Chapter 13 The Value Of Life Part 1

    Chapter
        Thirteen The Value
           of Life
       (Optimism
          and Pessimism)


        [1] One view
            says
          that this world
              is the best
                 that could conceivably exist,
           and
              that
                 to live
                    and
                  to act in it
                 is a blessing
                    of untold value.

    Everything that exists
        displays
           harmonious and purposeful co-operation
              and is worthy
           of admiration.

    Even
         what is apparently bad
            and
               evil may,
       from a higher point of view,
          be seen
             to be good,
       for it
          represents
             an agreeable contrast
           with the good;
              we are the more able
                 to appreciate
             the good
                when it
                   is clearly contrasted with evil.

    Moreover,
       evil is not genuinely real;
           what
         we feel
            as evil
               is only
          a lesser degree
             of good.

    Evil is the absence
        of good;
           it has no significance
              in itself.
 
    [2] The other
          view
        maintains
           that life
              is
             full of misery
           and want;
       everywhere
          pain
        outweighs pleasure,
       sorrow outweighs joy.

    Existence
        is
           a burden,
       and non-existence
          would
             in all
                circumstances
                   be preferable
               to existence.
 
    [3] The chief representatives
        of the former view,
           optimism,
        are Shaftesbury
           and Leibnitz;
      those
         of the latter,
      pessimism,
         are Schopenhauer
            and Eduard von Hartmann.
 
    [4] Leibnitz
        believes
           the world
              is the best
           of all possible worlds.

    A better one
        is impossible.

    For God
        is good and wise.

    A good God
        wants
           to create the best possible world;
       a wise God
          knows
         which is the best possible
       -- He is able
          to distinguish
              the best
           from all other possible worse ones.

    Only
         an evil
            or an unwise God
               would be able
          to create
              a world worse
                 than the best possible.
 
    [5] Whoever
        starts
           from this point of view
              will find it easy
          to lay down
             the direction
                that human action must follow
           in order to
              make
                 its contribution to the greatest good
                    of the world.

    All
         that man
              need
                 do is
                    to find out
                       the counsels
           of God
               and to behave in accordance
                   with them.

    If
         he knows
            what
               God's intentions
                  are concerning the world
               and mankind,
       he will be able
          to do
         what is right.

    And
         he will be happy
            in the feeling
          that he
             is adding his share
           to the other good
               in the world.

    From this
        optimistic standpoint,
           then,
        life
       is worth living.

    It must stimulate us
        to co-operative participation.

    [6] Schopenhauer
        pictures things
           quite differently.

    He thinks
        of the foundation
            of the world not
                as an all-wise
                   and all-beneficent being,
      but as blind urge
         or will.

    Eternal striving,
       ceaseless craving for satisfaction
          which is ever beyond reach,
       this is
          the fundamental characteristic
             of all active will.

    For no sooner
        is
           one goal attained,
       than a fresh need springs up,
          and so on.

    Satisfaction,
       when
          it occurs,
       lasts only
           for an infinitesimal time.

    The entire remaining content
        of our life
           is unsatisfied craving,
       that is, dissatisfaction
          and suffering.

    If at last blind craving
        is dulled,
       then all content
          is gone
             from our lives;
       an infinite boredom
          pervades
             our existence.

    Hence
         the best
             we can do
                is
           to stifle
              all wishes and
           needs within us
               and exterminate
                   the will.

    Schopenhauer's pessimism
        leads
           to complete inactivity;
       his moral
          aim
        is
           universal idleness.
 
    [7] From
         the observation
            of life
               he hopes
              to discover
         whether pleasure
              or pain
            outweighs
          the other
             in the world.

    He parades
         whatever
            appears
           to men
         as blessing
            and fortune
           before the tribunal
               of reason,
       in order to show
          that all alleged
              satisfaction
                 turns out
           on closer inspection
               to be illusion.

