Summary Chapter 5: Zero Point_Nihilism


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Chapter 5: ZERO POINT—NIHILISM (Pgs.74-93)

Sire begins this chapter by arguing that nihilism is a denial of ultimate reality and is thus more of a worldview than a philosophy.  This is evident in the artwork produced which denies meaning on the one hand, but possess a structure to it on the other hand, and thus ends refuting itself.  For structure, presupposes meaning, a mind, design, etc.

Nihilism, Sire continues, is the child of naturalism which reduces all of life into chance plus time plus matter.  To make a choice is really illusory for what seems to be “our decision” is actually determined matter in motion.  This means there’s no such thing as free will.  All that exists is unknown determinism masked as chance that cares for no one nor favors anyone.  It just is.  Add to that naturalism’s claim to knowledge which according to Darwin is quite dubious since our brains are only a higher order from monkey’s, who knows if it’s not deceiving us into thinking something illusory?

Nihilism, in light of the aforesaid, commits the; is/ought fallacy, for there’s no outside influence telling us what is right or wrong.  This loss of knowing ushers in a loss of morals, which escorts people into a meaningless life.  Futility thus destroys any sense of real beauty in art and living this worldview consistently often leads one to madness (Pg.93 consider nihilism’s heroes).

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