Ye, formerly known as Kanye West, has been on my mind lately. Antisemitism aside, his dogmatic belief in Christianity sets off the anti-religiousness I embody. However, one particular quote from an interview resonated with me.
There is no ifs, woulds, coulds, shoulds. It just is and we just are.Ye from Kanye West: ‘Jesus Is King’ and Iconic Sunday Service 1
A thought that returns to me. A new ontology of action. As with Buddha2, the ontology must be fashioned out of Ye.
In The Ethical Imperative3, I make the claim –
Because Ought is the fundamental IsThe Ethical Imperative
To ground the Moral inside the Ethical. At last, there’s an incentive for goodness. It is simply what one truly wants.
Hence, the distinction between Authentic Goodness and Perceived Goodness. Consider the latter in its blatant caricature. A celebrity engaging in charity solely to cultivate a positive image. We all condemn this, and rightfully so. Goodness resides not in the act but in its intentions. Kant claims victory over the objective scholars4 here.
Most acts of goodness, although not immediately clear, are driven by such slave moralistic motives. At a fundamental psychological level, goodness is a matter of affirming one’s identity. Virtue as a matter of validating one’s virtuousness.
The Messiah Complex5, including the White Saviour, is a mainstream example. Another is the Beauty and the Beast paradigm. The woman attempts to fix the abusive man, as to affirm her feminine patriarchal identity.
In modern politics, the left is a perpetrator of such contingent goodness. When a leftist deplores a billionaire, there is a belief in the inherent goodness of intentions. As a radical leftist myself, I accept, the billionaire often has engaged in unethical action. However, the leftist would have done the same in similar circumstances. If authentic goodness cannot be exhibited, relative to one’s circumstances, all outcries fade into hypocrisy6.
Then, what is Authentic Goodness? Good as consequence of being. As one acts, to merely be, and good transpires as a natural consequence. Good done reflexively, for it’s own sake. In contrast to an action that should be done, for that is categorically good.
Reason acts on virtue. Abolishing reason is the return to pure virtue.
Flow – a state of concentration or complete absorption with the activity at hand and the situation. Csikszentmihalyi’s greatest contribution. Separating the faulty connotation with happiness, flow ties into the ontology of the subject.
What if living itself was complete absorption with reality? To borrow from the Eternal Recurrence7 – imagine every pain and every joy and every thought and sigh and everything unutterably small or great in your life, all affirmed in succession. No wars to be waged. No culprits to be accused.
The most popular, and misconstrued, Nietzschean aphorism: What does not kill me makes me stronger. The critique, when the maxim is taken at face value, holds true. For instance, psychological trauma always makes people unfree; thus weaker. But context, as always, remains important.
For Nietzsche, a foundational freedom is necessary for the aphorism. To draw from The Three Metamorphoses8, one must be a child for it to be applied onto their ontology. The capacity of experiencing the most difficult of emotions, if found lacking, leaves the aphorism inadmissible.
Ye is the perfect example of how the ontology is inapplicable, at times dangerous, without necessary psychological emancipation. He has made clear, time after time, that he says what he feels – that he just is. But I disagree.
Perhaps in times of artistic creation, Ye may just have been the prototypical Nietzschean Artist of post-enlightenment. Apart from those moments, he embodies a false persona; one inadvertently determined by the trauma and conditions he suffers from.
Like how Ye, known for radical progressive views on African American discrimination in the States, turns the table on individuals of Jewish Ethnicity. He fought monsters, only to see himself become one9.
To employ the references in Stronger10 Ye, like others, needs a free ontology. Although the explicit details of its attainment have not been worked out, I can offer one hint.
Emancipation over Enforcement.
- From youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QuOCvKvrwI8
- Krishna, N. (2023). The Non-Buddha: A Metaphysical Conception of the Virtuous https://niranjankrishna.in/2023/06/19/the-non-buddha-a-metaphysical-conception-of-the-virtuous/
- Krishna, N. (2023). The Ethical Imperative https://niranjankrishna.in/2023/07/11/the-ethical-imperative
- Utilitarians; a Nietzsche reference
- Something Ye himself does
- Krishna, N. (2023). To Mankind https://niranjankrishna.in/2023/06/24/to-mankind/
- “The heaviest burden: “What, if some day or night, a demon were to steal after you into your loneliest loneliness and say to you: ‘This life, as you now live it and have lived it, you will have to live once more and innumerable times more; and there will be nothing new in it, but every pain and every joy and every thought and sigh… must return to you—all in the same succession and sequence—even this spider and this moonlight between the trees and even this moment and I myself. The eternal hourglass of existence is turned over again and again—and you with it, speck of dust!’ Would you not throw yourself down and gnash your teeth and curse the demon who spoke thus? Or have you once experienced a tremendous moment when you would have answered him: ‘You are a god, and never have I heard anything more divine!’ If this thought were to gain possession of you, it would change you as you are, or perhaps crush you. The question in each and every thing, “do you want this once more and innumerable times more?” would lie upon your actions as the greatest weight. Or how well disposed would you have to become to yourself and to life to crave nothing more fervently than this ultimate eternal confirmation and seal?”
- “The child is innocence and forgetting, a new beginning, a game, a self-rolling wheel, a first movement, a sacred Yes. For the game of creation, my brothers, a sacred Yes is needed: the spirit now wills his own will; the world’s outcast now conquers his own world.”
- Krishna, N. (2023). To the Critics of SocietyTo Mankind https://niranjankrishna.in/2023/07/04/to-the-critics-of-society/
- Ye, Stronger https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PsO6ZnUZI0g