Who am I and what is "I"?

Self-knowledge issues worried thinkers throughout the history of mankind. Philosopher and psychoanalyst Elsa Godar reminds us the main European milestones of this path.

1. Socrates (470-399 BC.NS.)

The famous saying on the front of the temple in Delfa, which so liked Socrates, said: "Know yourself, and you know the gods and the universe". However, this aphorism encourages not so much to individual self-knowledge as to the knowledge of human nature in the general sense: a person must distinguish what he knows from what he does not know.

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2. Mark Azeri (121-180)

In "reasoning about yourself", the emperor and Stoik Mark Arellium recalls the importance of a realistic view: you need to be able to separate what depends on me, from what does not depend on me. To spend this distinction, you need to understand who I and what I want. He claims that knowledge of herself begins with the ability to manage itself and its passions.

3. Blessed Augustine (354-430)

"Confession" – one of the first works of Western culture, written from the first person. In it, Blessed Augustine opens his sins, nothing embellishes and without hiding. This is a genuine dialogue with himself – which at the same time has been fully facing God and glorifies it. "Confession" of Blessed Augustine creates a new genre: introspection, or self-analysis … However, for Augustine, his "I" exists only in the correlation with God. The emergence of a separate "I" and subjectivism we will see only with the arrival of Renaissance and Humanism.

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4. Michelle Monten (1533-1592)

Who am I and what is

"Who am I?"- This most important question is placed in the" experiments "of Montene. Already in circulation "To reader", the philosopher is recognized: "The content of my book – I myself". Exploring your own "I" ("I depict precisely myself"), Montaen tries to understand what the man is "a lot". Later Pascal criticized his conversation, objection: "I" hate ". Nevertheless: this once again confirms that "I" exists safely! So the era of individuality and subjectivism has come.

5. Rene Descartes (1596-1650)

Recognized by the "father of rationalism", Descartes not less contributed to subjectivism, deploying philosophy towards personality. Seeking to summarize our knowledge about the world, the philosopher comes from the suspension that nothing exists. However, to say "I doubt everything", you need a "me", subject of doubt. This is his "COGITO" – conscious subjectivity of thought: I doubt, therefore, "I think, therefore, I exist". Here it is, "I" Personal and Concrete, "I" RenĂ© Descartes. Subjective awareness of himself becomes the first reliable knowledge and the basis of any knowledge.

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6. Jean Jacques Rousseau (1712-1778)

Autobiography, after the blissful Augustine calls the "confession". She describes the first 53 years of the lives of the Epoch of Enlightenment. Far from religious dogmas, Rousseau first of all seeks sincerity, he is concerned to explore and consider itself in all its uniqueness ("I dare to believe that I am not like anyone who ever existed"). His book is considered the first autobiography in the full sense of the word. In it, "I" becomes the main issue of modernity, and subjectivity is the lenses through which a person looks at the world. From now on, the path to psychoanalysis is open ..

Who am I and what is

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