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    What is the Will to Power?

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    Zoot Allures

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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by Zoot Allures on Tue Feb 20, 2018 3:03 pm

    witchdoctor wrote:If you aim to be a teacher, it would benefit you, as well as your students, to be less condescending.

    don't you worry about Barracuda's condescension, none. i'm like wolverine. by the time he stabs a second time, i've already healed from the first stab. he can't make no headway like that.

    besides, he loves me, and that's the only way he knows how to express it.

    witchdoctor wrote:You say that things don't have power, they are power.

    I say things are energy, and what we call power is the potential or ability to transform, i.e. disequilibrium.

    so it's the potential of changing that's the power? not what energy transforms into, but the transforming itself?

    hmm. that means the more powerful something is, the more it changes. seems to me that merely changing can't be an indication of power. this speculation is metaphysical of course since we aren't asking about definitive quantities but processes, like change. the safe way to go... especially to avoid frivolous semantics, is to stick with the orginal thesis; that power is a capacity to perform work through a distance.

    yeah i think we can agree, if you agree with this. quibbling over this stuff like we are will only send us deeper and deeper into metaphysics.

    metaphysics is an old habit that dies hard, man. i still balance on that wire a lot, but thankfully the positivists talked some sense into me. can't let go of fritz, though, or the WTP. problem is defining what that power is... and since science can only describe, not explain (N), metaphysics is almost unavoidable.



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    Barracuda

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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by Barracuda on Tue Feb 20, 2018 6:14 pm

    witchdoctor wrote:
    Barracuda wrote:Perhaps you will understand. Or do. The concept of self-valuing, the logical formula representing a quantum of WtP and thus also the ground to identity-based logic (formal logic and math) eliminates our power to deceive ourselves through the schizoid belief that a concept is not a thing and that "thing" isn't a concept.

    This belief has cleft the integrity of humanity ever since Sokrates "knew that he knew nothing".

    Perhaps I will understand, but it will take more than that Smile
    Yes. But it will come from you. Do you want to understand?
    This wanting itself is part of the understanding and of what is understood.

    I can't teach, nor do I aspire to. I am a writer of aphorisms and jests, I am a philosopher of hell, for that is where we live.
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    witchdoctor

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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by witchdoctor on Wed Feb 21, 2018 5:27 am


    witchdoctor wrote:You say that things don't have power, they are power.

    I say things are energy, and what we call power is the potential or ability to transform, i.e. disequilibrium.

    so it's the potential of changing that's the power? not what energy transforms into, but the transforming itself?

    Not even the transforming, itself, but the potential, or ability. The transforming, itself, is a use of power.


    The will to power is not a being, not a becoming, but a pathos... the most elemental fact from which becoming and effecting first emerge...

    Perhaps an attempted physical interpretation of this passage into very plain english would be that the determination to possess the ability to transform is not a being, not a becoming, but an emotional persuasion (a reaching out, a passionate motivation)... the most elemental fact from which becoming and effecting first emerge...

    ...a feeling that precedes even the object of transformation, or the transformation itself.

    That, or I smoked too much.


    hmm. that means the more powerful something is, the more it changes. seems to me that merely changing can't be an indication of power.

    No, the more powerful something is, the greater ability to affect change. The difference is subtle but very important.


    this speculation is metaphysical of course since we aren't asking about definitive quantities but processes, like change. the safe way to go... especially to avoid frivolous semantics, is to stick with the orginal thesis; that power is a capacity to perform work through a distance.

    Capacity being the key word here, not work, nor distance (motion), which are the effects of that capacity being exercised.


    yeah i think we can agree, if you agree with this. quibbling over this stuff like we are will only send us deeper and deeper into metaphysics.

    Going deeper and deeper into metaphysics is what we do in a forum called "metaphysics" Smile
    I don't consider this to be quibbling, though. Important clarifications must be made.


    metaphysics is an old habit that dies hard, man. i still balance on that wire a lot, but thankfully the positivists talked some sense into me. can't let go of fritz, though, or the WTP. problem is defining what that power is... and since science can only describe, not explain (N), metaphysics is almost unavoidable.


