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Single Idea 20248

[catalogued under 23. Ethics / A. Egoism / 1. Ethical Egoism]

Full Idea

Whatever they say about their 'egotism', people nevertheless do nothing their whole life long for their ego, but instead for the phantom ego that has formed in the heads around them and been communicated to them.

Gist of Idea

People do nothing for their real ego, but only for a phantom ego created by other people


Friedrich Nietzsche (Dawn (Daybreak) [1881], 105)

A Reaction

Nietzsche has a vision of true devotion to the ego as healthy, and so (I would say) does Aristotle, though the two might disagree about the details. I want to live among people who work on themselves, not those who always sacrifice themselves.

Book Reference

Nietzsche,Friedrich: 'Dawn (Daybreak)', ed/tr. Smith, Brittain [Stanford 2011], p.72