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1. The Essays of Arthur Schopenhauer;
2. The Essays of Arthur Schopenhauer:
3. The Essays of Arthur Schopenhauer;
4. The World As Will and Representation,
5. Essays and Aphorisms (Penguin
6. The essays of Arthur Schopenhauer
7. The Wisdom of Life and Counsels
8. The Essays of Arthur Schopenhauer;
9. Samtliche Werke, Book 1
10. On the fourfold root of the principle
11. The Essays of Arthur Schopenhauer;
12. El Arte de Tener Razon (Spanish
13. Great Ideas: On the Suffering
14. How to WinEvery Argument: The
15. Schopenhauer on the Character
16. The Art of Always Being Right:
17. The Riddle of the World: A Reconsideration
18. The world as will and idea
19. The Essays of Arthur Schopenhauer;
20. The World as Will and Presentation,

1. The Essays of Arthur Schopenhauer; Religion, a Dialogue, Etc.
by Arthur Schopenhauer
Paperback: 56 Pages (2010-07-06)
list price: US$9.99 -- used & new: US$9.99
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Asin: B003YJFRN4
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The Essays of Arthur Schopenhauer; Religion, a Dialogue, Etc. is presented here in a high quality paperback edition. This popular classic work by Arthur Schopenhauer is in the English language. If you enjoy the works of Arthur Schopenhauer then we highly recommend this publication for your book collection. ... Read more

2. The Essays of Arthur Schopenhauer: the Wisdom of Life
by Arthur Schopenhauer
Paperback: 74 Pages (2006-11-03)
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Asin: 1406905488
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This book was converted from its physical edition to the digital format by a community of volunteers. You may find it for free on the web. Purchase of the Kindle edition includes wireless delivery. ... Read more

3. The Essays of Arthur Schopenhauer; Counsels and Maxims
by Arthur Schopenhauer
Paperback: 86 Pages (2010-07-06)
list price: US$9.99 -- used & new: US$9.99
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Asin: B003YH9WV4
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
The Essays of Arthur Schopenhauer; Counsels and Maxims is presented here in a high quality paperback edition. This popular classic work by Arthur Schopenhauer is in the English language. If you enjoy the works of Arthur Schopenhauer then we highly recommend this publication for your book collection. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Essays of arthur Schopenhauer; counsels and Maxims
Arthur Schopenhauer is the only philosopher who seems to me to take Art, in all it's forms, seriously, as a form ofknowledge; he also seems to understand that we are essentially irrational creatures, fundamentally driven by our desires and emotions. he thus seems to be deeply in contact with those uncomfortable truths about ourselves which we would rather not know about.this makes the reading of him something that if taken seriously, can change one's life.
what higher complement can one make of a writer? He is vigorous in his so called pessimism, so he invigorates us. He is totally honest; He detests humbug and in clarity; he thinks that Art is something which can enoble us, and i agree with him. he is infintely insightful and deflationary of human pretention, always salutary; and last, but by no means least, i find him funny!

enough from me; Try him ! ... Read more

4. The World As Will and Representation, In Two Volumes: Vol. I
by Arthur Schopenhauer
Paperback: 694 Pages (1966-06-01)
list price: US$17.95 -- used & new: US$9.94
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Asin: 0486217612
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Volume 1 of the definitive English translation of one of the most important philosophical works of the 19th century, the basic statement in one important stream of post-Kantian thought. Corrects nearly 1,000 errors and omissions in the older Haldane-Kemp translation. For first time translates and locates all quotes, provides full index.
... Read more

Customer Reviews (35)

5-0 out of 5 stars A clever man who smashes idols!
It's absolutely terrifying to note that Arthur Schopenhauer nearly fell out of history; to die alone and unknown and his writings all cast into oblivion. If this did come about, then we would have no Sigmund Freud, no Wittgenstein, no Friedrich Nietzsche, Erwin Schrodinger would be at a loss for his Eastern religious musings and Albert Einstein world have to pick another favourite philosopher. It was only by shear fluke that Schopenhauer was discovered at all; a decade before his death. This is why his writings contain a faint cry to the eternal; for Arthur Schopenhauer, oblivion was a few years away. He was convinced then that he would never be discovered, because of the dead weight of `the professors', the eternal chorus of the `foolers and the fooled', those retched Hegel mongers and the sheer lumpen-ness of the crowd, which always flattens the individual genius. This is why his works sparkle with an angry brilliance, measured and structured for maximum humph and very literature heavy, with penetrating insights into human psychology, the vanity and the woe of the world and our retched ephemeral place in it. Do not try googling the man, as you will only get second hand summaries; this is poetry and literature rolled into philosophy, so buy this and read it.

By all accounts, Schopenhauer's prose dazzled in the original German and it's good in translation too. This volume is a commentary on the first but that is not doing it justice. It is more than a commentary, as it blends essay writing with a pessimism that is never morbid or depressed, just convinced of its sheer bravado. This is great philosophical literature that will last as long as the German language lasts. They do not teach Schopenhauer in today's universities; I think it is because he will only show up the professors whom he hated. Schopenhauer knew how to write and it's his genius that inspired so many artists and thinkers. I wonder how many undiscovered philosophers died alone and unrecognized? I'm made dizzy, thinking about all those undiscovered geniuses.

1-0 out of 5 stars Schopenhauer is great, but this edition is a Major Misunderstanding!!!?
This review is not about Schopenhauer's book, which is great in itself and I would recommend it to every individual interested in German philosophy, but about this very edition until recently advertised on Amazon.com webpage. Be careful, because buying this hard cover edition, you are buying a pig in a poke! To begin with, there is no mention here that The World As Will and Representation (2-Volume Set), Hardcover, Publisher: Peter Smith Publisher (June 1969) ISBN-10: 0844628859 ISBN-13: 978-0844628851, is actually the same ordinary Dover Publications edition we have read and known for forty years, this time, however, it is sold with some blue hard covers added by a Peter Smith Publisher, and marketed as a completely different product. As for the date of this edition, don't let anyone fool you, it was bound more recently than 1969, trust me, I had it checked. What's more, the book is advertised as (2-Volume Set), whereas you can count only on the first volume at the quoted price, another upset! Therefore, be careful or else you may be very, very sorry. Happily enough, Amazon.com have removed the item from their list of products and now you can buy it only from market sellers at even more punitive and exorbitant prices!!!!

5-0 out of 5 stars Wrong, but genius.
Schopenhauer's masterpiece is divided into four parts:

I. The world as idea I.
II. The world as will I.
III The world as idea II.
IV. The world as will II.

I. Schopenhauer articulates his understanding of Kantian metaphyiscs and epistemology. Schopenhauer is in agreement with Kant here and adds some important points of clarification in regard to Hume and Berkeley.

II. Schopenhauer abandons Kant's claim that we can never know the thing-in-itself. He argues we can know it through our direct experience of the will to live. This will manifests itself in all phenomenon.

III. Schopenhauer illuminates his discussion of aesthetics by incorporating Plato's theory of the forms. He argues that experiencing art is the closest most individuals will ever come to recognizing the truth.

IV. Schopenhauer elaborates his ethics. In short, his claim is that all religions point to this truth: It would be better if the universe never existed.

I don't agree with Schopenhauer's philosophy. However, he was a master thinker. He followed the logical path of his premises with an unflinching eye and had no time for those not willing to be clear about their views. For that, I thank him.

Bottom line: Careful study of this book will yield some important methodological insights. However, I would recommend Aristotle's (which Schopenhauer barely mentions) philosophy as closer to the truth.

