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Albert's World Essay

2185 words - 9 pages

A novel that focuses throughout the history of philosophy, Sophie’s World by Jostein Gaardner, goes through over two-thousand years of philosophical history with a young girl names Sophie. A story with a twist, Gaardner is able to study the history of philosophy, focusing deeply even towards its outreach to the development of psychology. This novel is one designed to please children and adults alike to learn more and discover deeper meaning into philosophical thought. The story begins by focusing on young school aged Sophie who becomes the recipient of strange letters that contain information and thoughts on different philosophers. As the story develops, she discovers different things about ...view middle of the document...

The chapter on Berkeley begins with Hilde and a birthday banner. Alberto teaches Sophie about Berkeley and his extreme views that reality has no substance and that everything stems from a soul is of another spirit and is almost as if we are dreaming. This theme is one that could be kept throughout the remainder of the story as Sophie and Alberto begin to disappear from reality. Berkeley did not believe that we existed in reality and only existed in God’s mind. This correlated with Alberto’s thought that he and Sophie only existed in Albert Knag’s mind. Alberto believed that their existence was only in a story that was a part of the imagination of Hilde’s father.
Berkeley’s perception of human beings existing only in God’s mind is not biblical and is contradictory to the purpose of human beings to be on earth. Scripture states for humans’ purpose on earth “God blessed them and said to them, "Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground." (Holy Bible). Humans are to have children to then have dominion on the earth. The earth that was created is not an earth that is a figment of our God’s imagination, but a piece of reality; and thus, the human beings on the earth are also a part of reality. It seems incredibly difficult for me to understand the concept of me not being a part of reality and thus not truly having a purpose but to entertain a God who sent his Son to die a painful death for all people that are not real.
To grapple on the idea that Sophie and Alberto only exist in the mind of a mind and are stuck thus does not seem to make sense as well. If they were a part of a man’s mind, then they would not be able to have human thoughts for they are without a mind. Therefore, it could then be argued that Sophie or Hilde or Alberto were dreaming and not a part of Albert Knag’s mind. This argument made by Gaardner is an illustration as to how powerful our minds are. By Sophie and Alberto to have been perceived to have lived in the mind of Alberto Knag, they grew to become a reality. Much of this illustration lives to the phrase, “mind over matter”. According to Knag’s perception, they were not matter, but as a result of his mind they almost were a reality to young Hilde.
Alberto’s study on Kant assisted in his understanding as to how they could have been stuck inside Albert Knag’s mind. The chapter begins with Hilde informing her father that she believed that Alberto and Sophie were both real, and then Sophie learning about Kant. Kant’s belief was that our mind influenced our worldly experiences. Kant believed that our perception of what happens in the world our characteristics of our mind. Kant also believed that we cannot answer certain questions on earth because they are beyond human reasoning and thus we rely on faith to be the answer to those difficult questions. The takeaway for Alberto to explain how they...

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