Ultimate Meaning: We Don't Have It, We Can't Get It, and We Should Be Very, Very Sad

Journal of Controversial Ideas 1 (1) (2021)
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Abstract

Life is pointless. That’s not okay. I show that. I argue that a point is a valued end and that, as agents, it makes sense for us to want our efforts and enterprises to have a point. Valued ends provide justifying reasons for our acts, efforts, and projects. I further argue that ends lie separate from the acts and enterprises for which they provide a point. Since there can be no end external to one’s entire life since one’s life includes all of one’s ends, leading and living one’s life as a whole cannot have a point. Finally, I argue that since we live our lives and structure our living­a­human­life efforts both in parts and as a whole, it is fitting to be sad to recognize that leading and living a life is pointless. My discussion helps make sense of the literature that frequently talks around this topic but often does so vaguely and indirectly.

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Author's Profile

Rivka Weinberg
Scripps College

References found in this work

Meaningfulness and Time.Antti Kauppinen - 2011 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 84 (2):345-377.
The absurd.Thomas Nagel - 1971 - Journal of Philosophy 68 (20):716-727.
Life and meaning.David E. Cooper - 2005 - Ratio 18 (2):125–137.

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