5-0 out of 5 stars A consoling masterpiece, a trusty friend for the rest of my life.
Imagine this. You are in your car at 3 p.m. on a Sunday afternoon. It's hot. You're painfully lonely, you have no friends to speak of. The sun is beating on your face. You have absolutely nothing to do. You feel the pressure of time and consciousness. You hear an advertisement on the radio about another blow-out sale in a nearby mall. You want to scream. Sound familiar? This is when a nice cup of Arthur Schopenhauer is in order.

I first learned about Schopenhauer when I was in a rather low point in my life and was looking for a consolation in the philosophy section of a bookstore. There I stumbled across The Consolations of Philosophy, which had a section about Schopenhauer and his basic outlook on the human condition. I never had a problem with pessimism and in fact always looked for someone great to defend it. Anyway, I slowly started preparing myself for the first volume. I had no philosophical background, just an immense desire to understand Schopenhauer's point of view since I knew then it would become my metaphysical backbone.

One of the challenges was that English is my second language and I feared that philosophy in English will exact too big a demand on my language skills. But the realization that with Schopenhauer lay the answers to my angst was enough to commit to this project.

I first read The Philosophy of Schopenhauer, which I understood for the most part and became even more intrigued. I definitely gained some philosophical muscle and so I plunged into volume one shortly after. It took me three months and it was a rather grueling experience. Partly because of the terminology and new concepts, partly because of the style, partly because of the translation. As one of the readers noted, some of the Latin and Greek phrases are not translated, which infuriated me each time I encountered them. For crying out why? But all these problems are nothing compared with the immense pleasure I got from reading the work, which my body frequently heralded with goosebumps!

I just finished the second volume (took me another 5 or 6 months). I read just a few pages a day. But I'll never regret spending the time. If there's an intellectual equivalent of orgasm, this is it. This experience will be forever etched in my brain. Transcendental idealism (which is also the basis of Buddhist metaphysics) is a life changing idea. I kind of look at myself and everything that happens to me through that lens now.

One of the ideas that was always on the tip of my tongue and that I never was able to articulate even to myself is Schopenhauer's notion about the negativeness of happiness and positiveness of suffering. In other words, happiness is only a subtraction from suffering. Needs, discomfort and suffering is what we start from. Turns out Voltaire said it even more succinctly: "There are no great pleasures without great needs". To, me it's a profound insight and both volumes are worth reading just because of this. If this idea does not give you goosebumps, then Schopenhauer might not be for you. Later I read Ann Ryand's "Atlas Shrugged", where that idea was attacked at least once -- but just as a bare assertion. By the way, "Atlas Shrugged" is the most tedious and crude attempt at realism (or objectivism) I ever read. But I'm digressing again.

I do have a couple of gripes with Schopenhauer's style. Some sentences are REALLY long with sub-sentences and sometimes sub-sub-sentences. Sometimes, I needed to re-read them a dozen times. Also, Schopenhauer is surprisingly repetitive in places, which was also commented on by Magee. But if you think about it, in the age of no computers and fancy editors, it was probably difficult to spot repetition. On the flip side, I found the repetitiveness of his ideas helpful when a particular major concept was not clear, because sure enough he would describe it ten more times from slightly different angles.

Schopenhauer says several times that everything that he had written must be read to fully understand his philosophy. He prescribes a list of his works to be read before "The World as Will and Representation" (TWAWR) is begun. The list includes:

1) His doctoral thesis. On the Fourfold Root of the Principle of Sufficient Reason (Dodo Press).
2) Hi prize winning essay. Schopenhauer: Prize Essay on the Freedom of the Will (Cambridge Texts in the History of Philosophy).
3) On the Basis of Morality
4) His critique of Kant's philosophy at the end of volume one.

I started with the critique of Kant and quickly abandoned it because it required decent knowledge of Kant. By the way, Schopenhauer once said that he who hasn't read and understood Kant is a mere child. But I was not ready for Kant yet. So, I skipped Kant's critique and moved on to volume one. I can now say that at least a general idea about the fourfold principle of sufficient reason (FPSR) is required to fully get it. So, do yourself a favor, look it up and read at least a summary of it. Otherwise a lot of the meaning will be lost. But FPSR is all you really need to get started.

By the time you finish TWAWR, even if you don't agree with his ideas, you will definitely be amazed by the sheer breadth of his knowledge. For starters, he spoke four foreign languages fluently -- English, French, Greek and Latin. His knowledge of science of that time is also quite staggering. He frequently provides his insight on physics, math, logic, astronomy, medicine (anatomy and physiology), botany, zoology, biology and chemistry. His knowledge of philosophy is similarly awesome. He constantly refers to and quotes Plato, Aristotle, Hume, Locke, Berkley, Kant and others. Fine arts? Sure! He had a lot to say about poetry, music, sculpture and architecture. In fact, he had something to say about everything that matters.

To conclude, I love Schopenhauer. Too bad I can't thank him in person. To those who accuse him of pessimism, I can only say that just because something is pessimistic, doesn't mean it's not true. And Schopenhauer does make his case strong.

Remember to look at your life through the prism of eternity. Hang in there, accept your lot and carry it with pride. Everything passes...

Thank you, Arthur.

5-0 out of 5 stars Schopenhauer says art really does get us to the Platonic universals
I read this book for a graduate seminar on the philosophy of art.It is important to note that the Germans look on art as more than art.They look on art as a cultural phenomenon that has deep significance for understanding reality and not just to study experiences and such.Arthur Schopenhauer's book "The World As Will And Representation," shows an interesting relation between him and Nietzsche which is very important because Schopenhauer was an important influence on Nietzsche, but always in an ambivalent manner.Nietzsche followed Schopenhauer on his philosophical model of reality.At the bottom of Schopenhauer's philosophy is his belief that reality is chaotic, a surging force that has no purpose, no meaning.Of course Schopenhauer drew from the notion that that life is meaningless and pessimism is a philosophy that says the more you think properly about the nature of reality the more you have to come to a pessimistic conclusion, which is, there is no ultimate meaning in life.The proper thing to do would be to turn away from the manner of resignation.

Thus, Schopenhauer did Kant one better by taking "disinterest" as not only a mode of apprehension that had nothing to do with the personal interest of the subject.Schopenhauer thought that this gave the self, the person an inkling of the pleasures of renunciation.Another word, the pleasures of aesthetic contemplation is the first signal that it is desirable to turn off one's will to live.It is desirable to turn away from interests.If reality is ultimately chaotic and formless with no ultimate purpose, then the question arises from this statement."Can life be meaningful given that truth"?Schopenhauer says no.

Schopenhauer follows Kant; he says art really does get us to the Platonic universals; however, he completely reinterprets Plato's universals as not being cognitive but being receptive.Almost as though Schopenhauer says, Plato is wrong that art couldn't be something expressive and universal.An interesting theory; for example, when you are looking at a portrait, what is really essential about the portrait is not the idiosyncrasies of the individual subject, what is important about a great portrait is that it expresses something universal about the human condition, you learn something about the human through the universal sense of art.Here he is objecting to Plato's notion that universals are purely cognitive, and art is purely sensuous, Schopenhauer says no, art can give us an experience of something that is universal, and far exceeds the power of sciences.Schopenhauer says for instance if we wanted to understand the sea, we could try to come up with a definition, or we could turn to oceanography, or science that categorizes the characteristics of the ocean, etc.Schopenhauer says that is not universal, that is a very narrow perspective on the meaning of what the sea is, however the painter or the poet that shows us the vastness of the sea is what gets us to the universal understanding of what the sea is, and as something that is significant.

