Nihilism Reconsidered


What is Nihilism? Short answer from Oxford English Dictionary is a “total rejection of prevailing religious beliefs, moral principles, laws, etc., often from a sense of despair and the belief that life is devoid of meaning.”

Then look up Nietzsche who wrote in his book Will to Power, “ The extremest form of Nihilism would mean that all belief—all assumption of truth—is false: because no real world is at hand.”

What about the Red Sox? Not real. Jesus? Not real. Now how do you feel. Can we afford to lose both?

At this point, I say lighten up Nietzsche. Would he then say that without Nihilism the world will blow up?

I know what religion does for me. It give me strength, hope, meaning, purpose. And then Fred comes along and tells me with a shake of the head, “Your naive.”

“Even if that were true Fred, is it better to be a nihilist?”

Will to Power is one of those books I will read because I think doubt is good. It can be formative. Now what? Any Nihilists out there? Help me claim my naiveté.

 

6 thoughts on “Nihilism Reconsidered

  1. New Hampshire Garden Solutions May 22, 2014 / 6:16 pm

    Rejecting everything as false yet still having to face it every day must be a living hell. Can something exist and not be real?

    • fictionfitz May 23, 2014 / 6:16 am

      I am glad I was not born Mr. Nietzsche. He must have had a few tough days.

  2. hessianwithteeth May 23, 2014 / 12:00 am

    You make it sound like the only options are religious belief or nihilism. That’s not the case. You can be non-religious without being a nihilist. I believe that the Red Sox exist, but their existence means nothing to me. I’m not sure if Jesus existed. Maybe he did, but I’m doubtful. I don’t think any god exists either. But I’m certainly no nihilist.

    • fictionfitz May 23, 2014 / 6:13 am

      Excellent points. And not everything has a label. My writing as if everything is black and white has one advantage, it simplifies. I guess there is not much truth in that, but it sure helps with the word count.

  3. Carole Webber May 23, 2014 / 4:30 pm

    Nietzsche must have head a troubled life just trying to spell his name,!
    . I find that many who do not believe in a god spend a lot of time arguing about what they believe does not exist.

    • fictionfitz May 23, 2014 / 4:36 pm

      Smart man, but not someone I would want to have lunch with. Or at least I would need a second.

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