10 Good Questions About Life And Death by Christopher Belshaw

By Christopher Belshaw

10 reliable questions about existence and Death makes us reassess approximately essentially the most vital concerns we ever need to face.

  • Addresses the elemental questions that many folks ask approximately existence and death.
  • Written in an attractive and easy sort, excellent for people with no formal historical past in philosophy.
  • Focuses on in most cases reflected concerns, akin to: Is lifestyles sacred? Is it undesirable to die? Is there existence after loss of life? Does lifestyles have that means? And which existence is best?
  • Encourages readers to consider and reply to the human condition.
  • Features case stories, thought-experiments, and references to literature, movie, tune, faith and myth.

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Sample text

José and Ramon have a lot in common. They are both persons – both, in spite of their injuries, still self-conscious thinking beings. And they are both able at times to get some small pleasures out of life – their lives are not unremitting agony from one day to the next. But they both believe their lives are, on balance, no longer worth living, and they want them to be over. The difference is that while José is able by himself to end his life, Ramon cannot do this, and needs, if he is to get what he wants, the help of others.

Certainly we think it bad when it ends a good life, but we don’t, in fact, think it’s good when it ends a bad life. It still seems, to most of us, to be a bad thing either way. Can this be right? It might seem that it can, but it isn’t easy, I think, to spell it out. Death may be better than a life of agony, but it’s not better than a good life. And we might think there’s nothing absolutely inevitable about the life of agony. Clarrie might not have been ill. A child born with severe handicaps might, instead, have been perfectly healthy.

So it’s reasonable to think about next week’s shopping, to get the leaky roof fixed before winter, maybe even to continue with the pension plan. These things are reasonable, assuming you’ll go on living. But, second, there are very likely reasons now to want to go on living. You really want to finish your second symphony, see how the garden matures, climb all the Scottish Munros. Desires like these give you reason now to stay alive, to exercise, to eat tolerably well, to keep out of the way of buses.

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