However, Schopenhauer thought art was only a temporary refuge from the more chaotic elements of the will, and the will is this kind of aimless surging.What is interesting about Schopenhauer is that he ridicules optimism and he ridicules the idea that in all the characteristics of existence still somehow it all adds up, some how it is worth while it is meaningful, he ridicules these ideas with his very powerful analysis of the facts of life.Anybody that takes an honest look at life could easily conclude that life doesn't add up to anything.Life is just a cycle of births and deaths people strive for things all the time and they are crushed, and that is it.Plato was concerned about tragedy as a dark and dangerous message that he wanted to overcome, but Schopenhauer says of all the art forms, tragedy is the highest art form because it targets specifically the message of the futility of existence.What is interesting in Schopenhauer and where Nietzsche is different is there are interesting moments in Schopenhauer's analysis of tragedy is one would think the Greeks would give up trying to assert their wills and would cease to play the game.But, on occasion what he says its that what strikes him about the Greeks is that they were not pessimistic, in fact they were the very opposite, they were life affirming, active and productive, not a resigning race at all.Schopenhauer was stuck by this and found it strange, his explanation for it was well they may have invented tragedy but they haven't really lived up to the full implication.Later we had to learn more about tragedy and modern tragedy that gets more to the point, which he says the whole point of tragedy is to teach resignation.Therefore, Schopenhauer says the Greeks were kind of childish and started the whole thing, but they didn't quite understand what tragedy meant.I find this point is a preposterous analysis by, Schopenhauer!

I recommend this work for anyone interested in philosophy, and philosophy of art.
... Read more

5. Essays and Aphorisms (Penguin Classics)
by Arthur Schopenhauer
Paperback: 240 Pages (1973-05-30)
list price: US$15.00 -- used & new: US$8.42
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Asin: 0140442278
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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One of the greatest philosophers of the nineteenth century, Schopenhauer (1788-1860) believed that human action is determined not by reason but by 'will' - the blind and irrational desire for physical existence. This selection of his writings on religion, ethics, politics, women, suicide, books and many other themes is taken from Schopenhauer's last work, "Parerga and Paralipomena", which he published in 1851. These pieces depict humanity as locked in a struggle beyond good and evil, and each individual absolutely free within a Godless world, in which art, morality and self-awareness are our only salvation. This innovative - and pessimistic - view has proved powerfully influential upon philosophy and art, directly affecting the work of Nietzsche, Wittgenstein and Wagner among others. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (28)

5-0 out of 5 stars A superb introduction to Schopenhauer.
Hang out a couple of philosophy, music, art history or art (practice) majors and chances are, the name Schopenhauer will be dropped an average of once every 10 minutes.This guy is big.I mean big.

But analytic philosophy, which dominates much of today's philosophical inquiry, research and discourse, tends to overlook much of the German philosophers (except a handful like Frege) unfortunately for reasons that would take me far more time than you possibly would have time for (after all, you're here just for a book review!).

Now, this work (or rather a compilation of many separate writings) was quite frankly one of most illuminating and thought-provoking reading experiences I have ever encountered in a long time.You will feel a full spectrum of emotions from possible disgust (his frankly misogynistic piece, "On Women") juxtaposed to sheer wonder at the spellbinding elucidation of what "thinking for oneself" truly means.

However, as it goes with most philosophical works, I encourage the prospective reader to view his writings with care and consideration at the historical and cultural context of its time and to place the words at an academic distance (but not too far) and not as a self-help book.In the end, you, as an independent thinker decides what is the right thing for you to adhere to and consider.

Schopenhauer like Kant is famous for his concise compositions.But Schopenhauer on the other hand also understood the letter as not simply a tool of articulation but as an art form.I found that his words turned the pages far more than other German philosophers (Kant, Nietzsche, and especially Hegel, whom Schopenhauer disliked) I have encountered.The overall reading experience was surprisingly short (took me a couple of days) yet each and every subject matter he seems to skim into can run quite deep (I highly recommend reading "On Aesthetics" at least twice).Such is the genius of Schopenhauer, whom I consider to be the Hemingway of philosophy.

So in short, whether you are a layperson or working on your philosophical dissertation, in need of a short and sweet introduction to Schopenhauer (unlike the more comprehensive The World as Will and Representation) and his views and ideas while having a bit more knowledge than a quick glance through his wiki (if read carefully) -- look no further!

5-0 out of 5 stars Eternal Optimist

Who was the first to understand that newer, better ideas are always rejected and even violently resisted, before being finally accepted? Was It Schopenhauer?Was it Tom Paine, Louis Agassiz, George Bernard Shaw, Max Planck, or Gandi? Or perhaps the idea is as old as the ancient legend of Prometheus who "stole the fire of the gods," and in the process taught primitive humans all of the arts of civilization; for which he was punished by being bound to a rock eternally by Zeus so that an eagle could eat out his liver.

In modern times at least, the answer seems to be Arthur Schopenhauer, (1788 - 1860), who early published what may be the first clear formulation of the idea. Following are some memorable quotes from Essays and Aphorisms, which give an idea as to what is meant.

"The discovery of truth is prevented more effectively not by the false appearance of things present and which mislead into error, not directly by weakness of the reasoning powers, but by preconceived opinion, by prejudice. (Essays and Aphorisms, 120 § 9)
"Truth that has been merely learned is like an artificial limb, a false tooth, a waxen nose; at best, like a nose made out of another's flesh; it adheres to us only because it is put on. But truth acquired by thinking of our own is like a natural limb; it alone really belongs to us. This is the fundamental difference between the thinker and the mere scholar. (Essays and Aphorisms, 91 § 4)
"Truth is fairest naked, and the simpler its expression the profounder its influence. (Essays and Aphorisms, 205 § 8)
"How very paltry and limited the normal human intellect is, and how little lucidity there is in the human consciousness, may be judged from the fact that, despite the ephemeral brevity of human life, the uncertainty of our existence and the countless enigmas which press upon us from all sides, everyone does not continually and ceaselessly philosophize, but that only the rarest of exceptions do so. If they should ever feel any metaphysical need, it is taken care of from above and in advance by the various religions; and these, whatever they may be like, suffice. (Essays and Aphorisms, 123 § 16)
"Great minds are related to the brief span of time during which they live as great buildings are to a little square in which they stand: you cannot see them in all their magnitude because you are standing too close to them. (Essays and Aphorisms, 226 § 5-D)
"The difference between the genius and the normal intelligence is, to be sure, only a quantitative one, insofar as it is only a difference of degree: one is nevertheless tempted to regard it as a qualitative one when one considers how normal men, despite their individual diversity, all think along certain common lines, so that they are frequently in unanimous agreement over judgments which are, in fact, false. (Essays and Aphorisms, 131 § 23)
"To estimate a genius you should not take the mistakes in his productions, or his weaker works, but only those works in which he excels. For even in the realm of the intellect, weakness and absurdity cleave so firmly to human nature that even the most brilliant mind is not always entirely free of them: whence the mighty errors which can be pointed to even in the works of the greatest men. (Essays and Aphorisms, 223 § 5-A)
"The great misfortune for intellectual merit is that it has to wait until the good is praised by those who produce only the bad.
"It is the fate of the great here on earth to be recognized by us only when they are no more.
"After a hundred years Copernicus had not yet supplanted Ptolemy. Bacon, Descartes, Locke prevailed very slowly and very late. It was no different with Newton. Although Newton lived almost forty years after the appearance of his Principia, his theory was, when he died, recognized only in England, and there only partially, while abroad he could, according to Voltaire, count fewer than twenty adherents. Hume, although he wrote in a thoroughly popular style, was disregarded until his fiftieth year. Kant, although he wrote and taught his whole life long, became famous only after his sixtieth year. Artists and poets have a better chance than thinkers because their public is at least a hundred times bigger: and yet what did Mozart and Beethoven count for during their lifetimes? or Dante, or even Shakespeare? Every Portuguese is proud of Camoens, the only Portuguese poet: but he lived on alms procured for him in the streets. (Essays and Aphorisms, 224 § 5-B)
"As the sun needs an eye in order to shine, and music an ear in order to sound, so the worth of every masterpiece in art and science is conditioned by the mind related and equal to it to which it speaks. Only such a mind posses the incantation to arouse the spirits imprisoned in such a work and make them show themselves. The commonplace head stands before it as before a magic casket he cannot open or an instrument he cannot play. A beautiful work requires a sensitive mind, a speculative work a thinking mind, in order to really exist and live.(Essays and Aphorisms, 225 § 5-C)
"The poet [and novelist] presents the imagination with images from life and human characters and situations, sets them all in motion and leaves it to the beholder to let these images take his thoughts as far as his mental powers will permit. This is why he is able to engage men of the most differing capabilities, indeed fools and sages together. The philosopher [and scientist], on the other hand, presents not life itself but the finished thoughts which he has abstracted from it and then demands that the reader should think precisely as, and precisely as far as, he himself thinks. That is why his public is so small. (Essays and Aphorisms, 118 § 4, brackets added)
"If you want to earn the gratitude of your own age you must keep in step with it. But if you do that you will produce nothing great. If you have something great in view you must address yourself to posterity. (Essays and Aphorisms, 131 § 25)
"Talent works for money and fame; the motive which moves genius to productivity is, on the other hand, less easy to determine. It isn't money, for genius seldom gets any. It isn't fame: fame is too uncertain and, more closely considered, of too little worth. Nor is it strictly for its own pleasure, for the great exertion involved almost outweighs the pleasure. It is rather an instinct of a unique sort by virtue of which the individual possessed of genius is impelled to express what he has seen and felt in enduring works without being conscious of any further motivation. (Essays and Aphorisms, 131 § 26)