    It is illusion
          when
             we believe that in health,
                youth,
               freedom,
                  sufficient income,
       love
          (sexual satisfaction),
             pity,
           friendship
               and family life,
           self-respect,
              honor,
           fame,
              power,
                 religious edification,
           pursuit
               of science
                   and of art,
           hope of a life
          hereafter,
             participation
                in the progress
                   of civilization
       -- that in all
          these
             we have sources
           of happiness
               and satisfaction.

    Soberly considered,
       every enjoyment
          brings much more evil
             and misery
           into the world
          than pleasure.

    The disagreeableness
        of the hangover
           is always greater than
        the agreeableness
           of getting drunk.

    Pain far
        outweighs pleasure
           in the world.

    No man,
       even though
          relatively the happiest,
             would,
           if asked,
              wish
         to live through
            this miserable life
           a second time.

    The pain
        of created
       beings is,
         however,
        nothing
       but God's pain itself,
      for the life
          of the world
              as a whole
                 is identical
                    with the life
                       of God.

    An all-wise Being can,
       however,
          see his goal
             only in
                release
               from suffering,
       and,
          since
         all existence is suffering,
       in release
           from existence.

    To transform
          existence
             into the far better state
                of non-existence
                   is the purpose
               of all creation.

    The course of the world
        is
           a continuous battle
              against God's pain,
       which
          ends
             at last
           with the annihilation
               of all existence.

    The moral life
        of men,
           therefore,
        will consist
           in taking part in
       the annihilation
          of existence.

    God has created
        the world
       so that
         through it He
            may free Himself
               from His infinite pain.

    The world
        is
           "to be regarded,
              more or less,
           as an itching eruption
               upon the Absolute,"
           by means
              of which
                 the unconscious healing power
                    of the Absolute
                  rids itself
                     of an inward disease,
            "or
                 even as
                    a painful poultice
                       which
                          the All-One
                             applies
                       to himself
                           in order first
                               to divert
                                   the inner pain outwards,
               and
                  then
                     to get rid of it altogether."
 
    [8] Man has
          to permeate
             his whole
        being
           with the recognition
         that the pursuit
            of individual satisfaction
          (egoism) is a folly,
       and
          that
             he ought to be guided solely
           by the task
               of dedicating himself
                  to the redemption
                     of God
                        by unselfish devotion (service)
                           to the progress
                               of the world.

    Thus,
       in contrast
           to Schopenhauer's,
       von Hartmann's pessimism leads us
           to activity
              devoted
                 to a sublime task.
 
    [9] But is
          it really based on experience?
 
    [10] To strive
        for satisfaction
           means
              that our activity reaches out
            beyond the actual content
                of our lives.

    A creature
        is hungry,
       that is,
          it
        strives
           for repletion,
       when its organic functions,
          if they
        are
           to continue,
       demand the supply
           of fresh means
               of life
                   in the form
                       of nourishment.

    The striving
        for honor
           means
      that a man only regards
         what
            he personally does or leaves
               undone as valuable
           when his activity
               is approved by others.

    The striving for knowledge
        arises
           when a man
              finds that something is missing
           from the world
              that
                 he sees,
                    hears,
                   and so on,
                      as long
         as he
            has not understood it.

    The fulfillment
        of the striving
           creates pleasure
        in the striving individual,
       failure creates pain.

    It is important here
        to observe that pleasure
           and pain
         are dependent
        only upon the fulfillment
            or non-fulfillment
               of my striving.

    The striving itself
        can by no
            means
               be counted as pain.

    Hence,
       if
          it happens
         that
            in the very moment
         in which
             a striving
                is fulfilled
               a new striving
           at once arises,
       this is
          no ground
             for saying that,
       because
           in every case
              enjoyment
                 gives
                    rise
               to a desire
                   for its repetition
                       or for a fresh pleasure,
       my pleasure
          has given birth
             to pain.

    I can speak
        of pain
       only
      when desire
         runs up
        against the impossibility
            of fulfillment.

