Arthur Schopenhauer (1788–1860) was a German philosopher, author and university professor. Criticizing the philosophy of classical German idealism, he built an original and unique doctrine that includes epistemology, metaphysics, aesthetics and ethics, and is called the philosophy of pessimism. In his most famous work, The World as Will and Representation (1818) he laid the basic idea of his philosophy. The world as the infinite being of the concept takes place under the laws of causality, and is based on the principle of reason, which gives it the character of reality and differentiates it from a dream. By examining Kant’s „things-in-themselves“ Schopenhauer finds his cognitive explanation in will, which, in its essence, is metaphysical, unreasonable and blind, without meaning and purpose. Man’s life, as a manifestation of that will, is infinite suffering and a series of defeats. That is why this world is the worst of all possible worlds. Schopenhauer finds that the ethical meaning of life lies solely in compassion and helping others. He was one of the first to share and affirm the essential principles of Eastern philosophy in the Western one. His other more important works are: On the Fourfold Root of Principles for a Sufficient Reason; On the will in nature; Parerga and Paralipomena, The Art of Being Right.
Image source: Wikipedia