Nietzsche Beyond Good and Evil: Scope of Philosophy


Motivational Analysis

  • 'most of a philosophers conscious thinking is secretly guided and channelled into particular tracks by his instincts'
  • values are 'psychological demands for the preservation of a particular kind of life'
  • 'all animals strive instinctively for an optimum combinaion of favourable conditions which allow them to expend all their energy and echieve their maximum feeling of power'
  • different types of people are drawn to different types of life
  • different values support different ways of life
  • on basis of these interpretations of values people come to hold dif phil views

Philosophy and Values

  • moral aims of a philosophy are the seed from which the whole theory grows
  • philosophers seek resons to support their pre-existing commitment to 'a rarefied and abstract version of their hearts desire'
  • 'How are synthetic a priori judgements possible?'
  • Kant says such judgements are possible because we have a faculty that makes them possible - flawed theory
  • should look at a persons values for an explanation of why they hold these beliefs
  • Hume and Nietzsche both argue theres no rational explanation of many of our beliefs - try to find source of these beliefs outside/beyond reason
  • Hume - imagination and principle of 'Custom'
  • Nietzsche - motivation and the bewitchment of language
  • philosophy isnt driven by a will to truth
  • philosophy interprets the world in terms of the philosophers values
  • stoics - we should live accoring to nature - they interpret nature by their own values

Philosophers' values: the 'ascetic ideal' and the 'will to truth'

  • if philosophical beliefs rest on values - values are expresions of power - philosophica beliefs are an indirect expression of power
  • philosophy requires lifestyle of contemplation and ascetism
  • ascetism - self discipline and refusal to indulge bodily desires
  • philosophers find it difficult if surrounded by culture of action and values that support these activites
  • protect their lifestyle by arguing there are transcendent values of the mind that are greater than values of the body and world of action
  • they max their feeling of power over themselves (ascetism) and others
  • philosophy is wrong to think its an expression of will to truth as other values come into play
  • discovery of truth at any cost involves a guiding value thats an expression of the ascetic ideal - elevates mind over body & expresses will to bear the cost of truth
  • what is the value of truth? why do we prefer truth to untruth?
  • we dont but we say we do - hold truth to be of value even if we dont always act according to that value
  • paradox - nietzsche wants to know the truth about the will to truth
  • will to truth originates in self-deception
  • it presents itself as driven only by the value of truth but its part of a set of balues that seek to protect conditions in which certain types of people can live the kind of life that maxs their feeling of power
  • new philosopher will be the creators of values
  • unlike the values of the past which have…


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