Three Epigrams by Schopenhauer
Spoons Editorial
Posted by Spoonman on 10/15/11 01:24pm.

Read closely and see that (3) can be concluded from (1) and (2) according to a consequentialist/utilitarian moral calculus.

(1) Good vs. Evil

I know of no greater absurdity than that propounded by most systems of philosophy in declaring evil to be negative in its character. Evil is just what is positive; it makes its own existence felt. Leibnitz is particularly concerned to defend this absurdity and he seeks to strengthen his position by using a palpable and paltry sophism*

(2)Pleasure vs. Pain

The pleasure in this world, it has been said, outweighs the pain; or, at any rate, there is an even balance between the two. If the reader wishes to see shortly whether this statement is true, let him compare the respective feelings of two animals, one of which is engaged in eating the other.

(3) Antinatalism

If the act of procreation were neither the outcome of a desire nor accompanied by feelings of pleasure, but a matter to be decided on the basis of purely rational considerations, is it likely the human race would still exist? Would each of us not rather have felt so much pity for the coming generation as to prefer to spare it the burden of existence, or at least not wish to take it upon himself to impose that burden upon it in cold blood?



Arthur Schopenhauer (1788-1860) excerpts from 'Studies in Pessimism'


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*(Translator's Note cf. Théod: s153) Leibnitz argued that evil is a negative quality- ie, the absence of good; and that its active and seemingly positive character is an incidental and not an essential part of its nature. Cold, he said, is only the absence of the power of heat, and the active power of expansion in freezing water is an incidental and not an essential part of the nature of cold. The fact is that the power of expansion in freezing water is really an increase of repulsion amongst its molecules; and Schopenhauer is quite right in calling the whole argument a sophism.

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eodukesfaus @ 02/08/14
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eodukesfaus @ 02/08/14
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