Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Nietzsche and Hitchens

In my last post I linked an article from The Atlantic in which Lawrence Krauss is interviewed about his beliefs concerning something from nothing.  In that article he mentions having given a speech at the memorial service for Christopher Hitchens in New York.  One story he told involved a question that Krauss read in the paper while visiting Hitchens.  The question was whether students at university can keep their faith while being bombarded with Nietzsche, Hitchens, and beer-pong.  Krauss thought it quite an honor for Hitchens to be placed between Nietzsche and beer-pong.

This anecdote reminded me of an article Hitchens wrote toward the end of his life.  Here is the link.  In this article, Hitchens rejects a claim attributed to Nietzsche (whatever doesn't kill me makes me stronger) which he had previously accepted.  The article looks at the problem of evil in the lives of both Hitchens and Nietzsche.  It is an honest and thought provoking account of the reality of pain and suffering that Hitchens was facing.  The human element is moving and should be read in his own words.  However, it does raise questions about the contraints of naturalism to answer some of the questions he is wrestling with.

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