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Atheismus, Nihilismus


Geheimer Meister
6. Juni 2003
da war doch mal ein link zu einer site, auf der die begriffe genau erklärt wurden. ich hab den link leider nicht gefunden, kann den hier jemand posten? es geht uch ein anderer, hauptsache, die begriffe sind geklärt!

danke schonmal

PS: thread closen, wenn beantwortet...


Geheimer Meister
10. Dezember 2002
Hier hab ich mal den Text von einer Website, die ich mir gespeichert habe und so also keine URL mehr verfügbar habe, keine Ahnung, ob es dir weiterhilft:

Nietzsche and Nihilism
Perhaps the most common misconception about Nietzsche, held widely in both popular and academic works, is that Nietzsche was a nihilist. Nihilism is undoubtedly one of the central themes of his works, but it is not his statement but his question mark! Like Kierkegaard before him and Camus after him, Nietzsche was concerned with the effects of nihilism and looked for ways around its monstrous conclusions. Nietzsche does not, however, succumb to the temptations of the Void but attempts to reconstruct human endeavor in the face of it.
We can see Nietzsche attitude towards nihilism most clearly in The Gay Science, where he announces for the first time that "God is dead!" This announcement amounts to Nietzsche's recognition that nihilism is upon, for without God, humans are deprived of the supports of absolute values and eternal truths. All views that pronounce such values and truths (or even their possibility) rely on the existence of God ("how much must collapse now that this faith has been undermined because it was built upon this faith, propped up by it, grown into it; for example, the whole of our European morality" [GS, #343]).

Much of Nietzsche project was dedicated to shedding light on the consequences of this death - a death, it must be remembered, that Nietzsche does not accomplish but merely has the audacity and simplicity (note: remember that it is a madman who makes this announcement - but is he mad because crazy or mad because "simple") to announce. One must think of Nietzsche as the madman who, in The Gay Science, first cried out, "Whither is God? I will tell you. We have killed him - you and I." [#125] But, it must be remembered, the madman goes on to smash the lamp that he brings to shed light on this revelation and say in disgust, "I have come too early, my time is not yet. This tremendous even is still on its way, still wandering; it has not yet reached the ears of men. Lightning and thunder require time; the light of the stars requires time; deeds, though done, still require time to be seen and heard. This deed is still more distant from them than the most distant starts - and yet they have done it themselves." [GS #125]. Nietzsche is the messenger of God's death, and as a philosopher, he is the apostle of its consequences, dedicating the effort of writing Beyond Good and Evil (particularly Part One: The Prejudices of Philosophers) to speeding the realization of these consequences to the eyes and ears of God's murderers - modern man.

The death of God is what poses the nihilist question for modern man. As a number of Dostoyevski's characters ponder, "if God is dead, then everything is permitted" (or a different formulation: "if God is dead, then nothing is forbidden"). This is the nihilist Void, and far from drawing back from it, Nietzsche reaches out to drag us to its edge and make us take a long look into its blackness. What does the Void devour? Everything - especially those dearly held doctrines devised by the touchingly naive Enlightenment thinkers who first struck a blow at God. It is not too much to say that nothing is sacred to Nietzsche (without God, sanctity is impossible) and he takes to murdering the presumptive heirs to God's empire with a deftness reminiscent of Hume's attack on empiricism. Nietzsche exposes the illusions and "errors" that underlie the belief systems that dared to fill the hole left by God's disappearance.

Nietzsche's primary contribution to the critique of Enlightenment values (democracy, liberalism, secular humanism) - besides, of course, initiating the critique in a revolutionary rather than simply reformist mode - is to expose the "perspective" from which Enlightenment valuations are made. ("For one may doubt, first, whether there are any opposites at all, and secondly whether these popular valuations and opposite values on which the metaphysicians put their seal, are not perhaps merely foreground estimates, only provisional perspectives perhaps even from some nook, perhaps from below, frog perspective as it were, to borrow an expression painters use. [BGE #2].) Nietzsche gives these doctrines far too much credit to simply refute them - what, after all, is the point of such an exercise? Rather, he analyses them and indicates the kind of point of view they express and presuppose. This is one of the main themes of On the Genealogy of Morals. In that work, Nietzsche does not attempt to refute either Christian or Secular Humanist morality; instead, he points out what type of constitution produces this moral system. He also indicates that other moral systems exist that express the perspective of other kinds of humans, and while he seemingly attacks what he labels the "slave morality" and exalts the "master morality," he is simply showing that for some types, the master morality is more appropriate than the slave morality. The crime of the Christians and the Philosophes and the Kantians and the Democrats and the Socialists (and whatever other proponents of various versions of the slave morality) is that they claim universality for their moral system when in fact it is appropriate for only some kinds of humans.

Nietzsche recognizes that the slave morality makes sense and is beneficial to certain types. ("That lambs dislike great birds of prey does not seem strange: only it gives no ground for reproaching these birds of prey for bearing off little lambs. And if the lambs say among themselves: 'these birds of prey are veil; and whoever is least like a bird of prey, but rather its opposite, a lamb - would he not be good?' there is no reason to find fault with this institution of an ideal" [GM # 13].) The slave morality is the one that is appropriate for, that makes sense to, individuals that Nietzsche characterizes as "weak." Our assumption that "weak" is a negative rather than merely descriptive term germinates the reading of On the Genealogy of Morals that has Nietzsche claiming correctness for one moral system (master morality) and incorrectness for another (slave morality). But Nietzsche knows that God is dead and that therefore one cannot make these kinds of absolute claims.

Nietzsche's analysis of the different moral systems is his first move in avoiding the nihilist conclusions that there is no truth. He asserts not that there is no truth but that there is an appropriate truth for each type and that every view has its proper adherents. The problem with Enlightenment values is not the truths they announce, but the presumption of absoluteness, universality, and eternity. The "frog" perspective is no less valid to the frog (or the lamb morality to the lamb) than the eagle's perspective is to the eagle; the problem is when the frog or the lamb claims that its perspective is the only, the true, the objective one. Such a claim is absurd without God, yet God has been killed by precisely those that wish to maintain the universalist doctrines of the frog/lamb.

To see that Nietzsche is not a nihilist, then, one must simply recognize that nihilism would deny the frog even the frog's perspective, whereas Nietzsche recognizes that that perspective is appropriate to the frog - but not to everyone! Nietzsche's perspectivism is a reaction to the death of God that avoids the nihilist conclusion that there is nothing but the Void.

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