But ‘the other world’ is well hidden from humans, that dehumaned, inhuman world that is a heavenly nothing.
Nietzsche, Thus Spoke Zarathustra
As the ancient philosophical paradox about the non-being about which we still can speak, about ‘the other world’ we are able to speak, too, though the solely world known is this one. At least, Nietzsche talks about it.
We may justify such occurrence of ‘the other world’ in Nietzsche’s discourse as a way of refuting the cultural and religious meanings of it.
But how does ‘this’ world is known to us? From Nietzsche’s claim, we can deduce by opposition to ‘the other world’ that it is easy noticeable, humanly determined, and truly and earthy existent. Is it yet a by product of the ‘other world’ in this description? If we maintain an affirmative answer, then we should deny that the criticism of the other world is just a refutation of a cultural or religious vestige.
‘The other world’ is the bearer of a human attitude to an object of knowledge hardly met in our conception about ‘this world’. For instance, there are rarely the cases when we accept that the objects of knowledge could be hidden from us. They are considered so close to us that we feel free from questioning them. Also, they are all in our human sphere, so that almost never we commit to the seemingly strange Kantian perspective about their epistemological origin in the human intellect. Nonetheless, the objects of knowledge have not the privilege of being viewed in their dynamic aspect as it could be a world that will come in the future, so that we always prefer to reserve the movement to our daily activities and feelings and not the theoretical information.
Thus, in spite of the unknown character of ‘the other world’, it is needed for revolving a deep indifference to our supposed known world. A word that is in lack of any reference could provide a thoroughly reinterpretation of an epistemological habit. The productive force of the fear of contradictions testifies about the great power of the senseless notions to provide sense for our discourses. Therefore, Nietzsche’s criticism is in fact a positive manner to direct to a change in our conception about this world.
Properly speaking, it is not ‘this’ world, as if we could point to it in an ostensive manner. It should be called and understood as a world that shares with us all its content. It should be ours as a piece of land or as a house that is in our own property. We can leave our house and it is still ours, we can go through it, and we are designated as his owners by other persons. Accordingly, our world must accept to be left, to be the place we travel through and to be recognized as our world by other persons. Shortly, the world would be both one that contains us and one contained by us.
Certainly, such a world is not neutral to the subjectivity, as it is the world in a scientific or epistemological account. ‘The other world’ is not an objective one, too. One believer does not wait for a world that is not his own. The so called ‘heavenly kingdom’ is divided to all human beings and it is the place of their own rewards, but it is not conceived as a personal world.
Thus, the religious conception of the other world suggests a way of thinking of this world. We are in fact obliged to speak about a plurality of worlds that are to be attributed to each individual, though not all individuals can fulfill the requirements of ownership that were mentioned above as regards the example of a house. For a similar reason, Nietzsche’s substitution of God with the overman describes an effort and not a simple replacement.
Contrary to Nietzsche’s manifest purpose, the religious view of the other world could not be abolished by a simple refutation of God’s existence. It has to be maintained as a permanent support to the construction of a personal and not simply a solipsist world. Even if we qualify it as a dream or an illusion, the other world proves its necessity as a refugee from the more illusionary view that there exists an objective world that could save us from ourselves.