This sample essay on Ingenious Pain provides important aspects of the issue and arguments for and against as well as the needed facts. Read on this essay’s introduction, body paragraphs, and conclusion.
The book Ingenious Pain by Andrew Miller takes place during The Enlightenment of the 18th century. This dramatic novel portrays James Dyer, the main character, is born in 1739 without the feeling of pain. In the eight parts of the story, the structure begins near the end in which an autopsy is taken place of James dyer, who died in 1772.
The climax of the story is not of his death, but rather the metamorphosis of his human suffering. This change connects with Friedrich Nietzsche theory of pain. In pain there is as much wisdom as in pleasure: like the latter it is one of the best self preservatives of a species”. His theories of suffering, hardships, and pain allow us to understand the goodness of pain. The metamorphosis of Andrew Miller broaden our views in the importance of pain and teach readers important themes essential for growth in life.
Dyer’s metamorphosis of feeling is prevalent as the novel progresses: From no emotion to insanity; from insanity to compassion. In the beginning James Dyer’s life, he is born in Blind Yeo, an English village.
He makes no sound when he is born because he a born without the feeling of pain. He is perceived quite unusual to his family, siblings, and peers from school. He does not talk until he is 11 years old, he has unusual blue eyes in the family, and he does not display any form of emotion.
Because of this he lacks empathy, the essence of all human qualities. As his parents die from Smallpox, he is unhindered by the traumatic event of his family. His inability to feel pain also disallows him to feel pleasure. This connects to Friedrich Nietzche theory of pain.
He theorized, ”But what if pleasure and pain should be so closely connected that he who wants the greatest possible amount of the one must also have the greatest possible amount of the other, that he who wants to experience the ‘heavenly high jubilation,’ must also be ready to be ‘sorrowful unto death’? ” As the German philosopher suggests, James Dyer’s inability to feel any form of pain disallows him to attain any form of pleasure. For instance, Andrew Miller demonstrate Dyer’s inability to experience pleasure.
Dyer has sex with the Collin twins, but feels nothing. To achieve pain is to achieve pleasure. One can easily relate to the torture of schooling; overcoming great pain brings great pleasure of success. Needless to say, James Dyer becomes captivated by “books of anatomy, books of maps, books of experiments books of astronomy, geometry” and later becomes a successful surgeon (Miller 120). This is not an issue of success, but of pleasure. Although there may be positive aspects of his inability to feel pain, his metamorphosis eventually counter-weigh it.
As James Dyer changes throughout the novel, it portrays the essentiality of pain. The man who is guided by concepts and abstractions only succeeds by such means in warding off misfortune, without ever gaining any happiness for himself from these abstractions. And while he aims for the greatest possible freedom from pain, the intuitive man, standing in the midst of a culture, already reaps from his intuition a harvest of continually inflowing illumination, cheer, and redemption — in addition to obtaining a defense against misfortune.
To be sure, he suffers more intensely, when he suffers; he even suffers more frequently, since he does not understand how to learn from experience and keeps falling over and over again into the same ditch. -Friedrich Nietzsche Later in the book we learn that James Dyer starts to become human. In part 6, we see the beginning of Dyer’s experience to the world of pain. Julius Lestrade sees the start of this change when Mary reaches into Dyer’s chest. In Lestrade’s view, “There is no blood; the flesh parts like water, like sand” (Miller 123). He does not want to help Dyer because he feels an unusual force preventing him from going in.
Dyer feels like he is on fire from inside and out. He starts to become insane. Later Mr. Swallow sends Dyer to a lunatic asylum in England, where his pain continues to increase. Dyer begins to feel the old injuries of his leg and hands and remembers the loss of Mary. Augustus Rose arrives to help the inmates through art. He castes them into a William Shakespeare A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Dyer falls in love with Dot Flyer during the play and has sex with her. He experiences pleasure for the first time. Dot dies of a seizure and Dyer, again, grieves for someone who he truly loves.
As he is dismissed from the asylum, he senses that Mary is waiting for him. Friedrich Nietsche connects with Dyer’s pain by emphasizing the importance of suffering. He states, “The discipline of suffering, of great suffering – do you not know that it is this discipline alone that has produced all the elevations of humanity so far? ” Although pain and suffering is cruel, it is essential to produce humanity. For without pain there is no humanity. As Dyer becomes capable of feeling pain, he also gains the capability to love. Dyer’s conversion to love and suffering is the climax of Ingenious Pain.
He stays in Lestrade’s house to practice the concern for others and art. His change from an automaton surgeon to a compassionate feeling for art leaves his life fulfilled. As Mary saved Dyer’s heart by reaching into his chest, Dyer cuts into John Amazement and saves his heart. His skill as a surgeon and feelings for another coincide; “the target to which the arrow of his life has been flighted” (329). Examine the life of the best and most productive men and nations, and ask yourselves whether a tree which is to grow proudly skywards can dispense with bad weather and storms.
Whether misfortune and opposition, or every kind of hatred, jealousy, stubbornness, distrust, severity, greed, and violence do not belong to the favourable conditions without which a great growth even of virtue is hardly possible? -Friedrich Nietzsche In Ingenious Pain, Andrew miller demonstrates how a person born without feeling can change into a warm person, a compassionate healer. In connection to Friedrich Nietzche theories in pain, it is essential to feel pain. Without emotion, one cannot grasp humanity. In the beginning of the novel, all Dyer wants to know is how the world works; a deistic approach to life.
Toward the end of the novel he changes into a romantic characteristic demonstrated through artwork. The message Miller wants to pass to the reader is expressed by Mr. Voney, the apothecary when Dyer begins to learn about medicine as a child: “We can neither heal, nor e healed without humility” (75). In other words, the proud may fix the body, but it cannot heal the person. Friedrich Neitzche states, ” There is nothing for which men ask to be paid dearer than for humiliation”. Pain is “ingenious” in the end, because it teaches this lesson.