In particular, the Vedantins hold that there is but One Reality, and that everything else that appears to exist seperately from that Reality is an illusion.
Ancient Greeks[ edit ] In Philosophy in the Tragic Age of the GreeksFriedrich Nietzsche argued that the pre-Socratic philosophers such as AnaximanderHeraclitus called "the Weeping Philosopher" and Parmenides represented a classical form of pessimism. Nietzsche saw Anaximander's philosophy as the "enigmatic proclamation of a true pessimist".
Similarly, of Heraclitus' philosophy of flux and strife he wrote: Heraclitus denied the duality of totally diverse worlds—a position which Anaximander had been compelled to assume.
He no longer distinguished a physical world from a metaphysical one, a realm of definite qualities from an undefinable "indefinite. For this one world which he retained [ Louder than Anaximander, Heraclitus proclaimed: It is the fault of your short-sightedness, not of the essence of things, if you believe you see land somewhere in the ocean of becoming and passing-away.
You use names for things as though they rigidly, persistently endured; yet even the stream into which you step a second time is not the one you stepped into before. Like later pessimists, Hegesias argued that lasting happiness is impossible to achieve and that all we can do is to try to avoid pain as much as possible.
Complete happiness cannot possibly exist; for that the body is full of many sensations, and that the mind sympathizes with the body, and is troubled when that is troubled, and also that fortune prevents many things which we cherished in anticipation; so that for all these reasons, perfect happiness eludes our grasp.
The Critic paints a bleak and desolate picture of the human condition. His Pocket Oracle was a book of aphorisms on how to live in what he saw as a world filled with deception, duplicity and disillusionment. Though himself a DeistVoltaire argued against the existence of a compassionate personal God through his interpretation of the problem of evil.
Jean-Jacques Rousseau[ edit ] The major themes of philosophical pessimism were first presented by Rousseau and he has been called "the patriarch of pessimism". Rousseau saw the movement out of the state of nature as the origin of inequality and mankind's lack of freedom.
The wholesome qualities of man in his natural state, a non-destructive love of self and compassion are gradually replaced by amour propre, a self-love driven by pride and jealousy of his fellow man.
Because of this, modern man lives "always outside himself", concerned with other men, the future and external objects. Rousseau also blames the human faculty of "perfectibility" and human language for tearing us away from our natural state by allowing us to imagine a future in which we are different than what we are now and therefore making us appear inadequate to ourselves and thus 'perfectible'.
Thus The Social Contract opens with the famous phrase "Man is born free, and everywhere he is in chains. Giacomo Leopardi[ edit ] Though a lesser known figure outside Italy, Giacomo Leopardi was highly influential in the 19th century, especially for Schopenhauer and Nietzsche.
According to Leopardi, because of our conscious sense of time and our endless search for truth, the human desire for happiness can never be truly satiated and joy cannot last.
Leopardi claims that "Therefore they greatly deceive themselves, [those] who declare and preach that the perfection of man consists in knowledge of the truth and that all his woes proceed from false opinions and ignorance, and that the human race will at last be happy, when all or most people come to know the truth, and solely on the grounds of that arrange and govern their lives.
This uncertainty makes life valuable and exciting but does not free us from suffering, it is rather an abandonment of the futile pursuit of happiness.Greco-Roman Religion and Philosophy The ancient Greek and Roman worlds made important contributions to both religion and philosophy, the study of the nature of truth, knowledge, and moral values.
In fact the word philosophy is of Greek origin, combining the . Great Religions and Philosophies.: Greek Philosophy.
In the 6th century B.C, The pre-Socratic era of Greek Philosophy came to an end when the Sophists turned their attention to man himself, delving into the moral and mental nature of man and dealing with the practical problems of life. 5. Philosophy and Basic Beliefs Chapter 5 of thinking, in fact, that there is a name for it in philosophy.
It is called "the Socratic method" after Socrates, the great Greek philosopher. He lived during the fifth century B.C. in Greece and was the teacher of Plato, another famous philosopher. MEDIEVAL PHILOSOPHY -- philosophies of. Greek Religion is the beginning to Greek philosophy and the beginning to many great philosophers.
The lack of stimulation that Greek religion is the main reason why the study of . Jewish religion—the Hindu teachers of philosophy had formed great schools of thought, which in turn had been subdivided reason as it is set forth by the Greek philosophers, appears in A Series of Lessons on The Inner Teachings of The Philosophies and Religions of India.
The origins of Babylonian philosophy, in the popular sense of the word, can be traced back to the wisdom of early Mesopotamia, which embodied certain philosophies of life, particularly ethics, in the forms of dialectic, dialogs, epic poetry, folklore, hymns, lyrics, prose, and proverbs.