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Nietzche's Philosophical Understanding of Truth - Essay Example

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However diverse the interpretations of the different scholars may be, they all agree that Nietzsche's philosophy is perspectival. Nietzschean thought claims that there is no singular truth or absolute truth. There is instead a multiplicity of truths. His philosophy states that there is no singular platform or vantage point from which absolute truth could be seen. However, there is also a multiplicity of perspectives, each with their distinct way of presenting the truth. Many scholars have searched for solutions to what appear to be cnradictions arising from Nietzsche's works. This paper however, only aspires to give an interpretation of his thoughts and philosophies.
So that the human individual may survive and preserve his condition, given that he has none of the accouterments of beasts armed with the most deadly of natural weapons with which to defend themselves and dominate weaker specimen, Man has resorted to his intellect using the art of dissimulation. It is through "deception, flattery, lying, deluding, talking behind the back, putting up a false front, living in borrowed splendor, wearing a mask, hiding behind convention, playing a role for others and for oneself - in short, a continuous fluttering around the solitary flame of vanity", that Man is able to not only survive but also prevail over other species and his fellowmen.
Given that man possesses such a nature, and such nature arises from necessity, it becomes a contradiction that Man should also possess a drive to find truth. Nietzsche states that men do not comprehend the truth through their senses, but merely receives stimuli through them. He is also deceived by his dreams, and does not have a full comprehension of himself since there are many things in his biological constitution that naturally could not be seen. Since Man's nature, mind and his senses and tools of perception do not fully reveal the truth, Nietzsche asks from where does the drive to find truth emanate
As an individual needs to preserve himself against others, he also desires their company, being the social being that he is. As such, though he utilizes dissimulation for the purpose of self-preservation, he also tries to eliminate the most flagrant of this method. This compromise gives root to Man's need to find truth. Designations are given to all things and these assignations become the basis for the truths as individuals agree they should be. It is upon these designations that the difference between truths and lies are based.
A person who lies is someone who applies the designation or word for one thing to describe another. If this results to harm for another individual or society, then he will be distrusted and even ostracized. Man responds in this way to lies because he is harmed by the commitment of fraud, and not the act of lying itself. It is not deception which is abhorred or condemned but the consequential negative effect it brings upon them. The greater the degree of harm, the more hostile society becomes to the fraudulent person. But the question remains on whether the words used as designations for truths are themselves consistent with what is "absolutely true".
Nietzsche describes words as merely "the copy in sound of a nerve stimulus". The more incongruent or distant a word is from the nerve stimulus it is supposed to represent, the more false it becomes. Words therefore are arbitrary assignments which represent ...Show more


Friedrich Nietzsche is among, if not the only philosopher whose works have been subjected to numerous critical interpretations and evaluations. Numerous literature have been written about his papers and books, and innumerable interpretations have also arisen from his materials…
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Nietzches Philosophical Understanding of Truth essay example
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