In a letter Nietzsche made the following comment about Spinoza; "I am utterly amazed, utterly enchanted! I have a precursor, and what a precursor! I hardly knew Spinoza: that I should have turned to him just now, was inspired by “instinct.” Not only is his overtendency like mine—namely to make all knowledge the most powerful affect—but in five main points of his doctrine I recognize myself; this most unusual and loneliest thinker is closest to me precisely in these matters: he denies the freedom of the will, teleology, the moral world-order, the unegoistic, and evil. Even though the divergencies are admittedly tremendous, they are due more to the difference in time, culture, and science. In summa: my lonesomeness, which, as on very high mountains, often made it hard for me to breathe and make my blood rush out, is now at least a twosomeness."

Beyond offering opinions but rather by employing textual references, how do the two philosophers compare in their thinking and in specifically which aspects?


Here is a book I just found after doing a search for Wagner and Spinoza “Goethe, Nietzsche, Wagner: Their Spinozan Epics of Love and Power” by T.K. Seung. https://www.amazon.com/Goethe-Nietzsche-Wagner-Their-Spinozan-ebook/dp/B00ELMFQ4S

Nietzsche was always learning from Wagner, whatever the ups and downs of their friendship. The reviews are interesting. I have never read this book but the idea for this book is not at all surprising to me. Who knows, it may contribute to the OPs research.

Something just hit me. This, shall we say, non-standard Spinoza can be brought back into religion by Ernst Bloch. This is why “Marx and the Bible” by Jose Miranda, ends with the work of Ernst Bloch, who was Jewish by birth and a big fan of Goethe. https://www.amazon.com/Marx-Bible-Critique-Philosophy-Oppression/dp/1592444857

In others words, there could be a true New Jerusalem and immortality right here. Ilyenkov, Bloch, Spinoza. And I think an ethics could be constructed too.

But it won’t come about automatically, behind our backs as in Hegel (Spirit), but through work, shaping, reproduction, ie Ilyenkov’s “ “thinking body”, in the context of his “activity philosophy”. (Bill Bowring, Birbeck College).

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    Spinoza defined human nature as 'conatus' or the urge to sustain one's life. A synonym for this urgency in Spinoza's terminology is 'desire'. When a person is conscious of their desire Spinoza called it 'appetite' . Nietzsche speaks of the 'will to power's as the root of human existence. That is one hint. A second, Spinoza speaks of 'mens aquiescentia', Nietzsche of 'Amor fanti'. Locate those two and you may 'see' the rest. Thank you for participating.
    – user37981
    Jul 9 '20 at 22:58
  • @CharlesMSaunders. Hi. At first I did not know if that small “answer” there would Post, so I am sorry there is a repetition in the comments to the original question. Also I apologize for being rude to you in my comment last night. We are all here for the same reason, to learn more about these thinkers, and your question came just at the right time to catch my interest in some things I was working on.
    – Gordon
    Jul 9 '20 at 23:07

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