What are some good resources for understanding Nietzsche?

(Jamie Hobbs) #1

Anyone have any good materials on Nietzsche’s effect on humanist thought? Ravi speaks of him often, but I was looking for some literature on the topic. There’s a coach in a nearby school that claimed, “I was set free from the church’s teachings through a 1.5 hour lecture on Nietzsche.” There are several implications there, and I regret that I have no further knowledge of this lecture. I admit concern that a man with so much influence over children would see the teachings of the church as constricting, as if he was wearing shackles until Nietzsche set him free. It would seem to be the opposite to me.

Any help would be most appreciated.

(Jimmy Sellers) #2

I am not a Nietzsche expert but this is a short video with an author Ruth Abbey, Friedrich Nietzsche’s Thought perhaps this might give you some insight as to what was appealing to the coach you mentioned. My guess is he was shacked by doubt and not comfortable with asking the why questions. If you think for a moment this is what we do here, ask the whys. Nietzsche’s Thought

I hope this helps.

(Jamie Hobbs) #3

Thank you, sir. I will definitely look into it.

(SeanO) #4

@Jamie_Hobbs Below are some resources that I think would provide a good starting point. I still remember reading ‘Beyond Good and Evil’ and being shocked at the outworking of his thought in that particular work - he clearly felt that he was among a select group of ‘supermen’ who had ascended above the sheeple (he felt most people were like sheep - weak and basically unworthy of existence) to lead humanity forward. And I feel that anyone who agrees with his thought strongly must also see themselves as somehow above the sheeple and uniquely gifted in some way - his works to me seem to contain a very strong temptation to a terrible pride and hubris.

He reminded me of Uncle Andrew from ‘The Magician’s Nephew’ by C. S. Lewis, if you have ever read that book. Uncle Andrew was their mad uncle and an amateur magician who gave no thought to using the children as part of his experiment while himself remaining safely at home because he was the ‘great magician’ and above common morality. Though that caricature may be unfair of him as a person, it certainly came through clearly in what he wrote in ‘Beyond Good and Evil’.

Like any author, the best way to get to know him is probably to read his books and I am sure realize that his opinions change and even sometimes contradict one another throughout his life. Though I personally find little joy in reading him.

James 4:6-7 - God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble.Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you

Great Sermon by Tim Keller on “Losing Religion”

In this sermon, Tim Keller analyzes the critique of religion provided by Freud, Marx, and Nietzsche. Freud said we created God to assuage our guilt and calm our fear. Marx said we use religion to exclude those unlike us. Nietzsche said we use religion to gain power. Some would say Freud said it was all about sex, Marx its all about money and Nietzsche its all about power, but that would be an oversimplification. Finally Keller tells us how Jesus critiques religion in a way that is much more powerful and accurate than any of these thinkers.

(Candace foster) #5

RC Sproul wrote a book, “The Consequences of Ideas”-I think that is the title, nouns may be reversed…but anyway, it is a very simple overview of the main ideas of philosophers through the ages. I used it with a group of homeschooled high school age kids. Each chapter is on a different philosopher and his contribution to the discipline.
I think it is important to remember that no one lives in a vacuum. I believe that it would be accurate to say that all of us form our ideas in relation to zeitgeist or in opposition to it. So knowing what was going on in Nietschze’s time and who he was ‘arguing’ with (besides his own family members) might be helpful.
It was very interesting to see how the church has combatted and/or absorbed many of the teachings of these philosophers and how different denominations follow a particular strand of philosophy-whether classical or modern.