Schopenhauer said that the creative genius must write for posterity and expect to be rejected in one's own lifetime. That is a pessimistic attitude; or a self-deluded one if one's theory is wrong. But it may also be practical. Until a new theory is finally accepted, it can not be considered "true" objectively. And "accepted" must mean by a large enough scientific, philosophic, or academic community to make use of the idea, and to give it reality by passing it along to the general public. In the long run it must be accepted by society at large, or at least by a much larger group, or it will forever remain a cult phenomenon.

What it all comes down to is that the creative genius must have a sufficient degree of confidence in the truth of an idea, that one is willing to put one's life on the line. Possibly not in a sudden, life-or-death gamble, though that too sometimes happens; but--what can be more difficult--in a slow ebbing of the life-force that occurs when one risks everything on an idea that for the present is rejected by almost everyone; and gambles it on an unknown future where it will probably fail, or worse; where it may never see the light of day. But it also might be a future in which the new idea succeeds, thereby ushering in a future that will be better than the present, perhaps immeasurably so.

5-0 out of 5 stars "No rose without a thorn. But many a thorn without a rose"
A. Schopenhauer and Ralph W. Emerson deserve to be read together. I remember reading these two at roughly the same time and they blew my mind open, splattering it on whatever was behind me. Schopenhauer writes beautifully, with great wit, humor and massive quantities ofvitrol all at once. R. J. Hollingdale, famous for his superlative translations of Friedrich Nietzsche's writings, does justice to this collection; it's only a shame that he never translated the rest of his writings, or at least the World as Will and Representation.

A brief passage for those who might be otherwise daunted:

"Dilettantes! Dilettantes! -- this is the derogatory cry those who apply themselves to art or science for the sake of gain raise against those who pursue it for love of it and pleasure in it. THis derogation rests on their vulgar conviction that no one would take up a thing seriously unless prompted to it by want, hunger, or some other kind of greediness. The public has the same outlook and consequently holds the same opinion, which is the origin of its universal respect for 'the professional' and its mistrust of the dilettante. the truth, however, is that to the dilettante the thing is the end, while to the professional as such it is the means; and only he who is directly interested in a thing, and occupies himself with it form love of it, will pursue it with entire seriousness. It is from such as these, and not from wage earners, that the greatest things have always come." pg. 227

My copy is showing age and serious wear; I'd recommend picking up two, you'll be reading this into the dust.
If you enjoy the 'gallant' misogeny and self-sure egoism in passages like those from his essay "On Women" I'd reccomend Max Stirner's "Ego and its Own"--a must for rampant individualists. Another plus: caustic enough to rile the ire of a young K. Marx. Thoreau minus patience.

5-0 out of 5 stars Sure, the "Buddha of Frankfurt" was no saint, BUT...
I came to Schopenhauer's work reluctantly, having been put off by two things: first, his well-known belligerent attitude towards women (misogyny is an understatement); and second by Nietzsche, who - despite an early infatuation with Schopenhauer - later turned against his "mentor" (of sorts), claiming his work lacked any ethical applicability.

Yet, as an avid reader of philosophy in general, I found myself repeatedly drawn towards Schopenhauer through various resources. After putting my prejudices aside, then, I have to say that I consumed this volume with great enthusiasm and found Schopenhauer to be one of the clearest, most articulate philosophers in the Western tradition. He was, in a word, a genius.

Sure, the "Buddha of Frankfurt" (his nickname) was not saint, but Schopenhauer himself would have been the first to admit it. That said, I think the chapter on women and Nietzsche's complaints should be kept in mind, but not used to disallow the rest of his brilliant methaphysical writing.

I want to mention here, too, that the introduction by R.J. Hollingdale is outstanding and helpful. I have read Kant, but I still found his summary of philosophy leading up to Schopenhauer to be a refreshing and lively review (compared, say, with the dull, unhelpful introduction by Dave Berman in Everyman's edition of The World as Will and Idea). It is hard to sum up Kant's thought in a few pages, but Hollingdale does a great job, I think.

Finally, I don't think you need to have read Kant to understand most of the ideas presented in this text. Also, I have to concur with Schopenhauer's university philosophy professor, G.E. Schulze, who told the young thinker to stick with ONLY Plato and Kant - but to that small list I would now add the name Schopenhauer.

I highly recommend this text for both beginners and experts in the field -it is THAT good...and it just might change your whole perspective, if not your way of life. Amazing!

5-0 out of 5 stars Schopenhauer!
I've read much of his "The World as Will and Idea," but I like his "Essays and Aphorisms" better (if you're a scholar or philosopher you might prefer vice versa). The "Essays" state all of his major ideas but in an enjoyable way. Of course his magnum opus explicates his philosophy more exhaustively, but I got bogged down by Schopenhauer's incessant treatment and reinterpretation of Kantian transcendentalism.

What I find fascinating is Schopenhauer's pessimistic view of consciousness and existence, his western philosophical reworking of Vedantic and Buddhistic philosophy. He was able to synthesize Kantian and Eastern idealism and make the combination all his own.

One delights (even if one does not agree) in Schopenhauer's acerbic abuses slung at life and all of its tedious cycles, Christian metaphysics (not so much Christianity itself), and optimisms of every kind. He has a way of reducing the ideals we cherish and take for granted to the absurd mechanisms of control and torture that (according to him) they really are.

In the end, Schopenhauer is quite guilty of turning all the world into one ridiculous straw man. But he is so deft and devilishly humorous in the process that we are almost convinced. It took Nietzsche quite some time to realize that this was no true pessimist at all, but one who delighted in life via berating it!

Read the "Essays" if you want to be challenged, if you want to understand better the philosophers he influenced (e.g. Nietzsche), and if you want to appreciate a one of a kind artistic presentation of some fascinating philosophical assertions. ... Read more

6. The essays of Arthur Schopenhauer
by Arthur Schopenhauer, T Bailey 1860-1928 Saunders
Paperback: 838 Pages (2010-08-01)
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Originally published in ca. 1893.This volume from the Cornell University Library's print collections was scanned on an APT BookScan and converted to JPG 2000 format by Kirtas Technologies.All titles scanned cover to cover and pages may include marks notations and other marginalia present in the original volume. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

3-0 out of 5 stars Mistake in Table of Contents
I agree with the previous comment (Platon), except that there is a serious and confusing mistake in the Table of Contents where it lists "The Art of Controversy (also known as Counsels and Maxims).They are not the same, and "Counsels and Maxims" is not included here.The other editions so far do not have TOC's that can be used to navigate the text.This is the only edition I've seen so far where the TOC let's you navigate the text.

