Amor fati

I’m just curious as to what it is. Can someone give me an explanation?

love of fate

read Nietzsche - genealogy and twilight

-Imp

The term translates at “love of fate,” but that doesn’t really help understand the concept. There were several philosophers of the early 20th century nuancing the idea, but it comes from Nietzsche’s meditations on the meaning of his doctrine of Eternal Return, a concept inescapable in 19th century philosophy of science: given eternity, the random rearrangement of particles over time would cause the exact circumstances you are in now to reoccur, not once, but an infinite number of times. Hence, you must act as if each action were to be repeated infinitely throughout all eternity, because, indeed, it will be. With all the misery and terror and suffering in existence, the truly illuminated accepts and embraces existence as it is, joyously, because it is the way one is – to accept one’s own existence necessarily implies accepting the whole of reality.

It was when Nietzsche had this particular illumination that he decided to write Also Sprach Zarathustra.

The doctrine of Eternal Recurrence has been invalidated by the changes in science in the 20th century; it is a mark of the flexibility and power of Nietzsche’s philosophy as a whole that it stands without Eternal Recurrence.

no, the doctrine of the eternal recurrence has not been refuted by science… science still suffers from the inductive fallacy…

your summary of the eternal recurrence is not complete… the point of the eternal recurrence was more of a ethical or moral position… after destroying christianity as an ethical/moral standard, one needs to invent new values… god doesn’t do it, the herd doesn’t do it… only the ubermensch does it… but which values will be created? the ubermensch creates only those values, makes only the ethical/moral decisions that he will repeat an infinite number of time…

not only must you act as if you will repeat your existence, but you must will it to repeat…

BGE 56: Whoever has endeavored with some enigmatic longing, as I have, to think pessimism through to its depths and to liberate it from the half-Christian, half-German narrowness and simplicity in which it has finally presented itself to our century, namely, in the form of Schopenhauer’s philosophy; whoever has really, with an Asiatic and supra-Asiatic eye, looked into, down into the most world-denying of all possible ways of thinking—beyond good and evil and no longer, like the Buddha and Schopenhauer, under the spell and delusion of morality—, may just thereby, without really meaning to do so, have opened his eyes to the opposite ideal: the ideal of the most high-spirited, alive, and world-affirming human being who has not only come to terms and learned to get along with whatever was and is, but who wants to have just what was and is repeated into all eternity, shouting insatiably da capo [in music: from the beginning], not only to himself but to the whole play and spectacle, and not only to a spectacle but at bottom to him who needs precisely this spectacle—and who makes it necessary because again and again he needs himself—and makes himself necessary — — What? And this wouldn’t be—circulus vitiosus deus? [A vicious circle made god? or: God as a vicious circle?]

-Imp

[quote=“Impenitent”]
no, the doctrine of the eternal recurrence has not been refuted by science…

First relativity then quantum mechanics and then complexity theory one by one have invalidated the assumptions on which eternal recurrence is founded. Complexity theory in particular suggests that there is no reason to believe that any given set of conditions would ever repeat. Finally, even the idea of eternity is no longer tenable if the universe runs down in heat-death. 19th Century sciences used a Newtonian frame of reference in which atoms could carom around the billiard-table of the universe forever with no loss of energy. Entropy has triumphed in the 20th century. We can no longer entertain the prospect of the eternity necessary to bring about the same conditions an infinity of times.

[quote=“Impenitent”]
no, the doctrine of the eternal recurrence has not been refuted by science…

First relativity then quantum mechanics and then complexity theory one by one have invalidated the assumptions on which eternal recurrence is founded. Complexity theory in particular suggests that there is no reason to believe that any given set of conditions would ever repeat. Finally, even the idea of eternity is no longer tenable if the universe runs down in heat-death. 19th Century sciences used a Newtonian frame of reference in which atoms could carom around the billiard-table of the universe forever with no loss of energy. Entropy has triumphed in the 20th century. We can no longer entertain the prospect of the eternity necessary to bring about the same conditions an infinity of times.