    I do think that his metaphysics is very positive and very beautiful, and it seems to me that it must have come from deep soul-searching... but that too is only my perspective speaking.


    Off-topic:
    http://pathos-of-distance.forumotion.com/t50-in-which-witchdoctor-provides-medicine#275
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    witchdoctor

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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by witchdoctor on Wed Feb 21, 2018 6:24 am

    Barracuda wrote:
    Yes. But it will come from you. Do you want to understand?
    This wanting itself is part of the understanding and of what is understood.

    I can't teach, nor do I aspire to. I am a writer of aphorisms and jests, I am a philosopher of hell, for that is where we live.



    http://pathos-of-distance.forumotion.com/t50-in-which-witchdoctor-provides-medicine#27
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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by Barracuda on Wed Feb 21, 2018 3:03 pm

    Ive now developed a trick. A definition of the Will, to answer your question, OP.

    Student: What is will?
    Wise man: What do you want?

    You can have the wise man hit the student with a rod to emphasize the horrible gulf between question and answer.

    Philosophy without physical discipline directly rooted in its practice... I don't know if that can survive down the line.
    Everyone practices his philosophy, or fails to do so to their own regret. Every entity is born with a philosophy, something it likes to see clarified so as to fully enjoy what it suspects to be the good thing. This randomly occurred seedling of life and mortality is now ingrained in the first movements of all fertilizations.

    Enough - somehow the lonesomeness of this cave appeals to me - I now cast shadows on all these walls. No evil lives on.

    ::

    What is life but an accident of enjoyment?


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    Zoot Allures

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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by Zoot Allures on Thu Feb 22, 2018 7:21 pm

    witchdoctor wrote:the potential, or ability. The transforming, itself, is a use of power.

    i'll play. fuck it.

    a) it is impossible to know what an object is capable of doing. the object may have acted a certain way, performed a certain way, many times, or even all times, in the past... and yet that doesn't guarantee it will do it again in the future. therefore, to speak of something's 'potential' is meaningless.

    if, on the other hand, on object can possess something about itself which can be guaranteed to prove a certain result when it acts, whatever it possesses must be quantifiable.

    if a characteristic or attribute about this object is quantifiable, it would be a certain, definite thing separate from the object which possesses it.

    think of a battery and its store of electrons.

    we can't say that the battery 'has' potential, because it wouldn't be the battery, but the electrons that produced the power. now, apply terms a) to the electrons... and you are back to square one.

    does the battery have the electrons that have the quarks that have the power that has the potential to produce movement?

    you see here that confusions arise when we speak about something 'having' power... about something being able to 'produce' power. this is why i insisted on the simplification; things are power, which is essentially movement, action, spread out across a field of ripples which, mysteriously, take the form of both particles and waves.

    that presents all kinds of common sense problems with logic, btw... especially aristotle's law of the excluded middle.  

    now see where metaphysics will get you? which doctor, witch doctor, told you metaphysics is good for you, anyway?

    witchdoctor wrote:Capacity being the key word here, not work, nor distance (motion), which are the effects of that capacity being exercised.

    yeah ordinarily the word 'capacity' is equivalent to 'potential', but do to our above conclusions we may have to now discard it. remember, to say something has a 'potential (capacity)' can only mean: if the laws of nature remain as they were a moment ago, object A may perform/act as it did at time B, before.

    i don't want to invest my metaphysical certainty on such guesses, for i am a lover of knowledge and wisdom and stuff.

    verily, i say that power is the object, and not what it 'does'... not what it might do.
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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by Barracuda on Fri Feb 23, 2018 4:35 pm

    This is tricky, because you reject all of physics in favour of Humes dream of a spontaneously alternating nature.

    Normally, we consider e=mc ^2 for potential, where, for our basic entities, the atoms, m is given here.



    There is no record of atoms deviating from what is expected of them.
    Their consistent behaviour is why we can reproduce and repeat chemical reactions.

    Hume, its funny, he didn't like Newton at all. He hated the extent of his certainty. Very entertaining stuff to read. Hume was morally opposed to the universe being consistent with itself. Still cracks me up.


