Friedrich Nietzsche was a German philosopher who founded many aspects of modern philosophy. Nietzsche is mostly known for his phrase, ‘God is Dead,’ and the idea that human-beings must seek suffering because it leads to personal fulfillment.
Nietzsche’s ideas are interesting to the Seekers of Knowledge. I gathered seven of his thought-provoking ideas which I thought I should share with you.
Here are they:
- Christianity Was Created by the Weak
Nietzsche believed Christianity was created by weak people to justify their lack of money and power since it praised poor conditions and promised good things to the meek.
I believe Nietzsche’s interpretation of Christianity was wrong because he didn’t understand the true meaning of some Biblical terms. For example, he thought the term ‘meek’ meant ‘to be poor and helpless.’ But according to many Christian philosophers, being ‘meek’ means “having faith in God and realizing God’s will.”
- The Ideal Human Being
According to Nietzsche, the ideal man goes his own way and uses his creativity to help the society. This man creates his own values and avoids living in accordance with the crowd’s values. He also welcomes everything that comes into his life believing that everything is meant for his good.
- Suffering Is Necessary For Human Excellence
“It’s out of the deepest depth that the highest must come to its height.” – Nietzsche
Nietzsche believed suffering was necessary for our excellence that he wished suffering upon his closest people. As he put it, “To those human beings who are of any concern to me I wish suffering, desolation, sickness, ill-treatment, indignities. I wish that they should not remain unfamiliar with profound self-contempt, the torture of self-mistrust, the wretchedness of the vanquished. I have no pity for them.”
Although I never wish bad things to happen to my loved ones, I agree with Nietzsche’s idea because sometimes suffering leads to human excellence as it makes people to take action. Many successful people decided to go after their dreams after undergoing a series of unimaginable difficulties.
- People Create Excuses to Cope With Their Misfortunes
Nietzsche saw that many people created excuses that helped them live with their misfortunes.
I believe Nietzsche would be surprised that we still do so in the 21st century since many people have justifications for their misfortunes. For instance, some people believe they can’t live a comfortable life because they came from poor family backgrounds. Others think they can’t follow their dreams because they don’t have time and money.
- What Will Happen When ‘God Dies?’
Nietzsche prophesied the current condition of the modern society through his idea of ‘God’s Death.’ According to him, the belief in a Higher Power made medieval people to find life meaningful. He knew the modern society will find life meaningless because science will make people doubt God’s existence.
Nietzsche was right because today many people find life meaningless since they don’t believe in a Higher Power that created them to fulfill a certain purpose. The belief that God created us for a reason made medieval people to find life meaningful and less stressful.
- Why You Must Separate Yourself From The Masses
Today, people conform to the masses thinking that any beliefs or values accepted by many people are right. Little do they know that the masses prevent them from self-actualizing since they have a negative perception towards factors that promote self-actualization. For instance, the masses hate solitude and the creation of independent values.
- If You Need Lots of Pleasure, You Must Experience Displeasure
Nietzsche believed it was impossible to live a life full of pleasure if you don’t want to experience displeasures. He wrote, ‘What if pleasure and displeasure were so tied together that whoever wanted to have as much as possible of one must also have as much as possible of the other. You have a choice in life: either as little displeasure as possible, painlessness in brief or as much displeasure as possible as the price for an abundance of subtle pleasures and joys.’
Nietzsche was right because people must go through discomfort for them to get what they want. For instance, for an individual to achieve success, she must work hard and risk a lot, and for one to enjoy the benefits of a relationship, she must be willing to experience its dark side. Nothing good comes easy.
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Friedrich Nietzsche on Why God is Dead and the Effects of God’s Death
“But when Zarathustra was alone, he spoke thus to his heart. ‘Could it be possible? This old saint has not heard in his forest that God is dead!” – Friedrich Nietzsche
Friedrich Nietzsche (1844 – 1900), a German philosopher, is remembered for his popular phrase: ‘God is dead.’ He came up with this phrase after realizing that the society had shifted its focus from religion to science and progress. As well, he observed how the scientific revolution resulted in the society believing that science was more reliable in helping it understand life than religion.
The phrase thus implied that, in the 19th century, many individuals stopped believing in the importance of God because the term ‘God’ became a cultural idea. Furthermore, it indicated that the society stopped perceiving God as the source of creation, and it seldom involved spirituality in everyday social life.
