Subtitles section Play video Print subtitles This video is sponsored by NordVPN. Nord VPN is the leading virtual private network that protects your online identity whether you're at a coffee shop, airport or anywhere. We will talk more about NordVPN later in the video but for now let's get on with how to find your inner genius from the philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche. Friedrich Nietzsche was a German philosopher who was definitely a genius. He started to learn Greek alphabet and to play piano when he was only 3 years old, he was one of the brightest students and at age of 23, he was the youngest Professor of Greek Linguistics. He was a very close friend of the famous composer Richard Wagner and with other famous personalities and he later became one of the greatest philosophers of all time. He wrote several books, including “Thus Spoke Zarathustra”, “Beyond Good and Evil”, “The Birth of Tragedy”, “The Twilight of the Idols” and his teachings continue to shock the world, even today. For Nietzsche, history itself is a process of creating geniuses; each genius is somebody who creates the mental world in which his successors will live. In other words, the history of the world follows the work of the geniuses. Although Nietzsche's life took a tragic turn, he created a new mental world to inspire generations. His teachings inspire everyone who dreams of becoming a genius, helping them to find that inner voice to guide them throughout their life. According to Nietzsche, if you don't cultivate your inner genius, if you don't own yourself, you have lived a life of “laziness.” Certain steps in life can only be walked by you and only by discovering that inner genius can you walk that path, so to help you uncover your own path, in this video we bring you 7 ways in which you can find your inner genius, from the philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche. 1. Be yourself Nietzsche says “Be yourself! All that you are now doing, thinking, desiring, all that is not you”. According to Nietzsche, life is hopeless and meaningless without a true liberation from the chains of opinion and fear. If we remain captive in those chains, we would be dreary, wandering aimlessly in life. As Nietzsche said, nobody can build the bridge on which we must cross the river of life, but ourselves. Discovering more about ourselves helps us in better understanding our strengths, our hidden talents, our inner genius, and the source of our creativity. The best way to know all of these is to ask yourself: “What have you truly loved thus far? What has ever uplifted your soul, what has dominated and delighted it at the same time?” Analyse all of these and you will unveil the direction you need to take to unleash the power of your inner genius. No matter who you are, what your profession is, on which place on Earth you are, you should be able to know what you really love doing in life, what makes you really happy. For example, you may find out that what you truly loved was when you volunteered for a humanitarian cause, what uplifted your soul was the happy ending from your favourite movie, what has dominated and delighted your soul at the same time was when you were at work in a leading position, maximizing the resources of your team. Based on these findings, that person would be happiest if they take a direction in which they can be a leader of a community, a position from which they can make a positive impact, helping the people in that community. Here would lie their genius. In the same way, any of us can answer the questions regarding what we really love, what uplifts our soul, and use that to find our own direction and unleash our inner genius. 2. Be a genius of the heart Nietzsche says “Genius of the heart whose voice can climb into the underworld of any psyche, upon whose touch everyone departs richer, richer in himself, cracked wide open, more delicate, fragile, and broken, but full of hopes”. Nietzsche considered himself the last disciple of Dionysus, the God of Wine, fertility and madness in Greek mythology. He saw Dionysus as a gateway to the depths of human psychology, a way to understand the essence of human desires and emotions. In psychoanalysis, a Dionysian experience can be considered as a way to release subconscious desires and bring them to the surface. For example, a subconscious desire can be the desire to be romantically involved with someone you are not supposed to, like someone who is already married. The more we become aware of what is inside our subconscious, the more we can control it. The more we can control it, the more likely we are to make good decisions, and therefore the more psychologically healthy we become. Being like the God Dionysus as Nietzsche described him, is not for everybody: It is for those who dare to descend into the abyss of the human psyche like Nietzsche claimed he did. But, a more superficial self-analysis can still be useful for the majority of us. According to neuro-psychoanalysis, free association might be a great tool through which we can perform self-analysis on our own psyche. By free association, we can dissect our most intimate thoughts and feelings, we can go deep inside ourselves, and, by bringing subconscious