To pick up where I left off in the last Nietzsche node:

Man is something that is to be surpassed.

In spite of rampant goofiness when it comes to scholars interpreting Nietzsche, he's pretty obvious about what he means most of the time. The above statement refers to what is probably Nietzsche's favorite idea: That of the SUPERMAN.

That's right, a crazy philosopher is responsible for at least inventing the identity for the Man of Steel. But it really wasn't anybody anything like Christopher Reed at all that he was talking about.

No, Nietzsche was talking about The X-Men; in fact, the new X-Men movie is probably one of the better possible modern interpretations of what Nietzsche saw as necessarily our future. He didn't claim to know what the SuperMan could do, or how the change would come about; he only steadfastly insisted that Mankind has got to evolve; there's no choice; there's no static spot on the Great Wheel where you can just rest on your laurels and stop growing up. His lambasting of the State and various restrictive or unnatural institutions stems from his belief that people like that, fatcats in priest's robes or CEO's in marketing meetings, will be the ones to oppose the changes that will bring about the Superman--the next evolutionary step up the human ladder.

I'm sure some people were pretty pissed when we stopped being monkeys, too. Hell, for one thing, monkeys can get as much nookie as they can handle without a moral majority stuffed up their asses. But I digress.

What side would you be on if your children--or mine--suddenly develop telepathy? Or learn to fly? Will you let them be crushed by the current power-structure? Or will you do what you can to pave the way for Nietzsche's X-Men?
Alright, Here we go:

Nietzsche would not think that the X-men were an approximation of his Ubermensch.

First, Nietzsche is by design not obvious about what he means ever. He speaks directly to this point in his discussion of Masks. Nietzsche felt that people often wear a mask that hides their inner thoughts, and further they do so in a number of ways: they will hide behind the appearance of being profound when there exist no depth of understanding behind their words. Intuitively, we can see this mechanism at work. Whether it’s the PHB who spouts lingo and can’t understand why implementing his latest brainstorm is “so hard,” or the annoying poet-type at last Fridays party who was going off on the hot topic du jour. The inverse is also prevalent, people who use simplicity in manner and language while maintaining a hidden message of startling clarity and scope. Nietzsche is truly a past master of obfuscation.

This works entirely within the general framework of Nietzsche’s project: the whole point is not to lead the reader to accepting Nietzsche’s conclusions based on so much blind faith, rather the free thinker by working through Nietzsche’s problems, independently and inevitably comes to their own individual conclusion.

Second, Nietzsche’s project is not based in the science of evolution, but in the ethical understanding of why humans exist and how they can coexist. Nietzsche is NOT looking for homo sapiens sapiens sapiens. The superman is not physically different from you or me. Instead the superman is the one who has a different self determined moral paradigm. No lasers out the eyes, and no enslaving of the masses.

If you insist on making a pop culture comparison, I believe Hannibal Lecter represents a better, though flawed, example of the Superman. Hannibal, especially in the last book, is tied to a strong moral code, the fact that his personal code of behavior is abhorrent to society and the state, is literally no concern of his. He has within reason elevated himself through focus and meditation techniques into a man of great talents, but what separates him and makes a superman isn’t these mental and physical achievements, but his rejection of the prevalent morality. Example: There is a sick yet concise logic inherent in eating a deer hunter’s liver. But it goes against everything we hold as acceptable recourse.

Personally PureDoxyk I suggest reading the Case of Wagner- Nietzsche himself addresses these issues.

A final note,

It is the defect of allegory and symbolism to set up the general above the individual, the abstract above the concrete, the idea above the person. I hold the contrary: to me the value of the sunset is not that it suggests to me ideas of the infinit; rather, infity itself aquires value to me only because I have seen it ( and other matters besides) in the sunset... and so have forcasted its perfections.

E.R. Eddison

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