Although Friedrich Nietzsche was an atheist, he believed ‘God’s death’ would bring disastrous effects to the society. For as he wrote, ‘God is dead. God remains dead. And we have killed him. How shall we, the murderers of all murderers, console ourselves?
He knew ancient people used God to console themselves during hard times, and therefore, God’s death would result in people finding it difficult to face hardships because they would lack a source of consolation. Besides, he claimed that modern folks would despair and find life meaningless if they stopped focusing on God as their helper.
Nietzsche’s idea of God’s death continues to be true in the 21st century because many people have stopped believing in God. To most people, God is just an ancient’s man idea since he doesn’t exist.
For this reason, as Nietzsche prophesied, many people today find life meaningless as it is difficult to find life purposeful in a Godless world. Also, those facing hardships succumb to depression and lose hope in life because they don’t believe that God will help them overcome their hardships.
Nietzsche’s phrase must thus remind us about the importance of believing in a Higher Power/God. This belief reduces the chances of depression when one faces hardships as it makes individuals realize that God is on their side. Lastly, it makes life meaningful as it enlightens us that we were created by a Higher Power for a Higher Purpose.
Thanks for Reading.
Peace be With You
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The Wisdom of Spinoza: Top 5 Powerful Teachings of Spinoza
Baruch Spinoza, born in 1632, was a philosopher who focused on teaching about God, and the limits of religious authority. He also taught about the human mind, science, and morality. As well, he stressed on the importance of freedom, and he provided the masses with a scientific interpretation of the Bible.
Spinoza’s teachings were enlightening, and the elite believed they would expose several religious errors and awaken the masses. For this reason, the elite forced him to flee Amsterdam.
I gathered Spinoza’s teachings from his book, ‘The Philosophy of Spinoza (Edited by Joseph Ratner).
1.How to Achieve Sustained Happiness
We only achieve happiness when we free ourselves from the bondage of our emotions by becoming the masters of our emotions. To become the master of our emotions, we must know ourselves because it’s impossible to control our emotions if we don’t study and understand ourselves.
2.Everything is Divine
‘Whatever is, is in God, and nothing can either be or be conceived without God.’ – Baruch Spinoza
Spinoza opposed the religious belief that some things are divine while others aren’t. For him, everything is divine because everything exists within God. He believed nothing is unholy because everything exists only because God, The Divine Creator, exists.
3.Anyone Can Understand God’s True Nature
‘Everyone can by the light of nature clearly understand the goodness and the eternal validity of God.’ – Baruch Spinoza
Many religious leaders believe understanding God is a spiritual gift only bestowed upon some individuals. However, Spinoza believed everyone can understand God’s true nature by studying nature because nature acts according to God’s laws and thus displays ‘his’ attributes.
4. Miracles are Natural Occurrences
Spinoza disagreed with the idea that miracles are contrary to nature since ‘nothing comes to pass in nature in contravention to her universal laws.’ For him, miracles are part of nature since they obey its laws. He claimed that many people believe miracles are supernatural occurrences because they are beyond their understanding.
5.The Illusion of Good and Bad
According to Spinoza, good and bad are ideas that arise after comparing one thing with another. For instance, an individual only believes Hip Hop is bad because he compares it with Country music, Rock, or Rhumba.
Besides this, people call one thing bad if it makes them sad and call another good if it makes them happy. For this reason, good and bad changes because something that can make you happy might be called bad if it makes another person sad.
Hope you loved Spinoza’s teachings.
Anyway, I gained massive interest in Spinoza’s teachings after realizing that he was banished from the Jewish community and forced to flee Amsterdam. My research on ancient history has enlightened me that all people who provided the masses with teachings that enabled them to realize their true power were either forced to exile or killed. Jesus was crucified, Socrates was sentenced to death, and Pythagoras was burned.
We should all strive to study these folks – who were either killed or exiled – because their teachings contained hidden truths that the ruling classes didn’t want us to know. I will thus continue studying Spinoza’s works, and I’ll share them with you because I believe they contain powerful hidden teachings.
Spinoza, Benedictus de, and Joseph Ratner. The Philosophy of Spinoza. Modern Library, 1954.
PEACE BE WITH YOU
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