File spoon-archives/nietzsche.archive/nietzsche_2000/nietzsche.0007, message 30


Subject: Freddy My Love
Date: 19 Jul 100 10:00:17 +0500



Have been wondering about old Freddy's attitude towards love. I know he would have liked to be in love, because he wrote lyrically of ice cream in his letters! And he loved the love poesy of Rilke and Hoelderin so much.

I think he had a simplistic notion which saw eros, agape and philia as the same. For Zarathustra I think love was inculcating self-improvement in the other. "For what does he know of love who has not been obliged to despise just what he loved." 

This is quite the same as the early aesthetic Kierkegaard for whom the purpose of love was to make the other more interesting, more like oneself, more for oneself, because as K said, he was too intelligent, too existentially bored (anomie) by the common love of women. 

In this I feel, both were short-sighted. In their lives, both would react to a person's shortcomings and walk away instead of accepting them as equals and then working towards mutual support. To free oneself from chains is one thing, but to free oneself from freedom is quite another! Nz warned us about the vanity of the liberated, but I think he succumbed to the same in his own life. No one was good enough!
 
The basic premise of eros is to start with the notion that the other is equal, worthy. Romanticism worked in the 12th c because the socially oppressed women were treated as equals by their lovers. But look at Freddy. He writes: "You have not the remotest conception of what it means to be closely related to the man and to the destiny in whom the question of millenia has been decided -  I hold, quite literally, the future of mankind in my hand."

Love entails the strength to accept and then love something which is not part of us and can probably never be. Like de Beauvoir puts it: "It is only as something strange, forbidden, as something free, that the other is revealed as an other. And to love him genuinely is to love him in his otherness and in that freedom by which he escapes. empathy at its best preserves, yet seeks to know the `strangeness', respects the boundary between self and the other that the `forbiddenness affirms, does not seek to assimilate or obliterate the freedom."

On that count, which sounds pretty good to me, I think the entire edifice of Nz's thought would collapse. For what would loving oneself - truly, deeply (and not egoistically as Nz'eans are wont to do) imply then? That if you have Nz'ean strength, you would love everyone, apply Nz's perspectivism to other people's way of living. So why do Nz and his disciples always seem so full of hatred, of judgmentality? And could anyone clarify (with a little creativity) how a typical Nietzschean romance would go!





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