The Stress of Avoiding Death: Acceptance as the Will to Power sample essay
Friedrich Nietzsche in his philosophical undertakings, expanded on the work of Arthur Schopenhauer and the will to live to include his own theory of the will to power. Schopenhauer believed that individuals would be driven to their instincts to avoid death at all costs and procreate, as a means of continuing life, through their children. Nietzsche, however, believed that individuals would risk death in their quest for power in life and forgo their own instincts to avoid it.
Therefore, I believe that avoiding death creates stress and the very basic survival instincts will emerge. Persons, though, who are not afraid of death and do not take death seriously will be more likely to take risks and have less stress. Therefore, those, who do take death seriously will be diminished to very low levels of their own capabilities and will be afraid to take risks and will avoid change. Those, who do not take death seriously, will be happier and able to pursue their goals. They will be empowered in, as in Nietzsche’s idea of the will to power.
The implications of this in counseling are vast. Those, who fear success, failure, and abandonment (along with a host of other fears) ultimately fear death and change. Those will likely be the persons seeking counseling in the first place.
Individuals, who take risks are not afraid of either change or of death and will most likely not be seen in counseling if they are successful. Conversely, those, who excessively pursue success and power may be deemed self-destructive, because they do not fear death. I would think these individuals would not voluntarily seek counseling, but may be forced to if they break a law or some type of norm violation that requires them to be seen by a therapist.
The question posed is “At what point does the success-driven person realize that their motivations may be self-destructive and they, in fact, have less control over their ultimate fate than they realize?”
Neitzche, F. “Beyond Good & Evil” in Genealogy of Morality II:12
Neitzche, F. “Will to Power” in Nietzsche’s Published Works and the Nachlass. Journal of the History of Ideas.(1996), 57:3, p 450.
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