Aside

Glory of Colour - Sujanan

My post which was the most original (philosophically) so far was a discussion of the relationship between Eudaimonology and Soteriology. I posed a few questions about the former which will take a long time to answer (such is philosophy).

At the most general level my project is to defend eudaimonology as highly relevant and as the central concern of philosophy. Of course an important part of this project is refining an appropriate definition of the subject. While so far I have only made introductory posts about a third of the different traditions I’m aware of, I realised a working definition while reading the other night. If I remember correctly it looked something like this…

Eudaimonology is study of how human life is to be lived, focusing on:

1. What human beings are (the task of philosophical anthropology),

2. What makes human life fulfilling (a conceptual as well as psychological question),

3. How human beings should interact with one another (the task of ethics and socio-political philosophy),

4. How human nature can transcend itself to become something greater (a soteriological question).

Regarding the first of these, Vincent Nichols said recently that the understanding of human nature is an excellent basis upon which to carry out public discourse because it cuts away pernicious individualism. I agree. Though my expertise falls more towards the study of point 4 (and to a lesser extent points 3 and 2), we should begin from the common acceptance of the human species as the product of natural selection. After this, there are many different theories/traditions in the debate on human nature. I have yet not studied these but I have indicated my sympathy for Marx’s early writings.

Eudaimonology Project Update

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