What Is Birth Affirmation?: The Meaning of Saying “Yes” to Having Been Born

Journal of Philosophy of Life 11 (1):43-59 (2021)
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Abstract

In this paper, the concept of birth affirmation is clarified in both the psychological dimension and the philosophical dimension. In the psychological dimension, we propose two interpretations: 1) Possible world interpretation: Even if I could imagine a possible world in which my ideal was realized or my grave sufferings were resolved, I would never think, at the bottom of my heart, that it would have been better to have been born to that possible world. 2) Anti-antinatalistic interpretation: I would never think, at the bottom of my heart, that it would have been better not to have been born. In the philosophical dimension, we propose the following interpretation: The comparison of betterness or worseness between the actual world and a possible world and between my having been born and my not having been born should be impossible. In the final part of this paper, the differences from other related concepts and frequently asked questions are discussed.

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Masahiro Morioka
Waseda University

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