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The Celebrated Tragedies of Good and Evil

Is good and evil locked in a painful yet necessary and eternal conflict? What else did inform the competition between epicureanism and stoicism? What glorifies suffering, as in religion, with the promise of higher reward and what abhors suffering as alien to a man who was created to be happy. From tragedies to romanticism the trace of the contradiction yet inevitable struggle between evil and good has persisted throughout human history. If you walk in the streets of modern cities, you are going to see the sharp contrast between religious asceticism bordering on fanaticism, through things like overnight religious worship functions and human pleasure through things like discotheques in night clubs. These are not new things in the history of man, after all, in old Greece, Stoics took pain lovingly as atonement while Epicureans enjoyed the worldly pleasures. Sophists found pleasure in the art of argumentation; not very different from the current world of law and its practice. 

Commenting on some of these matters the Germany controversial philosopher, Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche precariously circumnavigated between classical Athenian tragedies, an art form that transcended the pessimism and nihilism of what he perceived as a fundamentally meaningless world. The Greek spectators, by looking into the abyss of human suffering and affirming it, passionately and joyously affirmed the meaning of their own existence. They knew themselves to be infinitely more than petty individuals, or contemporary common folk, finding self-affirmation not in another life, not in a world to come, but in the terror and ecstasy alike celebrated in the performance of tragedies. Nietzsche discusses the history of the tragic form and introduces an intellectual dichotomy between the Dionysian and the Apollonian. Let’s not forget that for Dionysianism, reality was conceived as being chaotic, disordered and undifferentiated by forms while to the Apollonians reality was prototypically ordered and differentiated by forms. For Nietzsche, life always involves a struggle between these two elements, each battling for control over the existence of humanity. In Nietzsche's words, "wherever the Dionysian prevailed, the Apollonian was checked and destroyed and wherever the first Dionysian onslaught was successfully withstood, the authority and majesty of the Delphic god, Apollo exhibited itself as more rigid and menacing than ever." Yet neither side ever prevails due to each containing the other in an eternal, natural check, or balance. So what new did Nietzsche say? And what new can we say today? We are seeing same old things, competition between what is perceived to be good and evil. I not think those who go to night cubs to have fun consider it to be evil neither are those who go for overnight religious functions. But either of the two perceives the other as indulging in things that do not matter. Is good and evil locked in a permanent conflict? And decides what becomes evil and what becomes good in human life? 
The Celebrated Tragedies of Good and Evil The Celebrated Tragedies of Good and Evil Reviewed by Ibrahim Magara on May 27, 2016 Rating: 5

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