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    Zoot Allures

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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by Zoot Allures on Fri Feb 23, 2018 5:27 pm

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    Mitra-Sauwelios
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    Self-valuing customs?

    Post by Mitra-Sauwelios on Fri Feb 23, 2018 11:00 pm

    I've diven into what Strauss still called "the unsolved Humean problem", and my thoughts run as follows. The chemical elements are basic self-valuings, and especially the noble ones are fundamental. But they aren't atoms; Newton may still have regarded them as indestructible, but we of the nuclear age know they aren't. It takes a great effort, a great lot of energy, but it's very well possible to split or fuse¹ their cores, their nuclei. Even a nuclear explosion (which may follow ¹an implosion?) obeys the laws of physics flawlessly. Yet what I've been doing is make the next step: what if those laws are really only that, laws, nomoi, customs? Even if those customs have been obeyed flawlessly since a few nanoseconds after the (last) Big Bang, they must have been "made" first.

    In the beginning there was nothing,
    And it didn't like itself,
    So it started dreaming up this Other
    Most unlike itself.

    The nothing as self-disvaluing One? The Other then indeed as self-valuing--many. Logically.


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    "The will to power takes the place which the eros--the striving for 'the good in itself'--occupies in Plato's thought. But the eros is not 'the pure mind' (der reine Geist). Whatever may be the relation between the eros and the pure mind according to Plato, in Nietzsche's thought the will to power takes the place of both eros and the pure mind. Accordingly philosophizing becomes a mode or modification of the will to power: it is the most spiritual (der geistigste) will to power; it consists in prescribing to nature what or how it ought to be (aph. 9); it is not love of the true that is independent of will or decision. Whereas according to Plato, the pure mind grasps the truth, according to Nietzsche the impure mind, or a certain kind of impure mind, is the sole source of truth." (Leo Strauss, Studies in Platonic Political Philosophy, "Note on the Plan of Nietzsche's Beyond Good and Evil".)

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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by Zoot Allures on Sat Feb 24, 2018 6:14 am

    MS wrote: Even if those customs have been obeyed flawlessly since a few nanoseconds after the (last) Big Bang, they must have been "made" first.

    but by what or whom?

    Bertrand 'the hustle' Russell wrote:natural laws are a description of how things do in fact behave, and being a mere dscription of what they in fact do, you cannot argue that there must be somebody who told them to do that, because even supposing that there were, you are then faced with the question 'why did god issue just those natural laws and no others?' if you say that he did it simply from his own good pleasure, and without reason, you then find that there is something which is not subject to law, and so your train of natural law is interrupted. if you say that in all the laws which god issues he had a reason for giving those laws rather than others- the reason, of course, being to create the best universe- if there were a reason for the laws which god gave, then god himself was subject to law, and therefore you do not get any advantage by introducing god as an intermediary. you have really a law outside and anterior to the divine edicts, and god does not serve your purpose, because he is not the ultimate lawgiver.
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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by Mitra-Sauwelios on Sun Feb 25, 2018 3:04 am

    Zoot Allures wrote:
    MS wrote: Even if those customs have been obeyed flawlessly since a few nanoseconds after the (last) Big Bang, they must have been "made" first.

    but by what or whom?

    Bertrand 'the hustle' Russell wrote:natural laws are a description of how things do in fact behave, and being a mere dscription of what they in fact do, you cannot argue that there must be somebody who told them to do that, because even supposing that there were, you are then faced with the question 'why did god issue just those natural laws and no others?' if you say that he did it simply from his own good pleasure, and without reason, you then find that there is something which is not subject to law, and so your train of natural law is interrupted. if you say that in all the laws which god issues he had a reason for giving those laws rather than others- the reason, of course, being to create the best universe- if there were a reason for the laws which god gave, then god himself was subject to law, and therefore you do not get any advantage by introducing god as an intermediary. you have really a law outside and anterior to the divine edicts, and god does not serve your purpose, because he is not the ultimate lawgiver.

