The article propounds an interpretation of Nietzsche’s philosophy, in which the issue of illness would be instrumental. However, in contrast to any kind of reductionary biographism, the illness should be conceived as inextricably intertwined with the
thinking itself. Nietzsche’s own illness was initially nothing more than a personal problem, yet it soon influenced his whole life, forcing to forgo the academic career. Thus afflicted, the philosopher used his experience to develop a new view on corporeality, diametrically opposed to Cartesianism. In the post-Cartesian model, objective thinking and illness have nothing in common; either corporal suffering
exerts no influence upon thoughts, or the mind sinks into pure insanity. Whoever lost their faculties is still capable to stick to rationality, if only they accept the diagnosis, however subjectively unconvincing it would seem. Suspicious of the notion of truth, Nietzsche reverses the post-Cartesian model. Objective thinking, neatly separated from illness, as well as rational diagnoses appear to him as a fetish supporting those
who cannot deal with their own corporeality. They repress their weaknesses, assuming the unfounded belief in objective thinking, which can be practised irrespective of personal malaise. However, Nietzsche’s suffering, which recurred irregularly and had no detectable grounds, couldn’t be separated not only from thinking, but from life as such. The philosopher was thus lead to advance a concept of “diet”, construed as broadly as possible, including the selection of food, lectures and embraced thoughts. The diet is the uttermost refutation of diagnosis, as it treats the mind and the body as a unity changing in time. The illness, which accompanies life inevitably, serves as a permanent yardstick of quality of our thoughts. Moreover, it gives us the opportunity to experience pure becoming.