Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Nietzsche ain't that peachy

What the hell IS IT with Nietzsche??? When guys on dating sites say they are interested in philosophy, I think, cool, maybe we can philosophize together. So I ask them, who is your favorite philosopher. They ALWAYS - and I mean every single goddam time - say 'NIETZSCHE'!!!

Not only is it tiresome but everything of value that Nietzsche ever said practically, he got from Schopenhauer. There are some people who claim to be interested in philosophy who don't even know who Schopenhauer is.

I find Schopenhauer a great comfort when I'm lonely, in part because few people were as lonely as Schopenhauer, who in the end was alienated from his mother, his sister, and almost everybody else, except his dog Atma.

Some interesting comments from Schopenhauer

A man of intellect is like an artist who gives a concert without any
help from anyone else, playing on a single instrument--a piano, say,
which is a little orchestra in itself. Such a man is a little world in
himself; and the effect produced by various instruments together, he
produces single-handed, in the unity of his own consciousness. Like
the piano, he has no place in a symphony: he is a soloist and performs
by himself,--in solitude, it may be; or, if in company with other
instruments, only as principal; or for setting the tone, as in
singing. However, those who are fond of society from time to time
may profit by this simile, and lay it down as a general rule that
deficiency of quality in those we meet may be to some extent
compensated by an increase in quantity. One man's company may be quite
enough, if he is clever; but where you have only ordinary people to
deal with, it is advisable to have a great many of them, so that
some advantage may accrue by letting them all work together,--on the
analogy of the horns; and may Heaven grant you patience for your task!

That mental vacuity and barrenness of soul to which I have alluded, is
responsible for another misfortune. When men of the better class form
a society for promoting some noble or ideal aim, the result almost
always is that the innumerable mob of humanity comes crowding in too,
as it always does everywhere, like vermin--their object being to try
and get rid of boredom, or some other defect of their nature; and
anything that will effect that, they seize upon at once, without the
slightest discrimination. Some of them will slip into that society,
or push themselves in, and then either soon destroy it altogether, or
alter it so much that in the end it comes to have a purpose the exact
opposite of that which it had at first.

Schopenhauer on writing
It would generally serve writers in good stead if they would see that,
whilst a man should, if possible, think like a great genius, he should
talk the same language as everyone else. Authors should use common
words to say uncommon things. But they do just the opposite. We find
them trying to wrap up trivial ideas in grand words, and to clothe
their very ordinary thoughts in the most extraordinary phrases, the
most far-fetched, unnatural, and out-of-the-way expressions. Their
sentences perpetually stalk about on stilts. They take so much
pleasure in bombast, and write in such a high-flown, bloated,
affected, hyperbolical and acrobatic style that their prototype is
Ancient Pistol, whom his friend Falstaff once impatiently told to say
what he had to say _like a man of this world._[1]

[Footnote 1: _King Henry IV_., Part II. Act v. Sc. 3.]