    For one thing, Spinoza disagrees that there's only those two options (and "there is no other philosophy than that of Spinoza" --Lessing). According to Spinoza, the reason God gave these laws rather than others is not that He looked to an Idea of the Good, but that it was simply a logical necessity following from His being infinite in all--infinite--respects. This does mean God is subject to law though, yes: as you've put it, it means even God must answer to logic. So even if Russell's parenthesis ("the reason, of course, being to create the best universe") is false, otherwise he's right about the two options. Now the second option means God is just a deference of the question (thus Nietzsche said what Spinoza really felt was "natura sive deus", not "deus sive natura"); but why not choose the first option? So your train of natural law is interrupted! So?
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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by Mitra-Sauwelios on Sun Feb 25, 2018 5:19 am

    Zoot has faith in logic:

    "Whoever does not know how to lay his will into things, at least lays some meaning into them: that means, he has the faith that they already obey a will. (Principle of 'faith'.)" (TI "Maxims and Arrows" 18 whole, Kaufmann trans.)

    The word here translated as "faith" is Glaube--also, and etymologically, "belief". This brings it back to love. So what's the difference between love and will?

    "Love is the law, love under will." (Crowley, Liber AL. Cf. WP 668.)

    "Love is unbalanced, void, vague, undirected, sterile, nay, more, a very Shell, the prey of abject orts demonic: Love must be 'under will'." (Crowley, Little Essays, "Love".)

    In my videos (in the Dutch ones, perhaps regrettably), I've connected love (eros--cf. WP 668) to Zarathustra's first "evil", Wollust (goodly lust), and will to his second, Herrsch-Lust (the lust for ruling)--Platonic eros and Nietzschean will to power, respectively. I then conceived of his third "evil", Selbst-Lust (self-lust), as the third, the whole of the first two that is more than the sum of its parts (the Devouring and the Prolific, respectively), and connected it to self-valuing. Now Plotinus describes the Idea (Vision! as in "Beatific Vision") of the Good as follows:

    "Beholding this Being--the Choragos of all Existence, the Self-Intent that ever gives forth and never takes--resting, rapt, in the vision and possession of so lofty a loveliness, growing to Its likeness, what Beauty can the soul yet lack? For This, the Beauty supreme, the absolute, and the primal, fashions Its lovers to Beauty and makes them also worthy of love." (Enneads 1.6.7)

    But a being "that ever gives forth and never takes" would not only make no sense, but would moreover not even be good, or at least not best--neither from the inside:

    "It is my poverty that my hand never ceaseth bestowing; it is mine envy that I see waiting eyes and the brightened nights of longing." (Z "The Night-Song", Common trans.)

    Nor from the outside:

    "O my soul, I have given thee everything, and all my hands have become empty by thee:--and now! Now sayest thou to me, smiling and full of melancholy: 'Which of us oweth thanks?--
    --Doth not the giver owe thanks because the receiver received? Is bestowing not necessity [Notdurft!]? Is receiving not--pitying?'--" (op.cit., "The Great Longing".)

    If a Dionysus "ever gives forth and never takes", he is not divine without his Ariadne. Lukacher's description of Plotinus' God qualifies and thereby clarifies Him or It:

    "It would appear that the World Soul returns eternally only by virtue of the fact that, in each cycle, the One gives Its gift absolutely, without hope of return. Every time the cycle of becoming reaches its endpoint, there is another gift, or more precisely, the return of the same gift. And each time it is only because the gift is pure and absolute that there can be the eternal contamination that is the coming to presence of a cosmos. This pure gift takes the form of a circle, but it does so only inadvertently; only by giving a gift outside the circle of exchange is the circle achieved.
    What is most beautiful about the One is Its gift, which takes us back to that first stirring of time[.]" (Time-Fetishes, page 27.)

    The One, which is the self-transcendence of the two, does not just give forth but also takes; but the thing is that It gives unconditionally, "selflessly", gives Itself away completely, and not for the sake of getting something back. It may have to take to be able to give, but It does not give in order to take.

    Yet It also takes away completely, and not for the sake of giving something back! It may have to give to be able to take, but It does not take in order to give...

    "Ah, ye men, within the stone slumbereth an image for me, the image of my visions. Ah, that it should slumber in the hardest, ugliest stone!" (Z "In the Happy Isles". Cf. EH "Z" 8.)

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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by Zoot Allures on Sun Feb 25, 2018 8:48 am

    good stuff, saully, though i think russell was dealing with a theistic/deistic, transcendent version of god... not the spinozean pantheistic immanent version of god. but yes, russell's critique would not stand for Spinoza's god, as you so well explained.

    more later.
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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by Magnus Anderson on Sun Feb 25, 2018 7:50 pm

    Zoot Allures wrote:what is power?

    Generally speaking, power is a potential to do something where something can be anything.

    Some examples of power:

    - the potential to speak
    - the potential to see
    - the potential to predict
    - the potential to kill
    - the potential to explode

    a potential for work or work itself?

    The former. Power is a potential and not something that is actual.

    what would it mean to say a battery has power in it if it isn't discharging itself but sitting on the shelf?

    It means that under certain conditions, such as when you attach a battery to your mobile phone, a battery is in the state of being used (rather than in some other state, such as the state of being charged or the state of being not used as is the case with your example of a battery sitting on the shelf.)

    This might be too narrow of a definition though. Here's a different one: what it means is that the battery is expected to be in the state of being used at some point in the future. No need for other kinds of conditions. But then, such a definition depends on one's expectations, which might be a problem.

    but how does something 'have' a potential for motion?

    By virtue of definition.

    Things have states. At every point in time, a thing can be in one of a number of different states. For example, a thing that has a property "position" can be either resting (which means its position is the same between two adjacent points in time) or moving (which means its position is different between two adjacent points in time.) By virtue of being defined as being able to rest or move, such a thing has the potential to move as well as the potential to rest.

    either it is presently producing motion or not. it cannot 'possess' a possibility like it can possess a physical quality.

    Why not? It's a concept.

    so then something 'turns into' energy... rather than providing it? but everything is energy already, so everything is already kinetic power. things don't 'give' energy.

    well what does that mean? it means everything is moving, but nothing 'makes' movement, or 'effects' movement in something else...

    Things can make movement i.e. they can make other things move. You have a billiard ball hit another ball and make it move. So the proposition that "nothing makes movement" is false unless the statement means something else. But what this "something else" could possibly be?

    so nothing 'possesses' power. things can't have power... they are power... insofar as they are moving.

    So things that are moving are power? Maybe, if you define the word "power" to mean "things that move". But I don't think that's how most people define the word.
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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by Magnus Anderson on Sun Feb 25, 2018 8:12 pm

    Zoot Allures wrote:there is no 'will' to power because there is no 'will'. no kantian transcendental 'will', no schopenhauerian 'will'. you have to keep in mind that nietzsche's influence by schopenhauer was what put that concept model into his mind... he was responding specifically to the 'will to life', as schopenhauer called it, and disagreeing with the premise that if there was a will, it would be simply a will to life.

    What would be the difference between "will to life" and "will to power"? How is willing life different from willing power?

    You keep saying "there is no will" but what does that mean? What do you mean when you say "will"?

    schopenhauer and nietzsche were both considered 'vitalists', but nietzsche wanted to extend the notion of biological power to physis, to mechanical power; the will to life is not explanatory... there must also be a will in the very mechanism of all things before they even become biological. although schopenhauer also called the phenomenal world a 'representation' of the noumenal world of 'will' (which he inherited from kant), he did not claim that the will which represented the world was about 'power'. this was one of nietzsche's breaks with schopenhauer.

    I thought that Schopenhauer's "will" also applies to inorganic matter?

    nietzsche abhored schopenhauer's pessimism, so he set out to put a different spin on the concept of the transcendental 'will'; suffering and striving are consequences of weakness of will, not of will itself, as schopenhauer had it. life is NOT inherently bad, and the judgement 'bad' reflects only a physiology and/or psychology of the one who makes the judgement. a judgement is a symptom only. schopenhauer was sick, but not a pure pessimist because he played the flute. nietzsche gave him that much credit.

    Right. Value judgments reflect personal preferences. When you say "this or that is bad" what that means is that you want it to be different, to be something else. And when you say "life is bad" that means you want . . . death? Unless, of course, you mean "this specific form of life is bad". Perhaps Schopenhauer was dissatisfied with the environment within which he lived? desiring a different one, a better one? Sort of like a prisoner who wants to get out of prison and do what everyone else is doing -- get a job, raise a family, etc.

    then later nietzsche realizes he's misled everyone by calling it a 'will' to power in a fundamental sense. he explicitly admits that there is no 'will' countless times throughout his work.

    Yes, and noone knows what the fuck he's talking about.

    why then the doctrine? because he had to explain the direction and process of becoming and change, indicatively. why there is change and becoming. for his purposes he anthropomorphizes becoming and change so that we can think of it as a vitalistic process, a metaphysical process; why do things evolve and change? because they have an inner will, are directed by an inner will, to do so. and what are they willing? not just life, but power.

    that was nietzsche's original thesis.

    Does that mean that rocks want power?

    but there is no 'Will' with a capital W. when we talk about 'will' we mean to say that someone or something is acting voluntarily and with purpose. and it makes no difference whether you are a hard-determinist, compatibalist, or indeterminist, for the word to be meaningful in language.

    Whereas "Will" with a capital W means exactly what?

    joe is taking a metaphysics-free walk to the store because he's willed it, because he wants to go to the fucking store and buy a pepsi, a snickers bar, and a lottery ticket (i don't know why because joe has a better chance of getting struck by lightening than winning the lottery). joe has the will and he knows the way. nuff said

    So WTP means that everything in the universe is willing power? Even our hands? Our hands want power? They want to become independent and powerful? They don't want to be slaves to humans?

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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by Zoot Allures on Sun Feb 25, 2018 9:02 pm

    i'll have something for you by tomorrow morning, andy. just sit tight man.


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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by Zoot Allures on Mon Feb 26, 2018 9:14 am

    the doctrine of the 'will' as schopenhauer conceived it is a kind of realism, essentially, because it posits some trans-phenomenal force as being both the cause and the manifestation of everything in nature.. all things and processes. but hume and kant already drew the limits to that kind of speculation. hume's nominalism was recognized by kant, but kant still sorta rejected it when he came up with his theory of the noumena (thing-in-itself)... only he didn't do with it what schopenhauer did. kant claimed this noumena was unknowable and stopped there, schopenhauer claimed it was knowable as a vitalistic force behind and beyond nature. this means he was a realist, not a nominalist, because he's posting a universal form of 'willing' that exists for all particular 'willing' things. this elevates the concept of the 'will' to something abstract and directly unknowable... or rather, it attempts to explain all individual actions as expressions of the same 'will'. then nietzsche comes along and keeps the basis of this theory but claims the 'will' is not just a will to live, but a will to power.

    from that point onward, the concept of the 'will' becomes even more abstract, as not only living things but inanimate matter too, also has a 'will'. here it becomes more and more difficult to talk specifically about the 'will' in philosophical terms because at this point, it's really moved into the field of the natural sciences; physics and chemistry.

    there is now no need to add to the concept a philosophical spin, since physics addresses the forces and processes that these philosophers were trying to identify.

    finally the doctrine of the 'will' has to either surrender to the sciences, or become even more metaphysical to account for and explain why there are such physical and chemical processes. one ends up right back where hume and kant began.

    the WTP theory is like an all-encompassing ontology that accounts for everything, and as such, accounts for nothing. one can't point to an instance in nature and say 'that's not an expression of the will to power." hence, the return to realism.

    nietzsche would claim that the WTP is expressed by human beings in their drive to overcome, expand, improve, seize control, etc., but then how would clearly irrational behaviors be explained... like in the case of a person commiting suicide? if the WTP is to account for that it has to redefine it's criteria.

    this is one of the reasons why the anthropomorphization of the concept is problematic. you end up back at physics and chemistry to account for it and have to dismiss the specialized notion that WTP is expressed only in certain kinds of human activity, as nietzsche would have it. now, even apparant expressions of weakness must also be some form of WTP, accordingly.

    now spinoza's idea of the 'conatus' is much more manageable than the german continentalist's theory of the 'will'. his is, for all intents and purposes, perfectly compatible with physics and chemistry. simply explained, power is a capacity to act. that's all. no distinction is drawn between strong and weak, unless by that we mean 'prohibited or not'. for spinoza there is no teleological standard for the WTP; things do not necessarily 'improve', as nieztsche surmised. they only change.


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    witchdoctor

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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by witchdoctor on Mon Feb 26, 2018 12:27 pm

    Zoot Allures wrote:
    witchdoctor wrote:the potential, or ability. The transforming, itself, is a use of power.

    i'll play. fuck it.

    a) it is impossible to know what an object is capable of doing. the object may have acted a certain way, performed a certain way, many times, or even all times, in the past... and yet that doesn't guarantee it will do it again in the future. therefore, to speak of something's 'potential' is meaningless.

    I wouldn't go as far as to say that that is false, but I would say that not only the potential can be quantified, but even theuncertainty can be quantified as well.


    if, on the other hand, on object can possess something about itself which can be guaranteed to prove a certain result when it acts, whatever it possesses must be quantifiable.

    if a characteristic or attribute about this object is quantifiable, it would be a certain, definite thing separate from the object which possesses it.

    think of a battery and its store of electrons.

    we can't say that the battery 'has' potential, because it wouldn't be the battery, but the electrons that produced the power. now, apply terms a) to the electrons... and you are back to square one.

    does the battery have the electrons that have the quarks that have the power that has the potential to produce movement?

    you see here that confusions arise when we speak about something 'having' power... about something being able to 'produce' power. this is why i insisted on the simplification; things are power, which is essentially movement, action, spread out across a field of ripples which, mysteriously, take the form of both particles and waves.

    that presents all kinds of common sense problems with logic, btw... especially aristotle's law of the excluded middle.  

    Whether you think of the battery as a unit, a system, or you break it down to its infinitesimal parts, things are energy. Everything is energy, and energy itself is not power. Power is the rate with which energy can transform. Something that can produce a big boom, or move really fast, etc, has a lot of power, but the thing itself is not power, and the big boom or the really fast speed are not power either. The capacity to do that is power.


    now see where metaphysics will get you? which doctor, witch doctor, told you metaphysics is good for you, anyway?

    I hear that things that are good for you keep the doctor away.


    yeah ordinarily the word 'capacity' is equivalent to 'potential', but do to our above conclusions we may have to now discard it. remember, to say something has a 'potential (capacity)' can only mean: if the laws of nature remain as they were a moment ago, object A may perform/act as it did at time B, before.

    i don't want to invest my metaphysical certainty on such guesses, for i am a lover of knowledge and wisdom and stuff.

    You would rather invest your metaphysics on something other than a model which has worked 100% of the times so far?
    I do realize the sentence above is a fallacy... but such is science.


    verily, i say that power is the object, and not what it 'does'... not what it might do.

    Leave aside the fact that I disagree, and answer... to what purpose? In other words, do carry on with your reasoning, for the love of knowledge and wisdom.

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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by Zoot Allures on Mon Feb 26, 2018 1:10 pm

    look man, i'm having a problem treating power or the potential for power as a property of something. i am utterly metaphysically confused. have mercy.
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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by witchdoctor on Tue Feb 27, 2018 7:35 am

    Mitra-Sauwelios wrote:what if those laws are really only that, laws, nomoi, customs? Even if those customs have been obeyed flawlessly since a few nanoseconds after the (last) Big Bang, they must have been "made" first.

    Does the tortoise walk slowly because it can't go fast, or because it wants to walk slowly?


    In the beginning there was nothing,
    And it didn't like itself,
    So it started dreaming up this Other
    Most unlike itself.

    The nothing as self-disvaluing One? The Other then indeed as self-valuing--many. Logically.

    Thing as a consequence of self-disvaluing nothing...
    Could nothing disvalue? Rather, it would no-value.
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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by witchdoctor on Tue Feb 27, 2018 8:20 am

    Magnus Anderson wrote:
    Does that mean that rocks want power?

    If presented with a sillicon-based life form, would I be able to see it as a life form?


    So WTP means that everything in the universe is willing power? Even our hands? Our hands want power? They want to become independent and powerful? They don't want to be slaves to humans?

    Power is potential to transform. I would think that hands want power.
    Whether or not they would want to become independent is an imposition of your own values upon the exercise of thinking about what a hand might want.
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    Magnus Anderson

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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by Magnus Anderson on Tue Feb 27, 2018 3:24 pm

    witchdoctor wrote:[Zoot says] that things don't have power, they are power.

    I say things are energy, and what we call power is the potential or ability to transform, i.e. disequilibrium.

    I disagree with Zoot who says "things don't have power, they are power" and I agree with Witch Doctor who says "things aren't power, power is something things have".

    However . . .

    Zoot wrote:so it's the potential of changing that's the power? not what energy transforms into, but the transforming itself?

    hmm. that means the more powerful something is, the more it changes. seems to me that merely changing can't be an indication of power. this speculation is metaphysical of course since we aren't asking about definitive quantities but processes, like change. the safe way to go... especially to avoid frivolous semantics, is to stick with the orginal thesis; that power is a capacity to perform work through a distance.

    . . . I disagree with Witch Doctor's claim (if that's what his claim is) that power is the potential of the thing to be changed and I agree with Zoot's impression that mere change can't be an indication of power.

    Power is the potential of the object to act in some way.
    The object itself is not power. It's also not energy.

    Witch Doctor wrote:Not even the transforming, itself, but the potential, or ability. The transforming, itself, is a use of power.

    I agree that power is the potential to act and not the act itself.
    It is a potential and not something actual.

    No, the more powerful something is, the greater ability to affect change. The difference is subtle but very important.

    I can accept the definition that power is the potential of the object to cause change (in itself or in other things.)

    Zoot wrote:a) it is impossible to know what an object is capable of doing. the object may have acted a certain way, performed a certain way, many times, or even all times, in the past... and yet that doesn't guarantee it will do it again in the future. therefore, to speak of something's 'potential' is meaningless.

    Does that mean that intelligence in general is meaningless? Since that's what intelligence is about. It is about making predictions based on what happened in the past; predictions that are never absolutely certain in the sense that it is never impossible for them to turn out to be wrong.

    We know that humans have no potential to see if they have no eyes. According to your logic, this proposition is meaningless. Not only is it meaningful, it is very much true. And you will agree with that.

    you see here that confusions arise when we speak about something 'having' power... about something being able to 'produce' power. this is why i insisted on the simplification; things are power, which is essentially movement, action, spread out across a field of ripples which, mysteriously, take the form of both particles and waves.

    You just have to understand the words. Not throw them away and replace them with words that cannot really replace them.

    Power isn't movement. It isn't action.

    verily, i say that power is the object, and not what it 'does'... not what it might do.

    That would be using words in an unconventional manner. You can do that but others won't follow.
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    Magnus Anderson

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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by Magnus Anderson on Tue Feb 27, 2018 3:35 pm

    Witch Doctor wrote:I would think that hands want power.

    I would argue that the property represented by the word "want" is inapplicable to the concept that is represented by the word "hand".

    Hands do not have wants.

    I challenge you to define the word "want".
    Good luck with that Wink
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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by witchdoctor on Tue Feb 27, 2018 5:10 pm

    Magnus Anderson wrote:
    Witch Doctor wrote:I would think that hands want power.

    I would argue that the property represented by the word "want" is inapplicable to the concept that is represented by the word "hand".

    Hands do not have wants.

    I challenge you to define the word "want".
    Good luck with that Wink


    The only part of your body which you control is your skeletal muscle cells. That alone is enough for your conscious self to declare itself the ruler of your body!

    Regardless of what you decide, every cell of your body is alive, and wants.

    We need not define the word "want". We need to define the word "hand".
    Smile
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    witchdoctor

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    Re: What is the Will to Power?

    Post by witchdoctor on Tue Feb 27, 2018 5:33 pm

    Magnus Anderson wrote:

    . . . I disagree with Witch Doctor's claim (if that's what his claim is) that power is the potential of the thing to be changed and I agree with Zoot's impression that mere change can't be an indication of power.

    No, not change. The ability or potential to effect change.

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