Nietzsche: The Superman

Nietzsche’s concept of the Superman is one of the most exciting and yet weird aspects of his thought. What did he really mean by this unusual word? Please help us to make films by subscribing here: Brought to you by Produced in collaboration with Mad Adam Films

  • martouk (64) September 26, 2015

    Nietzsche’s concept of the superman is directly in reference to a cognitively advanced human being, i.e. the human who has transcended the ego and is no longer reliant on superficial beliefs and ego dependencies. His ‘overman’ is exactly as he expressed it in Zarathustra wherein he stated that “man is a rope between the ape and the overman”, meaning that man has the ability to transcend all the ego bullshit that rules his present state of consciousness and become the overman. For those who doubt this assessment, they only have to look at what Nietzsche himself said about the ego in section 768 of “The Will To Power”:

    “The “ego” subdues and kills: it operates like an organic cell: it is a robber and it is violent. It wants to regenerate itself–pregnancy. It wants to give birth to its god and see all mankind at his feet.”

    When an ego gets hold of the idea of the overman, we only find visions of a being like Hitler’s Aryan Superman, because that is all the ego consciousness can comprehend about the concept of the overman, or superman. This same mindset of the ego personality is intimately reflected with the fascination in Superheroes, which Joseph Campbell only endorsed with his ideas of the “Hero’s Journey” philosophy.

    Nietzsche could see this aspect of the overman because he had himself transcended into this higher state of cognitive awareness. None of his contemporaries and no philosopher since he wrote Thus Spoke Zarathustra has remotely recognized what the man was trying to relate to humanity.The only writer I have ever found that understands these principles is Endall Beall, and he cogently describes this state of higher level cognitive awareness in the book Willful Evolution. Anyone wanting more in-depth explanations on the matter should really read his books. As for Nietzsche, In Ecce Homo Preface section 4, he wrote:

    “Among my writings my Zarathustra stands by itself. With this book I have given mankind the greatest gift it has ever been given. This book, with a voice that carries over millennia, is not only the highest book that there is, the true mountain-air book — the whole fact of man lies at a tremendous distance beneath it — it is also the deepest book, born out of the innermost abundance of truth, an inexhaustible well into which no bucket descends without coming up filled with gold and goodness.”

    Sadly, humanity as a whole, and philosophical intellectual academia specifically, has utterly failed to comprehend what Nietzsche shared with the world in Zarathustra. All they have done over the 100+ years since Zarathustra was written is speculate, vilify and challenge what Nietzsche wrote, which is why human consciousness has not moved forward one inch since that time.

    • mr. noone (20) September 27, 2015

      So what did you to move forward?

      • martouk (64) September 27, 2015

        Everyone’s individual road to overcoming their own ego is different in the sense that due to everyone’s individual life experiences, they each have different aspects of the ego to overcome within themselves. As for myself, I had a very strong internal drive to discover the truth, and this internal drive pushed me to research into may subjects over the years. The more subject matter I researched, the more I discovered that the world of perceptual reality I was living was not what it appeared to be. The more I followed this internal drive to know, the more I researched and the more I came to the realization that what I thought was reality was in fact a perceptual illusion founded on beliefs, mostly beliefs I accepted because someone else told me to believe it. The more I dug, the more these perceptual illusions revealed themselves to be nothing more than a ‘belief’ in a perception of reality. This process of self-discovery is what eventually resulted in removing these perceptual illusions that I accepted as ‘reality’ because everyone else said this was reality, simply because they were told what reality was an accepted the perceptual illusions in the same manner.

        This internal drive that pushed me to find the truth is what Nietzsche meant when he used the term “the will to power”. He observed that as a rule, people do not have this will to power, that they are totally content to let things remain the way they are, defined within the limits of the consensus perception of reality dictated by the ego itself. In his treatise called The Antichrist (§ 6), Nietzsche wrote:

        “Life itself is…the instinct for growth, … for power: where the will to power is lacking there is decline. It is my contention that all the supreme values of mankind lack this will”.

        The will to power is not the same thing as an ego desiring to rule over others, it is an internal drive to find the power of one’s own consciousness and gain the power that such freedom begets. What he referred to as the supreme values of mankind are a reference to the values of the consensus reality dictated in a world filled with ego perceptions and not based on spiritual truth or understanding one’s own free consciousness. Operating under the ego, there is no will to find this kind of power, there is only the will to be better or more powerful than other egos in a material world defined by these perceptual illusions.

        Through my own years of development, I studied a lot of spiritual material but found no real answers to my questions, which only served to make this internal drive to know grow more keen, so I kept pushing myself until I finally hit that transition point in my own consciousness. Don Juan called this transition a ‘breaking point’, at which the ego finally gets defeated and my own higher level consciousness started to show itself. A few other people I know have gone down their own road to achieve the same thing. They may have studied and researched different material to unravel their own ego illusions, but regardless of the road taken, they all arrived at the same point of conscious advancement.

        It was due to the progression of continually unraveling and getting rid of these perceptual illusions that, allegorically, the forest of illusions was cleared and clear ground for my consciousness to expand was exposed. Each of these illusions that we accept as defined reality only serve as a handicap on our conscious advancement. The more of these perceptual illusions we can erode and get rid of, the more our minds get cleared of the detritus that impairs our cognitive advancement. It starts with the question, why do I believe what I believe, and from there, one takes the course of internal analysis to discover that most of the time we believe things because others believe the same things we do. We believe because we are told, ever since we are children, what reality it and what the world is and how we are supposed to function in this world that we are ‘told’ about. We get programmed with the definition and we accept that definition because everyone else also accepts that ‘definition’ of reality.

