Philosophy Essay: Nietzsche and the Root of Herdsmen Behavior

Updated: Nov 3, 2019


The theory of the herdsman, described at length in several of Nietzsche’s works, describes a person who lives a life devoid of following their true passion, choosing instead to live a life of monotony and futility. Yet, does his explanation truly encompass the myriad of things that can put out the fire in someone’s soul to follow their innermost desires? Could it be that their behavior is shaped by a lack of opportunities that were fashioned from the failures in their life? The world is set up so only the ones who do not struggle to survive can have the time to pursue their higher passions. This unfortunately has created an extremely uneducated populace who live pay check to paycheck just to make ends meet. If we could build a world that gave everyone since their birth, an equal chance at survival, it would theoretically give more people the ability to reach the level of passionate pursuit that Nietzsche idolized. This would give everyone the time, money, and education to live their highest aspirations. Instead of helping by championing for better educational methods or fair wages for all of humanity, he vilified the common man. He compared him to an animal and described him as mediocre. He pompously proclaimed they were unworthy of profound thought and were following only an animal instinct with no individual morals. If you dissect his theories, you realize he had a complete disdain for common men and a classist view of humanity. He never caught the small nuances necessary to see the problems which need to be further investigated. In all his books, he never gave any genuine explanation as to why there were these extreme behavioral differences between herd mentality and the great thinkers. Like a madman, he declared his misrepresentations full force, and in doing so, he failed to write a comprehensive philosophical theory that could have helped humanity create more noble men. Read the rest of the pdf here.

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