Nietzsche's famous test from the Gay Science titled Madman proclaims the death of God. I am trying to give a Christian reading to it, making a few changes in the text. Changes made to the text by me are given in red. Before starting the essay, I accept that it is a perverse reading of Nietzsche, but it can be fruitful.
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God is the real God. god is the image of God we have created. So the madman is proclaiming the death of god, which are many caricatures or images of the true God.
They are burying those gods after it is dead. And we have killed god.
We are all murders of this god. But the most important change I made from Nietzsche is that our responsibility is not to become god or God. It is to let the divine emerge. Or to experience that manifestation of the divine which always happens in the world. This goes with an intellectual understanding that we can’t have the caricature of the divine. Divine is beyond everything we can or will create.
But interestingly, that act was an influential one. It has happened. But it takes time for the light of the act to reach us. (Just as the light from the stars take millions of years to reach us). The act of that death of god has happened, but we have not still felt it or experienced it fully. We are still in the control of god and not in the embrace (here freedom is there) of God.
Madman sees the churches as the monuments and tombs of god unless it is ready to let God act and speak through them. The text of Nietzsche is over.
- What is the invitation for us based on a perverse reading of Nietzsche?
- Do similar invitations are given by many spiritual masters and authentic believers over the centuries?
- If the Christianity of his time (today maybe a little better, but a long way to go) was anywhere close to the Christianity of Jesus, would Nietzsche have uttered the same?