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Level-up Like a Übermensch

“I want to teach men the sense of their existence, which is the Übermensch, the lightning out of the dark cloud man.” ~Nietzsche


What does it mean to become “the lightning out of the dark cloud”?


It means harnessing your integrated shadow like a sword. It means using that sword like a razor and slicing through everything your species has taken too seriously hitherto. It means cultivating the raw hope that spills forth from that slicing and using it to upgrade higher consciousness and cosmic interconnectedness.


More importantly, it means realizing—balls to bones, ovaries to marrow—that everything is connected to everything else, that you are the pinnacle of that perception, and that you are responsible for the universe becoming aware of itself. You are God becoming self-aware. It means electrifying the dead bones of God, raising God up Lazarus-style, and becoming God’s puppet master.


Leveling-up like a Übermensch is no walk in the park. It’s not for the faint of heart. It’s a slog through the abyss. It’s a hot scythe through a cold heart. It’s a journey without a destination—shreds of torn worlds pieced together. It’s a moth falling headlong into a cocoon mistaken for fire. It’s a transformation that redefines Transformation.


Make everything your fault:

“Proceed on the hypothesis that everything you are is a lie and everything you know is wrong and try to disprove it.” ~Jed McKenna


Make Iteration your God. Then sacrifice yourself to that God. Make trial and error your whetstone. Accept that you are fallible and imperfect. Make mistakes, glorious mistakes. Rake your heart across the coals of Truth. Drag your comfortable ego kicking and screaming into the uncomfortable fires of Soulcraft.


As Mark Manson said, “Success is often a function of who is willing to suck at something the longest.”


Allow yourself to suck. Embrace the suck. Then transform that suck into succor. Make of it a salve, a magic elixir. Steal the crucial ingredients of pain, loss, and failure gained on the Hero’s Journey and mix it into a concoction that jolts you into wakefulness. Then dare to share it with the “tribe.”


Find the beast within you:

“People with courage and character always seem sinister to the rest.” ~Hermann Hesse


Dig into your darkness. Sink into the muck and mire of your mortality. Get dirty. Seek the Untermensch, the under man, the primordial roots, the humus of humanity. Tap it like a lodestone. Initiate it into the legion of yourself. Then let it teach you how to howl.


Your inner beast is your guiding blacklight out of the blinding light of cultural conditioning. Use its sharpened teeth to bite through the throat of your forefather’s flimsy platitudes. Use its claws to ground you in the beautiful symmetry of change. Use its keen ears to hear “a language older than words.”


Use its howl as a wakeup call, which strikes like a cobra and sinks its fangs into the ripened fruit of everything you’ve taken for granted. Use it to rock all boats, test all waters, flip all scripts, turn all tables, push all envelopes, and think outside of all cliche boxes. Use it to count coup on the gods.


Throw yourself into pain:

“Turn your life into a line of poetry written with a splash of blood.” ~Yukio Mishima


Pain is a whetstone. You are the blade. Sharpen yourself.


Let your blood, sweat, and tears mark the path, revealing that the journey was always the thing. Become a torn thing—torn between discipline and humor, courage and humility, passion and indifference.


The tearing is the thing. It’s in the tearing where you are the most human. Torn between flesh and spirit. Torn between living life to the fullest despite knowing you’re going to die. Torn between standing on earth and longing for the stars.


The tearing is your growth space. It’s the place where you craft your unique philosophy. It’s here you hone your soul, sharpen your character, and perfect your rebellion against absurdity. It’s where you develop a master strategy for playing the Infinite Game.


Take your sacred wound and hold it up like a trophy. You earned it!


Train like a warrior:

“Unless one is able to live fully in the present, the future is a hoax.” ~Alan Watts


Don’t let your future be a hoax. Grab the bull of the present by the horns and force it into a force to be reckoned with in the future.


There’s a terrible joy in self-conquest that those idle and stuck inside tiny comfort zones will never know. Self-conquest cannot come from a place of comfort. Just as a muscle cannot grow stronger by lifting a feather. The muscle needs to be torn. Likewise, the self needs to be torn so that it can be put back together again as a stronger thing.


As Colin Wilson said, “The comfortable life lowers man's resistance, so that he sinks into an unheroic sloth.”


