Give a critical explanation of the following quotation from Sartre's "Humanism as Existentialism":.
"If existence really does precede essence, there is no explaining things away by reference to a fixed and given human nature. In other words, there is no determinism, man is free, man is freedom. On the other hand, if God does not exist, we find no values or commands to turn to which legitimize our conduct. So, in the bright realm of values, we have no excuse behind us, nor justification before us. We are alone, with no excuses.
That is the idea I shall try to convey when I say that man is condemned to be free.".
With this quote taken from his essay "Humanism as Existentialism", 20th century French philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre has been able to identify major ideas and concepts and reinforce those issues he has set forth to shape the school of philosophy broadly known as "existentialism".
The Webster's New World Dictionary defines existentialism as "The doctrine that existence takes precedence over essence and holding that man is totally free and responsible for his acts. This responsibility is the source of dread and anguish that encompass mankind". Sartre's existentialism stems from this definition beginning with the basic principle that in man, and in man alone, existence precedes essence. In stating that existence precedes essence, Sartre's is merely saying that a person is, therefore exists, before his human essence comes into being that will determine what he is. This theory is put forth under the belief that it preserves human freedom by removing the deterministic view of human beings, because if the what predetermines a human being, this same what would also restrict the human being to live as a free and self determined person. If essence does not precede existence then man is free, his life is not predetermined and he alone is then responsible for deciding what he is and must choose by compulsion at every moment of his life.