2 Answers

  1. He was a law-abiding loyal subject of Emperor Franz Josef, and when the Austro-Hungarian Empire entered the war, he was conscripted for military service on a general basis. Probably, as an ardent admirer of Leo Tolstoy, one would expect him to avoid military conscription. But he did not shirk his civic duties.

  2. In addition, he did many other things that may seem strange. He gave away his huge inheritance as donations to his relatives. He worked as a village teacher, monastery gardener, and hospital orderly. For a long time he lived alone in ascetic conditions in Norway and Ireland. He tried to emigrate to the USSR to work as a simple combine harvester, but could not find understanding with the Soviet bureaucrats, who instead of a collective farm offered him the Department of philosophy at Kazan University (fortunately, he could not, because it is very likely that he would have been repressed).

    Wittgenstein was a textbook example of genius, so one can only guess at his motives. There are different versions: revolt against the authoritarian rule of his father (three of Wittgenstein's brothers had committed suicide and he himself suffered from depression and suicidal tendencies), complexes due to his incredibly privileged background, complexes due to “Jewishness”, constant doubts about his intellectual worth (according to Russell's story, at the first meeting Wittgenstein asked him – ” Can you tell me if I'm a complete idiot or not?also known for his diary entry “Even the greatest Jewish thinkers are no more than talented, like me”); attempts to finally break with intellectual activity and philosophy, and do something difficult, but not requiring much thought. However, his whole life shows that no matter how much Wittgenstein tried to run or hide from reflection, nothing worked, he could not stop thinking and working. And only in those moments was he happy.

    “Our life is like a dream. But in our best hours, we wake up enough to realize that we are asleep. ” – from a letter to his friend P. Engelmann from the front, 1917.

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