Archive | Aristotle RSS feed for this section

Daily Obstruction: Via Negativa – Vita Vitalia

16 Apr

 

IMG_5153

Via Negativa Vita Vitalia

 

Aristotle once asked what the ultimate goal of the human form of life is.  He rejected the aim of “living,” for we humans have that in common with all life and thus that can’t be the unique purpose of human existence.  But why segregate human life from all other forms of life?  From the vantage point of life, the task of life is living.  There is no ultimate achievement; only varying degrees of living vitally.  The impulse of life moves toward living as vitally as one can.  More often than not, this inclination exceeds mere “happiness.”  Often vital living means distress, dis-ease, discomfort, even one’s own demise.  The fact that so many of the words that describe the state beyond happiness involve negative prefixes exemplifies the standpoint from which mankind has developed its vocabulary – from within the realm relative safety, ease, and comfort.  Humans lack a positive word for the ecstatic state of vitalism.

Advertisements

Daily Obstruction: Contra Aristotle

25 Feb

occupy

Contra Aristotle

 

So many people wonder why they’re not happy.  The answer is self-evident: Contrary to Aristotle, humans are not meant to be happy.  That’s not our goal, our telos, any more than the goal of the atmosphere is to be sunny and 74 degrees.  Rather, we are meant to complete our assigned task and that is not easy.  “Happiness” is a chimera created to be like the proverbial carrot held out in front of the donkey to get it to do its work.  Forget happiness and focus on your work because you are not an ass and your work was assigned just for you.