Abstract
Nietzsche’s cardinal ideas - God is Dead, Übermensch and Eternal Return of the Same - are approached here from the perspective of psychiatric phenomenology rather than that of philosophy. A revised diagnosis of the philosopher’s mental illness as manic-depressive psychosis forms the premise for discussion. Nietzsche conceived the above thoughts in close proximity to his first manic psychotic episode, in the summer of 1881, while staying in Sils-Maria (Swiss Alps). It was the anniversary of his father’s death, and also of the break-up of his friendship with Wagner, the most important relationship in his life. Despite having been acquainted with these ideas from reading philosophy and literature, Nietzsche created them de novo and imbued them with very personal meaning. Surprisingly, he never defined or explained his cardinal thoughts in his published writings, perhaps because rationally he could not. A resultant hermeneutic vacuum provoked an avalanche of interpretations in secondary literature. But could these ideas be delusions? A current definition of delusion is challenged, and an attempt is made at a limited comparison between delusion, scientific/philosophical doctrine and poetic creation. It is also argued that psychosis is a way of re-living trauma, and delusions can therefore be seen as a form of reasoning that helps to make sense of the world in a state of psychotic disintegration. Far from being false beliefs, delusions are a true expression of one’s innermost feelings and pain, albeit indirectly. The relationship between early parental loss and repeated trauma, psychosis and creativity is also explored. Indo-Pacific Journal of Phenomenology , Volume 8, Edition 1 May 2008
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
ISBN(s)
DOI 10.1080/20797222.2008.11433959
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 62,401
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

The Structure of Scientific Revolutions.Thomas S. Kuhn - 1962 - University of Chicago Press.
Critique of Pure Reason.I. Kant - 1787/1998 - Philosophy 59 (230):555-557.
The Structure of Scientific Revolutions.David Bohm - 1964 - Philosophical Quarterly 14 (57):377-379.

View all 39 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Nietzsche’s Eternal Return: Unriddling the Vision, A Psychodynamic Approach.Eva Cybulska - 2013 - Indo-Pacific Journal of Phenomenology 13 (1):1-13.
Nietzsche's Übermensch: A Glance Behind the Mask of Hardness.Eva Cybulska - 2015 - Indo-Pacific Journal of Phenomenology 15 (1):1-13.
Nietzsche: Bipolar Disorder and Creativity.Eva M. Cybulska - 2019 - Indo-Pacific Journal of Phenomenology 19 (1):51-63.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Are the Deluded Believers? Are Philosophers Among the Deluded?George Graham - 2010 - Philosophy, Psychiatry, and Psychology 17 (4):337-339.
Ten Tips for a Great Marriage According to Friedrich Nietzsche.Skye Nettleton - 2009 - Indo-Pacific Journal of Phenomenology 9 (2):1-9.
On Delusion.Jennifer Radden - 2010 - Routledge.
A Davidsonian Perspective on Psychiatric Delusions.Marga Reimer - 2011 - Philosophical Psychology 24 (5):659 - 677.
Psychotic Consciousness.Peter Chadwick - 2001 - International Journal of Social Psychiatry 47 (1):52-62.
The Folk Epistemology of Delusions.Dominic Murphy - 2012 - Neuroethics 5 (1):19-22.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2013-11-24

Total views
219 ( #45,330 of 2,445,781 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
2 ( #310,703 of 2,445,781 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes