For over a century, philosophers have argued that philosophy is impossible or useless, or both. Although the basic tion dates back to the days of Socrates, there is still heated disagreement about the nature of truth, reality, kwledge, the good, and God. This leaves us with a feeling of radical uncertainty, a feeling described by Kolakowski as metaphysical horror . The horror is this , he says, if thing truly exists except the Absolute, the Absolute is thing; if thing truly exists except myself, I am thing . The aim of this book, for Kolakowski, is finding a way out of this seeming dead end. This book confronts these dilemmas through examinations of prominent Western philosophers including Descartes, Spiza, Husserl, and many of the Neo-Platonists. He argues that philosophy may t provide definitive answers to the fundamental questions, yet the quest itself transforms our lives. It may undermine most of our certainties, yet it still leaves room for our spiritual yearnings and religious beliefs.
Leszek Kolakowski is the author of many books, among them God Owes Us Nothing, The Presence of Myth, Tales from the Kingdom of Lailonia and The Key to Heaven, and Modernity on Endless Trial, all published by the University of Chicago Press.