Zoroaster or Zarathustra? Ask Nietzsche


There are many wonders in the world. The miracle of life. The wonder of death. But one of the greatest wonders of them all is how did it happen that one of the most prominent philosophers ever, namely Friedrich Nietzsche, became a pop icon. (Same thing happened with Che Guevara, but that is another story.)

Nietzsche is absolutely adored by everyone, but mostly by the folks who have never read any of his books. Because reading philosophy can be hard, but the theory of Superman sounds so appealing. Hey, after all, Superman made his way into comic books. And films!

Why all the rant about this? Well, the fact of the matter is that Nietzsche wouldn’t have liked this kind of fame, not one bit. I could put my money on that. Author of such philosophical works like The Birth of Tragedy, Human, All Too Human, The Gay Science, Beyond Good and Evil, The Antichrist, Ecce Homo and The Will to Power was actually a bitterly troubled man, and both his life and his philosophy are way too deep to be taken so lightly.

Thus Spoke Zarathustra: A Book for All and None is a philosophical novel composed of four parts, written in between 1883 and 1885 and published in between 1883 and 1891. The book depicts the fictitious travels and speeches of Zarathustra, the founder of Zoroastrianism.

Also Sprach Zarathustra, Op. 30 is a tone poem by Richard Strauss, composed in 1896 and it was inspired by the work of the famous philosopher. The first performance was on November 27th, 1896 in Frankfurt. (Hence our inspiration for this post.)

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2001: A Space Odyssey, anyone?

Let’s read Nietzsche, watch Kubrick, and listen to Strauss. Richard, of course, not Johann. Art be praised, and philosophy reincarnated!

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