this refers to my own problems with nihilism.
this is my first attempt at a blog so all tips and criticism is welcomed.
in Albert Camus essay the myth of Sisyphus he tackles what he believes is the fundamental question of philosophy “whether life is, or is not worth living” . what i drew from his writing was that there was no apparent meaning for life at all, that is not to say it is not worth living. Camus tells us to scorn this principle of life without purpose by enjoying it.
so keeping it rather brief i ask to myself and to you, is merely living for the sake of enjoyment reason enough to go on?
in my view, yes, absolutely. Nietzsche came to the same conclusion — that experience itself is enough. i wrote at-length about my thoughts on this in a blog post once, if you’re interested:
Well I always found this to be rather superfluous question.
We are HERE. If you don’t want to be here then leave (I’m not judging if you decide to kill yourself). If you want to be here then stay (and hopefully try to live awesomely).
But the idea that it’s the job of philosophers to come up with an objective answer and then tell the rest of us whether we should kill ourselves or not is bullshit. It’s inherently an individualistic decision.
But perhaps I have a misconstrued picture of how philosophers are viewing the question.
well id say that most philosopher do (or well try to) answer the question of life in an individual manner but in a way that anyone can relate to. They pose questions to ask yourself for you to judge on whether your life is worth living or not. I haven’t heard of any philosophers that have said everyone should die (if you know please link) and the majority of existentialists come up with the view that life is worth living despite having no apparent purpose.
Camus said live in rebellion against the absurdities around you. My vote comes from a piece of graffiti I found in a dingy alley- “Exist loudly!”
whatever you do, make a splash, if you go out, go with a bang not a whimper. If you stay, make sure everybody knows you’re here.
Well yeah of course it’s worth going on. Something is better than nothing. And if life itself is not enough you can always find something stimulating.
Getting crazy immersed in a particular interest, or partying like a mad cunt.
Finding love. Or fucking around like a crazy fiend.
Creating. Or destroying.
I do not believe Camus proposes that we should continue life simply to enjoy it. He proposes that the reason not to commit suicide is a submission of oneself to the apparent absurdity of the universe. He says that, while life may be apprently meaningless and absurd, the only response humans can have is defiance. We defy the absurdity through enjoyment because that is exactly what the absurd tries to strip away from us. While the indifference and absurdity contains so much power, humans still have to the power to defy it. And that, is why we should keep living
Good summary. It’s hard to understand, and there are many reasons, you can’t really know for the most part till you think for a while. To me I guess I’m happy to keep living until I let myself down and then death seems like an ok option for me. But it takes a while to figure out.
Living based on a philosophical idea has no substance. If you convince yourself of reasons to live (or not live) based on ideas, you’re missing the point.
Thought is the problem in many cases. We apply it much too broadly for it to be an effective tool anymore.
There is no philosophical answer. Feeling alive is reason enough in itself. And when you feel alive, you feel enjoyment. It doesn’t need to be validated through reason.
It’s also a premature to assume that there is no meaning to life. There is actual meaning, but there is no meaning you can come up with through thought that will encapsulate the truth. You can’t say, “life is worth living because of x.” To me, there is no substance in that.
So I guess I would agree with your final statement. I think following pleasure and enjoyment is a biological and evolutionary imperative. Only humans justify their actions based on ideas and philosophical constructs. Other animals live for the sake of living, and do what is most enjoyable to them. Living doesn’t need to be justified through reason.