Nietzsche argument

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Reply Wed 14 Apr, 2010 08:03 pm
Hi, I need help with an idea for an argument. In my philosophy class I'm forced to write a paper arguing a point that a philosopher made. I'm wondering if I am understanding correctly that Nietzsche is saying warrior morality is what leads to a greater will to power. The book we are reading is beyond good and evil if that helps. Is Nietzsche saying that the warrior morality is better in a beneficial sense than the slave morality (the herd). If I'm correct then Nietzsche says people possess one of two DIFFERENT kinds of morality. One is the herd priest morality, and the other is the warrior morality. I think if Nietzsche doesn't understand why warrior morality is no more evil than a hawks killing nature and the morality associated with it then he should take into consideration that all hawks cannot differentiate between, much less get beyond, good and evil.
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Wed 14 Apr, 2010 09:48 pm
@CW146428,
CW146428;152127 wrote:
Hi, I need help with an idea for an argument. In my philosophy class I'm forced to write a paper arguing a point that a philosopher made. I'm wondering if I am understanding correctly that Nietzsche is saying warrior morality is what leads to a greater will to power. The book we are reading is beyond good and evil if that helps. Is Nietzsche saying that the warrior morality is better in a beneficial sense than the slave morality (the herd). If I'm correct then Nietzsche says people possess one of two DIFFERENT kinds of morality. One is the herd priest morality, and the other is the warrior morality. I think if Nietzsche doesn't understand why warrior morality is no more evil than a hawks killing nature and the morality associated with it then he should take into consideration that all hawks cannot differentiate between, much less get beyond, good and evil.


Nietzsche's view is fairly complex, really, but he is such a smart-a** at times that this is not always apparent. N sees the philosopher as the descendant of the priest, as the evolution of the priest. If you look at the beg. of Beyond, you see that the notion of truth is demolished in its traditional static sense and replaced with something else. A lie is true if it better serves life. That sort of thing. Nietzsche is about as ironic as it gets. He is full of self-contradictions, but also quite the genius.

On your question: Nietzsche actually suggests that the will-to-power is at the root of life, that life is will-to-power incarnate. But IMO he is too ironic and shifty to take this as his dogmatic view. I always think of Nietzsche as a self-eating Vortext. And he says somewhere that the venting of power is more important than the so-called survival instinct...and this accounts for fact that humans will risk their life for their ideals, just as they will mutilate themselves for such ideals. "Man would rather have the void for a purpose than to be devoid of purpose." I think that as an intellectual, Nietzsche wants to view things from an amoral or trans-moral standpoint. Basically we are talking about fearless shameless thought. I am forced to ramble as the issue is complex. I suggest you look at his biography, to see how he actually lived, because he was ultimately a good man, despite all his radical statements. I hope some of this helps. I'm used to considering philosophers in their totality. I've written plenty on the issue, but never for a grade. Good luck!
 
CW146428
 
Reply Wed 14 Apr, 2010 11:04 pm
@CW146428,
It's ironic that the shaky foundation neitzsche says we need to push over, resembles the foundation that lay beneath rulers of cultures who most closely resemble Nietzsche's master morality
 
Artifex
 
Reply Thu 15 Apr, 2010 10:14 pm
@CW146428,
Recently I've been reading BG&E by Nietzsche writing down my own perspectives upon several different points he raises.

Specifically relating to what Reconstructo mentioned about the will-to-power, BG&E point 19, the one referring to Schopenhauer's philosophy of will I have written a bit about the basic idea of the "freedom of will" from my own perspective, of what little I have considering I'm only sixteen.

"The "Freedom of Will" would seem to be a dangerous illusion; few know why they do something even if they have a definitive reason for doing it. Why would they commit themselves to accomplishing the goal or action that they sought to do. For instance, "I was hungry, so I ate, but what willed me to eat?" Well, of course, the response to this would be survival, but what is the purpose of survival, or rather, what wills the body to want to survive? The concept of self-preservation is rooted into the understanding of nature's necessity to release its power.

Take for example a bomb. The purpose of a bomb is to explode, once the reaction has occurred, nothing can stop it from deviating from its nature. It can be repressed and the fire can be stopped, but the energy and power was still released from the bomb.

