In NLP there is the distinction between the surface structure and the deep structure. The deep structure is basically reality. Yet, often we keep forgetting that we are not in reality but are part of reality. Hence there is much deep structure inside of us.

The so-called ‘ego’. – Language and the prejudices upon which
language is based are a manifold hindrance to us when we want to
explain inner processes and drives: because of the fact, for example,that words really exist only for superlative degrees of these processes and drives; and where words are lacking, we are accustomed to abandon exact observation because exact thinking there becomes painful; indeed, in earlier times one involuntarily concluded that where the realm of words ceased the realm of existence ceased also. Anger, hatred, love, pity, desire, knowledge, joy, pain – all are names for ‘extreme states’: the milder, middle degrees, not to speak of the lower ,degrees which are continually in play, elude us, and yet it is they which weave the web of our character and our destiny. These extreme outbursts – and even the most moderate conscious pleasure or displeasure, while eating food or hearing a note, is perhaps, rightly understood, an extreme outburst – very often rend the web
apart, and then they constitute violent exceptions, no doubt usually consequent on built-up congestions: – and, as such, how easy it is for them to mislead the observer! No less easy than it is for them to mislead the person in whom they occur. We are none of us that which we appear to be in accordance with the states for which alone we have consciousness and words, and consequently praise and blame; those cruder outbursts of which alone we are aware make us misunderstand ourselves, we draw a conclusion on the basis of data in which the exceptions outweigh the rule, we misread ourselves in this apparently most intelligible of handwriting on the nature of our self. Our opinion of ourself, however, which we have arrived at by this erroneous path, the so-called ‘ego’, is thenceforth a fellow worker in the construction of our character and our destiny.

Daybreak paragraph 115


Deletion is one of the categories of the metamodel. It includes the simple deletion, the comparison deletion, the lack of referential index and the unspecified verb.

If I have anything of a unity within me, it certainly doesn’t lie in the conscious ‘I’ and in feeling, willing, thinking, but somewhere else: in the sustaining, appropriating, expelling, watchful prudence of my whole organism, of which my conscious self is only a tool. Feeling, willing, thinking everywhere show only outcomes, the causes of which are entirely unknown to me: the way these outcomes succeed one another as if one succeeded out of its predecessor is probably just an illusion: in truth, the causes may be connected to one another in such a way that the final causes give me the impression of being associated, logically or psychologically. I deny that one intellectual or psychological phenomenon is the direct cause of another intellectual or psychological phenomenon – even if this seems to be so. The true world of causes is hidden from us: it is unutterably more complicated. The intellect and the senses are, above all, a simplifying apparatus. Yet our erroneous, miniaturized, logicized world of causes is the one we can live in. We are ‘knowers’ to the extent that we are able to satisfy our needs. Studying the body gives some idea of the unutterable complication. If our intellect did not have some fixed forms, living would be impossible. But that doesn’t prove anything about the truth of all logical facts.

Notebook 34, April-June 1885 paragraph 46


Denominalization is the process of turning a nominalization back into the active process that lies behind the noun.

On ‘causalism’: It’s obvious that things-in-themselves cannot stand in a relation of cause and effect to one another, and neither can phenomena: from which it follows that within a philosophy which believes in things-in-themselves and in phenomena, the concept ’cause and effect’ cannot be applied. Kant’s mistakes – … In fact the concept ’cause and effect’, considered psychologically, only arises from a way of thinking that believes will to be working upon will, always and everywhere – that believes only in what lives and at bottom only in ‘souls’ (and not in things). Within the mechanistic view of the world (which is logic and its application to space and time), that concept reduces to the mathematical formula – using which, as must be emphasized again and again, nothing is ever understood, but is denoted, distorted. The unalterable sequence of certain phenomena does not prove a ‘law’ but a power relation between two or several forces. To say: ‘But precisely this relation remains the same!’ means nothing more than: ‘One and the same force cannot be a different force as well’. – It’s not a matter of one after another – but of one in among another, of a process in which the individual factors that succeed one another do not condition each other as causes and effects…. The separation of ‘doing’ from the ‘doer’, of what happens from a something that makes it happen, of process from a something that is not process but is enduring, substance, thing, body, soul, etc. – the attempt to grasp what happens as a kind of displacement and repositioning of what ‘is’, of what persists: that ancient mythology set down the belief in ’cause and effect’ once this belief had found a fixed form in the grammatical functions of language.

