Absolutism, Universalism, and the Human Condition Introduction This paper refers to a number of passages provided in an undergraduate introduction to the Humanities that in different ways refer to dualities of life. Sometimes, these are spotted too in human nature, in the struggle that an aware and thinking person can know in approaching the self, the world and others. A reader sees, over and over, matters that continue to puzzle or very much trouble the living, in which personal outlooks or whole philosophies of life can incline in different ways and very often, differences between what seems universal and absolute. I “tis a question left us yet to prove. Whether love lead fortune, or else fortune love.” Shakespeare, Hamlet, Act 3, Scene...The end:
.....y course. Moral or other confusion of the present in such questions as, what really matters, or what do I really care about, become less compelling. It is helpful to realize that Shakespeare, for example, noticed the gap between materialists and humanists, and how their respective questions or assertions about life are never summarily answered. One sees in each work discussed above, how various other human beings have faced the same kinds of quandaries that may be more or less dramatic than what one’s own life presents. There will often be an absolutist ‘right or wrong’ approach, or a sense of universal wisdom or response, and there should be awareness that neither will be the accurate situation or right course of action in every situation.