4-0 out of 5 stars Best so far
This is the best Schopenhauer for the Kindle so far. The formatting is good, as are the essays (particularly "The Wisdom of Life"). Unfortunately, these are minor works. We are still waiting for acceptable editions of (both volumes of) The World as Will and Representation. ... Read more

7. The Wisdom of Life and Counsels and Maxims
by Arthur Schopenhauer
Paperback: 168 Pages (2010-02-05)
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"The Wisdom of Life and Counsels and Maxims," by philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer, offers a more accurate and realistic outlook on life than his student, Friedrich Nietzsche. While many disagree with Schopenhauer's renunciation of life, there is much to agree with in this book. Schopenhauer doesn't see a whole lot to celebrate in this vale of tears. His general view in "The Wisdom of Life and Counsels and Maxims" is summed up thus: Life is hell. Try to find a room furthest from the flames. If you tend towards a sunnier view of things then you're very likely to find this book by the grandmaster of philosophical pessimism unduly cynical. But if you've pretty much had it with the world and seldom meet a man (or woman) you wouldn't rather see the back of, you'll be delighted to find a fellow traveler and find wit and solace in Schopenhauer's acidic view of this "wonderful gift of life." Though riddled with hard-nosed realism and misanthropy, "The Wisdom of Life and Counsels and Maxims" is positively entertaining and enjoyable. Schopenhauer's style is fluid, prosaic, and imaginative, unlike most German philosophy. In lieu of modern world events, it is probably more relevant a work today than ever before. Schopenhauer discusses an array of subjects, such as the emptiness of those things commonly pursued by the masses (money, status/position, vanity, sensual pleasure, etc.), and those most commonly ignored by most (temperance, good health, character, individuality, and developing one's mind). Small, fleeting pleasures notwithstanding, Schopenhauer casts an unflinchingly jaundiced eye on the experience of human life and doesn't sweeten the pill. For its bracing honesty alone, this book deserves its reputation as one of the greatest philosophical manuals of how to best live our lives ever written. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (6)

5-0 out of 5 stars A reprint edition of an out of copyright title.
This review is for the 'Createspace' edition of Schopenhauer's essay called 'On the Wisdom of Life', translated by Saunders.

This essay is a fine piece of work; I apply its principles to my everyday life. The insights contained within it are profound, enlightening, and a source of consolation to any thinking person.

And I'm all for promoting Schopenhauer. I think his work was a product of genius, and I own many other works authored by him.

But I feel compelled to point out that this editon of the Wisdom of Life, published by Createspace, is a self published reprint of an out of copyright text. For those who don't know, Createspace is owned by Amazon. Their business model is to print on demand when someone buys a book; the costs of publishing are taken out; then whoever authored the book (or, in this case, submitted Saunder's translation verbatim and designed a new cover) gets the remainder.

So if you buy this book, you're buying exactly the same edition that's been in print for many a year through Prometheus Press (and is widely available second hand) and also freely available online.

Not that there's anything wrong with that. I do like the cover design. But I'm informing those who may not know this.

Incidently, if you decide to delve into Schopenhauer, there is another English translation - a better one - by E.F.J. Payne. However it's only found within the (reasonably expensive) Oxford press editon of volume 1 of Schopenhauer's 'Parerga and Paralipomena'.

5-0 out of 5 stars Dare I Say That This Book Is Fun?
This is a wonderful little collection of some of Mr. Happy's best, most accessible and practical writings. I see no point in expounding on his philosophy as anyone reading this review most likely is familiar with the gist of who the man was and what his philosophy is generally known for. I merely wanted to recommend this book to Schopenhauer newbies who are looking for a taste of his brilliance, whether you ultimately agree with him or not (in my case it usually amounts to a coin toss each year or so). This is quite a bang for your buck and I am reasonably certain you will turn to it again and again and find new things to contemplate with each read. I think I should win an Amazon gift card or something for shortest review of a philosophy book, don't ya think?

5-0 out of 5 stars Happiness is a room furthest from the fire...

This slim volume offers sage advice to anyone enduring the ordeal of life and the vast majority of fools, liars, and backstabbers we must suffer while doing so. Let it be admitted, it's not a book for everyone.

Schopenhauer's general view is summed up thus: Life is hell. Try to find a room furthest from the flames.

If you tend towards a sunnier view of things then you're very likely to find this book by the grandmaster of philosophical pessimism unduly cynical. But if you've pretty much had it with the world and seldom meet a man (or woman) you wouldn't rather see the back of, you'll be delighted to find a fellow traveler and find wit and solace in Schopenhauer's acidic view of this "wonderful gift of life"--a gift we'd just as soon not have been stuck with in the first place.

There's a lot of the Stoic in Schopenhauer and his approach to the "good life" bears more than a passing resemblance to what one finds in Ecclesiastes, which Schopenhauer cites often. But while Schopenhauer doesn't see a whole lot to celebrate in this vale of tears, he doesn't advise gnashing your teeth and acknowledges that some comfort might be taken in each moment that one isn't actively and acutely suffering.

Small, fleeting pleasures notwithstanding, Schopenhauer casts an unflinchingly jaundiced eye on the whole horrible "mistake" mistake of human life and doesn't sweeten the pill any. This isn't a philosophy for pansies. There aren't any metaphysical escapes, any humanistic idealisms, no fantastic leaps of faith--this is a creed for philosophical gladiators.

For its bracing honesty alone, this book deserves its reputation as one of the greatest philosophical manuals of how to best live our lives ever written.

5-0 out of 5 stars Schopenhauer as an exemplar
"Philosophy" is often refered to as a field of study in which questions regarding the nature of reality, beauty and man are taken up with vigor.Those who are interested in these topics and all of their tributary subjects are said to be "philosophers" or "philosophical" in nature.Others, whose concerns are strictly material, are considered to be "unphilosophical" in nature.They have no philosophical disposition towards anything: it is as if their behavior is guided by their immediate circumstances and that they are prey to interests that are common and trite.It is this very distinction between the "philosophical" and "unphilosophical" that I wish to refute by appealing to Schopenhauer as an exemplar of what it means to have a philosophy of life.
All of the reviews below adequately convey the merits of the book itself.But what is also important is understanding what this book represents within the context of philosophy itself.And what we discover from reading this book is that even the most vulgar man, a man considered by all measure to be morally and intellectually inept, has a philosophy of life.Schopenhauer was a genius and therefore had the capacity to articulate his thoughts in a powerfully original manner.His outlook on the world stands out from the rest precisely because his intellect is capable of penetrating to the heart of things and describe them in a manner that is at once lucid and compelling.Most of us, however, do not have the mental power nor the luxury of time to express our views on life in general.But I believe this book, when taken as a whole, will help us understand that every life is ultimately guided by a point of view which, underlying all its idiosyncratic characterstics, refers to philosophical assumptions and hence a philosophy of life.In sum, our relation to life is and always will be philosophical in nature.The difference between an ordinary man and Schopenhaure is merely a qualitative one. Schopenhauer's book proves that, and I inviteyou to see how it does.

