Sartre's notion of transcendence is closely linked with the idea offreedom. Humans are free in the sense that they have theability to choose how they are going to interpret things, and in theseinterpretations they are deciding how things are to count ormatter. We constitute the world through our freedom to the extent thatour ways of taking things determine how reality will be sorted out andmatter to us. At the same time, we constitute ourselvesthrough our own choices: though the facticity of my situation createssome constraints on my possible self-interpretations, it is always upto me to decide the meaning of those constraints, and this means thatwhat I take to be limitations are in fact produced by my owninterpretations or meaning-giving activities. Such limitations aregrasped in light of antecedent commitments, on the background of whichsituations becomes intelligible, as affording certain actions and/ormodes of evaluation. It is our antecedent commitments that shape ourworld, making situations and objects intelligible as threatening orfavorable, easy or full of obstacles, or more generally, as affordingcertain actions (Sartre 1992a : 489). Our engagements provide ahermeneutic structure within which our situations and motives becomecomprehensible and reveal themselves in the way situations appear tous—as significant, requiring our attention, etc. (1992a :485).
The denial of altruistic moralism means that the primary business of life is the pursuit of goods for the self, and these are the goods of private life.
The responsible self : an essay in Christian moral philosophy
Besides being a topic in philosophical debates, authenticity isalso a pervasive ideal that impacts social and politicalthinking. In fact, one distinctive feature of recent Westernintellectual developments has been a shift to what is called the“age of authenticity” (Taylor 2007; Ferrarra 1998).Therefore, understanding the concept also involves investigating itshistorical and philosophical sources and on the way it impacts thesocio-political outlook of contemporary societies.
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The Anselmian version of the satisfaction theory does not quiteencounter these difficulties. But, together with the moral exemplartheory and various other versions of the satisfaction theory, it facesa different sort of problem. Both views seem unable to account for theBiblical emphasis on the necessity of Christ's passion to remedy theproblems brought forth by sin. It is hard to see why Christ's deathplays any essential role in establishing him as moralexemplar. Further, it is hard to see why it would be needed in orderfor him to merit the sort of reward that Anselm thinks the Father oweshim. Given that Christ is a man, he owes it to the Father to live asinless life; but why isn't the incarnation itself sufficientlysupererogatory to merit the debt-cancelling reward? Moreover, even ifwe can discover some reason why Christ's death would be necessaryunder these theories, it is hard to see why it would have to involvesuch horrible suffering. For purposes of meriting a reward or forserving as an exemplar, why would it not suffice for Christ to dwellamong us, live a perfect human life resisting all earthly temptation,and then die a quiet death at home? Indeed, these theories seem unableto account even for the value in Christ's passion, much less itsnecessity.
This claim is superficial and grossly misleading
First, Kant’s account of virtue presupposes an account of moralduty already in place. Thus, rather than treating admirable charactertraits as more basic than the notions of right and wrong conduct, Kanttakes virtues to be explicable only in terms of a prior account ofmoral or dutiful behavior. He does not try to make out what shape agood character has and then draw conclusions about how we ought to acton that basis. He sets out the principles of moral conduct based onhis philosophical account of rational agency, and then on that basisdefines virtue as a kind of strength and resolve to act on thoseprinciples despite temptations to the contrary.