Early Greek Philosophy & Other Essays Collected Works, Volume Two

By Friedrich Nietzsche

Page 82

there is none more troublesome than
the question as to the beginning of motion. For if one may be allowed
to conceive of all remaining motions as effect and consequences, then
nevertheless the first primal motion is still to be explained; for the
mechanical motions, the first link of the chain certainly cannot lie in
a mechanical motion, since that would be as good as recurring to the
nonsensical idea of the _causa sui._ But likewise it is not feasible
to attribute to the eternal, unconditional things a motion of their
own, as it were from the beginning, as dowry of their existence. For
motion cannot be conceived without a direction whither and whereupon,
therefore only as relation and condition; but a thing is no longer
"entitative-in-itself" and "unconditional," if according to its nature
it refers necessarily to something existing outside of it. In this
embarrassment Anaxagoras thought he had found an extraordinary help
and salvation in that Nous, automobile and otherwise independent; the
nature of that Nous being just obscure and veiled enough to produce the
deception about it, that its assumption also involves that forbidden
_causa sui._ To empiric observation it is even an established fact that
Conception is not a _causa sui_ but the effect of the brain, yea, it
must appear to that observation as an odd eccentricity to separate the
"mind," the product of the brain, from its _causa_ and still to deem it
existing after this severing. This Anaxagoras did; he forgot the brain,
its marvellous design, the delicacy and intricacy of its convolutions
and passages and he decreed the "Mind-In-Itself." This "Mind-In-Itself"
alone among all substances had Free-will,--a grand discernment! This
Mind was able at any odd time to begin with the motion of the things
outside it; on the other hand for ages and ages it could occupy itself
with itself--in short Anaxagoras was allowed to assume a _first_ moment
of motion in some primeval age, as the _Chalaza_ of all so-called
Becoming; _i.e.,_ of all Change, namely of all shifting and rearranging
of the eternal substances and their particles, Although the Mind itself
is eternal, it is in no way compelled to torment itself for eternities
with the shifting about of grains of matter; and certainly there was a
time and a state of those matters--it is quite indifferent whether that
time was of long or short duration--during which the Nous had not acted
upon them, during which they were still unmoved. That is the period of
the Anaxagorean chaos.


The Anaxagorean chaos is not an immediately evident conception; in
order to grasp it one must have understood the

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Text Comparison with Early Greek Philosophy & Other Essays Collected Works, Volume Two

Page 0
To the essence of Culture slavery is innate.
Page 9
But in consequence of the effect of that _bellum,_--an effect which is turned inwards and compressed,--Society is given time during the intervals to germinate and burst into leaf, in order, as soon as warmer days come, to let the shining blossoms of genius sprout forth.
Page 13
_ What we believed we could divine of this cryptograph we have said in this preface.
Page 14
From the State the individual has to receive everything in order to return everything to the State.
Page 20
The lyric poet resembles all those hearers of music who are conscious of an _effect of music on their emotions;_ the distant and removed power of music appeals, with them, to an _intermediate realm_ which gives to them as it were a foretaste, a symbolic preliminary conception of music proper, it appeals to the intermediate realm of the emotions.
Page 35
Sparta and Athens surrender to Persia, as Themistocles and Alcibiades have done; they betray Hellenism after they have given up the noblest Hellenic fundamental thought, the contest, and Alexander, the coarsened copy and abbreviation of Greek history, now invents the cosmopolitan Hellene, and the so-called "Hellenism.
Page 37
What a desperate annoyance indeed to meddle with philosophy as an "educated person"! From time to time it is true it appears to him as if the impossible connection of philosophy with that which nowadays gives itself airs as "German Culture" has become possible; some mongrel dallies and ogles between the two spheres and confuses fantasy on this side and on the other.
Page 48
Now the idea of greatness is changeable, as well in the moral as in the æsthetic realm, thus Philosophy.
Page 52
Thales shows the need of simplifying the empire of plurality, and of reducing it to a mere expansion or disguise of the _one single_ existing quality, water.
Page 53
I do not behold the punishment of that which has become, but the justification of Becoming.
Page 54
Intuitive representation however embraces two things: firstly, the present, motley, changing world, pressing on us in all experiences, secondly, the conditions by means of which alone any experience of this world becomes possible: time and space.
Page 57
Are they immortal gods? Are they separate beings working for themselves from the beginning and without end? And if the world which we see knows only Becoming and Passing but no Permanence, should perhaps those qualities constitute a differently fashioned metaphysical world, true, not a world of unity as Anaximander sought behind the fluttering veil of plurality, but a world of eternal and essential pluralities?" Is it possible that however violently he had denied such duality, Heraclitus has after all by a round-about way accidentally got into the dual cosmic order, an order with an Olympus of numerous immortal gods and demons,--viz.
Page 58
With their issuing forth from the primordial existence of the "Indefinite," Becoming begins.
Page 63
9 Whereas in every word of Heraclitus are expressed the pride and the majesty of truth, but of truth caught by intuitions, not scaled by the rope-ladder of Logic, whereas in sublime ecstasy he beholds but does not espy, discerns but does not reckon, he is contrasted with his contemporary _Parmenides,_ a man likewise with the type of a prophet of truth, but formed as it were out of ice and not out of fire, and shedding around himself cold, piercing light.
Page 73
, first half of that space, then the fourth, then the sixteenth, and so on _ad infinitum.
Page 91
But this Anaxagoras would not have dared to assert in any individual case, to him the existing world was not even the most conceivably perfect world, for he saw everything originate out of everything, and he found the segregation of the substances through the Nous complete and done with, neither at the end of the filled space of the world nor in the individual beings.
Page 96
If, however, we and the gnat could understand each other we should learn that even the gnat swims through the air with the same pathos, and feels within itself the flying centre of the world.
Page 105
That impulse towards the formation of metaphors, mat fundamental impulse of man, which we cannot reason away for one moment--for thereby we should reason away man himself--is in truth not defeated nor even subdued by the fact that out of its evaporated products, the ideas, a regular and rigid new world has been built as a stronghold for it.
Page 106
If every tree may at some time talk as a nymph, or a god under the disguise of a bull, carry away virgins, if the goddess Athene herself be suddenly seen as, with a beautiful team, she drives, accompanied by Pisistratus, through the markets of Athens--and every honest Athenian did believe this--at any moment, as in a dream, everything is possible; and all nature swarms around man as if she were nothing but the masquerade of the gods, who found it a huge joke to deceive man by assuming all possible forms.
Page 107
There are ages, when the rational and the intuitive man stand side by side, the one full of fear of the intuition, the other full of scorn for the abstraction; the latter just as irrational as the former is inartistic.