I understand the advances with modern physics/astronomy…

modern science still is subject to the inductive fallacy…

to say the future will resemble the past because of past events begs the question… it is a logical error, not truth…

we can entertain any notion we choose… but that wasn’t the primary objection to your explaination… you neglected to mention the moral aspect which is of the highest importance in Nietzsche’s work…

-Imp

Possibly so, but I was not speaking of that dimension at this moment. I was speaking of the power and resilience of Nietzsche’s systematic philosophy, that such an important-to-him notion as Eternal Recurrence could be eliminated without affecting the power of the system as a whole, for the same moral dimension comes about if each act is unique.

no, they do not know the future will not be like the past… they have “laws” of physics that have no justification… the ball will fall when dropped because of the laws of physics which do nothing but appeal to past events which beg the question… I showed all this in the hume thread… ilovephilosophy.com/phpbb/vi … 90&start=0
no, there is not a definite beginning to time… and if the jury is still out on it, then the eternal recurrence is still possible…

systematic philosophy?!? exactly the opposite!!

uk.encarta.msn.com/encyclopedia_ … alism.html

…“Nietzsche, and other existentialist writers were deliberately unsystematic in the exposition of their philosophies, preferring to express themselves in aphorisms, dialogues, parables, and other literary forms. Despite their anti-rationalist position, however, most existentialists cannot be said to be irrationalist in the sense of denying all validity to rational thought. They have held that rational clarity is desirable wherever possible, but that the most important questions in life are not accessible to reason or science. Furthermore, they have argued that even science is not as rational as is commonly supposed. Nietzsche, for instance, asserted that the scientific assumption of an orderly universe is for the most part a useful fiction…”

-Imp

Impenitent

If you don’t understand either the physics or the philosophy underlying these notions, the most prudent course of action would be to refrain from making pronouncements about it/them.

Indeed no “refutation” has taken place: the model has changed out from under it. The closed, entropyless model that underlies Eternal Recurrence is no longer regarded as credible, and entropic models foreclose the possibility of eternity.

Moreover, you don’t seem even to be able to read what is before you: it was the “end of time” on which the jury was still out, not, as you have it, the beginning of time. There are legitimate critiques to be made of the mathematical reasoning on which the “beginning of time” idea is based, but your notion of the nature of a “law” of physics is quite embarrassingly inadequate to do so.

Re: systematic philosophy. You are arguing just to be arguing, and arguing with yourself to boot. I did not say that Nietzsche built philosophical systems, and I did not use the technichal terminology to describe that. Moreover, you don’t even start out talking about philosophical systems – your remarks relate to expository methods. The proposition that Nietzsche’s ideas cohere into a system is a minority opinion, true, but it is not an illegitimate one.

Moreover, the slightest actual acquaintance with either Nietzsche or with the course of philosophy following his death should tell you that it is an outright error to classify Nietzsche as unequivocally an existentialist writer, since the term gained a very specific meaning in the 20th century; Nietzche was existentialist in terms of 19th century philosophy, perhaps, but at best a precurser to 20th century existentialist thought. Perhaps the quotation you stripped out of context did make the necessary qualification; I can’t tell – and since it is obviously irrelevant I’m not going to Encarta to find out.

As you don’t seem to have any remarks to devote to the subject of this thread, I don’t propose to continue this colloquy any further.

Mr Patterson,

The sun may have risen a million times, and perhaps, a million times before that, upon what principle do we base our assumption that the sun will rise again tommorrow?

