Friedrich Nietzsche was a German philosopher, cultural critic, and poet who lived in the late 19th century. He is often associated with existentialism, which is a philosophical movement that emphasizes individual freedom and choice.
However, Nietzsche’s views on existentialism were complicated and often misunderstood. In this article, we will explore what Nietzsche believed about existentialism.
Nietzsche’s Critique of Traditional Philosophy
Nietzsche was highly critical of traditional philosophy, which he believed was overly concerned with abstract concepts and theories that had little relevance to human life. He argued that philosophers had become disconnected from reality and had lost touch with the fundamental aspects of existence.
According to Nietzsche, traditional philosophy was too focused on finding objective truths about the world. He believed that this approach ignored the subjective experiences of individuals and failed to account for the complexity of human existence.
The Importance of Individual Will
One of the key themes in Nietzsche’s philosophy is the importance of individual will. He believed that individuals should be free to determine their own values and create their own purpose in life.
Nietzsche argued that traditional morality was a form of herd mentality that stifled individual creativity and expression. He believed that individuals should reject conventional morality in favor of their own self-defined values.
The Role of Suffering
Another important aspect of Nietzsche’s philosophy is his emphasis on the role of suffering in human existence. He believed that suffering was an essential part of life and could lead to personal growth and self-discovery.
Nietzsche rejected the idea that humans should strive for happiness at all costs. Instead, he argued that individuals should embrace their suffering as a means to transcend their limitations and become stronger.
One concept closely associated with Nietzsche is the idea of the Superman (Übermensch). According to Nietzsche, the Superman is an individual who has transcended traditional morality and created their own values.
The Superman is not bound by conventional social norms and is free to create their own destiny. Nietzsche believed that the Superman represented the ultimate expression of individual will and creativity.
In conclusion, Nietzsche’s views on existentialism were complex and nuanced. He rejected traditional philosophy and emphasized the importance of individual will, suffering, and self-discovery. His concept of the Superman has had a lasting impact on popular culture and continues to be a source of fascination for many people today.