Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Readings #3: Nietzsche on LNC

In the following quotes Nietzsche argues against the law of non-contradiction and its application to reality.  Instead he relies on intuition which he believes shows us that reality contains contradictions like being and becoming.  Study questions: does Nietzsche actually show contradictions within reality?  Are being and becoming contradictions as he states them?  Does he rely on the law of non-contradiction to make his case for intuition?  Did Aristotle (in Reading #1) anticipate this?

"Heraclitus' regal possession is his extraordinary power to think intuitively.  Toward the other type of thinking, the type that is accomplished in concepts and logical combinations, in other words towards reason, he shows himself cool, insensitive, in fact hostile, and seems to feel pleasure whenever he can contradict it with an intuitively arrived at truth.  He does this in dicta like "everything forever has its opposite along with it," and in such unabashed fashion that Aristotle accused him of the highest crime before the tribunal of reason: to have sinned against the law of contradiction"


"The Law of Contradiction provided the schema: the true world, to which one seeks the way, cannot contradict itself, cannot change, cannot become, has no beginning and no end.  This is the greatest error that has ever been committed, the essential fatality of error on earth: one believed one possessed a criterion of reality in the forms of reason - while in fact one possessed them in order to become master of reality, in order to misunderstand reality in a shrewd manner.  And behold: now the world became false, and precisely on account of the properties that constitute its reality: change, becoming, multiplicity, opposition, contradiction, war." quoted from: Aristotle's Defense of the Principle of Non-Contradiction in Metaphysics IV.