nietzsche - Nietzsche Ben Riegel 1,2,3. Nietzsche speaks...

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Nietzsche Ben Riegel 1,2,3. Nietzsche speaks frequently of ressentiment, of the slave morality, but it is important to know how it arose and became such a powerful thing. Ressentiment is the slave morality, the values of the weaker men who were overtaken by the blond beasts that Nietzsche speaks of. Ressentiment is saying no to life, or taking all that was good, power, influence, rule over others, and switching their meaning from good to evil. These morals are imagined by the lower class, completely made up, but with time and certain events and systems, become popular, even dominant. Nietzsche makes a point to research some word lineages and, by doing so, shows that words for good are similar to words meaning power, nobility, aristocracy, and other such qualities while words for bad are similar to common, lower, and things of that nature. The priests were sought out for counsel on this subject, to perhaps try to amend this change in values, or make sense of it, but as stated later in this paper, they only make it worse, more powerful, more dominant, more dangerous. Nietzsche contends that it was the Jews who made the switch saying, “It was the Jews who, rejecting the aristocratic value equation…ventured, with awe-inspiring consistency, to bring about a reversal and held it in the teeth of their unfathomable hatred, saying, ‘Only those who suffer are good, only the poor, the powerless, the lowly are good…” (Nietzsche 19). This, Nietzsche claims, is the beginning of the slave revolt, which eventually won, and was only “forgotten about” because it won, and because all long things are hard to see. Ressentiment is imaginary revenge, and is only a reaction; it must have an external world to rebel against. Because the man of ressentiment is so introverted and
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passive, he withdraws himself from the world, but will end up cleverer than any noble race. These men of ressentiment could not do, so they only thought, imagined, connived their way to a new moral system where they were good, and they told themselves one day they would have to power, which was very appealing to all slaves similarly. This slave morality can only exist however as a reaction, a result, of another circumstance. Similarly to slave morality, the origin of the idea bad, according to Nietzsche, is only to express the meaning that something was not good. Men that were once good were turned into evil men by this backwards view on morals and the world. Nietzsche lays it out in an analogy with birds of prey and lambs. The birds are strong, and their role is to eat the lambs, and the lambs are weak, so they are eaten by the birds. No one can blame the birds for eating the lambs, and at the same time no one can blame the lambs for being eaten. This is where ressentiment comes in; it says, “…that the strong are free to be weak, and the birds of prey are free to be lambs: - in this way,
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This note was uploaded on 05/22/2008 for the course PHIL 112 taught by Professor Reeves during the Fall '07 term at UNC.

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nietzsche - Nietzsche Ben Riegel 1,2,3. Nietzsche speaks...

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