Where is Man in Nihilism?June 28, 2021
Nihilism; depreciation of values relative to values. In short, it symbolizes the zeroing of values and a trend towards non-existence. In other words, the devaluation of the highest values. (Nietzsche, The Will to Power, p. 23)
So, what is a person at this stage? How does nihilism interpret human and what kind of salvation does it predict for human existence? I will try to answer these questions fully and do my best to avoid any question marks in mind. Because nihilism is a concept and subject that is not understood much and that the most false things are written on it. At this stage, my aim is only to say something about man and his salvation as envisaged by Nihilism.
We have said that nihilism denies existing values (moral values). In this respect, questions should be asked as follows; To what extent does the person born and created within the values that have existed until now belong to himself? How often can he say yes to himself? And how pure and free is man in the values that exist now? In the light of these questions, we can say the following; According to nihilism, human; it has created its own captive values to rasp it; eg God and Morality. And while doing this, he managed to deceive himself and convince himself that this is the right thing to do. According to nihilism, this mistaken and ecstatic movement, which is a historical mistake, was enough to ruin everything. For man has thus acquired an unnatural, completely self-defeating will, and he is absolutely free of instincts. To justify this, he signed an invention called moral values. It is humanity that does it, and that is what Nihilism most opposes. In other words, Humanity and the Values It Creates…
Why is nihilism against humanity? Because the mob called humanity acts with the logic of a herd and certainly harbors and feeds corruption. Although nihilism is obsolete according to some in terms of what it tries to clothe, it actually aims to restore the human being to his former power. Because in Nihilism, man is powerful and destructive, and he takes this power neither from God, nor from values, nor from anything else; he draws his strength only from his forgotten instincts.
Nihilism rejects everything that modern man or the disempowered man does. French Revolution, Socialism, Christianity, Democracy etc. He draws attention to the fact that such movements have only a religious purpose. He tries to prove that these movements have brought people towards a degenerate order. Therefore, he argues that these revolutions and uprisings are nothing but artificial regressions.
“…Perhaps I alone know best why one laughs. Man only suffers so deeply that he was compelled to invent laughter. The most hopeless and most melancholy animal is rightly the happiest one.” Nietzsche (The Will to Power, p.64) It is clear what is meant by this quote. Man has made himself a slave with the values he has created, and then he has made it obligatory with laughter. We can say that the person who manages to laugh and forgets himself even in his most unfortunate situation, has actually invented this consolation and became a material for nihilism. Nihilism is the story of human rebirth. In this sense, it is about the human being shaken again and hugging all his powers.
In summary, nihilism, like all disciplines aiming to return to the essence of man, seeks his salvation in nothingness, denial and destruction. He could only reach this nothingness with his lost strong instincts. These are the warrior spirit, the desire to destroy, the sacrifice of races, the worship of power, the longing for a strong race, selfishness, etc. values like. The reason why these values are mostly associated with fascist ideology is that nihilism holds a great grudge against humanity, that is, against corrupt races and spirits. And it sees humanity as a monument to corruption.
When we look at the historical stages of the world, it is possible to see a test of this in Hitler’s Germany. The meaning that nihilism ascribes to man is Power. According to nihilism, man could regain his old body and will only by affirming nothingness with his weakened soul. We can say that Nihilism, which offers us a complete hierarchy of souls in the spirits market, has brought with it a philosophy that is entirely human-oriented despite all the rumors and criticisms. We can understand this very well from the following quote:
“…I consider a philosophy that teaches the rejection and negation of the will as a teaching that brings people down and slanders them. I appreciate the power of a will according to the extent of its resistance, the pain, the torture, and how it turns them into its own benefit; I don’t blame the human being for his bad and painful character, on the contrary, I hope that when the time comes, it will be even worse and more painful than it has ever been.” (Nietzsche; The Will to Power, p.199)
Prepared by: Sociologist Ömer YILDIRIM
Source: Omer YILDIRIM’s Personal Lecture Notes. Atatürk University Sociology Department 1st Grade “Introduction to Philosophy” and 2nd, 3rd, 4th Grade “Philosophy”