In Search of Schopenhauer's Cat: Arthur Schopenhauer's Quantum-Mystical Theory of Justice

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9780813214306: In Search of Schopenhauer's Cat: Arthur Schopenhauer's Quantum-Mystical Theory of Justice
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Arthur Schopenhauer's theory of justice is radical. Justice, in Schopenhauer's system of thought, is not an epistemological construct. It is neither rights based nor process based. It rejects the concept of individual moral duty as vehemently as it embraces the concept of collective moral guilt. For Schopenhauer, justice is not a way of assessing reality. It is a facet of reality itself. Schopenhauer's theory of justice is ontology―a study of being itself.

In this book Raymond B. Marcin offers several reasons why a review and a reevaluation of Schopenhauer's theory of justice are worthwhile now, almost two hundred years after it was first formulated. One is that his theory of justice, based squarely on his philosophy of being (or ontology), seems remarkably consistent with the view of reality that is taking shape in the minds of contemporary quantum physicists. Albert Einstein called Schopenhauer's writings "wonderful," and Erwin Schrödinger called them "beautiful." Another reason is that the metaphysical basis of Schopenhauer's theory of justice bridges a gap that has long existed between Western and Eastern approaches to philosophy and may well have had an influence on the thought of Mohandas K. Gandhi. Yet another reason is that some contemporary jurisprudential movements with a strong social orientation have of late taken an interest in the concept of "community." The idea of "comm-unity" in its most basic and most literal sense is at the heart of Schopenhauer's deep ontology of justice. Finally, the concept of justice has almost always been examined from an epistemological vantage point. Seldom have we seen, outside the natural law tradition, a metaphysical or ontological examination of justice, and that is exactly what Schopenhauer gives.

Readers will learn of Schopenhauer's thought, life, and importance in the history of philosophy. A multi-disciplinary approach combined with the author's inviting style will make this book worth the consideration of a broad range of scholars.




ABOUT THE AUTHOR



Raymond B. Marcin is professor of law at The Catholic University of America School of Law.

PRAISE FOR THE BOOK


"Raymond Marcin's range of topics and his ability to draw affinities between Schopenhauer's thought and physics, religion, legal theory, religious traditions, and mystical traditions are breathtaking. . . . A very exciting work of a mature scholar."―David E. Cartwright, University of Wisconsin―Whitewater

"This richly informed and novel approach to a difficult thinker ably demonstrates the uncommon and unexpected virtues of reading Schopenhauer's metaphysical and mystical contentions in connection with both contemporary physical theory and jurisprudence. Marcin challenges us to reconsider the ethical and political implications of Schopenhauer's grounding of justice in his metaphysics, given the considerable affinities of the latter with aspects of quantum physics."―Daniel O. Dahlstrom, Boston University

"This is a fine work. . . . Marcin leads the reader through a rich cornucopia of Schopenhauerian and Schopenhauerian-related themes. We learn of Schopenhauer's life, his thought, his significance in the history of philosophy, and, of far greater importance, his relevance to a number of contemporary scientific, legal, ethical, and political concerns."―G. Steven Neeley, Esq., Saint Francis University

"Marcin writes with a clarity that rivals Schopenhauer's own lucid style. He succeeds in discovering an illuminating perspective on Schopenhauer's concept of the will, approaching this vexed subject with insights inspired by contemporary controversies in physics. Were Schopenhauer to write a supplement to On the Will in Nature today, he could not do better than to use the line of argumentation so elegantly laid out in this book."―Dale E. Snow, Loyola College in Maryland

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About the Author:

Raymond B. Marcin is professor of law at The Catholic University of America School of Law.

Review:

"The central topic of this wide-ranging and thought-provoking book is Schopenhauer's theory of justice, with special attention given to its grounding in his metaphysics and theory of human nature. Explores Schopenhauer's thought by drawing out its affinities to an array of ideas from quantum mechanics, theistic natural law theory, Eastern and Western religion, and the entire history of metaphysics, ethics, and political philosophy . . . It will engage readers at many levels." ―Choice

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