Candide (cont’d and wrap-up)

The 3 main theories:

MEN IS NOT BORN EVIL, BUT HAVE BECOME EVIL

“Mankind have a little corrupted nature, for they were not born wolves, and they have become wolves; God has given them neither cannon of four-and-twenty pounders, nor bayonets; and yet they have made cannon and bayonets to destroy one another.”

MEN IS BORN EVIL AND ALWAYS WILL BE

“Do you believe, said Martin, that hawks haev always eaten pigeons when they have found them?
Yes, without doubt, said Candide.
Well, then, if hawks have always had the same character, why should you imagine that men may have changed theirs?”

MEN ARE NOT REALLY MEN, FOR A TRUE HUMAN IS PURE

“I have seen no bears in m country, but men I have behld nowhere…”


Three contradicting views. Which one does the book (Voltaire) seem to agree with?

Here’s the conclusion:

“Master, we come to beg you to tell why so strange an animal as man was made.
With what meddlest thou? said the Dervish, is it thy business?
But reverend father, said Candide, there is horrible evil in this world.
What signifies it, said the Dervish, whether there be evil or good? When his highness sends a ship to Egypt, does he trouble his head whether the mice on board are at theier ease or not?
What then, must we do? said Pangloss
Hold your tongue, answered the Dervish.”

Philosophy is not for us to figure out. It doesn’t even matter. Don’t think yourself as so important, for we are not important at all. Why must you think that a greater power cares about us when we’re just as equal as the rest of the animals. (Kind of ironic, because Voltaire was a philospher himself.)

So now what?
SOLULTION OF THE BOOK:

“I want to know which is worse, to be ravished a hundred times by negros pirates, to have a buttock cut off, to run the gauntlet among the Bulgarians, to be whipped and hanged, to be dissected, to row in the galleys, to go through all the miseries we have undergone, or to stay here and have nothing to do?”

The point is, stability is depressing. Boredom encourges passiveness as opposed to taking action. The idea is to just keep yourself busy, minding your own business. You could try to change the world, but nothing will change. To be safe, just find a hobby and keep your mind off from thinking. This will keep us away from the 3 great evils of the world. (Weariness, vice and want) All in all, ignorance is bliss. <—- SELFISH PHILOSOPHY!!!

I recommend this book, though. Pessimistic, but at least a different perspective. Interesting…

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