Ecce Homo Complete Works, Volume Seventeen

By Friedrich Nietzsche

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battlefield of thought, on
which there is no quarter, and for which no Geneva Convention has yet
been established or even thought of.

To those who know Nietzsche's life-work, no apology will be needed
for the form and content of this wonderful work. They will know, at
least, that a man either is, or is not, aware of his significance and
of the significance of what he has accomplished, and that if he is
aware of it, then self-realisation, even of the kind which we find
in these pages, is neither morbid nor suspicious, but necessary and
inevitable. Such chapter headings as "Why I am so Wise," "Why I am a
Fatality," "Why I write such Excellent Books,"--however much they may
have disturbed the equanimity, and "objectivity" in particular, of
certain Nietzsche biographers, can be regarded as pathological only
in a democratic age in which people have lost all sense of graduation
and rank and in which the virtues of modesty and humility have to be
preached far and wide as a corrective against the vulgar pretensions of
thousands of wretched nobodies. For little people can be endured only
as modest citizens; or humble Christians. If, however, they demand a
like modesty on the part of the truly great; if they raise their voices
against Nietzsche's lack of the very virtue they so abundantly possess
or pretend to possess, it is time to remind them of Goethe's famous
remark: "_Nur Lumpe sind bescheiden_" (Only nobodies are ever modest).

It took Nietzsche barely three weeks to write this story of his life.
Begun on the 15 th of October 1888, his four-and-fourtieth birthday,
it was finished on the 4th of November of the same year, and, but
for a few trifling modifications and additions, is just as Nietzsche
left it. It was not published in Germany until the year 1908, eight
years after Nietzsche's death. In a letter dated the 27th of December
1888, addressed to the musical composer Fuchs, the author declares
the object of the work to be to dispose of all discussion, doubt, and
inquiry concerning his own personality, in order to leave the public
mind free to consider merely "the things for the sake of which he
existed" ("_die Dinge, derentwegen ich da bin_"). And, true to his
intention, Nietzsche's honesty in these pages is certainly one of
the most remarkable features about them. From the first chapter, in
which he frankly acknowledges the decadent elements within him, to
the last page, whereon he characterises his mission, his life-task,
and his achievement, by means of the one symbol, _Dionysus_ versus
_Christ,_--everything comes straight from the

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Text Comparison with Beyond Good and Evil

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Supposing such a one comes to grief, it is so far from the comprehension of men that they neither feel it, nor sympathize with it.
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Supposing that nothing else is "given" as real but our world of desires and passions, that we cannot sink or rise to any other "reality" but just that of our impulses--for thinking is only a relation of these impulses to one another:--are we not permitted to make the attempt and to ask the question whether this which is "given" does not SUFFICE, by means of our counterparts, for the understanding even of the so-called mechanical (or "material") world? I do not mean as an illusion, a "semblance," a "representation" (in the Berkeleyan and Schopenhauerian sense), but as possessing the same degree of reality as our emotions themselves--as a more primitive form of the world of emotions, in which everything still lies locked in a mighty unity, which afterwards branches off and develops itself in organic processes (naturally also, refines and debilitates)--as a kind of instinctive life in which all organic functions, including self-regulation, assimilation, nutrition, secretion, and change of matter, are still synthetically united with one another--as a PRIMARY FORM of life?--In the end, it is not only permitted to make this attempt, it is commanded by the conscience of LOGICAL METHOD.
Page 34
But how often must he say despairingly to himself: "A single individual! alas, only a single individual! and this great forest, this virgin forest!" So he would like to have some hundreds of hunting assistants, and fine trained hounds, that he could send into the history of the human soul, to drive HIS game together.
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dangerous prescriptions as to regimen: solitude, fasting, and sexual abstinence--but without its being possible to determine with certainty which is cause and which is effect, or IF any relation at all of cause and effect exists there.
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They had to question him.
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What, then, is the attitude of the two greatest religions above-mentioned to the SURPLUS of failures in life? They endeavour to preserve and keep alive whatever can be preserved; in fact, as the religions FOR SUFFERERS, they take the part of these upon principle; they are always in favour of those who suffer from life as from a disease, and they would fain treat every other experience of life as false and impossible.
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"--Why?--"I am not a match for him.
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To teach man the future of humanity as his WILL, as depending on human will, and to make preparation for vast hazardous enterprises and collective attempts in rearing and educating, in order thereby to put an end to the frightful rule of folly and chance which has hitherto gone by the name of "history" (the folly of the "greatest number" is only its last form)--for that purpose a new type of philosopher and commander will some time or other be needed, at the very idea of which everything that has existed in the way of occult, terrible, and benevolent beings might look pale and dwarfed.
Page 68
The UNIVERSAL DEGENERACY OF MANKIND to the level of the "man of the future"--as idealized by the socialistic fools and shallow-pates--this degeneracy and dwarfing of man to an absolutely gregarious animal (or as they call it, to a man of "free society"), this brutalizing of man into a pigmy with equal rights and claims, is undoubtedly POSSIBLE! He who has thought out this possibility to its ultimate conclusion knows ANOTHER loathing unknown to the rest of mankind--and perhaps also a new MISSION! CHAPTER VI.
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The learned man, as is appropriate, has also maladies and faults of an ignoble kind: he is full of petty envy, and has a lynx-eye for the weak points in those natures to whose elevations he cannot attain.
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But if one would realize how characteristic is this fear of the "man" in the German spirit which awakened Europe out of its "dogmatic slumber," let us call to mind the former conception which had to be overcome by this new one--and that it is not so very long ago that a masculinized woman could dare, with unbridled presumption, to recommend the Germans to the interest of Europe as gentle, good-hearted, weak-willed, and poetical fools.
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in short, they betray something thereby.
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motleyness, this medley of the most delicate, the most coarse, and the most artificial, with a secret confidence and cordiality; we enjoy it as a refinement of art reserved expressly for us, and allow ourselves to be as little disturbed by the repulsive fumes and the proximity of the English populace in which Shakespeare's art and taste lives, as perhaps on the Chiaja of Naples, where, with all our senses awake, we go our way, enchanted and voluntarily, in spite of the drain-odour of the lower quarters of the town.
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At the commencement, the noble caste was always the barbarian caste: their superiority did not consist first of all in their physical, but in their psychical power--they were more COMPLETE men (which at every point also implies the same as "more complete beasts").
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" The noble and brave who think thus are the furthest removed from the morality which sees precisely in sympathy, or in acting for the good of others, or in DESINTERESSEMENT, the characteristic of the moral; faith in oneself, pride in oneself, a radical enmity and irony towards "selflessness," belong as definitely to noble morality, as do a careless scorn and precaution in presence of sympathy and the "warm heart.
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The favour, the super-abundance, the protection are there lacking under which variations are fostered; the species needs itself as species, as something which, precisely by virtue of its hardness, its uniformity, and simplicity of structure, can in general prevail and make itself permanent in constant struggle with its neighbours, or with rebellious or rebellion-threatening vassals.
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