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The Flame of EternityAn Interpretation of Nietzsche's Thought$
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Krzysztof Michalski

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780691143460

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691143460.001.0001

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The Death of God

The Death of God

(p.75) VI The Death of God
The Flame of Eternity

Krzysztof Michalski

, Benjamin Paloff
Princeton University Press

This chapter turns to Plato's Phaedo as well as the Gospel of Matthew: two narratives about death, and two visions of human nature. Christ's cry on the cross, as told by Matthew, gives voice to an understanding of human life that is radically different from that of Socrates. For Phaedo's Socrates, the truly important things in life are ideas: the eternal order of the world, the understanding of which leads to unperturbed peace and serenity in the face of death. The Gospel is the complete opposite: it testifies to the incurable presence of the Unknown in every moment of life, a presence that rips apart every human certainty built on what is known, that disturbs all peace, all serenity—that severs the continuity of time, opening every moment of our lives to nothingness, thereby inscribing within them the possibility of an abrupt end and the chance at a new beginning.

Keywords:   Plato, Phaedo, Gospel of Matthew, Socrates, Jesus Christ, human nature, death, human certainty, peace, serenity

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