    Even
         when
             an enjoyment that
                 I have had
                    creates
           in me the desire
               for the experience
                   of greater
                      or more refined pleasure,
       I cannot speak
           of this desire
               as a pain created
                   by the previous pleasure
         until
            the means
           of experiencing
              the greater
                 or more refined pleasure
                    fail me.

    Only
         when pain
            appears
           as a natural consequence
               of pleasure,
       as for instance
          when
             a woman's sexual pleasure
                is followed
           by the suffering
              of childbirth
                 and the cares
                    of a family,
       can
          I find
             in the enjoyment
           the originator
               of the pain.

    If striving
        by itself
           called
              forth pain,
      then each reduction
          of striving
             would have
                to be accompanied by pleasure.

    But the opposite
          is the case.

    To have
          no
              striving
                 in one's life
                creates boredom,
       and
          this is connected with displeasure.

    Now,
       since
          it may be
             a long time
         before
            striving
               meets
                  with fulfillment,
               and since,
                  in the interval,
               it is content
                  with the hope
               of fulfillment,
                  we must acknowledge
         that the pain has nothing
            whatever
          to do
         with the striving
            as such,
       but depends solely
           on the non-fulfillment
               of the striving.

    Schopenhauer,
       then,
          is in any case wrong
             to take
         desiring
            or striving (will)
         as being
            in itself
               the source
                   of pain.

    [11] In fact,
       just
          the opposite
             is correct.

    Striving (desiring) in itself
          gives pleasure.

    Who
         does not know
            the enjoyment given
           by the hope
               of a remote
         but intensely desired
            goal?

    This joy
        is the companion
           of all labor
          that gives us
             its fruits
           only in the future.

    It is a pleasure
          quite independent
             of the attainment
                of the goal.

    For when
         the goal
            has been reached,
       the pleasure of fulfillment
          is added
             as something new
                to the pleasure
                   of striving.

    If anyone
        were to argue
           that the pain caused
              by an unsatisfied
                 aim
            is increased
           by the pain
               of disappointed hope,
                  and that thus,
               in the end,
                  the pain
                     of non-fulfillment
            will eventually outweigh
           the possible pleasure
              of fulfillment,
                 we shall have to reply
                    that the reverse
          may be the case,
       and
          that the recollection
             of
           past enjoyment
               at a time
                   of unfulfilled
                      desire
                    will just
         as often mitigate the pain
            of non-fulfillment.

    Whoever
        exclaims
           in the face
               of shattered hopes,
        "I have done my part,"
           is a proof
               of this assertion.

    The blissful feeling
        of having tried one's best
           is overlooked
        by those
           who say of every
               unsatisfied
                   desire
       that not only is the joy
          of fulfillment absent
      but
          the enjoyment
             of the desiring itself
                has been destroyed.
 
    [12] The fulfillment of a desire
        brings pleasure
           and
         its nonfulfillment
            brings pain.

    But
         from this
            we
               must not conclude
                  that pleasure is the satisfaction
           of a desire,
       and pain
           its non-satisfaction.

    Both pleasure
         and pain
            can be experienced
           without being
               the consequence
                  of desire.

    Illness
        is
           pain not preceded
              by desire.

    If
         anyone were to maintain
            that illness
               is unsatisfied
        desire
           for health,
       he would be making the mistake
           of regarding
         the unconscious
              wish not
           to fall ill,
       which
          we all take for granted,
       as a positive desire.

    When
         someone receives
            a legacy
           from a rich relative
               of whose existence
         he had not
            the faintest idea,
       this fills him
           with pleasure
               without any preceding desire.
 
    [13] Hence,
       if
          we set out to enquire
             whether
                the balance
              is
                 on the side
                    of pleasure or of pain,
       we must take into account
           the pleasure
              of desiring,
       the pleasure
           at the fulfillment
               of a desire,
       and the pleasure
          which
             comes
           to us
               without any striving.