A more immediate example would be a soldier on the battlefield. A grenade was thrown near his position endangering his life and others around him, for the sake of it lets say that he did not have time to throw it back. The soldier covers the grenade with his helmet and forces his body on top of the grenade. The grenade explodes, releasing its force and power entirely, however, it was still contained and stopped from delivering the full extent of damage as it is "willed" to (or rather intended to). Just because the grenade was contained however, it still delivered its power in its entirety.

This all may seem self-explanatory however, the concept of life is often viewed by many simply to survive, which, through nature's own devices, is not true. Nature's ultimate goal is to release its power in its entirety, if it is not done, then it has failed what it is programmed to do. Therefore, from what I have deduced, the goal of living, is to release this power. Self-preservation, i.e. survival, is simply a byproduct of this."

----

Back to the warrior mentality and herd mentality, both have been prevalent throughout time and are simply key characteristics of society. People WILL follow the ones that are ABLE to take control and lead them. It really is quite easy to find, the most recent and widely observed in history textbooks is Hitler's rise to power. Hitler, through many radical ideas and changes, was able to lead the German people out of the depression and into a 'glorious' new day where Germany, for a time, was the most powerful nation in Europe.

Finally, referring to this point:

"I think if Nietzsche doesn't understand why warrior morality is no more evil than a hawks killing nature and the morality associated with it then he should take into consideration that all hawks cannot differentiate between, much less get beyond, good and evil."

I'm sure that Nietzsche was fully aware of the principles of warrior mentality and herd mentality. If we refer to my earlier writings on BG&E point 19, the principle of nature and life quite simply in its purest form is to release its power. How you define this power can come down to many many many different factors, but that is besides the point. Morality developed with the human mind and intellect through religion and society. Who is to say that if we had evolved socially in a different manner that killing would be morally correct and not killing would be morally incorrect. The hawk's killing nature is simply that of instinct developed over time to accomplish a specific goal, self-preservation, which leads to nature and power again. The reason why animals may or may not be able to discern between what we declare "good" and "evil" is because they have not developed in the same way/capacity that the human mind has and the structure of any specific animal's society is different in many ways from that of a human. There is no PURPOSE for a hawk to go BEYOND what is "good" and what is "evil" because neither of these things concern it.
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Thu 15 Apr, 2010 10:45 pm
@CW146428,
Another thing occurs to me. We should consider the tribe as a organism. A tribe that is organized, whose cells work well together, is going to survive better than a disorganized tribe. A code of cell harmony, including prohibitions on murder, theft, usury, adultery, is going to be passed on like a gene is. Because a strong tribe will win (often violently) access to resources. AND such an atmosphere contributes to technical advancement. Perhaps as culture develops, and literacy spreads, we see tribe identification replaced by individualism, and this where tribe-laws can be perceived as hindrances to the individual, who can declare himself beyond such laws. Some say the French Revolution is the beginning of modern history.

Of course this doesn't make prisons and nooses go away.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Fri 16 Apr, 2010 01:42 am
@CW146428,
CW146428;152127 wrote:
Hi, I need help with an idea for an argument. In my philosophy class I'm forced to write a paper arguing a point that a philosopher made. I'm wondering if I am understanding correctly that Nietzsche is saying warrior morality is what leads to a greater will to power. The book we are reading is beyond good and evil if that helps. Is Nietzsche saying that the warrior morality is better in a beneficial sense than the slave morality (the herd). If I'm correct then Nietzsche says people possess one of two DIFFERENT kinds of morality. One is the herd priest morality, and the other is the warrior morality. I think if Nietzsche doesn't understand why warrior morality is no more evil than a hawks killing nature and the morality associated with it then he should take into consideration that all hawks cannot differentiate between, much less get beyond, good and evil.