I think this is Impenitent’s point.

no, you don’t understand the objection… Hume’s problem of induction has not been refuted… science is based on inductive reasoning… science is based on an error… if you don’t want to admit that, that is your problem… your science is not truth. period.

beginning of time… you think the hubble shows you the beginning of the universe? shows from where the big bang came? that was the start of time? perhaps that was the start with the big bang… but what about time prior to that? you can not arbitrarily stop time and claim that all time began with this event… that is no better than claiming that it began with god…
and the only point about the “laws” of physics is that they are logically worthless… they are based upon logical errors…
science remains a “useful fiction

“I was speaking of the power and resilience of Nietzsche’s systematic philosophy”

yes you did say that… Nietzsche despised systematizers and your calling him one only demonstrates your ignorance of Nietzsche…

true, it is not illegitimate… it just runs counter to almost everything Nietzsche wrote about philosophical systems…

I never did…

that’s on you…

if you can’t take the heat…

(and you never did address the moral problem which was the entire basis of the original objection…)

-Imp

Yes well, get back to the point of the thread. Forget about Hume and science and heat-deaths and fiction. All of you are right with your accounts of the contentions of each position. Hume does throw cause/effect experience out the window. We infer causal relationships between events but we do not experience them. So anyone attempting to disprove the eternal reoccurence by way of science and theory is subject to this fallacy in the first place, not to mention the fact that it is quite possible that there are many universes all operating simultaneously with ‘infinite histories,’ as Hawking put it, where any possible alternative event did happen at any given point in time. We are all Schrodinger’s Humans, my friends, so go the distance when speaking about infinity, beginnings and ends. Keep in mind that a universe can be in a state where the laws of physics, as we know them, break down, and with that the arguments go with them. Trying to prove that the eternal reoccurence is false by imploying the big-bang theory is useless.

Nietzsche’s eternal reoccurence was moreso a moral principle than a scientific principle. At that time his theory was reasonable if not just common sense. You take a basket full of apples and shake it up, eventually the apples are going to land in a previous postion they were once in. In five minutes time there are only so many possible postions for the apples. In an infinite amount of time a finite amount of apples must do the same. Its the apples, not the time. La apple amor fati.

Was it the bird that taunted and teased Zarathustra about his eternal condemnation to life? Ha, ha, you have to live over and over again. Despite the actual primacy of the eternal reoccurence as a scientific doctrine, whether or not it ‘abides by the known laws of physics,’ it has a great ethical importance. It speaks to one personally and demands some resolve. If one had to live over and over again, and this life here is the one where we determine what those lives will be like, then it is of grave importance that we get it right. Its perfect. It doesn’t need scientific relevance to be useful as a moral principle.

I admit that one problem comes to mind in the formula, even for ethical use. If, in fact, we did live over and over again, why wouldn’t this life be already determined by one before it? What makes Nietzsche think that this life is the first one? How then do we believe that we should ‘choose wisely for our future’ if all this had already been done?

I like the idea, but it is a bit redundant. It is a strange marriage between freewill and determinism that I don’t quite understand. However, in the end I see once again the usefulness of the idea. Especially in the case that one can’t know for sure what happens after death, it would be harmless to practice Nietzsche’s principle of amor fati and endorse the idea of eternal reoccurence.

When Nietzsche says that he dislikes all systemizers for a ‘lack of integrity,’ he is playing with words and treating the word ‘system’ as if it weren’t ambiguous in the first place. I could say that Nietzsche had a system, if I mean by system: ‘a set of facts, beliefs, tendencies and truths used methodologically to discern further truths.’

I think it is an empty charge to call someone a mongrel because they practice a routine when approaching problems. If what everybody means is simply: where you can’t know everything, no one thing is certain,’ then I’ll take it. But golly, its hard to utter the first word without becoming somewhat systematic.

[quote=“de’trop”]
Yes well, get back to the point of the thread.

I admit that one problem comes to mind in the formula, even for ethical use. If, in fact, we did live over and over again, why wouldn’t this life be already determined by one before it? What makes Nietzsche think that this life is the first one? How then do we believe that we should ‘choose wisely for our future’ if all this had already been done?

Ah, well, but nobody, not even Nietzsche, could tell whether this particular iteration is the first or the infiniteth [?] iteration – which is what makes it all so powerful. You experience it as a present choice.

What I find interesting is that contemplation of the utter uniqueness of experience can take you to the same sublimity that Eternal Recurrence engenders. Amor Fati in either case – To be wholly at one with oneself in the moment of the experience.