During my freshman year I took the introduction to philosophy class that everyone takes and actually thoroughly enjoyed it. So much so that I thought maybe I had found a passion of mine, and that maybe I could add a minor in philosophy. This semester I’m taking a philosophical ethics course and after only four weeks, it’s frustrating me. The reason I’m frustrated isn’t because I have to think hard about the reasons I do certain things or that I have to remember which philosophers coined which types of moral philosophies, but because I leave class each day with zero answers.
I don’t even have more questions, I just have zero answers, because either the philosophy has been undermined by another one or because there is a problem with the argument, and I remember feeling this way at the end of my introduction to philosophy course as well.
Philosophy teaches us a great deal about a new way to think, a way to question everything around us, and the true meaning behind it all, but what it doesn’t give us is a way to find the meaning. My philosophy class came to a close first semester and I was upset that nobody had figured it all out yet; essentially, nobody knew the meaning of life after we looked at tons of possible philosophies. In my philosophical ethics class so far we have come to the same conclusion that nobody can provide a sound argument for why morals are a common phenomena. We all have morals and we should all do the right thing, but as soon as we begin to ask why, we come to an impasse. There isn’t any justifiable reason for why we have morals, so I’ve come up with my own theory–feel free to debate it if you’d like.
We as humans objectively carry out actions; no one can argue that we do things.
People, subjectively, think that those actions are right or wrong, and no one can seem to agree on any one right morality concept.
Therefore, there is no objective meaning to the actions we do, only meaning we place on said actions.
This prospect has helped keep me sane the past few weeks. I don’t do well in classes when I feel like I don’t have any reason to learn the information. So, after this proposition of a theory, I have to go back into class and try to understand Utilitarianism and all the other types of different moral philosophies. But now I’m frustrated for a new reason, that no one has disproved my theory and given meaning to everything, so I’m frustrated I have to learn about these new philosophies. So is life though; I guess I’ll just have to try to enjoy learning a new way of thinking, questioning everything around me.