The more I read Nietzsche the more I like this guy!
I don’t think I’ve had as many “yes” moments with any other philosopher I’ve studied in courses here so far than I have with Nietzsche. When he says that a Homer could not have written an Achilles if he himself was one, or when he points out that the path to power is NOT the same as the path to happiness, but in fact is something we might prize over happiness, that could even lead to our unhappiness, I find myself ticking off mental checkboxes in my head. These (and others in earlier treatises) are ideas I had thought of independently before even coming Nietzsche, and at this point this is becoming so common that I’m beginning to wonder if I’ve maybe been reading a lot of stuff inspired by him without knowing it. Otherwise, the similarities are certainly starting to become freaky.
On a personal note, Nietzsche is often considered to be an INTJ on the widely-used MBTI personality test, the exact same type I am, which could explain many of the similarities in thought process (even though we don’t agree on everything). This is part of the reason I mentioned the other day in class that he maybe might not have intended for us to take the precise components of his arguments as particularly as we do, since INTJs are often known to be more concerned with making a point in the “best” (clearest, strongest, most vivid) way possible than about the formal “rigour” of the arguments themselves – which is not to say they can’t be analytical, of course. Obviously, Nietzsche was a highly gifted scholar who was more than capable of writing in the conventional “philosophical” style, but certainly in the “Genealogy” at least that doesn’t seem to be his main focus. Perhaps a more literary style of textual analysis would be more appropriate here?
Speaking of which, this post doesn’t seem to be all that “philosophical” either, but I just had to put this out there, since the “Genealogy” has just been such a fun read – something I never thought I’d say about a philosophical text!