So I was about to re-read a philosophical favorite of mine (I actually do have one), Contingency, Irony, and Solidarity by Richard Rorty, and in the intro or preface or whatever he's all, "Nietzsche blah blah blah," and I was like, "Oh yeah, I've got The Birth of Tragedy and The Genealogy of Morals just sitting on that shelf, waiting for me to finally pick it up and fucking read it." So, dear Richard, I will do the requisite survey of Nietzsche before I get back to you and your delightful disavowal of absolute truth and objective morality. It has been long enough since Pretentious Ex-Boyfriend (henceforth to be known as PEB) left me for his Nietzsche-rrific honors project that I can read it without it having to be about PEB and his recommendations for BASIC READING REQUIREMENTS FOR NOT SUCKING AS A HUMAN BEING. I still refuse to go anywhere near Marcuse or Žižek, however.
The point of all this being that though I do read a fair amount of non-fiction for pleasure reading, I suspect it may be a bit more difficult for me to get through this particular set of works. Therefore, I have decided to make Nietzsche Blogging a regular thing, where I have to periodically discuss what I read, so I feel like I have a reason to keep on going. And then when I'm done, I can read something fun. Like feminist theory. Or a nineteenth-century epic romance novel. But so, so far I have read our Friedrich's own "Critical Backward Glance" that he wrote about The Birth of Tragedy sixteen years after its original publication. He's pretty much like, "I am definitely awesomer than I was like sixteen years ago, but I totally had great ideas and it's too bad I wasn't as awesome at writing back then as I am now." But then he talked about Christianity and actually said, "From the very first, Christianity spelled life loathing itself, and that loathing was simply disguised, tricked out, with notions of an 'other' and 'better' life" (p. 11 in my book). I totes feel that, Neech. If you're spending all your time thinking about how much Jesus is going to reward you in super-awesome heaven for being good, I think a certain lack of appreciation for our one and only mortal lives is kind of inevitable. And you end up expending all this effort following arbitrary rules instead of doing things like enjoying sex or alcohol, which are both awesome, by the way. By the same token, if Jesus is just going make up for all your suffering in the next life, it's also a lot easier to disregard all the shitty shit that goes down in real life all the time that if you are paying attention makes you want to cry and start a revolution and change the world. But if Jesus is coming back pretty soon anyway to take Chuck Norris and the rest of us good guys to heaven, there's not a lot of reason to worry about things like trying not to destroy the environment or ending world hunger or achieving social justice or whatever. But that's just what this apathetic agnostic thinks. I guess.