desires to the surface, we can release our Dionysian nature and become “geniuses of the heart.” One method through which we can perform free association is journaling. If we write in our journal every day, without censoring ourselves, we can come to a deeper understanding of what bothers us every day and we can even find solutions to our most personal problems. For example, if you are stuck and unable to make a major life decision, say marrying your partner, choosing a better career or moving to another place, it can help to write the reasons you would or would not take each path. Evaluating their pros and cons, as well as your emotions towards them can help you make a more informed decision that's best for you in the long run. The more you know about your subconscious self, the more you know what makes you happy, what activities make you more creative. Our inner genius has everything to do with our creativity, as in our creativity lies our potential for growth and for leaving our legacy on the world. 3. Protect your genius from the herd Nietzsche says “What we've called universal values, what we've called truth, has always only ever been the personal expressions of those who promoted them”. Because we live in a society, we are blinded by certain standards and rules, we obey certain moral codes which control our behaviour. Although these invisible rules give us security, they also limit our individuality and creativity. As Nietzsche argues, we are controlled by a herd morality, which was created by the ruling class in order to control the poor. These societal values, what is good and what is bad are not given by a supernatural being like God, but rather, they are concepts invented by the ruling classes. Although many of these values have a positive influence over society overall, it is important to be more aware of them and investigate the way in which they control us, in order to educate ourselves, to become who we truly are and to find our inner genius; the source of our individuality and creativity. Millions of us are trapped in traditional religions and prejudices and, in our attempt to free ourselves, we can encounter tough opposition from people who kill their own creativity and dreams in order to conform to society and who feel insecure seeing other people pursuing their creative dreams. For example, if you are a young woman living in a country which encourages women to be only housewives, then you would likely face a lot of backlash and opposition when pursuing a career in science. According to Nietzschean philosophy, you should protect your inner individuality as a scientist and your creative spirit as a whole by continuing to practice science in spite of the opposition. Although you may never get the recognition and respect you deserve, your inner creativity, your genius, is the most important life force you have to fulfil you in the long run. Even if you are not allowed to go to school, you can borrow science books, keep up to date with developments in the news, and of course follow some of the many amazing science communicators right here on YouTube. To protect your inner genius, you must stop blindly following society's rules as they are not based on universal truths or values, they are all relative. 4. Genius is no accident Nietzsche says “Do not talk about giftedness, inborn talents! One can assume great men of all kinds who were very little gifted..”. We live in a society which considers a genius as being a rare phenomenon, which takes luck like being born in a special culture or in a special family, with a certain status, or being born 'gifted' at, say, music, art, maths, and so on. We often feel that they achieved the status of genius by accident, a miracle, or luck. We never look at what it is behind their success. This mentality of seeing a genius might prevent us from actually becoming one. There is a huge difference between what society considers being a genius and what being a genius really is. Following society's way of looking at geniuses as rare phenomena, as accidents which happen only in certain professions or circumstances might compromise your endeavour to develop your own inner genius. Therefore, it is important to disregard what is popular and focus on what ignites your own flame. If the thing that really excites you is making anime art using ancient printing techniques or dumpster diving for old technology to restore or upcycle, then great! Get out there and do it and ignore the haters telling you to stop because it's not 'normal'. Not to mention ignoring your inner voice telling you to feel embarrassed or shameful because your interests don't conform to current trends. Conforming almost never matters, and ultimately is less likely to lead to your personal happiness than pursuing the things you know bring you joy. 5. Don't resent geniuses if you want to become one Nietzsche says “Our vanity, our self-love, promotes the cult of the genius: for only if we think of him as being very remote from us, as a miraculum, does he not aggrieve us...”