    On the other side
        of the account
           we shall have
              to enter
                 the displeasure
            of boredom,
      the pain
          of unfulfilled striving,
      and lastly the pain
         which
            comes
          to us
              without any desiring
                  on our part.

    Under this last
        heading
           we shall have
              to put also
          the displeasure
             caused by work,
       not chosen
           by ourselves,
       that has been forced
           upon us.
 
    [14] This leads
        to the question:
       What
          is
         the right method
            for striking the balance
               between these credit
                   and debit columns?

    Eduard von Hartmann believes
         that it
            is reason
               that holds the scales.

    It is true
         that
             he says,
        "Pain and pleasure
           exist only in so far
          as they are actually felt."

    It follows
          that there can be no yardstick
             for pleasure other
          than the subjective one
               of feeling.

    I must feel
         whether the sum
            of my disagreeable feelings
               together
                  with my agreeable feelings
                leaves me
                   with a balance
                       of pleasure
                           or of pain.

    But for all that,
       von Hartmann
          maintains that,
        "though the value
           of the life
               of every person
          can be set
             down only according to his own
           subjective measure,
              yet
                 it by no means
            follows
               that every person is able
          to arrive
             at the correct algebraic sum
                from all
                   the collected emotions
                       in his life
       -- or,
          in other words,
       that his total estimate
               of his own life,
       with regard to
           his subjective experiences,
              would be
          correct."

    With this,
       the rational estimation
           of feeling
              is once more made
                 the evaluator.
 
    [15] Anyone
         who follows fairly closely
            the line
           of thought
              of such thinkers
                 as Eduard von
          Hartmann
              may believe it necessity,
       in order to arrive
           at a correct valuation
               of life,
       to clear
          out of the way those factors
         which
              falsify
           our judgment
              about the balance
                 of pleasure and pain.

    He can try
          to do
             this in two ways.

    Firstly,
       by showing
          that our desire
         (instinct, will)
            interferes
           with our sober estimation
               of feeling values
                   in a disturbing way.

    Whereas,
       for instance,
          we ought to say
             to ourselves
         that sexual enjoyment
            is a source
           of evil,
       we are misled
           by the fact
         that the sexual instinct
            is very strong
           in us
               into conjuring up
              the prospect of a pleasure
                  which
                     just is not there
                   in that degree
                      at all.

    We want
          to enjoy ourselves;
       hence
          we do not admit
             to ourselves
                that we
           suffer under the enjoyment.

    Secondly,
       he can do it
           by subjecting feelings
               to a critical examination
                   and
                attempting
                   to prove
          that the objects
         to which
             our feelings
                  attach themselves
                     are revealed
           as illusions
               by the light
                   of reason,
       and
          that they
             are destroyed from the moment
          that our ever growing intelligence
              sees through the illusions.
 
    [16] He can think
        of the matter
            in the following way.

    If an ambitious man
        wants
           to determine clearly
         whether,
       up to the moment
           of his enquiry,
       there has been a surplus
           of pleasure or
               of pain
                   in his life,
       then he
          has
         to free himself
            from two sources
               of error
          that may affect his judgment.

    Being ambitious,
       this fundamental feature
          of his character
        will make him
           see the joys
              due to
                 the recognition of his achievements
           through a magnifying glass,
       and the humiliations
           due to his rebuffs
               through a diminishing glass.

    At the time
          when
             he suffered the rebuffs
         he felt
            the humiliations
          just
         because he
            was ambitious;
       in recollection
          they appear
             to him
                in a milder light,
       whereas the joys
           of recognition
         to which
             he is so susceptible
                leave a far deeper impression.

    Now,
       for an ambitious man
          it is
             an undeniable blessing
                that it should be so.

    The deception
        diminishes his pain
           in the moment
               of self-analysis.

    None the less,
       his judgment
          is wrong.

