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Which is correct?

He lives as he wants

He lives how he wants

  • They both seem fine to me, and have the same meaning, though different grammar of course. I wouldn't say that either is preferable. – BillJ Apr 18 at 17:27
  • Doesn't the second one look like "he lives because he wants"? – Michael Azarenko Apr 18 at 17:28
  • No: it means "he lives any way that he wants (to live)" – BillJ Apr 18 at 17:28
  • But aren't "as" and "because" interchangeable? I did it as\because I had been going to do it for a long time She came as\because it was her party He shall win as\because he's never been losing Then all these sentences with "as" should be like I did it how I had been going to do it for a long time She came how it was her party He shall win how he's never been losing – Michael Azarenko Apr 18 at 18:13
  • Forget "because" -- it's irrelevant. They both mean he lives in the way he chooses to live in. Grammatically, "as he wants" is a preposition phrase; "how he wants" is a special kind of relative clause. – BillJ Apr 18 at 19:12
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They are both grammatical and they both mean essentially the same thing.

He lives as he wants.
He lives how he wants.

→ He lives (in the way / in the manner) he wants.


In the first sentence, as is used in the following sense:

[Merriam-Webster]
: in the way or manner that
// Do as I do.

  • But if I am asked "Why are you living?" I can't say: "I live as I want"? Or it depends on the context: 1) in the way - if I am asked: "What way do you live" - "I live as I want" 2) because - "Why are you living?" - "I live as I want". – Michael Azarenko Apr 19 at 7:48
  • @MichaelAzarenko Why are you living uses two different words, and it means something else entirely. It's asking Why are you alive? – Jason Bassford Apr 19 at 12:39
  • No, I mean for "Why are you living?" we can use "I am living because I want". It's like "what aim are you living for?". But can't we use "as" instead of "because" in the same sentence? - "I am living as I want?" – Michael Azarenko Apr 19 at 12:52
  • @MichaelAzarenko No, you can't normally reply with I am living because I want. That would imply that your force of will is enough to keep you alive. In some contexts that actually may make sense—but not in general. People are generally alive because they haven't died yet. The question Why are you living? does not mean 'What kind of lifestyle do you have? And, no. You can't use as instead of because here. They don't mean the same thing. Although you're talking about something else now, you might be able to use since instead of because. – Jason Bassford Apr 19 at 13:09
  • Okay, a different example? "Why are you playing this game"? - "I am playing because I want". Is it alright? Then can we change "because" for "as" like "I am playing as I want"? – Michael Azarenko Apr 19 at 14:16
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The statement is fine grammatically. The social or target audience may see it differently. As presented, it's vague.

  • 1
    I would say either of these statements in response to someone unduly criticizing the man's lifestyle or trying to control or manipulate the man or otherwise infringe upon his free will. – Elininja Apr 18 at 18:11

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