The New Philosopher

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The New Philosopher

  • Every exceptional person desires, instinctually, their 'fortress'; to be set apart from the crowd.

  • Many are tempted to seclude themselves, live alone, bur philosophers should resist this temptation – they should depart from their high vantage point, and strive to understand all aspects of humanity, regardless of how unpleasant.

  • Observing cynics can aid this process – though they are 'normal' people, they possess 'refined exceptional understanding', which allows them to speak truthfully about human nature, pointing out how much of human behaviour is motivated by selfish desires.

The Free Spirit:

  • Exceptional, seeks solitude, feels excessive emotions when around others.

  • Has an exceptional understanding of 'the rule', but is an exception to it

  • Wishes to stay tucked away

New Philosopher:

  • Is a free spirit – but destined for knowledge

  • Willing to 'go down' to study the common man.

  • Should listen to cynics

  • 'to be independent and to command', they must detach themselves entirely from:

  • Other people ('every person is a prison'), any of their specific virtues, detachment itself, a fatherland, pity, and science.

  • Nietzsche calls the new philosophers experimenters (a pun on 'tempters').

  • They will dismiss the 'common good', a notion which is itself contradictory, because 'anything that is common never has much value'.

  • This emphasises his elitist view of philosophy

  • Nietzsche distinguishes between his philosophical


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