A philosophy webcomic about the inevitable anguish of living a brief life in an absurd world. Also Jokes

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No Motive



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Should I have a cup of coffee, or shoot the president?

Sort of incredibly, as of the writing of this comic, it seems like the Trump shooter basically had no real motive in the normal sense (i.e. a political goal to achieve). Sartre thought that human freedom could always transcend itself, in that you can have free acts without a prior chain of events that led it. The way we talk about freedom and motives often makes it seem like our actions are wholly cause by our prior beliefs. For example, if someone hated Charles de Gaulle their entire life, and wanted France to be a communist country, and then they shot him, their hatred and political ideals would have "caused" them to shoot him. But since we are free creatures, someone could equally wake up in the morning and decide to shoot him for "no reason".

Camus had similar ideas, taking it even further in that he thought most of the stories and narratives that we tell ourselves are often lies and fabrications to impose a narrative on our lives that might not exist. We want our lives to be like novels that we author, but most of the time it is more like we are just bouncing around more or less at random like anything else in the universe.

As a side note, I can almost gaurentee that both of them thought about shooting de Gaulle at least one, especially Sartre. Existentialists love dramatic shit like that.

Sort of incredibly, as of the writing of this comic, it seems like the Trump shooter basically had no real motive in the normal sense (i.e. a political goal to achieve). Sartre thought that human freedom could always transcend itself, in that you can have free acts without a prior chain of events that led it. The way we talk about freedom and motives often makes it seem like our actions are wholly cause by our prior beliefs. For example, if someone hated Charles de Gaulle their entire life, and wanted France to be a communist country, and then they shot him, their hatred and political ideals would have "caused" them to shoot him. But since we are free creatures, someone could equally wake up in the morning and decide to shoot him for "no reason".

Camus had similar ideas, taking it even further in that he thought most of the stories and narratives that we tell ourselves are often lies and fabrications to impose a narrative on our lives that might not exist. We want our lives to be like novels that we author, but most of the time it is more like we are just bouncing around more or less at random like anything else in the universe.

As a side note, I can almost gaurentee that both of them thought about shooting de Gaulle at least one, especially Sartre. Existentialists love dramatic shit like that.

Philosophers in this comic: Jean Paul Sartre, Albert Camus
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