Sartre and the human reality of existentialism

I know it’s a funny topic to write on, when the world around is running after profits, cuts and commissions, jobs and promotions, and cashing in on every opportunity to capialise on every conceivable difference in caste, class and status, and its jealousies and low self-esteem. Human reality – For the poor, it’s two difference concepts – man and reality. To the middle classes, an argument or a joke over coffee. For the rich, another excuse to get richer? No one, I assume, will bother to ever look inside, until they get banged on all sides by reality itself. This is the true world that we can now witness in the making. A vast school for scoundrels, that it always was. So if we are to believe Sartre, man can “exist” before he is anything at all. And where he goes depends on his will and actions. And the paradoxical conclusion of this: that there is no such thing as human nature. That’s...
Read More

How great writers fare on the readability tests

Jean Paul Sartre Atheistic existentialism, of which I am a representative, declares with greater consistency that if God does not exist there is at least one being whose existence comes before its essence, a being which exists before it can be defined by any conception of it. That being is man or, as Heidegger has it, the human reality. What do we mean by saying that existence precedes essence? We mean that man first of all exists, encounters himself, surges up in the world – and defines himself afterwards. If man as the existentialist sees him is not definable, it is because to begin with he is nothing. He will not be anything until later, and then he will be what he makes of himself. Thus, there is no human nature, because there is no God to have a conception of it. Man simply is. Not that he is simply what he conceives himself to be, but he is what he...
Read More