Negate This

A future that could've been

The Mirror and Nietzsche

Published on by Negate This

I was reading some work on Nietzsche’s ethics today, and some of it made me think back on the Mirror.

Apparently, Nietzsche characterizes Christianity’s desire for the “otherworldly” as life-denying, likely because focusing on an afterlife and the system of moral values imposed as necessary for access to that afterlife denies the potential of life, negating the will to power, or life itself.

The Mirror, while being a work of Christian mysticism, does not seem particularly concerned with the afterlife as it does with creating an ethic centered around oneing oneself with God and His will. Love even says that the Annihilated Soul “possesses no comfort, nor affection, nor hope in a creature which God has created, nor in heaven, nor in earth, but only in the goodness of God.” The Mirror focuses on overcoming oneself, affirming the potential of life, the will to power, rather than negating it by focusing on the afterlife.

Also, this Soul is not commanded or encumbered by the Church’s virtues, just like Nietzsche’s รœbermensch (not the Nazi’s interpretation) self-overcomes moral values to actively express the will to power.

There lay similarities in Porete’s Annihilated Soul and Nietzsche’s รœbermensch, but the Mirror is from the 1300s while Nietzsche wrote in the 1800s. Looks like there’s more to be found in older texts than what I first assumed.

Porete was a Beguine, and from what I’ve seem from another Beguine, Hadewijch, their work is similar. Studying more of the works of the Beguines may yield a lot of good stuff, I think.