On Truth and Untruth : Selected Writings, by Nietzsche, Friedrich Wilhelm
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- ISBN: 9780061990465 | 0061990469
- Cover: Paperback
- Copyright: 11/9/2010
Nietzsche's celebrated essay, in which he argues that "truth" is an illusion. Those ideas commonly agreed to be truths, according to Nietzsche, are mere beliefs and arbitrary constructions of human thought. From the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy: "Scholars regard Nietzsche's 1873 unpublished essay, On Truth and Lies [the full title is "On Truth and Lies in a Non-Moral Sense"] as a keystone in his thought. In this essay, Nietzsche rejects the idea of universal constants, and claims that what we call "truth" is only "a mobile army of metaphors, metonyms, and anthropomorphisms." His view at this time is that arbitrariness prevails within human experience: concepts originate via the transformation of nerve stimuli into images, and "truth" is nothing more than the invention of fixed conventions for practical purposes, especially those of repose, security and consistency. Viewing human existence from a great distance, Nietzsche further notes that there was an eternity before human beings came into existence, and believes that after humanity dies out, nothing significant will have changed in the great scheme of things."