How The Search For Meaning And The Futility Of Labor

1863 WordsMar 29, 20178 Pages
Alexander Martinie Mr. Laverde AP Capstone Seminar Period One Third Rough Draft How the search for meaning in the workplace affects productivity within the workplace: An absurdist, capitalistic, existential, and nihilistic argument. Word Count: 1872 The Philosophy of Meaning and the Futility of Labor Meaning is prevalent in the lives of most humans, to some it is as essential to life as breathing is, but this search for meaning also has its drawbacks. It was the philosopher of absurdism, Albert Camus that said “I don’t know whether this world has a meaning that transcends. But I know that I cannot know that meaning and that it is impossible for me just to know it,” (Archon). To Camus, the absurd is an essential part of the world and…show more content…
The futility of labor is not just seen in Greco- Roman myths, it is also found in Western Abrahamic religions, the book of Ecclesiastes takes a nihilistic turn on labor. It states that everything in life is meaningless because no one will remember those who came before them and no one cares about those who will follow after them. The author even states that he hated all of his efforts under the sun because it would only better those who came after him. Nihilism is the belief that there is no meaning in the world at all. Depending on the perspective of someone observing nihilistic studies, this idea can be either depressing or freeing. Existentialism is a branch of philosophy that contemplates what it means to exist, much like René Descartes statement of Cogito ergo sum, or in English, I think therefore I am. Economics and Meaning While absurdists, existentialists, and nihilists believe that there is no meaning in the workplace or that there is a meaning that is too complex for humans to understand, Adam Smith, the father of modern capitalism, would argue that there is meaning in the workplace. This meaning comes in the form of capitalism and the free market. According to philosopher Ayn Rand, capitalism is “a term used to denote the economic system that has been dominant in the western world since the breakup of feudalism. Fundamental to any system called
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