    The sufferings over which
        a veil is now drawn
           were actually experienced
              by him
                 in all their intensity,
       and
          hence
             he enters them
           at a wrong valuation
               in his life's account book.

    In order to
        arrive
           at a correct estimate,
       an ambitious man
          would have
             to lay
           aside his ambition
               for the time
                   of his enquiry.

    He would have
          to review
              his past life
           without any distorting glasses
               before his mind's eye.

    Otherwise
         he would resemble
            a merchant who,
       in making
           up his books,
       enters
           among the items
               on the credit
                  side his own zeal
                     in business.

    [17] But
         the holder of this view
            can go
          even further.

    He can say:
       The ambitious man
          will even make
              clear
           to himself
              that
                 the recognition he pursues
                    is a worthless thing.

    Either
        by himself,
       or through the influence
           of others,
       he will come
          to see
             that for an intelligent man
                recognition by others
                   counts for very little,
       seeing that
          "in all such matters,
             other than
                those
                   that are
                      questions
                         of sheer
                      existence or that
                          are already finally settled
                             by science,"
           one can be quite sure
              "that the majority is wrong
                 and the minority right....

    Whoever
        makes
           ambition
          the lode-star
             of his life
            puts
           his life's happiness
              at the mercy
                 of such a judgment."

    If the ambitious man
          admits all this to himself,
       then
          he must regard
             as illusion
         what his ambition
            had pictured as reality,
       and thus
          also
             the feelings attached
           to these illusions
               of his ambition.

    On this basis
         it could
            then be said
          that such feelings
             of pleasure
                as are produced
               by illusion
                  must also be struck
              out of the balance sheet
                 of life's values;
               what
                  then remains
                     represents the sum total
                   of life's pleasures
                      stripped
                         of all illusion,
       and
          this is so small
             compared
           with the sum total
               of pain
              that life
                  is no joy
                     and non-existence preferable
               to existence.
 
    [18] But
         while it
            is immediately evident
          that the deception produced
             by the instinct
                of ambition
                   leads
           to a false result
         when striking
            the balance
           of pleasure,
       we must none
          the less
              challenge
         what has been said
            about the recognition
               of the illusory character
                   of the objects
                       of pleasure.

    The elimination
        from the credit side
            of life
                of all pleasurable feelings
      which accompany actual
         or supposed
       illusions
          would positively falsify
        the balance
           of pleasure and pain.

    For an ambitious man
        has genuinely enjoyed
           the acclamations
              of the multitude,
       irrespective of
          whether subsequently
             he himself,
                or some other person,
       recognizes
          that this acclamation
              is an illusion.

    The pleasant sensation
        he has had
           is not
              in the least diminished
           by this recognition.

    The elimination
        of all such "illusory" feelings
            from life's balance
               does not make
        our judgment
           about our feelings more correct,
      but
         rather obliterates
            from life
               feelings
        which
           were
         actually there.
 
    [19] And
         why should
             these feelings
                  be eliminated?

    For
         whoever has them,
       they are certainly pleasure-giving;
          for
         whoever has conquered them,
       a purely mental but none
          the less significant pleasure arises
             through the experience
                of self-conquest
        (not through the vain emotion:
           What a noble fellow
              I am!
           but
               through the objective sources
                   of pleasure
             which
                  lie
               in the self-conquest).

    If
         we strike
            out feelings
               from the pleasure side
                   of the balance
                       on the ground
         that they
            are attached to objects
         which
              turn out
          to have been
              illusory,
       we make
           the value
              of life dependent
                 not on the quantity
                    but on the quality
               of pleasure,
                  and this,
               in turn,
                  on the value
                     of the objects
         which
            cause the pleasure.

    But
         if
             I want
                to determine
               the value
           of life
               in the first place
                  by the quantity
                     of pleasure
                        or pain
             which
                 it brings,
       I may
           nor presuppose
               something else which
        already determines the positive
           or negative
        value
           of the pleasure.

