- Amor fati
Amor fati is a
Latinphrase that loosely translates to "love of fate" or "love of one's fate". It is used to describe an attitude in which one sees everything that happens in one's life, including sufferingand loss, as good. That is, one feels that everything that happens is destiny's way of reaching its ultimate purpose, and so should be considered good. Moreover, it is characterized by an acceptance of the events that occur in one's life. It is almost identical to the Jewish concept of Gam Zu Letova (this too is for the best).
The phrase is used repeatedly in
Nietzsche's writings and is representative of the general outlook on life he articulates in section 276 of " The Gay Science", which reads,
I want to learn more and more to see as beautiful what is necessary in things; then I shall be one of those who make things beautiful. "Amor fati": let that be my love henceforth! I do not want to wage war against what is ugly. I do not want to accuse; I do not even want to accuse those who accuse. "Looking away" shall be my only negation. And all in all and on the whole: some day I wish to be only a Yes-sayer.
Quote from "Why I Am So Clever" in "Ecce Homo", section 10 ["Basic Writings of Nietzsche". trans. and ed. by Walter Kaufmann. 1967. p. 714.] :
My formula for greatness in a human being is "amor fati": 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—all idealism is mendaciousness in the face of what is necessary—but "love" it.
Outside of Nietzsche's works, the phrase can be found in works as far removed from German philosophy as
Frank Herbert's " God Emperor of Dune".
It is also mentioned in
Hermann Hesse's novel " The Glass Bead Game". There, it is used to describe part of Joseph Knecht's attitude towards life.
This phrase was also seen on the opening credits of the "
The X-Files" Season 7 Episode 2 entitled "The Sixth Extinction II: Amor Fati" instead of the usual phrase "The Truth Is Out There".
Thus Spoke Zarathustra
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