Will to Power

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  • Topic: Friedrich Nietzsche, Thus Spoke Zarathustra, Beyond Good and Evil
  • Pages : 3 (1159 words )
  • Download(s) : 188
  • Published : October 13, 2005
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The "Will to Power"
Nietzsche believed the will to power to be the fundamental causal power in the world, the driving force of all natural phenomena and the dynamic to which all other causal powers could be reduced. I believe Nietzsche in part hoped the will to power could be a theory of everything, providing the ultimate foundations for explanations of everything from whole societies, to individual organisms, down to simple lumps of matter. The will to power cannot be known. It must be understood by its collection of manifestations. Being must consequently be rethought as becoming-a perception that acknowledges the altering nature of life and is able to stress the importance of constantly rethinking and revaluing a relationship between thought and life. The will to power is something like the desire to exert one's will in self-overcoming. The will to power is taken as an animal's most fundamental instinct or drive, even more fundamental than the act of self-preservation.

The connotations of power are broader and richer, suggesting that a human being is more than a figurative economic man whose desires could be satisfied with the utopian comforts of a Brave New World. Nietzsche's meaning could also be brought out by speaking of a will to self-realization, (one of his favorite mottoes was "Become what you are!") or by thinking of "power" as a psychic energy or potentiality whose possession "empowers" us to aspire, strive, and create.

Nietzsche associates man's being with positivity. Nietzsche's preferred metaphor for the human essence is the will - an active image that allows striving and creativity to be reconciled with plenitude. It enables him to see activity and desire as a positive aspect of our nature, rather than a somewhat desperate attempt to fill the hole at the heart of our being. For Nietzsche, all that proceeds from weakness, sickness, inferiority, or lack is considered reactive and resentful, while that which proceeds from health,...
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