. We use the words “gifted”, “genius”, “one of a kind” because we want to protect ourselves - we do it to shield our own egos. We might consider it too hard to be like them, that it seems too much like hard work, so we say it's impossible. Often, when we decide someone is a genius, we automatically put a barrier on our own future endeavors. We think we might never get there, that we are incapable of doing that, so we called them “geniuses.” We think those people had an unfair start, that they were born with that particular talent, they were born in that certain country, in that certain family and so on. We wish we were more like them or at least wish we had those same advantages at the start. In this way, we do not take responsibility for our life and instead blame external factors for our failures. Instead of seeing genius as an out of reach target, we need to start evaluating their journey to see how they achieved the status of genius, to count the number of hours of work they put in, to evaluate the decisions they made in life and so on. Take Nietzsche, for example; You can call him a genius, but if he hadn't studied so much Greek linguistics and Greek philosophy, he wouldn't have been appointed to Basel university, he wouldn't have become part of Richard Wagner's inner-circle of famous artists and writers. All his great achievements were accomplished not because of some innate natural ability, but through effort and determination in spite of his fragile physical structure and his psychological vulnerabilities. Therefore, if you feel a particular intense interest towards a field, you need to put in all the effort you can to pursue that career. For example, imagine you work in a company and you have always envied a colleague who is an admired manager in your branch. You find yourself despising him and assuming his success is pure luck because of his innate talent to talk to people - a talent you believe you don't share. So don't try and play that game - Instead of fixating on how they are 'better' than you, you should focus on what you do better than them; Invest more time and energy into your work itself, into time management and self-discipline and you could become successful in your own individual way. Everyone's genius is unique so trying to measure your genius with another is an unfulfilling waste of time. 6. Learn to be diligent Nietzsche says “All had that diligent seriousness of a craftsman, learning first to form the parts perfectly before daring to make a great whole. They took time for it, because they got more pleasure from making something little or less important, than from the effect of the dazzling whole”. There are definitely people who appear naturally gifted and are better at a given activity than most other people. For example, even as a child Nietzsche showed a great talent for music and demonstrated great intellectual capabilities. However, these raw 'talents' were not enough in isolation: Talent is just the gateway to success, it is not success in and all itself. Nietzsche took the necessary steps to perfect them, until he became an excellent musician and composer, and a great scholar at the University of Basel. It is easy to say he was a genius, but if he hadn't perfected his talents, hadn't focused his energies on music, literature and philosophy, we would have never heard about him. This kind of person appears to us as a genius because we never saw them grow up or what they have been exposed to. When we use the word 'genius' or 'gifted' to describe an extraordinarily talented individual, there is an underlying implication that devalues any of the deliberate practice and effort that went into crafting the skill that the individual is now an expert in. We do not take into account that a 'gifted' musician spent most of their life playing, listening to, and composing music, we just call them a genius in order to avoid daring to do the hard work they've already done. Those people are not superhuman; all that separates them from us is their diligence to achieve greatness. Mastery can take many years to achieve, but 'genius' can be obtained by many of us. We all have different passions, what we usually call a hobby, but we rarely cultivate it to the fullest due to our low level of self-confidence. We all have the qualities necessary to become a genius, but not all of us have the right attitude. Before you declare for example that you are a terrible writer, you should practice writing a lot; Short stories, novels, articles, screenplays, Harry Potter fanfiction… anything your heart desires, all the while perfecting your style, comparing it with experts in your field and learning from the critique you receive. There is no shortcut, greatness requires your time and energy. 7. Be grateful and “clean” In our final quote from Nietzsche for this video, he says: “A man who possesses genius is insufferable unless he also possesses at least two other things: gratitude and cleanliness”. In spite of his daring and sometimes acerbic philosophy, Nietzsche was a gentle and sophisticated human being. Moreover, he was a very talented poet, piano player and composer, possessing great artistic skill. Nietzsche valued his friendships to extremes and he never compromised himself for money. He can be considered a good example of a grateful person because of his track record of being a great friend, and a clean person because of his pride to never compromise himself for money.