*** This is my paper two years ago. I feel like sharing it. =D
Most of these are according to Johann Gottfried von Herder
Does Human Freedom Exist?
Human Freedom, for me, is the free will that God has given us to do whatever we want to do guarded by our intellect. As I study Johann Gottfried von Herder’s philosophy of history, I have seen that human freedom exists.
He stated that “Each person has it’s own time and place in History” and Time does not stand still”. Connecting the two principle, time goes on and on and on, it won’t end but our time will come to an end. We have our own time and place that God has given us. In connection to free will, God has given our own time and place on which, when and where that we are going to make a difference, a legacy (if it matters to us). God has handled us our own freedom to do whatever we wanted to do in the certain time and particular place that He had put us.
In addition, Herder told “Everything that can exist exists. Everything to produce, will be produced. If not today, yet tomorrow.” On my understanding, human freedom exists here on this quotation. We are free to think and create what we think our earth needed. We have our right to made things that we know that will make our stay here comfortable. But everything has a limitation as what the CAN implies.
“Everything has a limitation” as what the old saying says and so our freedom is. As I understand Herder’s philosophy. He simply expresses Human Freedom’s existence for he wanted us to do and express what we want but he sets a limitation that represents God and that’s limitation is God’s business not ours.
Is there a common Human Nature?
If we analyze Johann Gottfried von Herder’s philosophy of History, we can understand that it’s all about TIME. Time, as one of the common phenomena that we experience and for me, it is one of our common human nature.
Herder says, “Time does not stand still”, everything here changes. Change is the only permanent thing here on earth. I believe that “CHANGE” is a part of Human Nature. We changes as time goes by. We won’t remain as babies, we will grow and became adult, even if we do not want. We are not always the villain or as a bad and worthless person. Time will came that we will realize what is life for and we will change for the better.
He compares Man in common to what happen to Greek character Ixion, Sisyphus and Tantalus. Ixion is tied to a wheel that revolves across the sky. The wheel turns round and round in his everyday’s life. Connecting to us, as the earth rotates to it’s axis and revolve around the sun, we perform the same activities such as eating, laboring, breathing, sleeping etc… In Sisyphus’ situation, he was condemned by the god to roll a huge stone up to a hill. In relation to us, we are all existing here on earth to work forever. As Sisyphus push the stone, he will not stop, for if he, it might go down. Like us human being, once we have started something we need to finish it for we might encounter circumstances that is more difficult than our first situation. We should also remember that as the stone reaches the summit it will fall, and so as humans, once we have reach our goal, triumph, or victory, it isn’t forever it will fade, it will end. Lastly is Tantalus, who is punished by standing chin-deep in water with branches of fruit just above. As he try to eat the fruit or drink the water it rises and rises. We are all in search of something we do not know, or let us say PERMANENT HAPPINESS that we cannot attain for there are always hindrances.
Most of all, Herder shows Human Nature by telling that here on earth “There is a mixture of Hope and Despair”.Every good thing pass away and so as the bad one. Everything has an end. Everything isn’t permanent. Therefore, do every best thing we can, for we have our own FINALE, let’s make it a grand ending, of our theater of unhappiness.
Is there a Supreme Being?
Johann Gottfried von Herder is under the philosopher who have seen a plan in history that is why I believe that he believes that a Supreme Being really do exists or else he won’t have seen a plan.
Herder stated a principle law, “everything that can exist exists; Everything that is possible to produce will be produced; If not today yet tomorrow.” That is what Herder’s call a plan in History. The “Possible” will appear here on earth in a particular time and place and I believe that God is the one who had plan it. Like in human being, God has given us our own time to shine the way we want to. To show that God really exists, Herder put a limitation by saying that “History is Transient”. Meaning, nothing lasts forever. Everything isn’t permanent for everything will going to change and fade. In addition, God is our limitation also for the things we cannot do.
On my own understanding of Herder’s philosophy believe that there is God for there is a plan and there is a limitation. God has a purpose in creating us and in making someone and something exists. In addition. Man cannot do everything because God has put limitation to us, and according Herder, it is through Time and Change.
Note: Everything changes and so my views about them (just some of them) =D