Nietzsche believed that for any human to experience true joy and happiness you must fall in love with the morality of your own life within the present moment, regardless of its ebbs and flows.
“My formula for greatness in a human being, is amor fati” ~ Friedrich Nietzsche
Amor fati literal translation is “love of fate”, meaning to embrace one’s fate.
The concept of amor fati is that
“one wants nothing to be different, not forward, not backward, not in all eternity. Not merely bear what is necessary, still less conceal it … but love it.”
For Nietzsche, life’s trials and tribulations acted as a gift. It provided human existence with meaning. Struggles morph into friendly donations to test ourselves that we embrace with open arms. The same goes for our enemies, rivals and competitors. Respect and love for our enemies is crucial to appreciate the challenge they bring in return. Nietzsche wants us to “say yes to life.” Rather than hide from it — embrace it head on.
There is this concept of ‘life-denying philosophies’, which are philosophies that attempt to soften or even erase both the pains and pleasures of this life. For Nietzsche, these were the most self-destructive life-denying philosophies. A life-denying philosophy encourages individuals to resent and discount this life and look forward to another. Life-denying philosophies are those which cause an individual to hold out for some “pie in the sky” future that will free them from all pain and sorrow.
In the modern context, this “pie in the sky” is the act of being dependent on external stimuli you have no control over to bail you out of an adverse situation. It’s the act of taking the path of least resistance, and often the most cowardice and comfortable.
Instead of taking this path Nietzsche proclaims we see mortality’s trials as something to struggle with and overcome. In the process, we become stronger for it and build the mental fortitude to withstand life’s sun and rain.
Amor fati is a very important concept to me. So important in fact I’ve written it on my chalkboard wall next to my bed to ensure I see it every day.
To me, amor fati means no matter what … keep moving forward.
No matter harm that may be done to you.
No matter what harm you may do unto others.
No matter someone close to you falls ill or die’s.
No matter if your mood is elation or depressed.
Keep. Moving. Forward.
Just like water.
No matter what’s around it, water eventually finds a way to overcome its obstacles.
I must be like water.
We must be like water.
And try and find love and peace in every moment of it.