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Philosophy is an important part of everyone’s life whether or not they accept it as poignant. It shapes or qualifies the general and specific elements of each person’s life. Below are four philosophies that will return focus, stamina and sincerity to your life.

Friedrich Nietzsche Shares ‘Eternal Recurrence

Nietzsche isn’t well known for being the most cheery of philosophers in history. His observations are always profound and at the core of his philosophies is normally a positive intent. The philosophy I wanted to discuss comes out of his publication, The Gay Science, specifically Aphorism 341:

“What, if some day or night a demon were to steal after you into your loneliest loneliness and say to you: “This life as you now live it and have lived it, you will have to live once more and innumerable times more; and there will be nothing new in it, but every pain and every joy and every thought and sigh and everything unutterably small or great in your life will have to return to you, all in the same succession and sequence—even this spider and this moonlight between the trees, and even this moment and I myself. The eternal hourglass of existence is turned upside down again and again, and you with it, speck of dust! Would you not throw yourself down and gnash your teeth and curse the demon who spoke thus? Or have you once experienced a tremendous moment when you would have answered him: “You are a god and never have I heard anything more divine.” If this thought gained possession of you, it would change you as you are or perhaps crush you. The question in each and every thing, “Do you desire this once more and innumerable times more?” would lie upon your actions as the greatest weight. Or how well disposed would you have to become to yourself and to life to crave nothing more fervently than this ultimate eternal confirmation and seal?”


So even if this is your first go round, there are an infinite number of repetitions you will have to go through. Nietzsche said that this idea would be the ‘common man’s’ heaviest burden. He said that the illusion of control and power gave the commoners great solace in their existences. His version of ‘human greatness’ is accomplished when a person  accepts the past, present and future as relative perfection. He believed that a person who loves and accepts the present is maximizing the experience to be gained from any of the repetitions. We are given multiple chances because it takes a life time to understand the objective importance o each moment.

Socrates Believes That No One Tries To So Wrong

This philosophy is meant to break up the jaded perspective that happens to many as they grow older. There is a common feeling that strangers are conspiring or randomly trying to screw YOU over. This sounds absurd when you say it like that or hear it when you are not upset. For the sake of explanation, sensation4verything anyone does is trying to be positive or diminish pain. Socrates also believed that, on the whole, people were rational beings.

From these precepts, Socrates concluded that: Humans are rational and no one would choose pleasure over pain. This means that the only reason people do wrong is because they literally don’t know any better. I’m sure you’ve already thought of some scenarios that discredit this notion. Lets take smoking cigarette’s as an example. I have a friend that smokes cigarettes. He knows that this is an unhealthy practice. According to Socrates, he may intellectually grasp the notion o cigarettes, but he doesn’t truly understand or he wouldn’t do it.

So the lack of knowledge is what is enabling you to continue to harm yourself without you knowing. This sounds kind of scary, but if you accept this as a fact and let yourself grow comfortable with it then it can be an excellent reason to always training and learning.  Pleasure is the motivator here.

Jean-Paul Sartre Explains Freedom

A French renaissance man, Sartre starts the foundation for this philosophy with there is no god. Humans are born without an ‘essence’, ‘divine purpose’ or ‘predetermined path’. There are no rules or ties to inherently restrict us. Due to this freedom, our lives are the causes of our actions. We are 100% responsible for our actions.

Depending on how this notion is lighted, it can viewed as a hreat gift or a terrible burden. Having total freedom away from gods and religions means responsibility. We can’t chalk anything up the big guy in the sky, disasters or miracles. Because there are many peopl on the planet, and the planet exists in a infinite universe, there will still be mysteries and forces out of our control. I, personally, recommend you take Sartre’s notion to heart, as a positive and enabling ideal. The weight of infinite choices and the total responsibility of what we do, makes us strong and forces us to critically consider our surroundings and how we interact with it. I feel that if you can pass off responsibility to your higher power, we loose a lot in mindfulness. That mindfulness is crucial in moment to moment daily considerations.

Dan Millman Lays Moderation To Rest

This idea comes from Millman’s fictional character ‘Socrates’, in the novel Way Of The Peaceful Warrior. In the novel, ‘Socrates’ is asked , ‘what is moderation?’ His response is,

“There is a saying when you sit, sit. When you stand, stand. What ever you do don’t wobble. Once you make your choice do it with all your spirit. Don’t be like the evangelist that thought about praying while making love to his wife and making love to his wife while praying. It’s better to make a mistake with the full force of your being than to carefully avoid mistakes with a trembling spirit. Responsibility means recognizing both pleasure and price, making a choice based on that recognition, and then living with that choice without concern.”

In essence, he is saying dedicate yourself entirely to whatever task you are currently doing. This is a mind numbing concept in these modern times, where multitasking is not only a national past time but a future Olympic event. Combining commitment and focus, this is fantastic way to live. When you sit to lunch, put away your phone and commit to being there, then, with your food and your present company. Many of my friends complain of boredom and that the food isn’t good enough to warrant their full attention. This in a way is the whole point. If your food isn’t good don’t tick yourself into eating it. Get better food. Bringing a heightened mindfulness and focus to your life will force you to improve all round. Better conversations, better food preparation and choices, better crafted work.

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