What he took, writes Mann, was the ‘idea’ and the ‘Ding an
sich’. But with the latter he did something very bold, even
scarcely permissible— he named it and also defined it. He
called it the Will. The Will is the ultimate and absolute. It is
the irreducible, primeval principle of being, the source of all
phenomena, the begetter, the impelling force producing the whole
visible world and all life.
regards the body as an appearance whose reality exists in the
will. The will is not subject to space and time and the
categories of Kant. All knowledge is foreign to the will, it is
something independent of knowledge; it is entirely original and
absolute. The will, this ‘in-itself-ness’ of things, writes
Mann, exists outside time and space and causality, demands
objectivation, which occurs in such a way that its original
unity becomes a multiplicity. Schopenhauer called it principium
individuationis — the principle of individuality.
valuable contribution to Ethics and Aesthetics as well.
According to him, like art, virtue is not a thing to be learned.
Just as a man cannot become an artist by having explained to him
the essence of the creative state, so he cannot shun evil and
ensue good by instruction. The will cannot be ‘taught’
because it is free and absolute.
a bleak view of life, or so it seems. Pain is positive, he says,
and pleasure is negative as happiness is nothing but the absence
of pain. What causes our suffering is our willing. If we gave up
the will we might experience the ultimate bliss, the state of
nothingness, or Nirvana.