Monday, November 17, 2008

Nietzsche opens with the provocative question, “Supposing truth is a woman—what then?”

drawings by marguerita- from unpublished book-

Nietzsche identifies the origin of bad conscience in the transition from hunter–gatherer to agrarian societies. Our violent animal instincts ceased to be useful in a cooperative society, and we suppressed them by turning them inward.
By struggling within ourselves, we carved out an inner life, bad conscience, a sense of beauty, and a sense of indebtedness to our ancestors, which is the origin of religion.
At present, we direct our bad conscience primarily toward our animal instincts, but Nietzsche urges us instead to direct our bad conscience against the life-denying forces that suppress our instincts.
Ascetic ideals manifest themselves differently among different kinds of people.
A sort of philosophical asceticism leads philosophers to claim that the world around them is illusory. This is one way of looking at things, and Nietzsche applauds looking at matters from as many perspectives as possible. There is no single right way to look at the truth, so it's best to be flexible in our viewpoints.

from -Friedrich Nietzsche: Beyond Good and Evil

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