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Sartre's Existentialism - Essay Example

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This research will begin with the biography of Jean-Paul Sartre. He was a French existentialist philosopher and has laid down the foundation of literary and philosophical existentialism in 20th-century philosophy with the help of his works and doctrines. Every question for a man starts from the mere idea of his existence on this Earth; thus the question subsequently arises as to who it was that created a human being. Most people have branded this creator by the name of God. Philosophers like Kant and Descartes have been able to give the example of an artisan that creates a paper knife or a paper cutter and designs it for a specific purpose, in order to meet a specific goal of cutting paper and have copied the same analogy for the purpose of a human being. Thus, God is the creator that has made individuals that roam the planet Earth and they come with a specific purpose of meeting their personal goals and objectives. However, there are atheist existentialists that believe that man ‘just is’. They do not believe that man has to be created by someone by the name of God, and thus write that the human race just began existing. This can be compared to certain moral values within society that people follow; for example, it is nowhere written that people must not lie or cheat; people choose to not lie or cheat because it is the ‘good thing’ to do. Once again, however, it has nowhere been mentioned by anyone in particular as to what ‘is good’ and what is not.‘is good’ and what is not. According to Dostoevsky, “If God did not exist, everything would be permitted.” This very sentence is the starting point for most existentialists. This is because most people find in God an assuring power that helps them to survive each and every day.

Even if God does not exist in reality, everything will still be permitted. Existentialists write that man is born free, with freedom however from the time that he is born, he attaches himself to a segment of God in order to provide himself with something to rely upon in times of need. A human being cannot find anything else to depend upon except a higher power which he vests within the name of God. Thus, he discovers that he is without excuse. Man is left alone and does not have the right to blame anybody else for his actions; this mere thought drives a man to the greatest depths of fear which forces him to believe in God.

According to the text provided, an existentialist “thinks that every man, without any support or help whatever, is condemned at every instant to invent man.” Thus, the only thing that stops a man from doing everything that has been permitted is the idea of being ashamed and being answerable to his own self. Every man is able to take on a certain amount of responsibility in order to carry out actions that would help him to understand himself and achieve more in life. However, every ounce of responsibility comes equipped with a certain amount of anguish that most people are not able to fathom and thus disguise in order to not let other people know that they are suffering from it. However, anxiety is quite commonly associated with heavy responsibility and thus, man requires someone that he can provide an excuse with in case he is not able to carry out these actions to the best of his abilities in a desired manner.

God is the driving force that led human beings to believe in ideas of heaven and hell, thus if the possibility of His very existence vanishes, with that, the possibility and idea of an aspect of intelligible heaven or hell also disappears. The death of God simply anguishes a human being and forces him to think of a plane where he exists without the help of any higher power or force. This very thought is perturbing to the mind of a man who has ...Show more
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This paper provides with an insight into one of the most talked about questions in the field of existentialism, regarding God and His existence. Existentialism arises in order to remind man that even today if there was valid proof of the existence of God himself, even then nothing can save a man but himself…
Sartres Existentialism
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