Wednesday, March 13, 2019
Philosophy Essay on Self Essay
I certify that this literature re draw is my stimulate work and contains no material which has been accepted for the award of any spirit level or diploma in any institute, college or university. Moreover, to the best of my familiarity and belief, it contains no material previously published or written by another psyche, except where due reference is made in the school text of the dissertation. Name Signed _________________________________________________ Date ___________________________________________________ The most fundamental of the questions man asks him egotism-importance in his flavour clock are, what/who am I ? and what is my tendency? The curiosity over this retail store of the self-importance has spanned piece thought for millennia rooting from societal notion that life potnot be just bricks and cement. Due to the inherent temper of these fundamental curiosities mankind has strugg lead from ancient times to uncover these mysteries. In the westerly-context, thi s brief judge will try to explore the dimensions of the essence of self ranging from medieval to the neo existence of self. It will review the theories of self starting with Aristotelian comprehension and Christian doctrines and their eventual marriage by St. Thomas Acquinas moral theory.In effect, it then explores critical viewpoints and traces the maturement of Scientific Rationalization. Progressively, it passs Rene Descartes rationalist views shaping his dualistic conception of the self. Furthermore, it poses the contrasting empiricist views of John Locke where he places self-knowingness and memory as the variables to comprehend self. In addition, it contests David Humes proclamation of the self as simile (Robinson, H. , 2012). The theories of self and identity operator gradually developed over a diachronic timeline resulting in modern thought on the subject.In this regard, it is important to project its development initiation from religious conception in the west. Cur iosity on these issues can be traced back to accounts of Aristotle, where he is of the view that everything in nature has a purpose and everything can be rationalized based on its feeling and the purpose it served (Greetham, B. 2006, p. 213). This is referred to as the teleological systemal view, which contri barelyed to the formation of medieval world view formed by Christian dogma and the Catholic church (Cavalier, G. ,1989).This Christian conception viewed the world as being divinitys trigger and expression of his will which was cosmologically meaningful and structured. The purpose of things downstairs this theology is God given and is a part of the empyreal plan (Stanford encyclopedia of philosophy). This categorises the medieval belief of self, where humans have a certain place and purpose and the self is understood in terms of the role it plays in the grand plan of things. The medieval Christian conception of self was greatly excite by the work of 13th century theologian St. Thomas Acquinas.In his opus he bridged the gap between faith and reason by linking Christian dogma and Aristotelian thought (OCallaghan, R. , 2010). In essence, he lived in a crucial juncture of western culture when the Latin reading of Aristotelian corpus was made available which in effect reignited the debate on relating faith and reason. His theories borrowed from Aristotle and Christian dogma and ethics which were consistently reaffirmed by the church over the centuries (auquinas from stanford). The aforementi unitaryd medieval religious conception of self forms the butt Acquinas ethical premise on how we ought to act (Greetham, B., 2006).Right and unlawful actions based on their compliance with human nature and its place God-given subjective order, categorized as natural or unnatural. Hence, the self jump and confined to serving a purpose. However, this religious world-view came under intense chiding with the climax of scientific advancement and rationality in the 1 6th and seventeenth centuries. Scientific thinking developed under the likes of Descartes and Locke and was reasoned based on the accomplishments of Galileo and Newton(Zalta, E. , 2011).They disregarded the place of divine-will in their conception of self, basing it on mere experience, existential evidence and mathematical formulations. This shift of conception is termed demythologization, where everything works without a purpose and results from mechanical fundamental interaction of particles regulated by universal laws which can be mathematically formulated (Greetham, B. , 2006). Consequently, began the calculate of the self by aspect within for purpose and meaning. The modern view of self is articulated in the works of 17th century philosopher Rene Descartes.He pioneered the dualistic arrangement of the human being, which is made up of the mental aggregate ( judgement) and the physical substance ( personate) (Warburton, N. , 1992). Here, the dead body has physical properties like having weight and using space, whereas the mind is a non-material substance, prudent for thought and experience and then is the abode of consciousness. In his view, the self is a spiritual subject of experience which is fundamentally different from the body and nature, where the body inessential and the mind