Yes, it is hard to deal rationally with someone who would think that the Nazis were morally superior to the Jews they murdered in cold blood, isn't it? Well, the man had syphilis eating away at his brain. There, but for the grace of God go we.
 
jgweed
 
Reply Fri 16 Apr, 2010 05:57 am
@CW146428,
It is not that one morality leads to a greater WTP, which Nietzsche posits as the process underlying the universe, both the natural and the human world. Rather the WTP can manifest itself in many different ways, some of which are "healthier" than others, for example consider his accounts for the different origins of the moral pairs good/evil, good/base in the Genealogy of Morals.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Fri 16 Apr, 2010 06:27 am
@jgweed,
jgweed;152711 wrote:
It is not that one morality leads to a greater WTP, which Nietzsche posits as the process underlying the universe, both the natural and the human world. Rather the WTP can manifest itself in many different ways, some of which are "healthier" than others, for example consider his accounts for the different origins of the moral pairs good/evil, good/base in the Genealogy of Morals.


"Healthier" is right, since it is a perversion of language to say that it is healthier.
 
Artifex
 
Reply Fri 16 Apr, 2010 08:46 am
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;152717 wrote:
"Healthier" is right, since it is a perversion of language to say that it is healthier.


What exactly makes it a perversion of language to say that it is healthier? I can understand the point that there is, for the individual, no specific 'health' which can be defined, but why would it be perverse to say that it is healthier, as I seem to have missed something.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Fri 16 Apr, 2010 08:50 am
@Artifex,
Artifex;152765 wrote:
What exactly makes it a perversion of language to say that it is healthier? I can understand the point that there is, for the individual, no specific 'health' which can be defined, but why would it be perverse to say that it is healthier, as I seem to have missed something.


Because Nietzsche's morality is sick, and calling what is sick, "healthy", is a perversion of language. I would have thought that did not need saying.
 
jgweed
 
Reply Fri 16 Apr, 2010 09:03 am
@CW146428,
It could be argued that if one rejects "good" and "evil" as useful categories, suggesting a different normative perspective that might supplant them is appropriate; jumping to a different horizon of meaning by using "healthy" or "diseased" allows this to happen.
One must, of course, understand his use of this new dichotomy is only meant to be suggestive of its medical overtones, and that Nietzsche intends the terms as spiritually, ethically, and psychologically descriptive of certain types and attitudes which promote ascending life or not.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Fri 16 Apr, 2010 09:17 am
@jgweed,
jgweed;152776 wrote:
It could be argued that if one rejects "good" and "evil" as useful categories, suggesting a different normative perspective that might supplant them is appropriate; jumping to a different horizon of meaning by using "healthy" or "diseased" allows this to happen.
One must, of course, understand his use of this new dichotomy is only meant to be suggestive of its medical overtones, and that Nietzsche intends the terms as spiritually, ethically, and psychologically descriptive of certain types and attitudes which promote ascending life or not.


But, isn't it good to be healthy, and isn't it bad to be diseased? I would have thought so, wouldn't you? But if we can ask those two questions, then how can we reject good and evil, for health and disease? Answer, we can't. In all this time of discussing N. have people posed that question? It seems to me to be an obvious question to pose.
 
Artifex
 
Reply Fri 16 Apr, 2010 04:18 pm
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;152766 wrote:
Because Nietzsche's morality is sick, and calling what is sick, "healthy", is a perversion of language. I would have thought that did not need saying.


Pardon me, I'm new to Nietzsche.

Anyways, replacing "good" and "evil" with "healthy" and "diseased" seems to suggest that one is right the other is wrong, of course morality says it like this anyways. Good could be bad and evil could be good, I doubt anyone would say being diseased would be good however.

Maybe I'm just going about this wrong, but replacing "good" and "evil" with the others seems to create a prejudice even further developed than "good" and "evil" themselves.
 
jgweed
 
Reply Sat 17 Apr, 2010 07:11 am
@CW146428,
One of Nietzsche's central positions is that objective values do not exist [and often questions of the value of values, e.g., truth] and in investigating their historical origins, attempts to show how values are the result of various types of will to power.

Given this status of values, he offers a different perspective and a new way of looking at values that differs from the traditional nomenclature that has been ingrained in our thinking and developed over thousands of years by philosophy and by the society in which it operates. One such perspective, or interpretation, he suggests, can be created by tentatively thinking about values as healthy or unhealthy. As one reads Nietzsche, the way in which he uses these terms becomes clearer.

