This question requires you to use the handout for Chapters 1 and 2.
The Meaning of Life
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Read the last part of the handout for Chapters 1 and 2, which consists of quotations from the philosophers on the meaning of life., Explain, in one or two paragraphs and in your own words, the meaning of the quotation you like best. You may also tell us a little about the life and works of the philosopher who said it. Use Garth Kemerling’s Philosophy Pages as your online source of information.
The Meaning of Meaning
This question is taken from the handout to chapters 1 and 2 (see the Content section of the course home page).Read the handout first, before trying to answer the question.
Rudolf Carnap claims that statements about ethics, metaphysics, and religious belief are really pseudostatements. They look like they are making claims about the world, but they don’t. They are really just expressions of people’s states of mind. They might tell us what people’s feelings about the world are, but they aren’t true or false.
So, if someone says: “Everything happens for a reason,” that tells us something about the way this person thinks or feels about the world. This person feels that the world is not chaotic, but has a purpose. But that doesn’t tell us that the world really does have a purpose; just that the person thinks it does.
After reading the discussion in the handout, tell me whether you agree or disagree with Carnap’s view. Be sure to think about its implications, both for ethics and for religious belief.