Ideas of Arthur Schopenhauer, by Theme

[German, 1788 - 1860, Born in Danzig. Educated in France and Britain. Taught at the University of Berlin. Retired in 1831, and settled in Frankfurt.]

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1. Philosophy / D. Nature of Philosophy / 3. Philosophy Defined
Philosophy considers only the universal, in nature as everywhere else
Everyone is conscious of all philosophical truths, but philosophers bring them to conceptual awareness
1. Philosophy / D. Nature of Philosophy / 8. Humour
Absurdity is incongruity between correct and false points of view
2. Reason / B. Laws of Thought / 2. Sufficient Reason
'There is nothing without a reason why it should be rather than not be' (a generalisation of 'Why?')
7. Existence / A. Nature of Existence / 2. Types of Existence
Matter and intellect are inseparable correlatives which only exist relatively, and for each other
7. Existence / D. Theories of Reality / 3. Anti-realism
The knowing subject and the crude matter of the world are both in themselves unknowable
10. Modality / C. Sources of Modality / 1. Sources of Necessity
All necessity arises from causation, which is conditioned; there is no absolute or unconditioned necessity
11. Knowledge Aims / A. Knowledge / 2. Understanding
All understanding is an immediate apprehension of the causal relation
11. Knowledge Aims / B. Certain Knowledge / 5. The Cogito
Descartes found the true beginning of philosophy with the Cogito, in the consciousness of the individual
11. Knowledge Aims / C. Knowing Reality / 3. Idealism
The world only exists in relation to something else, as an idea of the one who conceives it
12. Knowledge Sources / B. Perception / 4. Sense Data / a. Sense-data theory
Direct feeling of the senses are merely data; perception of the world comes with understanding causes
12. Knowledge Sources / B. Perception / 5. Interpretation
All perception is intellectual
15. Nature of Minds / B. Features of Minds / 1. Consciousness / a. Consciousness
A consciousness without an object is no consciousness
16. Persons / C. Self-Awareness / 2. Knowing the Self
What we know in ourselves is not a knower but a will
16. Persons / E. Rejecting the Self / 4. Denial of the Self
It is as perverse to resent our individuality being replaced by others, as to resent the body renewing itself
16. Persons / F. Free Will / 5. Against Free Will
We all regard ourselves a priori as free, but see from experience that character and motive compel us
16. Persons / F. Free Will / 6. Determinism / a. Determinism
Man's actions are not free, because they follow strictly from impact of motive on character
20. Action / A. Definition of Action / 4. Action as Movement
Every true act of will is also at once and without exception a movement of the body
20. Action / B. Preliminaries of Action / 2. Willed Action / a. Will to Act
Schopenhauer was caught in Christian ideals, because he didn't deify his 'will'
20. Action / C. Motives for Action / 3. Acting on Reason / a. Practical reason
If we were essentially intellect rather than will, our moral worth would depend on imagined motives
21. Aesthetics / A. Aesthetic Experience / 4. Beauty
A principal pleasure of the beautiful is that it momentarily silences the will
21. Aesthetics / C. Artistic Issues / 6. Value of Art
The will-less contemplation of art brings a liberation from selfhood
Man is more beautiful than anything else, and the loftiest purpose of art is to reveal his nature
22. Metaethics / A. Value / 1. Nature of Value / d. Subjective value
Every good is essentially relative, for it has its essential nature only in its relation to a desiring will
22. Metaethics / A. Value / 1. Nature of Value / f. Ultimate value
Will casts aside each of its temporary fulfilments, so human life has no ultimate aim
22. Metaethics / A. Value / 2. Values / b. Altruism
Altruistic people make less distinction than usual between themselves and others
22. Metaethics / A. Value / 2. Values / e. Self interest
Only self-love can motivate morality, but that also makes it worthless
22. Metaethics / B. The Good / 2. Happiness / a. Nature of happiness
Happiness is the swift movement from desire to satisfaction, and then again on to desire
23. Ethics / C. Virtue Theory / 1. Virtue Theory / a. Nature of virtue
Virtue must spring from an intuitive recognition that other people are essentially like us
24. Applied Ethics / C. Death Issues / 1. Death
Most people would probably choose non-existence at the end of their life, rather than relive the whole thing
26. Natural Theory / A. Concepts of Nature / 1. Nature
The essence of nature is the will to life itself
27. Natural Reality / A. Space-Time / 2. Time / a. Time
Time may be defined as the possibility of mutually exclusive conditions of the same thing
29. Religion / A. Religious Thought / 1. Religious Belief
Religion is the mythical clothing of the truth which is inaccessible to the crude human intellect
29. Religion / C. Monotheistic Religion / 4. Christianity / a. Christianity
Christianity is a pessimistic religion, in which the world is equated with evil