So it is not a matter of simply replacing one term with another, but more a matter of attempting to find a different way of thinking about morality altogether.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Sat 17 Apr, 2010 08:51 am
@jgweed,
jgweed;153167 wrote:
One of Nietzsche's central positions is that objective values do not exist [and often questions of the value of values, e.g., truth] and in investigating their historical origins, attempts to show how values are the result of various types of will to power.

Given this status of values, he offers a different perspective and a new way of looking at values that differs from the traditional nomenclature that has been ingrained in our thinking and developed over thousands of years by philosophy and by the society in which it operates. One such perspective, or interpretation, he suggests, can be created by tentatively thinking about values as healthy or unhealthy. As one reads Nietzsche, the way in which he uses these terms becomes clearer.

So it is not a matter of simply replacing one term with another, but more a matter of attempting to find a different way of thinking about morality altogether.



Can't we ask whether this way of thinking is a good or bad way of thinking, or is that barred? I would imagine, however, that if N. advocated a new way of thinking, it was because he thought it was good? And I wonder whether it was a good thing for him to advocate such a new way of thinking. It certainly seems to me that the question, should we replace our old way of thinking with a new way of thinking, is a value question. Doesn't it to you? It is foolish and naive to think that you can rid yourself of ways of thinking that are imbedded in our thought and in our language merely by resolving to do so. Such foolish naivete' stems only from a Rationalistic mind. In Nietzsche's case, of course, this is humorously ironic.
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Sat 17 Apr, 2010 08:56 am
@CW146428,
Truth as an army of metaphors. D*mn, that's a brilliant metaphor itself. The "truth" about "truth," which half-negates itself, or calls itself into question. Nietzsche was right about himself. He was indeed dynamite.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Sat 17 Apr, 2010 09:00 am
@Reconstructo,
Reconstructo;153193 wrote:
Truth as an army of metaphors. D*mn, that's a brilliant metaphor itself. The "truth" about "truth," which half-negates itself, or calls itself into question. Nietzsche was right about himself. He was indeed dynamite.


How enlightening you always are! You always keep us informed about your opinions. Something all of us cannot wait to learn about. So considerate of you. And always in such clear language too!

P.S. Of course, it goes without saying, that I respect your opinion.
 
jgweed
 
Reply Sat 17 Apr, 2010 09:26 am
@CW146428,
I would imagine that Nietzsche would say that asking such a question as " whether this way of thinking is a good or bad way of thinking" merely shows how ingrained over two millennia philosophical prejudices can become, or that he would reply, "No, but it is a healthier way of thinking."

And of course, suggesting a new way of interpretation is a value question, but one can talk of value without using "good" or "better" except by way of analogy or becoming hopeless lost in equivocations.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Sat 17 Apr, 2010 09:35 am
@jgweed,
jgweed;153198 wrote:
I would imagine that Nietzsche would say that asking such a question as " whether this way of thinking is a good or bad way of thinking" merely shows how ingrained over two millennia philosophical prejudices can become, or that he would reply, "No, but it is a healthier way of thinking."

And of course, suggesting a new way of interpretation is a value question, but one can talk of value without using "good" or "better" except by way of analogy or becoming hopeless lost in equivocations.


I would imagine, however, that N. would think that a healthier form of thinking was preferable to a diseased form of thinking because it is....shall we say, a good form of thinking? And, I daresay, that he could even give good reasons for thinking that it a good way of thinking? As Ali said, "You can run, but you can't hide".


The term, "healthy" is, after all, a term of approval, exactly as "good" is, except that "good" is a more general terms of approval. When you say, in this extended sense, "healthy" you are merely substituting one term of approval for a different one. So, if, and when, you adopt Nietzsche's way of speaking rather than the ordinary way of speaking, and you say something like "courage is healthy", I will just translate that as meaning, "courage is good", and nothing substantive will change except that one mark or sound will be substituted for a different mark or sound. However, you may have the satisfaction of thinking that there is a difference philosophically. So, at least, that is something. And, if a verbal change give you that much pleasure, well hell, why not?
 
 

 
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