        • mr. noone (20) September 29, 2015

          Yeah. In my old world, we called what you are referring to “social programming”. Great post, thanks for taking the time to explain it.

          I am on this road myself, and can very well relate to your worlds. Although, I don’t know how much do I still have to walk. Maybe this enlightenment never ends until our bodies live (and maybe beyond).

          But this makes me think of my next, and currently last question (until I find its answer for me) – should we, now that we have reached a bit higher level of consciousness, aim to “help” others do this too? Are we even ABLE to do that, and are we supposed to? In order to assist humanity’s progress somehow? I just don’t feel right knowing so much stuff and seeing how most of the people around me live their lives – in the illusionary reality where the ego rules.

          • martouk (64) September 29, 2015

            This is a good question you ask, but you may not like the answer in response to it. So far as helping others, you can’t help anyone who refuses to help themselves. You can give them all the information you desire, but in the end, the responsibility for acting on that information is their problem, not yours. Like the old adage says, you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink.

            The modern spiritual movement is wrapped up in the belief about service to others. This is simply a belief like any other. This belief system caters to the ego in everyone because it gives the ego the sense that it is some kind of hero that is going to save the world. The doctrine, (and that’s all it is – a doctrine like any other doctrine), appeals to the ego in everyone because it makes the ego feel ‘special’ and that is inherently obligated to try and save the world. As a species, we have the hero mentality programmed into us as children. Once adopted, the ego rarely lets go of that concept. You have absolutely no obligation to help anyone other than yourself where your conscious advancement is concerned. In truth, you can’t help anyone else.

            The fact that you ‘don’t feel right’ about not helping others is only the ego making you feel guilty for not being the hero that it desires to be based on this programming. No one can help anyone else if they can’t help themselves, but the ego doesn’t recognize this. The ego wants to be the hero, it wants to be the star of the show, it wants to save the world, and that vision makes the ego feel really good about itself, which is why so many people are deceived by this particular belief program. What you are experiencing is a phase of spiritual advancement that most people usually can’t or don’t choose to transcend. I was no exception in going through this phase myself, but I gained the wisdom to realize that beating my head against the wall of trying to help people ‘get it’ was not advancing me. I finally gave up on trying to ‘save the world’ and turned my focus inward instead of worrying about others. They are as responsible for themselves as you are for you. They are not your obligation, and the sooner you realize this, the sooner you can quit letting your ego agonize over this ego need to help others.

            The modern spiritual movement is as much a trap for consciousness based on this ego need to save the world as any other religion. The religions all send out their disciples to spread their brand of spiritual ‘good news’ to the world in hope that the world will come around to their way of believing. The New Age is no different in that respect if you look at it with all honesty. This need to be a hero is all about gratifying the ego, as is the idea of saving the world from itself by preaching any specific set of beliefs. When you can recognize this as nothing more than ego programming, you can move past it and put your focus where it needs to be, on your own individual development.

            One final set of comments. There is a great difference between heightened levels of awareness and higher consciousness. On the path to higher level consciousness, one passes through many different phases of higher level awareness. Being more aware of the world around you is not higher level consciousness, it is only heightened awareness. One can be keenly ‘aware’ of things in the world while the ego is still in the driver’s seat of our consciousness, but one is still operating under a sense of higher awareness within the same system of ego control. The ego makes the mistaken assumption that higher awareness is higher consciousness. It isn’t. One can lead to the other, but it is not an automatic process. Many people are operating with higher level awareness and their egos make them believe this is higher level consciousness because the ego can’t imagine any consciousness that goes beyond its own perceptual reality. Too many people still governed by their ego believe that higher level awareness is a higher state of consciousness. It isn’t. The ego convinces itself that this greater awareness is greater consciousness, but in actuality, it is only the ego deceiving itself with another perceptual lie. The ego can’t comprehend any level of consciousness that goes beyond its own perceptual limitations, so it convinces itself that higher awareness is higher consciousness, and therein lies one of the greatest traps for one who is genuinely seeking transition into higher level consciousness. This misconception makes people believe that they are ‘enlightened’ when in fact they are only working within another form of ego illusion. They may have had brief momentary views into this other realm of conscious advancement, but then the ego convinces itself that it knows what it is by putting this brief experience into its own cognitive box of categorization. The ego takes a larger concept and tries to fit it into the smaller container of its own definition of reality. Higher level consciousness, once achieved, is a permanent state of being. It is not occasional or brief instances of enlightenment, which are really only peeks into that realm of greater cognitive awareness. Greater awareness is only part of the transition into higher level consciousness. Too many people allow their egos to deceive them into believing that this heightened awareness is enlightenment, and they therefore never move forward in their own advancement. The ego has convinced them of this illusion, and few indeed can get past this roadblock to advanced consciousness to really discover what it is. They settle for the illusion and never find the real thing. When the ego embraces this ‘belief’ it is very hard to convince them of anything contrary to this belief, and they then get stuck in just another belief program. To advance yourself, you have to recognize this and move beyond it to the next level of development so you don’t get stuck in this cognitive trap.

            • mr. noone (20) October 1, 2015

              I think you are completely right that the desire to “help” the others is an ego trap. Thank you for explaining this to me.
              You answered my question, thank you very much.