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The Meaning of Life - Essay Example

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If one takes a close look at the human civilization, one cannot help noticing that people possess a peculiar characteristic feature: they are able to reflect on their life and think about abstract concepts that are regarded as guidelines by the society. It is quite obvious that…
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The Meaning of Life
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Download file to see previous pages This paper will analyze the views which were articulated by Richard Taylor and Susan Wolf.
To begin with, it may be particularly important to examine the ideas of each of the above mentioned scholars. Thus, the former is known for developing the concept of meaning of life that is based on the principle of fulfillment (Taylor 24). In order to illustrate it, the author used the ancient myth of Sisyphus, pointing out that while the majority thinks that life of the latter is pointless, certain alterations of the point of view might actually make it quite full of meaning. According to this kind of thinking, a person is able to live a meaningful life as long as it fulfills one’s desires, expectations as well as idea of what live should look life. Returning to the articulated example, if Sisyphus had a strong desire to roll up large stone, then his life would be rather meaningful and enjoyable.
Contrary to that, Susan Wolf developed a different understanding of what people should take into account while considering the meaning of one’s life. According to her, the principle of fulfillment is an essential one; however, the objective reality should be taken into account as well which results in the fitting-fulfillment principle (Wolf 25). The author argues that life of a person can be found to be full of meaning as long as it fulfills one’s desires, expectations as well as ideas, but also fits into a general context of the social environment. For example, life of Sisyphus can hardly be called a meaningful since despite the fact that it fulfilled his possible desire to roll up stone, it did not help the society in any way.
A brief examination of the above mentioned views was able to highlight one fundamental difference in the approaches that were developed by the thinkers. Thus, on the one hand, the position of Taylor is purely subjective. In other words, he argues ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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