5-0 out of 5 stars essential for anyone inclined to contemplation
arthur schopenhauer had a more accurate and realistic outlook on life than his student, friedrich nietzsche, who i also have a great deal of admiration for. which is not to say that going on tirades against life and intellectualizing everything is the way to go, but which is to say that anyone who recognizes the basic facts of existence is hardly going to reply with a tremendous "YES TO LIFE" as nietzsche so ridiculously and psychotically suggested. is schopenhauer a decadent, as nietzsche claimed? by his standards, yes, but let's remember that by nietzsche's standards he himself was a decadent of the worst kind. he had very few interpersonal relationships that were successful, he was an utter failure when it came to women, he was filled to the brim with bitterness and contempt for religion, and he was for the most part a solitary neurotic, who tried to conceal his own fear of life as some sign of nobility or superiority. i disagree with schopenhauer's supposed 'renunciation of life', but i am in decided agreement with his firm and unyielding belief that ultimate satisfaction and total happiness, those absurd myths which themselves bring terrible unhappiness to those who imagine they exist, are fictions created by society. both philosophers contradicted themselves constantly, but of the two i would say that nietzsche was by far the more hypocritical and blind to his own failings while so harshly critical of the failings of others. nietzsche preached the virtues of creativity and self realization as the highest possible goal man could reach for, and yet he attacked everything strange, odd, interesting, as 'decadent'. there is no better way to discourage creativity and perpetuate bourgeois values than to contemptuously dismiss everything unusual and unique as 'sick'. and all that 'will to power' BS gets pretty tiresome after awhile, especially considering that nietzsche himself was utterly lacking in any kind of power whatsoever, save that of the intellectual type. nietzsche dismisses with disgust everyone and everything that doesn't strive for worldly influence and domination, and yet three sentences later he will admit openly that the universe is basically subjective and that all meanings and goals are equally legitimate and equally relative. if that's the case, as i believe it is, why not enjoy ourselves and stop stressing about things like 'power' and 'greatness' that don't really matter in the bigger picture? anyone with the slightest experience of life will immediately agree with schopenhauer that our 'inner wealth' is what really matters, not the accidental and meaningless distractions of the external world. if this is decadence, roll in the decadence! this book is a must. ... Read more

8. The Essays of Arthur Schopenhauer; the Art of Controversy
by Arthur Schopenhauer
Paperback: 60 Pages (2010-07-06)
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The Essays of Arthur Schopenhauer; the Art of Controversy is presented here in a high quality paperback edition. This popular classic work by Arthur Schopenhauer is in the English language. If you enjoy the works of Arthur Schopenhauer then we highly recommend this publication for your book collection. ... Read more

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5-0 out of 5 stars Essential reading for debaters
Anyone who is interested in debating a topic simply has to read Schopenhauer's "The Art of Controversy" and pay particular attention to his "38 stratagems."

You'll find out about sophisms ex homonymia.And special pleading (if I do it, it's cool, if you do it, it's tacky).You'll see links in a chain of reasoning omitted.And false premises, and omitted premises.And non sequiturs (omitted chains).Suppressed majors.Negated minors.Argumentum ad ignorantiam.Question-begging (sticking your conclusion into a premise).

There is advice about false generalizations.Get your opponent to admit that your examples are true.Do not ask about the validity of the general case, but later act as if this has been admitted as well.

Then there are "false choice" arguments, where you pretend that the only alternative to your policy is some manifestly crazy "straw-man" counterplan.And there are false reductio ad absurdums and false counterexamples.There are also suggestive questions, such as asking why something is true, when it may not be true at all.

There are hidden judgments, as anyone will discover when she calls a city by its name in one language as opposed to another.

A very important stratagem is argumentum ad auditores (this ought to be illegal in a debate).Here, you simply make an argument that you and your opponent know full well is totally invalid, hoping to win over your audience.If your audience is a mob, it is called argumentum ad captandum.

You'll learn to blitz your opponent by talking fast (and maybe especially softly or loudly as well).And to extend your opponent's propositions, exaggerate them, and make them absolute.

If you think your opponent has a potentially strong but unusual counter to what you are about to propose, get her to admit the opposite of it before you start your main argument (advice from Aristotle).Try to ask it so that a "no" answer is the one you want.Never tell an opponent that you have won an argument.You do not want to hear her reply.Address victory claims only to the audience.

I've used plenty of Latin here.That's a good idea in general; it makes you look wise even though you are just another plebeian.Don't say "No way!"Say "Non possumus."

You'll learn that the line "That is all very good in theory, but it would never work in practice" is in fact a famous sophism.

And there is much more in this terrific essay.Perhaps the most interesting advice is this.If an opponent comes up with some captious sophistry, try to dispose of her ex concessis rather than ad rem.That is, come up with something just as silly as her nonsense (as long as it is something she can't or won't refute).After all, you are seeking victory, not truth!Schopenhauer assures us that this works better.

I'd be more than a little reluctant to follow this last bit of advice, but I truly enjoyed The Art of Controversy. ... Read more

9. Samtliche Werke, Book 1
by Arthur Schopenhauer
Paperback: 736 Pages (2002-01-01)
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Die Klassiker der deutschen und weltweiten Literatur in einer einzigartigen Reihe. Lesen Sie die besten Werke großer Schriftsteller und Autoren auf Ihrem Kindle Reader.

Die Welt als Wille und Vorstellung (1819) ist das Hauptwerk des deutschen Philosophen Arthur Schopenhauer (1788–1860). Die zweite Auflage (1844) besteht aus zwei Bänden, wobei bereits der erste Band die Philosophievollständig darstellt und der zweite Band als Vertiefung eben derselben verstanden werden kann. Fremdsprachige Zitate finden sich relativ häufig und werden in der Regel nicht übersetzt.

Schopenhauer entfaltet in dieser Arbeit ein groß angelegtes System seiner voluntaristischen Metaphysik des Lebens. Diese ist pessimistisch und empirisch begründet. Er stützt sich unter anderem auf Platon, Berkeley, Hume, Kant und auf die naturwissenschaftlichen Erkenntnisse seiner Zeit, aber auch auf die so genannten Upanishaden, eine Sammlung von philosophischen Schriften des Brahmanismus. Das Werk ist insgesamt durch buddhistisches Gedankengut beeinflusst, was ein Novum in der deutschen Philosophie darstellte. Schopenhauer nannte sich selbst den ersten Buddhaisten Europas. (aus wikipedia.de) ... Read more

10. On the fourfold root of the principle of sufficient reason, and On the will in nature; two essays. T
by Schopenhauer, Arthur
Paperback: 410 Pages (2009-07-10)
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11. The Essays of Arthur Schopenhauer; On Human Nature
by Arthur Schopenhauer
Kindle Edition: Pages (2004-01-01)
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This book was converted from its physical edition to the digital format by a community of volunteers. You may find it for free on the web. Purchase of the Kindle edition includes wireless delivery. ... Read more

12. El Arte de Tener Razon (Spanish Edition)
by Arthur Schopenhauer
Paperback: Pages (2005-04)
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Asin: 987113956X
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13. Great Ideas: On the Suffering of the World
Paperback: 144 Pages (2004)
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14. How to WinEvery Argument: The Subtle Art of Controversy
by Arthur Schopenhauer
Paperback: 56 Pages (2010-06-14)
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Tired of losing out because you couldn't find the right way to convince someone? Here are 38 strategies to teach you the art of controversy.The famed philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer wrote this guide, and while the writing at times requires a little thinking and effort to fully comprehend, the next time you succeed in convincing someone to see things your way, you'll agree that it was well worth the effort! ... Read more

15. Schopenhauer on the Character of the World: The Metaphysics of Will
by John E. Atwell
Hardcover: 240 Pages (1995-03-17)
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The most extensive English-language study of Schopenhauer's metaphysics of the will yet published, this book represents a major contribution to Schopenhauer scholarship. Here, John E. Atwell critically but sympathetically examines the philosopher's main work, The World as Will and Representation, demonstrating that the philosophical system it puts forth does constitute a consistent whole. The author holds that this system is centered on a single thought, "The world is self-knowledge of the will." He then traces this unifying concept through the four books of The World as Will and Representation, and, in the process, dissolves the work's alleged inconsistencies. ... Read more

