The philosopher who hangs out on my nightstand the most.

“The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself.”
―Friedrich Nietzsche

Nietzsche has many interesting quotes that always trigger critical thinking and so forth. I find myself always going back to this one because I think it is one of his best. He truly was a free spirit in many ways. It is difficult to live a life with little to no restraints. He wrote a lot about going against “the herd.” I like to think of myself as someone who has always tried to live my life avoiding the herd mentality but haven’t always succeeded.

As we grow older it becomes much more difficult to keep our own identity. We are often swallowed up by life and its various changes. Jobs and personal relationships test our ability to hold onto our sense of self which we can lose so easily in this giant blue world. I believe we all have dreams but some of us put our dreams on a shelf or forget about them entirely in order to “make a living.” Some of us become afraid of what we really want out of life and end up conforming to the status quo.

In his book “Beyond Good and Evil” he writes about many things; brutal truth, nihilism and what it means to be a free spirit. I am by no means well versed in philosophy but what I take away from his books are the importance of having a sense of self. Being brave enough to live the life in which we desire and not allowing our own thinking to become diluted by the current rhetoric, whether it be politics or religion.Although I do not agree with Nietzsche’s misogynistic views on women, I believe he is in one of the most important philosophers of all time. He challenges us to rise above given ways of thinking and to learn to think for ourselves. He was a man that was not shaped by the world but who shaped his own world.

* I tend to write in a stream of consciousness kind or way, which is my biggest downfall because I often stray too far from the point I am trying to make.


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