Life itself is essentially appropriation, injury, overpowering of the strange and weaker, suppression, severity, imposition of one’s own forms, incorporation and, at the least and milder, exploitation–but why should one always have to employ precisely those words which have from of old been stamped with a slanderous intention?
…‘Exploitation’ does not pertain to a corrupt or imperfect or primitive society: it pertains to the essence of the living thing as a fundamental organic function, it is a consequence of the intrinsic will to power which is precisely the will of life. – Granted this is a novelty as a theory – as a reality it is the primordial fact of all history…
What Nietzsche says in Beyond Good and Evil. Basically I see it as what Nieztsche thinks life should be, or perhaps more straight to the point, what life is. Anything that goes against this would be a denial of life, decay to what should be a healthy life. Apparently, “unhealthy” living would be the following:
To refrain from mutual injury, mutual violence, mutual exploitation, to equate one’s own will with that of another. (Beyond Good and Evil)
In other (simplistic) words, being nice to one another. Hehe, I wish Marx could have said something in return to him. I’d love to see both of them duke it out.
Anyway, Nietzsche’s ideal mode of life is the aristocratic, where you actually find the best situation where you can “exploit” others (though I suppose Marx would be so up in arms about capitalism being usurped of its throne as the utmost mode of exploitation) for the sake of the existence of the few extraordinarily brilliant individuals, the “ubermensch.” I love what Nietzsche says about how the existence of Napoleon justified the French Revolution. It’s such an insane way of looking at it.
To follow, since most of us are living in an egalitarian society with human rights et al, this makes the world, according to Nietzsche anyway, one big disgusting mass of mediocrity. No Napoleons now. This is what characterizes the decline of Western civilization, during the late 19th century anyway and continuing now.
I really do beg to differ. I think that if ever the brilliant individuals of the aristocratic age were so prominent, it was because they didn’t have much competition, because they were the privileged few. What egalitarian society has done, I suppose…all right, what egalitarian society IDEALLY and THEORETICALLY should have done…is leveled the playing field. If you want to be brilliant in your time, you’ll have to work even harder for it.
In any case, I do understand why the Nazis tried to make Nietzsche look like Nazi propaganda. All this “strong triumphing over the weak” talk and the idea of the ultimate superiority of a certain class of men does feed the fire. And I suppose Hitler could very well be the “uberman.” Though you’ll have to bear in mind that the Nazis had to strip away a heck of a lot of things that Nietzsche said. For one thing, Nietzsche had a few choice words to say about his fellow Germans. And he detested Wagner. You certainly can’t have that, can you?
Anyway, just some stray, disorganized thoughts. If you look at the way he writes, Nietzsche has so much passion and belief that it just propels all his statements. But it’s all so up in the air in that ivory tower; he doesn’t really present historical evidence to back up what he says of modes of societies, for a worldview that has become such a hallmark of understanding modernity. Still, he’s very compelling, I’ll give him that.