16. The Art of Always Being Right: The 38 Subtle Ways to Win an Argument
by A.C. Grayling, Arthur Schopenhauer
Paperback: 204 Pages (2009-01-31)
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In discussions and meetings the aim of everyone is to persuade. Yet we know that really the best result is obtained by the person who is most skilled in holding his position. "The Art of Always Being Right" catalogues the 38 subtle tricks businessmen, negotiators, politicians, lawyers use to gain advantage. It may well be that you are in the right. But once you enter into a debate with someone else being right is not enough-you are entirely on your own. You need to parry moves designed to throw you. This book will teach you all you need to know. ... Read more

17. The Riddle of the World: A Reconsideration of Schopenhauer's Philosophy
by Barbara Hannan
Paperback: 176 Pages (2009-02-25)
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Asin: 0195378938
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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This book is an introduction to the philosophy of Arthur Schopenhauer, written in a lively, personal style. Hannan emphasizes the peculiar inconsistencies and tensions in Schopenhauer's thought--he was torn between idealism and realism, and between denial and affirmation of the individual will. In addition to providing a useful summary of Schopenhauer's main ideas, Hannan connects Schopenhauer's thought with ongoing debates in philosophy. According to Hannan, Schopenhauer was struggling half-consciously to break altogether with Kant and transcendental idealism; the anti-Kantian features of Schopenhauer's thought possess the most lasting value. Hannan defends panpsychist metaphysics of will, comparing it with contemporary views according to which causal power is metaphysically basic. Hannan also defends Schopenhauer's ethics of compassion against Kant's ethics of pure reason, and offers friendly amendments to Schopenhauer's theories of art, music, and "salvation." She also illuminates the deep connection between Schopenhauer and the early Wittgenstein, as well as Schopenhauer's influence on existentialism and psychoanalytic thought. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (4)

3-0 out of 5 stars Well written, but not an introduction
This is a well written little about about Schopenhauer's philosophy, the implications it has for living in the world today, and his legacy on other thinkers, particularly Wittgenstein.

However, I would not buy this book as an introduction to Schopenhauer's philosophy. The author sets aside a number of pages for criticizing Schopenhauer and his forebears, namely Kant and Berkeley. This is fine for an academic work on the philosopher. But the detail the author goes into, in addition to the criticism, assumes at least some prior knowledge of S's ideas not appropriate for an introductory-level text.

As an introduction, like many, I would recommend starting with Magee's.

4-0 out of 5 stars An Overlooked Philosopher
Schopenhauer is an overlooked philosopher. He's not a rigorous thinker in the analytic sense, but his critiques of Kant's metaphysics and moral theory are insightful and his theory of the will is historically crucial to the development of Nietzsche and Freud. Wittgenstein is also visibly influenced by Schophenhauer, particularly in the later, more mystical-sounding propositions of the Tractatus. On top of all that, he's readable, as 19th century German philosophers go.

Hannan's book is meant as a personal perspective on Schopenhauer. She says early on in the book that she is drawn to Schopenhauer's pessimism, in particular. And she plays at the edges of psychological discussion of the roots of her own and Schophenhauer's pessimism. I think a more in-depth discussion of Schopenhauer's life, maybe dipping into Helen Zimmern's 1876 biography of Schopenhauer, would have been helpful.

As it is, it's a relatively easy-to-read introduction that does a good job of focusing on what is most influential and insightful in Schopenhauer.

4-0 out of 5 stars Schopenhauer revisited
The Riddle of The World by Barbara Hannan is subtitled a reconsideration of Arthur Schopenhauer's philosophy. Schopenhauer is currently out of fashion and has been for some time. His vogue hit its peak in the late decades of the nineteenth century among the aesthetes and decadents who found Schopenhauer's philosophical "pessimism" congenial to their sometimes doom-laden outlooks (remember the turn of the millennium?)These readers included Wagner and Nietzsche who helped bring Schopenhauer out of the oblivion into which he and his works had fallen. He did live long enough to see interest in his work return to European culture, but he never did like Wagner's music. Hannan's book does link Schopenhauer to current trends in postmodern thought, though I found the personal note she strikes in the book, and strikes often, affecting and effective. Her own journey in dialogue and initially, rejection, of Schopenhauer is an at once disarming and helpful perspective. In the light of Schopenhauer's notorious misogyny, Hannan charitably suggests that that is the result of his desire for women but rejection by them, ie the cri de coeur of the wounded romantic. Hannan makes cogent critical remarks when it comes to the more logically dubious parts of Schopenhauer's "system" with its many aporias. However, system-building was not what Schopenhauer was about, and one of his perennial targets was the great systematizer Hegel. The interesting contradictions that Hannan locates and explicates only deepened my appreciation for Schopenhauer, and in many ways he does anticipate post modern thought, and given the limitations of the science of his day (his major work written prior to Darwin),Schopenhauer always surprises by his scientific prescience. We know that he was up to date in his day and in many ways ahead of his time.
The Riddle of The World rekindles interest in the Symbolistes' favorite philosopher, who provided the foundation for Nietzsche's development of the philosophy of Will.

4-0 out of 5 stars Schopenhauer's Teachings Still Ripe With Thought About The Human Condition and Reality
This is a likeable book on the whole.The Preface displays and promises a personal and sympathetic touch for the rest of the book, unusual for a professor of philosophy, and she, for the most part, achieves this touch, this human and humane goal (apart from a frequent stilted or stylistically clumsy use of abstract terms strictly from a professional philosopher's toolkit in at least three of the five total chapters).There is a live and real human being behind this book just as Schopenhauer's philosophy revealed the grand human being behind the words in "World As Will and Representation," despite the at-first daunting initial encounters with Kant and the world of Forms.

While Ms. Hannan, a realist who here can really, demonstrably and winningly, pit her own empirical knowledge, experience and reasoning against the floating abstractions of Idealists, admits she owes a debt to John Heil who served as the reader of her manuscript and expresses her thanks to many other people, including philosophers, in making her book possible, I wished she had stated outright her debt and her thanks to John E. Atwell, who, before his death by brain cancer, wrote two wonderful, fabulously sympathetic, sensitive, and clear philosophic books on Schopenhauer in the early 1990s, because he was the true forerunner of Ms. Hannan's approach to elucidating and reconsidering Schopenhauer's "system" by being personal about one's understanding of the philosophy even while analyzing the content of the work as a philosopher.The only recognition Mr. Atwell received from Ms. Hannan, sadly, was the mention of both his books in the Bibliography at the back.

Having said that, I think this book can be read and understood without even having encountered the wonderful and grandly fortifying two-volume work by Schopenhauer, translated by E.F.J. Payne and more currently translated (at least Volume 1) by Richard E. Aquila.Ms. Hannan makes clear what Schopenhauer's central ideas are in his major work and also focuses in on three major themes found within its pages, even if, at times, she seems overly concerned with producing, as I stated outright in the beginning, philosophic terminology fit only for the dusty halls of academe.With enough patience and focus, however, even the untrained but avid philosopher or wanna-be can follow her meaning, although I am aware I may be overstating this.This isn't exactly easy reading for the non-specialist.

