Friedrich Nietzsche: First Impressions

Painting of Nietzsche by Edvard Munch

The Greek knew and felt the terror and horror of existence. That he might endure this terror at all, he had to interpose between himself and life the radiant birth of the Olympians. That overwhelming dismay in the face of the titanic powers of nature… all this was again and again overcome by the Greeks with the aid of the Olympian middle world of art. (48)

This dichotomy between art and existence can not only be extrapolated with Aristotle’s postulations in Poetics, but tie the underlying knot with all of Nietzsche’s philosophy. It is similarly present in his most famous work, Thus Spoke Zarathustra, which intended to create a separation between religion, philosophy, and art. The way Nietzsche wrote Zarathustra serves as an indicator to the dual intentions of the work. The religious language it invokes adds an element of artistic merit and irony to the text, further demonstrating his commitment to the breach in art and existence.

Absurd journalist and essayist from the outskirts of Shambhala.

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