Seek comfort in discomfort. Allow yourself to be heroic. Allow yourself to come alive despite a world that’s trying to keep you half dead. Rise up! Cultivate the warrior within. Force yourself into taking the Hero’s Journey.


Warriorship is a process not an endgame. It’s a means not an end. True warriors keep their mind-body-soul calibrated to the vicissitudes of life. They adapt and overcome. They go with the flow. But, like Aikido, it’s more of an elegant fight than a dance—Entropy and Life in lockstep, darkness and light in a yin-yang struggle. The only thing certain is that the dance must go on.


Transform like a phoenix:

“The Spiritual journey is not a career or a success story. It is a series of small humiliations of the false self that become more and more profound.” ~Jung


Cultivate rebirth. Practice resurrection. Humiliate your false selves on a daily basis.


Humiliate your culturally conditioned self. Humiliate your religious self. Humiliate your political self. Humiliate your very notion of Self. Then humiliate your concept of God.


Go through the iteration of yourself like an artist polishing his craft. Let outdated ideas fail. Let ancient truths faulter. Let old gods die.


Take your hard-earned ashes up the switchbacks. Seek the summit. Discover the underlying order in the overlaying disorder. Lay those ashes in the nest of the Phoenix where your rebirth can be self-actualized.


Create like a god:

“It had long since come to my attention that people of accomplishment rarely sat back and let things happen to them. They went out and happened to things.” ~Leonardo da Vinci


Life is less about getting what you want and more about making the best of what you get. Making the best of what you get is creating like a god. It’s using absurdity as an inkwell and nihilism as a paint palette.


When you’re creating like a god, everything becomes a piece on a chessboard. Everything is seen through the nonattached lens of the Infinite Game, and you are the gamemaster. The interconnected cosmos is your playground. The universe is your canvas. You manifest meaning despite meaninglessness. You create purpose despite pointlessness. You rise above the cosmic joke and laugh with a humor of the most high.


You become autonomous, contrarian, trailblazing. You’re able to create worlds between worlds. You free yourself to create, destroy, and recreate God. You gain the power to pivot. To interrogate rather than gravitate. To meditate rather than deify. You choose risk-taking over script-making. You don’t settle, you meddle. You mix it up. You kick up the dust and knock off the dross. You choose improvisation over tradition. You transcend the comfort zone through sincere nonattachment.


You realize that your true value is in your unique imagination. Everything else is moonshine. Your unique imagination is your potential. It’s your deepest longing to express your own values in the world. This uniqueness is your life’s purpose, your soul’s signature, your unmatched contribution to the human condition. Let it shine with the light of someone who is no longer pretending they’re not God.


Destroy all false gods:

“If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill him.” ~Lenji Yixyuan


The first duty of an Overman is to destroy all false gods.


What is a false god? Anything that attempts to pigeonhole infinity and then uses it to bludgeon people into falling into line out of fear is a false god. Anything claiming to be “the Truth” is a false god.


Any “Tao” claiming to be the eternal Tao is not the Tao. Any Buddha claiming to be the Buddha is false. Any “truth” that can be named is not the Truth.


The only God is Infinity itself. The only God is the infinite interconnectedness of all things. Anything else is a dogmatic derogatory stopgap and a blatant mockery of God.


Rise above the nonsense. Elevate yourself above the battlefield. Realize that you are the infinite interconnectedness becoming aware of itself. Honor it. Take responsibility for this awesome power.


Be audacious. Be impudent. Be insouciant. Get out of your own way by reconditioning your conditioning. Hang the religious gods from a cross. Get out from under the thousand-year-old oppression of gilded guilt, petty placation, and mock spirituality. Kill the tiny part of yourself that still believes it needs such parochial nonsense to survive.


As Plutarch stated, “The eye with which I perceive God is the same eye with which God perceives me.”


Man is God asleep. God is man awake. And a Übermensch is always awake.

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About the Author:

Gary Z McGee, a former Navy Intelligence Specialist turned philosopher, is the author of Birthday Suit of God and The Looking Glass Man. His works are inspired by the great philosophers of the ages and his wide-awake view of the modern world.


This article (Level-up Like a Übermensch) was originally created and published by Self-inflicted Philosophy and is printed here under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Gary Z McGee and It may be re-posted freely with proper attribution, author bio, and this statement of copyright.


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