can exist independently.His radical scepticism led to the formation of the Illusion argument, where the bodily senses are deemed unreliable and consequently the existence of the external world and body is uncertain. The only thing one can be certain of is that I exist. This is categorized under his famous proclamation -Cogito ergo sum, meaning I think, whence I am (Cavalier, G. , 1989). In essence, the self is essentially mental and the search for purpose and meaning should be searched within ourselves instead of classifying it under marrow of nature.In his endeavours, Descartes used the rationalist approach to knowledge, which solely relies on logic and scepticism . In contrast, his contemporary, English philosopher John Locke relies on the empiricist approach, where knowledge is acquired by the means of watchfulness and experience. His theology of self underlines the role of reason, consciousness and self-consciousness. As for Locke, he sees self-consciousness as a inseparable chemical element in the conduct of any conscious action, like thinking and observing.The experience of the world by the senses, awareness of personal identity, actions performed and its remembering (memory) over time is what constitutes self-consciousness (Robinson, H. , 2012). Personal identity here is quintessentially the self, in which memory is decisive variable as the consciousness of past actions is critical to being the comparable person and selfhood is reliant on the consciousness and not the body. For instance, if a person has memories from a past life as Salvador Dali, then he is the like person in the current life with a different body. These arguments that appear ambiguous upon correlation with Descartes accounts.However, Lockes accounts differ where cites that it is not needed that thinking, observation etc. to be the products of a non-material substance and leaves a anticipation open that they could be of material origin. The self, Locke argues, is resultant from continuity of consciousness and not a substance as proposed by Descartes (Greetham, B. , 2006). Then again, there is a fallacy in these arguments if the self is continuity of consciousness and memory retention then without the memory of past actions accountability for the actions is cannot be held (Cavalier, g., 1989).For instance, it could be hypothesized in Lockes view, that a person who committed murder as a child, who grew up to become a doctor and then as an oldish man he cannot remember his crime as a child, hence in effect, he cannot be held responsible for the murder. Eighteenth century philosopher David Hume proceed in the empirical approach, maintaining t hat authentic knowledge is solely acquired on the basis of direct experience (Robinson H. , 2012). He borrows from Locke, however, he reaches drastic conception where he conceives the self as fiction.Thereafter, he entirely disregards the substance view of the mind. He bases his conception strictly on experience or perception and maintains that the existential claim for the inner substance should be discoverable by experience (Greetham, B. , 2006). Through his experience, Hume, found no such substance but instead only a variety of perceptions where there is no identity or self binding them. Academics refer to this view as the tamp down theory of substance, where different perceptions are in eternal mix in (Robinson H. , 2012).However, Hume fails to identify a unifyingfactor and puts forth a faint understanding of the mind just being a bundle of perceptions. Consequently, the Cartesian theory of self gained an upper hand as it offers the unifying substance of mind in the concepti on of the self (Greetham, B. , 2006). The aforementioned theories of self significantly influence the post-modern conception of the self, as the subject has a tendency to develop over time (Cahoone, L. , 2003). These western theories have borrowed from Eastern conceptions of self, which indicates ancient interaction between the west and the east.(Cavalier, G. , 1989). In the contemporary world, the twentieth century has been the fore-bringer of spiffy industrialization in the western world, begetting fast-paced consumer societies, where the people have infinitesimal or no time for personal fulfilment (Cahoone, L. 2003). This along with advent of cultural pluralism, scientific rationalization and secularization of notions of religion has led to burgeoning concern in the conception of self (Olsen and Timothy, 2006, p. 139).On a personal basis, the theories of self explored here provided a clearer picture on the gradual development of understanding of self with a historical context and an insight into how these theories have shaped post-modern notions on the same (Collinson, P. et al, 2000). Descartes accounts and his violence on the soul substance worked as a bride between my eastern thought origin and modern western conception on the subject. However, Lockes and Humes empirical approach and their emphasis on discovering self through experience is also profound to my conception of self.Their conclusions however appeared radical and absurd especially in the case of Hume where proclaims the self as being fictional. References Cahoone, L. (2003). From Modernism to Postmodernism An Anthology. 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