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Is Morality Necessary?

Anarchism as a 'Philosophy of life'

E1 This essay is at the same time the expression, the enunciation and the vindication of an entire philosophy of life. It expresses the philosophy because it is an unfettered outpouring of my thoughts and the philosophy is something like this: life should be an unfettered outpouring of self. It enunciates the philosophy in order to show that we will fully realise ourselves as human beings only when we are strong enought to step beyond notions of morality, and hence that not only is morality not necessary but that it is something which society might hope to grow beyond. It will vindicate that philosophy, for by deliberately abandoning the framework of analytic philosophy and setting my thoughts free I will, in the end, produce something which even measures against the yardstick of analysis will be far more significant than anything I could have produced in any other way. N11

E2 What I have called, enigmatically, a philosophy of life is relevant to moral philosophy and also to political philosophy in this way. The are all of a piece, if a man thinks about these things then important threads will rin through all three and unite them. An anarchist will treat himself and others with tolerance, he will attach little importance to morality, and he will abhor the heavy hand of the state. A rather idealised view perhaps. True enough people are inconsistent, but my point is this, if these common threads are lacking then it does look like some sort of inconsistency. If I were to advocate political anarchy and yet bully and coerce my companions to my own ends would i not be showing a measure of inconsistency? If I denounce the authoritarian state because I believe that people can live together naturally without being forced into social behaviour, then surely I must treat myself with the trust which I advocate, and does not self discipline imply a lack of faith in the self, a paradoxical attempt to escape from oneself into something better? N12


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