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Friedrich Nietzsche was born in Germany in 1844 and died in 1900. His major works included: The Gay Science (1882), Thus Spoke Zarathustra (1883-1885), Beyond Good & Evil (1886), On the Genealogy of Morals (1887). (Editor ~ Rolly Montpellier-BoomerWarrior).

Is Man The Cruelest Animal?

The “Will to Power” is a prominent concept in the philosophy of Nietzsche.

The will to power describes what Nietzsche may have believed to be the main driving force in humans: achievement, ambition, the striving to reach the highest possible position in life.

Our natural desire is to dominate and reshape the world to fit our own preferences and assert our personal strength to the fullest degree possible. Struggle, through which individuals achieve a degree of power commensurate with their abilities, is the basic fact of human existence.

Published on Dec 21, 2012
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Nietzsche goes on to expand the concept of Will to Power to include the pleasure of feeling power and the hunger to overpower one’s social and physical environment. He then connects the pleasure in the feeling of power with the desire for cruelty. From this philosophical bent emerges the question: is man the cruelest animal?

Unlike other species, humans know when they’re being cruel. We can quash our morality and our better instincts and choose to be cruel in some circumstances. It’s that knowing right from wrong and intentionally deciding to be wrong to gain some benefit that makes man the worst animal for cruelty.

In another one of his works, Nietzsche shows how “self-deception is a particularly destructive characteristic of Western culture.” This concept resonates loudly with modern civilization’s inertia in dealing with climate change. There is no greater manifestation of self-deception than the delusional behavior of climate change deniers so heavily funded by the fossil fuel industry.

Is man the cruelest animal
Source: Steve Cutts YouTube video, Man


Rolly Montpellier,

Rolly Montpellier is the Founder and Managing Editor of BoomerWarrior.Org.

Rolly is also a registered Climate Leader (Climate Reality Leadership Corps) a blogger, an activist and a Climate Change presenter.

BoomerWarrior is for the socially aware and politically conscious; for the change-makers and thought-provokers; for the light and young at heart; for anyone willing and courageous enough to move forward. 


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  1. Neitsche was writing a 150 years ago. Much of his interpretation of life changed with the end of WWII and the Cold War.

    I have faith that in the new millennium, humans will learn to work together for our mutual benefit because the quest for ‘power’ and ‘control’ only works when people are ignorant of the facts. Despite the best efforts of many power brokers like the Koch brothers, ignorance is close to being stamped out… A few more generations and I expect things will be very different on planet earth.

    Keep the faith…

    • James – I wish I could be as positive and optimistic as you are about our “humanity” rising to the occasion in a few more generations. In a few more generations, let’s say 50 years from now, I envisage a deterioration on planet Earth that will bring out the worse in mankind. By 2050, world population will reach 9 billion making the struggle for depleting resources even more confrontational than it is now. Not to mention the environmental degradation that is spiraling out of control. Recent scientific reports are indicating that we have grossly underestimated the near-future impacts of climate change – by some 60 years I think I saw somewhere yesterday.

      Sorry about being so realistic.


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