Existential Vacuum

Topics: Meaning of life, Life, Family Pages: 4 (1671 words) Published: May 5, 2011
There have been many phenomena introduced to man within the twentieth century. The most important and interesting of these phenomena is the existential vacuum. In the 1960s, Viktor Frankl observed that people twentieth century have lost meaning of purpose. He also observed that the existential vacuum was worse in the United States than in Europe or developing countries. A potential cause for this feeling of emptiness is the loss of animal instinct throughout human history. Every living culture, whether it was human or animal has an innate set of instincts that guide how we live. However, through time, humans have tamed those instincts and shoved them into non-existence by creating laws of “civility.” For example, people used to live in groups of extended families. Usually, the men would go out and hunt and women would stay back and watch the living areas, the children, and make food for the home. Sometimes, there were probably times when a man or woman wanted to perform the responsibilities of the other gender, but that was not encouraged. There were clear gender rules, as well as clear responsibilities that had to be performed in order to survive. There were also chores that had to be performed. These usually involved making clothes from the skins of the animals that were hunted, making weapons for defense and to hunt, everything for home and hearth had to be created. In the early days of humanity, there were no stores to run out and buy something from. As civilization “grew up” and developed, stores may have been established, but everything still had to be made by hand, since there was no such thing as technology, as we know it, until the latter part of the 19th century. People also believed in gods, or a Divine Being, that had power over everything, from weather, to hunting successes, to how the group lived together. Faith in this Being and religion was the guide for how people lived and the glue that held families, groups, and societies...
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