Arthur Schopenhauer

On this date in 1788, Arthur Schopenhauer was born in Germany. He studied philosophy at Gottingen, Berlin and Jena Universities. His opus, The World as Will and Idea, was published in 1818, and was revised in 1844. Parerga and Paralipomena (1851), his final work, contained his popular writings, aphorisms and essays. Schopenhauer was influenced by Kant, and rejected the ideas of Hegel, and proofs for the existence of God and immortality. He was also influenced by Buddhism. Although a loner and pessimist, he advocated the alleviation of suffering through an appreciation of aesthetics, altruism and asceticism. D. 1860.

“Faith and knowledge are related as the two scales of balance; when the one goes up, the other goes down. . . . The power of religious dogma, when inculcated early, is such as to stifle conscience, compassion, and finally every feeling of humanity. . . . For, as you know, religions are like glow worms; they shine only when it's dark. A certain amount of ignorance is the condition of all religions, the element in which alone they can exist. ”

—Arthur Schopenhauer, Parerga and Paralipomena (1851), cited in Who's Who in Hell compiled by Warren Allen Smith

Compiled by Annie Laurie Gaylor

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