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  1. It depends on what kind of existentialism is implied. In the 20th century, there was a cultural movement of “existentialism”, founded by Sartre. However, the tradition of existentialism in a general sense unites the work of very different philosophers and writers in certain features. The forerunner of this tradition was Pascal, who rejected Cartesian rationalism, which defined man as the sum of rational abilities, the world as a rationally comprehensible substance, and the incomprehensible God as essentially an unimportant question.

    For Pascal, human existence was an unsolvable paradox and contradiction of body and spirit, and irrational faith in God was of great importance-he once wrote and always carried with him a piece of paper with the text beginning ” My God – the God of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob-is not the God of philosophers and scientists, [not the God of Descartes]…”.

    Kierkegaard, who is generally considered the founder of existentialism, shared Pascal's belief in the inconsistency of man. Kierkegaard's work was largely a reaction to the claims of Enlightenment science and philosophy (and especially Hegel) to a complete and rational understanding of the human condition and history. Kierkegaard drowned for the absurdity of human existence, and the need for an essentially irrational, but sincere and passionate involvement in religious, Christian life.

    Dostoevsky and Nietzsche also believed that the main thing in human existence is sincere and complete (for Dostoevsky – religious) involvement in life, in the world, and the rationalism of their contemporary philosophy rather hinders this. It turns out that only Nietzsche was an atheist among the thinkers whose work served as the basis for existentialism in the 20th century.

    The general features of the creativity of existentialism can be roughly summed up as follows:

    • the desire to comprehend one's own existence and the world that it reveals, “as it is”, without distortion by “rational” and “scientific” presuppositions, which leads to increased attention to the irrational aspects of existence – unconscious practices and desires, moods, passions;

    • understanding that we look at the world “from the inside out” and our “rational representations” – constructions, concepts, categories-may be inadequate;

    • as a consequence, the understanding that a rational view of a person “from the outside” is impossible, that is, a person cannot be exhaustively described as a substance with a certain set of properties (biological, anthropological, sociological, etc.).

    Conceptualizing existence in this way, existentialism comes to the conclusion that:

    • ordinary, conformal everyday life is banal at best, absurd and meaningless at worst;

    • sincere anxiety in the face of death – or some other extreme experience – can reveal to us the banality or absurdity of life, so there is a desire to escape, to hide from it in conformism and everyday life;

    • the main task of philosophy is to help us cope with anxiety and despair, to accept this life as it is, in all its absurdity;

    • life should be authentic – that is, a person should have freedom and not be afraid to make decisions and take responsibility for them, understanding all the absurdity and lack of foundations of the world.

    Thus, sincere faith, while realizing that no rational or” scientific “or” miraculous “proof of the existence of God is possible – “existentialized” faith-can well serve as the basis for authentic life, and does not contradict the philosophy of existentialism in any way.

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