G÷bel Christian ,
Antonianum, 76/3 (2001) p. 495-519
Summary:The subject of the present paper is Nietzsche’s Overman. It gives a new interpretation, emphasising a psychological-biographical approach towards Nietzsche. At the heart of our application of the Overman to Nietzsche’s own life stands the demonstration of multiple escape movements, which obviously not only dominated his life, but also found expression in his work. In the concept of the Overman, the intrinsic paradoxical feature of Nietzsche’s being and thinking is expressed. Here, the great hater of all escapes from the world constructs his own refuge Utopia; the ‘timid eagle’ (as Nietzsche can be called because of the contradiction between his life and thought) creates a flight-exercise from the inner conflict of thoughts into thought-lessness and a pure ‘activism’. However, Nietzsche’s thinking is not exhausted or can be dismissed with a philosophical-psychological analysis of his person. No matter how many attempts at psychological explanations of the philosophy of Nietzsche almost force themselves upon us, it would be ill conceived to conclude from this that thus his ideas are settled, his designs without value. Therefore it is important to save the philosophical value of these. So it is a second goal of this paper to review Nietzsche’s idea of the Overman critically and to search for its possible meaning for a modern Christian self-understanding. The true core of the Christian message in view, i.e. the God of unconditional love, the paper proposes an attitude which can be called a ‘Christian Overman: As Nietzsche defined the Overman as he who endures the “death of God”, a modern Christian should be able to review his picture of God and endure the end of the moral God.