Kierekaard Individiualism - One cannot maintain his indiivdualism for the simple fact that one is always becoming

something else. Leap of faith when he speaks of the existing individual, he insists that the human being is infallibly interested in human existence. Human beings are able to as it were reflect on their lives a whole and because of that to give shape and sameness towards their lives, this is an infinite life because until the day you're dead you can always look back on your life and values and how you shaped them This final point in Kierkegaard reflects on how the "exists" ( latin word which means to stand outside of or back from) his point is that the existing individual has this capacity to stand back from his or her life , reflect on it , adopt and commit to some values and re-shape that life. All the later 20th century existential thinkers inherent this rather special use of the term exist. Heidegger says that the human being exists because he is always ahead of himself. He means that if you're always on the way to becoming something new and different from what he has been. Sartre wrote that in the case of human beings and only human beings their existence precedes their essence. He means that : he contrasts human beings with a tool like a knife. A knife comes into existence in keeping with as it where a preordained essence of life. Something a knife has to be to become a knife, and its because of that that the knife is created in the way it is. The first central theme of existentialism is this theme of radical existential freedom. This power/responsibility to reflect, adopt and shape a way to commit to a way of life. The theme of human world, to identify this theme it is useful to turn the clock back to the 19th century and to look of the views of another figure sometimes described as a father of proto-existentialism, Nietzsche There are many similarities between Kierkegaard and Nietzsche, they were both critics of the religion power of that time. Nietzsche says that the self is not something that each of us have, its something we have to achieve and construct. We have to create a unity and structure to our lives. Fable of the true world - the illusion that there’s a way reality is, independently of how human beings see it. Independent of what he calls perspective. Any world we can describe or experience is the world from a certain perspective, and so the idea that there’s an absolute or objective reality which religion or science captures for him is a fable. - His view on why we conceptualize the world as we do is that our perspectives serve for the

preservation of creatures like ourselves. What he means is that we have the particular schemes of thought , science for example, because they are useful to us. These perspectives that we accept and use is not that they’re true or correspond to reality as it is , its because they are pragmatically useful. Sartre- there’s no other universe than the human one. Heidegger and Sartre state that you shouldn’t the world as at is something alive and repeating in meaning and significance, things are experienced by us. Even so called natural things like trees, have a significance in relation to purposes.

How can you and I be radically free existing individuals? Heidegger says that for the most part of everyday life we live under the dictatorship of man. It’s “them” that prescribe the being of everyday. You and I in everyday life tend to enjoy what they enjoy, disklike what they dislike etc.. Our everyday lives are therefore inauthentic. If we are so , for the most part, so under the public reign , with our views and families shaped from society, why insist then that each of us has or might have this radical freedom? Why indeed do we deny that we’ve got this freedom? These questions raise a very important notion , the notion of angst ( translated anxiety, anguish etc..) It might answer both questions that we’ve raised. Kierkegaard wrote a whole book on angst, the central point in his book is that angst is a sort of ordinary fear. For the philosopher in the case of angst the fear is essentially a disturbing sense of your own freedom, of the fact that its up to you to decide what to do or what to value, or what belief to commit yourself to. Sartre distinguished angst from fear by discussing a sort of vertigo, we have to distinguish between 2 cases, one when you’re scared that you’re going to fall of the cliff (that’s not angst that’s just fear) angst is the recognition that you stand over the cliff edge and nothing whatsoever prevents from jumping off. It’s a direct evidence of your individual freedom something you can experience yourself having. Only you can decide what the right decision is for you, granted you might take advice but there are “no excuses” (as Sartre puts it) that your decisions are yours. Sartre’s Faith. The most important bad fate is that in the form of letting other people’s estimation or view of you dictate or sense yourself. Instead of looking at yourself honestly you let the views of others dictate your sense of who you are. Freudian theory which denies our freedom to control our lives by holding that much of our life is governed by unconscious drives and motives; any deterministic view of human behavior leaves us no choice.

Existential freedom is a freedom to stand back to adjust ourselves , something that each of us can do even though most of us don’t to protect ourselves from bad fate. In we try to shape ourselves in this human world.