The implicit behind constructing a philosophical self-portrait is central to contemplating in the lead one’s existence, (aspirations and participation) and to bring these components into an interconnected sum total. These constituents are unified into an unswerving whole by virtue of expanded knowledge, influenced or transformed by these reflections in our very existence. Based of Nozick and his axiom of thinking, human beings have the capacity to construct meaning of their lives through self-reflection and intellectual engagement.
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During this phase of self-reflection and absorption most components in one’s life are examined comprehensively. In a nutshell to erect a self-image is essentially to look underneath the facade of our exterior and inspect diverse characteristics of ourselves and our subsistence in order to fashion a chock-a-blocker, unfathomable and more consequential life. The purpose of this paper is therefore to identify some philosophical constructs and try to integrate them.
The central dynamism behind the philosophical self-portrait is knowledge, which in this context is acquired through reflection. The standpoint in regard to self-maturity is related to the amount of information accumulated by an individual in relation to the development of knowledge and comprehension.
Nozick delineates a flank by knowledge and wisdom, according to his knowledge can be employed for malicious purposes; hence it has been viewed as trivial and does not have the audacity to give imminence about real life as well as anomalies in life. Wisdom on the extreme end is rather practical and imperative since it has the latent force to channel one’s thoughts and actions on how to subsist in life. Wisdom gives meaning to life by the mere fact that it’s not universal, hence adds up value to the very existence of human entities.
Wisdom has therefore been portrayed as a rational construction of a philosophical self-portrait than knowledge; this so because wisdom has more impact on the life of an individual’s perspective, decisions and actions. Nozick contends that wisdom delineates between truths and values that are integral in life than those that are not; this includes the highest aspirations in one’s life, the capacity to deal with one’s blockages about life.
Wisdom has been interlocked to the construction of one’s philosophical self-portrait since wisdom about comprehends life and the living process and as a result, wisdom puts one in a position to achieve levity and draw meaning and fundamental nature from life. Nozick presents the example of physicists and scientists who are knowledgeable about the universe. He argues that their knowledge about the workings of the universe would be inconsequential to their very existence and a s a result would not constitute wisdom if the knowledge does not give insight into the imperatives of the universe and our place in it. (Nozick, p.269).
Value and Meaning
According to Nozick significance and implication depends with the interconnection in between the two philosophical introspections. Intrinsic value is organic unity while unity is diversity; with divergent axioms of evaluation Nozick acknowledges the usual tradition of employing the term value in a different way that denotes the overarching stratum of everything good. Consequently, Nozick puts more prominence on worth as one evaluative element in the midst of countless, for instance, connotations. Significance engrosses something’s linked within its own precincts, while connotation engages its having some relationship away from these restrictions, the inflexible the relationships of implication to value, the superior the denotation.
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According to Albert Camus in reference to the myth of Sisyphus; consciousness or awareness of the human condition is the greatest knowledge that one can achieve in life, the absurd life for instance.
The most critical phase of Sisyphus is when one acquires consciousness about the fact that is about to toil. Consciousness in the intellectual perception of Camus is the greatest source of tragedy, happiness and triumph and that triumph comes after a vivid analysis of self. Accordingly, denotation comes from an individual and from the outer walls, thus meaning can be achieved through life activities. In the myth of Sisyphus, Camus denotes that devastating truths give up the ghost from being renowned, however, he contents with the fact that absurdity about life is what should be acknowledged.
Through conscious engagement in toil and intellectual acknowledgment of this absurdity, Sisyphus is able to gain happiness. It is as if Camus is indicating that it is imperative for one to become conscious of and reconcile with the absurd human condition in order to gain happiness or draw meaning in one’s personal life. In Camus’ view, the examination of one’s life should be focused on the acceptance of the absurdity of life. Intellectual reflection should be exerted with the goals of awareness and acceptance that life is about toil and has no inherent meaning other than what you give to your life activity.
Nozick illustrates that meaning in life is realized by means of relating between meaning and value, thus meaning is acquired through a valuable connection with value. For instance going to church and having relationship with God gives life significance because it does not allow us to transcend the limits of one’s individual life. Just like Nozick, I also believe that I can only illuminate its profound meaning when I center my energies and time in accomplishing God’s will for my existence. Concisely, life gets its true meaning when not takes for granted familial relationships; relationship does with God, educational and personal ambitions and socio-activity involvement
Nozick, Robert (1989). The Examined Life: Simon & Schuster, New York Oxford University Press; pg 1-309.
Albert Camus (1937). An Introduction to the Art of Wondering. New York Printing Press. pg 45-566.