I’m wondering if philosophies that we like or agree with, find us. I have tried to “get” the basics of the history of philosophy—chasing after it with classes, videos, & books. But I experience learning philosophy like I experience a flash mob. For a few seconds it looks great, sounds great, and poof, it’s gone.
But existentialism—it keeps finding me. (I should probably be capitalizing the E but that’s too intimidating. Let’s stay with the small e—seems friendlier.)
The idea in existentialism is that we, every one of us as an individual, is responsible for what we do, who we are, and for the way we interact with the world. We are even responsible for the way the world is. That’s one makes me a little crazy but there are simply no excuses inside the philosophy of existentialism.
Yes, life may be a struggle, our circumstances desperate, our obstacles discouraging. And yet, we still are responsible for ourselves. I do not get to blame my life on the crap clothes I have or on being a bi-polar Pisces or on the genetics that force me to be short & fat.
So, at first, I’m thrilled by the chance to create myself powerfully in this world. But then I remember what I have to work with—me.