Ten Top Existentialism Themes

Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are ...
Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going?, 1897, Boston Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA, USA (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

What unifies the existentialists are the themes and concerns that tend to show up in their work as here are the top ten themes that recur again and again in existential philosophy as well as in the art, literature, movies and any number of other fields:

1-  Absurdity: For the existentialists life is absurd as it makes no sense and has no meaning or ultimate purpose and human beings need to make sense of it and have their own meaning and purpose.

2- Rejection of meaning-giving narratives: It isn’t enough to say that life is absurd, the existentialists repeatedly make the point that when philosophy, religion or the science tries to make sense of it, their attempts always fail.

3- Alienation: This is the feeling that you are a stranger in your own life and a stranger in the world.

4- Anxiety: This is the feeling of unease you get when you start to recognize that life is absurd.

5- loneliness: This is the feeling of loneliness you get when you realize that no one can help you make sense of your existence.

6- Responsibility: Everyone bears responsibility as if one is going to give you a guidebook to life then you have to bear the responsibility for making your way through it and creating some kind of meaning for it.

7- Authenticity: People want authenticity—to live in a way that’s in tune with their true of who they are as human beings and the world they live in.

8- Individuality: An important part of developing an authentic and satisfying life is individuality as reason, science and systems that try to cover up the absurdity of life often takes individuality from you.

9- Passion/Engagement: Being passionate or engaged is another important aspect of living an authentic life and it is under attack from the same forces that take away your individuality.

10- Death: This is the ultimate context for all human actions and an important source of the absurdity of life.

5 comments on “Ten Top Existentialism Themes

  1. -

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