James Is The Best Essay

1010 words - 5 pages

In modern times humans have become susceptible to new psychological illnesses. Nietzsche and Freud both give different interpretations of these illnesses. Freud blames the repression of the libido and its erotic appetite, which goes against societal standards of behavior, as the cause for neurosis. While Nietzsche blames the slave revolt of morality for stopping us from acting out on our animal impulses as the root of bad conscience. It is because of different social contracts that lead the philosophers to come to different understandings of the illnesses, despite having the same prehistoric origin. For Freud the contract is a necessary part of the world and he sees neurotics as the isolated individuals who are unable to cope while Nietzsche sees the contract as a lie which damages every member of society with its bad conscience.
Freud presents an interpretation of how individuals fall ill. He states that individuals succumb to the flight to illness when they are unable to satisfy their libidinal desires for pleasure. These desires come from our untamed animal past in which we were able to do whatever we wanted. These prehistoric instincts do not go along with society’s agenda and are therefore repressed into the subconscious since they cause discomfort to the thinker. Freud believed these ideas originated from sexual frustration in the thinkers childhood and teenage years. Individuals then fall ill when their unsatisfied libidos refuse to accept that reality can offer them satisfaction. The result is that individuals fall into fantasies in order to properly achieve wish-fulfillment since they cannot seem to find satisfaction in the real world. One can avoid becoming neurotic by achieving these desires or focusing their powers elsewhere. While in this neurotic state we begin to regress to our infancy, when obtaining pleasures were easier. Thus, the flight to illness is the easy way out since it allows for an individual to simply bypass the troubles of society, moving to a state where they can instantly attain pleasure.
The illness Nietzsche writes about is bad conscience. Nietzsche states that humans were originally immune to these internal illnesses as we were “yes” sayers and naturally acted on our animal impulses. The weak were abused and unhappy in this society, unable to physically compete with the strong. The weak instead moralized the strong in the slave revolt of morality. The slave revolt acted as a social contract for a new society in which the organization of the world was reversed, causing our once violent world to become peaceful. This peace is the cause of bad conscience. Previously you would punish another individual for any misdeeds directed towards you in order to have them repay the damage done. But due to the slave revolt we now show mercy to our enemies and hold our animalistic nature in. The problem is that anything not released outwards is directed inwards. So since we no longer release our anger and rage against our...

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