Pity and Suffering.

Any atheist, agnostic or unbeliever who has ever met a Christian at some time or another has been on the receiving end of what is known as pity. Is pity harmless? Or is it hostile?

Take a look at what Friedrich Nietzsche has to say on the subject of pity:

Christianity is called the religion of pity.- Pity stands in opposition to all the tonic passions that augment the energy of the feeling of aliveness: it is a depressant. A man loses power when he pities. Through pity that drain upon strength which suffering works is multiplied a thousandfold. Suffering is made contagious by pity; under certain circumstances it may lead to a total sacrifice of life and living energy–a loss out of all proportion to the magnitude of the cause. This is the first view of it; there is, however, a still more important one. If one measures the effects of pity by the gravity of the reactions it sets up, its character as a menace to life appears in a much clearer light. Pity thwarts the whole law of evolution, which is the law of natural selection. It preserves whatever is ripe for destruction; it fights on the side of those disinherited and condemned by life; by maintaining life in so many of the botched of all kinds, it gives life itself a gloomy and dubious aspect. Mankind has ventured to call pity a virtue (–in every superior moral system it appears as a weakness–); going still further, it has been called the virtue, the source and foundation of all other virtues–but let us always bear in mind that this was from the standpoint of a philosophy that was nihilistic, and upon whose shield the denial of life was inscribed. Schopenhauer was right in this: that by means of pity life is denied, and made worthy of denial–pity is the technic of nihilism. Let me repeat: this depressing and contagious instinct stands against all those instincts which work for the preservation and enhancement of life: in the role of protector of the miserable, it is a prime agent in the promotion of decadence- pity persuades to extinction….

I take it Nietzsche doesn`t like the idea of pity. Didn`t the Ancient Greeks think that pity was an evil because it was a weakness? The idea that a man loses power when he pitites is absolutely demonstratable by the fact that Christians resort to “prayer” for us as pity when they are confronted by the apparent embarrasment of not being able to provide historical facts or a suitable rebuff against OUR argument. When a Christian is blocked into a corner he or she will resort to pity: it is a loss of power, as Nietzsche describes it.

Many Christians no doubt feel and think that pity is a virtue but the Greeks divined otherwise; they thought pity was a vice. I keep on saying this but life is not about virtue but about fitness. Whatever springs from strength must be worthy of life and whatever springs from weakness denies it.

Published in: on January 27, 2007 at 4:25 pm  Leave a Comment  

The Error of Responsibility

I`ve just found this interesting paragraph in the works of Friedrich Nietzsche. A lesson for all moralizers and Christians:

 “So we make people responsible first for the impact of their actions, then for their actions, then for their motives, and finally for their nature. Ultimately, we learn that this nature is also not responsible, since it is an absolutely inevitable result and a concretion of the elements and influences of the past and present things: hence, people cannot be held responsible for anything, including their nature, their motives, their actions, and the impact of their actions.”

Nietzsche concludes:

 “We therefore realize that the history of moral feelings is the history of an error, the error of responsibility.”

I agree 100% percent with Nietzsche. And to use a Krishnamurti expression; “Human beings are not free from their past conditioning.”.  The reason that Christians and other moralizers [and so too those Karmajunkies] feel that every human being is accountable for their actions is because they believe in absolute free will. But the belief in absolute free will is just a belief, isn`t it?Absolutes are tricky. A man in chains is free to pick his nose, touch the ground, move about a little bit but he cannot break free of his shackles; he can`t go for a stroll or run around. The will might be like this example. I really don`t see any evidence anyway of free will or even that the will is totally restricted. The idea that the will is totally restricted and tragically bound to shackles is absurd but I think too that free will which is totally free of any constraints is also absurd since we cannot be free from our conditioning. And I don`t excuse or believe those numbskull religious nuts who say [dreaming of the 12 tribes of Israel] the reason that man is not free is because he has gone astray and lead by the devil. What rot! Why speak about the will in those terms if all you have is some excuse of ethical semi-religious nonsense?

No-one has yet proved what the will is really like. But it does seem the case that the will is free and it is not free and neither case to be taken in the absolute.

Is truth a good thing or is it something we must not find out what it is? Imagine a society that doesn`t punish people for commiting a crime?

Within the walls of society however the ‘truth’ of the philosophy I have given above is oppressed and even turned on its head. Human beings are moralizers. ‘Truth’ might not be something good or even proper. The false may indeed enable humans to live in a society that makes someone murder us pay for that murderous act. Justice might lend itself to the false and erroneous interpretations of actions and of cause and effect and keep us all sleeping well in our beds at night. If that is the case then we have to find or furnish some middle ground. If we can`t live with the ‘truth’ and humans must look for the ‘truth’ then we need to protect ourselves from this ‘truth’ so as to not “perish”.

Published in: on January 23, 2007 at 3:05 pm  Leave a Comment