Notebook 2, autumn 1886 – autumn 1886 paragraph 139


Sorting for sameness or difference is one of the metaprograms.

What is ‘knowing’? Tracing something alien back to something one is acquainted’ and familiar with. First principle: what we have got used to we no longer consider a riddle, a problem. The feeling of the new, of the discomfiting, is dulled: everything that happens regularly no longer seems questionable to us. This is why the knower’s first instinct is to look for the rule – whereas, of course, finding the rule doesn’t yet mean anything at all is ‘known’! – Hence the superstition of the physicists: where they can stand still, i.e., where the regularity of phenomena allows them to apply abbreviating formulas, they think knowing has taken place. They have a feeling of ‘security’, but behind this intellectual security is the soothing of their fearfulness: they want the rule because it strips the world of dreadfulness. Fear of the unpredictable as the hidden instinct of science. Regularity lulls to sleep the questioning (i.e., fearing) instinct: to ‘explain’ is to show a rule in what happens. Belief in the ‘law’ is belief in the dangerousness of the arbitrary. The good will to believe in laws has helped science to victory (particularly in democratic eras).

Notebook 5, summer 1886 – autumn 1887 paragraph 10


Within NLP we prefer direction rather than goals or worse outcomes. If you make a goal too specific you only increase the chance of failure. With direction you give maximum freedom to the force that drives us.

Two Kinds of Causes which are confused.— It seems to me one of my most essential steps and advances that I have learned to distinguish the cause of an action generally from the cause of an action in a particular manner, say, in this direction, with this aim. The first kind of cause is a quantum of stored-up force, which waits to be used in some manner, for some purpose; the second kind of cause, on the contrary, is something quite unimportant in comparison with the first, an insignificant hazard for the most part, in conformity with which the quantum of force in question ” discharges ” itself in some unique and definite manner : the lucifer-match in relation to the barrel of gunpowder. Among those insignificant hazards and lucifer-matches I count all the so-called “aims,” and similarly the still more so-called “occupations” of people: they are relatively optional, arbitrary, and almost indifferent in relation to the immense quantum of force which presses on, as we have said, to be used up in any way whatever. One generally looks at the matter in a different manner: one is accustomed to see the impelling force precisely in the aim (object, calling, etc.), according to a primeval error,— but it is only the directing force, the steersman and the stream have thereby been confounded. And yet it is not even always a steersman, the directing force… Is the “aim”, the “purpose,” not often enough only an extenuating pretext, an additional self-blinding of conceit, which does not wish it to be said that the ship follows the stream into which it has accidentally run? That it ” wishes ” to go that way, because it must go that way? That it has a direction, sure enough, but— not a steersman? We still require a criticism of the conception of “purpose”.

Gay Science paragraph 360


Distortion is one the three categories of language patterns in the metamodel. In this category you find: nominalization, cause and effect, mind reading, complex equivalence and lost performative.

The continual transitions do not permit us to speak of the ‘individual’, etc.; the ‘number’ of beings is itself in flux. We wouldn’t speak of time at all and would know nothing of motion if we didn’t, in a crude way, believe we saw something ‘at rest’ alongside things in motion. Just as little would we speak of cause and effect, and without the erroneous conception of the ’empty space’ we would never have arrived at the conception of space itself. The principle of identity has as its background the ‘appearance’ that things are the same. A world of becoming could not, in the strict sense, be ‘grasped’, be ‘known’; only inasmuch as the ‘grasping’ and ‘knowing’ intellect finds an already created, crude world, cobbled together out of deceptions but having become solid, inasmuch as this kind of illusion has preserved life – only to that extent is there such a thing as ‘knowledge’: i.e., a measuring of earlier and more recent errors against one another.

Notebook 36, June – July 1885, paragraph 23