    If
         I say
            I want to compare
           the quantity
              of pleasure
                 with the quantity
                    of pain
                       in order to
                          see which is greater,
       I am bound
          to bring
             into my account all pleasures
                and pains
                   in their actual intensities,
       whether they
          are based
             on illusions
                or not.

    Whoever
          ascribes
              a lesser value
                 for life
                    to a pleasure
         which
            is based
           on an illusion
              than
                 to one
             which
                can justify itself
               before the tribunal
                   of reason,
       makes the value
           of life dependent
               on factors other
              than pleasure.
 
    [20] Whoever
        puts down pleasure
           as less valuable
          when it
              is attached
                 to a worthless object,
       resembles
          a merchant
              who enters
                 the considerable profits
               of a toy
             factory
                in his account
                   at a quarter
                       of their actual amount
                           on the ground
                 that the factory produces nothing
         but playthings
            for children.
 
    [21] If the point
        is simply
           to weigh
              quantity
           of pleasure
               against quantity
                   of pain,
       then
          the illusory character
             of the objects
            causing
         certain feelings of pleasure
            must be left
               right
                  out of the question.
 
    [22] The method
        recommended
           by von Hartmann,
       that is,
           rational consideration
              of the quantities
                 of pleasure
                    and pain
                       produced
                          by life,
       has thus
          led us
             to the point
         where
             we know how
                we are to set
               out our accounts,
       what we
          are
             to put down
           on the one side
               of our book and
         what
            on the other.

    But
         how is the calculation now
            to be made?

    Is reason
          actually capable
             of striking the balance?
 
    [23] A merchant
        has made a mistake
           in his reckoning
         if
             his calculated
                  profit
                does not agree
           with the demonstrable results
               or expectations
                  of his business.

    Similarly,
       the philosopher
          will undoubtedly have made
             a mistake
                in his estimate
              if
                 he cannot demonstrate in actual
        feeling
           the surplus
              of pleasure,
           or pain,
              that he
          has somehow extracted
             from his accounts.
 
    [24] For the present
          I shall not look
             into the calculations
                of those pessimists
         whose opinion of the world
            is measured
           by reason;
       but
          if
             one is to decide
         whether
            to carry
           on the business
               of life or not,
       one will first demand
          to be shown
         where the alleged surplus
            of pain
               is
          to be found.

    [25] Here
         we touch
            the point
         where
              reason
            is not
               in a position
              to determine
           by itself
               the surplus
                   of pleasure or of pain,
       but
          where
             it must demonstrate
          this surplus
             as a percept
                in life.

    For man
        reaches reality
           not through concepts alone
         but
            through the interpenetration
           of concepts
               and percepts
        (and feelings
           are percepts)
              which
            thinking
          brings about
        (see page 67 ff.).

    A merchant,
       after all,
          will give
             up his business
          only
              when
                 the losses calculated
               by his accountant
                  are confirmed
               by the facts.

    If this
        does not happen,
       he gets
           his accountant
          to make
              the calculation
          over again.

    That is exactly
         what
             a man
                will do
               in the business
                   of life.

    If a philosopher
        wants to prove to him
             that the pain is
                 far greater than the pleasure,
       but
          he himself does not feel
             it to be so,
       then
          he will reply,
        "You have gone astray
           in your reckoning;
              think it
                 all out again."

    But should there come
        a time
           in a business
      when
          the losses
             are really so great
          that the firm's credit no longer
             suffices
            to satisfy the creditors,
      then
         bankruptcy
            will result
        if the merchant
           fails
              to keep himself
                 informed
              about the state
                  of his affairs
                      by careful accounting.

    Similarly,
       if the quantity
           of pain
               in a man's life
                  became
           at any time so great
          that no hope
             of future pleasure
                (credit)
                   could help him
                      to get over the pain,
       then
          the bankruptcy of life's business
             would inevitably follow.
 