The big flaw with the book is that while the book is stated to be a "reconsideration" of Schopenhauer's philosophy, there is an inordinate amount of focus on Kant's philosophy and weaknesses, only a little of which really and truly illuminates Schopenhauer's own philosophic goals or specialties.Thus it is that Chapter 3 -- a discussion on morality and ethics -- for me, was scarred with frustration and irritability because it seemed to lose focus of Schopenhauer altogether, at least for two-thirds of that largely tedious chapter.Anyone who is interested in finding out the many weaknesses, lacunaes, and contradictions in Kant's ethics can come here and find a fount of useful facts that will stop cold any practitioner of "pure reason" or categorical imperatives.This flaw is balanced by some clear, specific and terrific insights into how Wittgenstein's thought was shaped by Schopenhauer's major work.

Like John F. Atwell's books on Schopenhauer clearly demonstrate, Barbara Hannan's book points up how Schopenhauer's philosophy, as a whole, doesn't cohere and is, in essence, broken, but it retains some very valuable and spirit-validating stuff, for scientists about the fundamental nature of reality and particularly for people who are already prone to a pessimistic view of life or who have ever suffered severe depression - the most precious and exciting bits of which are found in the last chapter, Chapter 5, "Pessimism, Depression, and Salvation."I was sorry that Ms Hannan, in the end, had to bring in Jung's ideas in order to bolster up her argument for Schopenhauer's worth, although why she does so is perfectly clear.Schopenhauer was conflicted about his own views even about the self, and she helped me see this man in more limited terms than I previously had conceived him.

In the final pages Barbara Hannan pitches her realist-oriented wits against the certainties of mysticism, Schopenhauerian or Buddhistic or whatever other sect.Schopenhauer, for the realist, is no mystical Jean Klein, no matter how cultured, Europeanized, and thoughtful either may be.Without any mysticism adhering to this reconsideration of Schopenhauer's thought, with no Yeat's "ladder" to cling to so as to climb out of "the rag and bone shop of the heart," there is something in this book and in Schopenhauer's philosophy that is beyond words. ... Read more

18. The world as will and idea
by Arthur Schopenhauer
Paperback: 512 Pages (2010-08-30)
list price: US$39.75 -- used & new: US$28.67
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1178017567
Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
Purchase of this book includes free trial access to www.million-books.com where you can read more than a million books for free.This is an OCR edition with typos.Excerpt from book:48 )CHAPTER XXIV.ON MATTER.Matter has already been spoken of in the fourth chapter of the supplements to the first book, when we were considering the part of our knowledge of which we are conscious a priori. But it could only be considered there from a one-sided point of view, because we were then concerned merely with its relation to the forms of our intellect, and not to the thing in itself, and therefore we investigated it only from the subjective side, i.e., so far as it is an idea, and not from the objective side, i.e., with regard to what it may be in itself. In the first respect, our conclusion was that it is objective activity in general, yet conceived without fuller determination; therefore it takes the place of causality in the table of our a priori knowledge which is given there. For what is material is that which acts (the actual) in general, and regarded apart from the specific nature of its action. Hence also matter, merely as such, is not an object of perception, but only of thought, and thus is really au abstraction. It only comes into perception in connection with form and quality, as a body, i.e., as a fully determined kind of activity. It is only by abstracting from this fuller determination that we think of matter as such, i.e., separated from form and quality; consequently under matter we think of acting absolutely and in general, thus of activity in the abstract. The more fully determined acting we then conceive as the accident of matter; but only by means of this does matter become preceptible, i.e., present itself as a body and anobject of experience. Pure matter, on the other hand, which, as I have shown in the Criticism of the Kantian Philosophy, alone constitutes the true and admissible content of the conception of substance, is causality... ... Read more

Customer Reviews (11)

1-0 out of 5 stars A strange but very influential philosopher
Bertrand Russell was probably right when he commented that Schopenhauer was more influential among artists and writers than he was among philosophers.Be that as it may, this quirky thinker had a great influence on fin-de-siecle Europe.He's one of the few genuinely pessimistic philosophers, and he helped to make the fin-de-siecle gloomy.

"The world is my idea," says the first sentence in this book.Leaving that aside for the moment, the only thing left in the world is "will," which Schopenhauer regards in a very Buddhist fashion.He tends to think that there is really one Universal Will, which shows up in each of us, and that this will is evil.Since Schopenhauer does not believe in any God, but is a sort of semi-Buddhist, he recommends abstinence and asceticism as the only path for the wise man to take.His only "salvation" is in Art, of all things!

As Russell points out, Schopenhauer was not completely honest in all of this.He lived alone, with a small dog named Atma, but he dined in fine restaurants every day.He never married, although he had a few brief affairs which were things of the flesh, not the heart.He was not only a misanthrope but a misogynist as well; he once threw a woman down the stairs for talking too loud outside his door. (She sued him and won, and Schopenhauer had to pay her a small sum for permanent injuries for the rest of her life.)

I find Schopenhauer's essays much more entertaining than his attempt at serious philosophy, and I think most readers agree.It is well to remember, while reading anything written by him, just what a strange fellow he was.Look at his portrait: does he strike you as a person of serene wisdom?:-)

1-0 out of 5 stars Do not buy General Books LLC "The World as Will and Idea"
This "translation" of The World as Will and Idea printed by General Books LLC is terrible.
No translator is listed.It is incomplete, missing important parts, and was total waste of money.
The disclaimer at the beginning of the book says in part:
"...While the publisher and author have used their best efforts...they make no representation or warranties with respect to the accuracy or completeness of the contents of this book..."Further down it says:
"We have created this book from the original using Optical Character Recognition software to keep the cost of the book as low as possible....please forgive any spelling mistakes, missing or extraneous characters..."
That pretty well sums it up.General Books LLC books clearly aren't even worth the money put into making them.
If you want a usable copy look for more well-known publisher.This is unusable for anyone studying the text academically, and fairly worthless for anyone else.

3-0 out of 5 stars Not as it seems
Unfortunately this title is misleading and starts in the middle of the book.It is a fair price for what you get but this kind of heady reading is not something one wants to start in the middle.I was unable to find a "part I" to this series so instead purchased an abridgement of the entire work so I intend to read the abridged version until it catches up with this, more detailed part of the work.
It comes from a source that allows you to download books very inexpensively but I didn't look into that as it is not for me.It may be a way to find the volume I of this series.


1-0 out of 5 stars this is not what it claims to be
this is actually the last part of the entire work although the advertising would have you believe you are buying the whole work
I regard this as a misrepresentation!

1-0 out of 5 stars Kindle edition
The Kindle edition of this work is a disaster. There is no Table of Contents, much less a Contents with active links. Worse, the text itself is full of formatting problems and typos. We very much need a Kindle edition of Schopenhauer's main work (in particular, the two volumes translated as The World as Will and Representation). But this is NOT that edition. ... Read more

19. The Essays of Arthur Schopenhauer; Studies in Pessimism
by Arthur Schopenhauer
Kindle Edition: Pages (2009-10-04)
list price: US$1.99
Asin: B002RKRFWC
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This book was converted from its physical edition to the digital format by a community of volunteers. You may find it for free on the web. Purchase of the Kindle edition includes wireless delivery. ... Read more

20. The World as Will and Presentation, Volume 2 (Longman Library of Primary Sources)
by Arthur Schopenhauer
Paperback: 784 Pages (2010-06-16)
list price: US$20.67 -- used & new: US$11.65
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0321355806
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Part of the “Pearson Primary Sources in Philosophy,” this second volume of Schopenhauer's World as Will and Presentation is framed by a pedagogical structure designed to make this important work of philosophy more accessible and meaningful for undergraduates.


Each book in the Pearson Library offers today’s students a clear, up-to-date, and inexpensive translation of a seminal work in philosophy.  With in-depth, user-friendly introductions, copious notes to clarify difficult or important passages, and a rich index, each volume makes the masterworks of philosophy accessible to students and emphasizes their relevance to contemporary issues and debates.  Again, each work in the Pearson Library is priced so that a number of works can be assigned in the same course, and/or bundled with a text or anthology.

... Read more

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