely the expression of Ideas through the prism of the Principle.
Contemplation thus intimates death, an anticipated, dramatised death perhaps, in its noumenological exploration of the destruction of individuality Dionysus , conceived by Schopenhauer as a return to the pure subject as the unknown knower Upanishads. Normally, the will serves the individual directly, or better, the individual serves the will, in a futile attempt to satisfy its desires. The individual remains locked inside this modulating network of relations, unable to know itself as the pure subject that underlies All, and not knowing the objects, representations, as in truth Ideas that have become trapped within the principle of individuation.
Corresponding to this subjective aspect of contemplation there is the objective aspect of the Idea. The beautiful, which has the effect of quieting the will, is disclosed in apprehending a beautiful object as Idea.
The beautiful allows for a significant transition to the topos of aesthetic contemplation and the realisation of pure subjectivity and objectivity, but still merely as a somewhat superficial phenomenology. We have abandoned ourselves so fully in the beautiful object that we have forgotten our very existence, overpowered by the objectivity of the Idea.
We have lost sight of the facticity of our own embodiment. A phenomenology that considers merely the clarity and distinctness of beauty thus forgets existence with its radical temporality or finitude. It could lose sight also of the very event by which the subject of knowing becomes constituted as the condition for the network of representations; the sublime, however, allows us to restore this awareness. One fights free of the individual will and interests of the body, but remains consciously linked to it and its existence.
Amid this suspension, the terrible becomes susceptible to contemplation, even if such a topos for thought will only be makeshift.It could lose sight also of the very event by which the subject of knowing becomes constituted as the condition for the network of representations; the sublime, however, allows us to restore this awareness. It is through the will that mankind finds all their suffering.
Yet, while Nietzsche's criticisms may have their merit, their thrust and direction are distinct from that of the positivists. The desire for release from the striving of the Will exposes an ignoble abdication from what Schopenhauer had earlier boldly disclosed in his phenomenology of the sublime: that human existence expresses itself in defiance of and struggle against the terrible, the threatening.
He believed, therefore, that we could gain knowledge about the thing-in-itself, something Kant said was impossible, since the rest of the relationship between representation and thing-in-itself could be understood by analogy to the relationship between human will and human body. Before and beyond the merely reflective universalisation of the will, therefore, there lies the practical, existential topos, an ontological rooting of the individual will in the Will itself.
The latest co It is through contemplation of Art that Ideas spring up and impinge on our awareness. It is subordinate to the demands of the will for all animals and most humans.
His belated fame after stimulated renewed interest in his seminal work, and led to a third and final edition with more pages in , one year before his death.
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