    [26] Now
         the number
            of those
               who kill themselves
                  is relatively unimportant
         when compared
            with the multitude
               of those
              who live bravely on.

    Only very few men
          give
         up the business
            of life
         because
            of the pain involved.

    What follows
        from this?

    Either
         that it
            is untrue
          to say
             that
                 the quantity
                    of pain
                       is greater than the quantity
               of pleasure,
       or
          that we
              do not
           at all make
               the continuation
           of life dependent
               on the quantity
                   of pleasure
                      or pain
                    that is felt.
 
    [27] In a very curious way,
       Eduard von Hartmann's pessimism comes
           to the conclusion
         that life
            is valueless
         because
             it contains
                a surplus
           of pain
              and yet affirms
                 the necessity
               of going on
                   with it.

    This necessity
        lies
           in the fact
              that the world purpose
                 mentioned above
          (page 177)
             can be achieved only
                by the ceaseless,
       devoted
          labour
             of human beings.

    But
         as long
            as men
               still pursue
          their egotistical cravings
             they are unfit
           for such selfless labour.

    Not until
         they have convinced themselves
            through experience
               and reason
             that
                the pleasures of life
                   pursued
               by egoism
                  cannot be attained,
       do they
           devote themselves
              to their proper tasks.

    In this way
        the pessimistic conviction
       is supposed
          to be
             the source
          of unselfishness.

    An education
        based
           on pessimism
              should exterminate egoism
           by making it
              see the hopelessness
                 of its case.
 
    [28] According to this view,
       then,
          the striving
             for pleasure
            is inherent
           in human nature
               from the outset.

    Only
         when fulfillment
            is seen
               to be impossible
                  does
              this striving
                  retire
           in favour
              of higher tasks
                 for mankind.
 
    [29] It cannot be said
          that egoism
             is overcome
           in the true sense
               of the word
                   by an ethical world conception
                  that expects
                     a devotion
                   to unselfish aims
                       in life
                           through the acceptance
                               of pessimism.

    The moral ideals
        are said not
           to be
              strong enough
          to dominate
             the will until man
            has learnt
                 that
                     selfish striving after pleasure
                        cannot lead to any satisfaction.

    Man,
       whose selfishness
          desires
             the grapes
           of pleasure,
       finds them
          sour
         because
             he cannot reach them,
       and so
          he turns
             his back
           on them and
              devotes himself
                 to an unselfish way of life.

    Moral ideals,
       then,
          according to
             the opinion
                of pessimists,
       are not strong enough
           to overcome egoism;
       but
          they establish
             their dominion
           on the ground
              previously cleared
                 for them
                    by the recognition
                       of the hopelessness
                           of egoism.
 
    [30] If men
        by nature
           were
              to strive
            after pleasure
      but were unable
         to reach it,
      then annihilation
          of existence,
      and salvation
          through non-existence,
      would be
         the only rational goal.

    And
         if one holds
            the view that
          the real bearer
             of the pain
                of the world
              is God,
       then
          man's task
             would consist
           in bringing
              about the salvation
                 of God.

    Through the suicide of
        the individual,
       the realization of this aim
          is not advanced,
       but hindered.

    Rationally,
       God can only have created
           men
              in order to
            bring about his salvation
               through their actions.

    Otherwise
         creation would be purposeless.

    And
         it is extra-human purposes
            that
         such a world conception
            has in mind.

    Each one of us
        has
           to perform
          his own particular task
             in the general work
                of salvation.

    If
         he withdraws
            from the task
               by suicide,
       then the work
          which was intended for him
        must be done
           by another.

    Somebody else
        must bear the torment
           of existence
               in his stead.

    And
         since
            within every
               being
          it is
              God
                  who
                      actually bears all pain,
       the suicide does not
           in the least
          diminish
              the quantity of God's pain,
       but
          rather imposes
             upon God
                the additional difficulty
               of providing a substitute.