Ecce Homo Complete Works, Volume Seventeen

By Friedrich Nietzsche

Page 46

philosophy, and in some respects too
even Plato's philosophy--in short, the whole of idealism in its typical
forms), as opposed to a formula of the highest yea-saying to life,
born of an abundance and a superabundance of life--a I yea-saying free
from all reserve, applying even to suffering, and guilt, and all that
is questionable and strange in existence.... This last, most joyous,
most exuberant and exultant yea to life, is not only the highest,
but also the profoundest conception, and one which is most strictly
confirmed and supported by truth and science. Nothing that exists must
be suppressed, nothing can be dispensed with. Those aspects of life
which Christians and other Nihilists reject, belong to an incalculably
higher order in the hierarchy of values, than that which the instinct
of degeneration calls good, and _may_ call good. In order to understand
this, a certain courage is necessary, and, as a prerequisite of this,
a certain superfluity of strength: for a man can approach only as near
to truth as he has the courage to advance--that is to say, everything
depends strictly upon the measure of his strength. Knowledge, and
the affirmation of reality, are just as necessary to the strong man
as cowardice, the flight from reality--in fact, the "ideal"--are
necessary to the weak inspired by weakness.... These people are not
at liberty to "know,"--decadents stand in need of lies,--it is one of
their self-preservative measures. He who not only understands the word
"Dionysian," but understands _himself_ in that term, does not require
any refutation of Plato, or of Christianity, or of Schopenhauer--for
his nose _scents decomposition._


The extent to which I had by means of these doctrines discovered the
idea of "tragedy," the ultimate explanation of what the psychology of
tragedy is, I discussed finally in _The Twilight of the Idols_ (Aph.
5, part 10).... "The saying of yea to life, and even to its weirdest
and most difficult problems: the will to life rejoicing at its own
infinite vitality in the sacrifice of its highest types--that is what I
called Dionysian, that is what I meant as the bridge to the psychology
of the tragic poet. Not to cast out terror and pity, or to purge one's
self of dangerous passion by discharging it with vehemence,--this was
Aristotle's[2] misunderstanding of it,--but to be far beyond terror
and pity and to be the eternal lust of Becoming itself--that lust
which also involves the joy of destruction." ... In this sense I have
the right to regard myself as the first _tragic philosopher_--that is
to say, the most extreme antithesis and antipodes of a pessimistic
philosopher. Before my

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Text Comparison with The Joyful Wisdom

Page 14
_ .
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_ Yes! I manufacture ice: Ice may help you to digest: If you _had_ much to digest, How you would enjoy my ice! 36.
Page 58
—Fourthly, it is when "morals decay" that those beings whom one calls tyrants first make their appearance; they are the forerunners of the _individual_, and as it were early matured _firstlings_.
Page 62
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_The Lack of a noble Presence.
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to _annihilate_ that which virtually passes for the world—namely, so-called "reality"! It is only as creators that we can annihilate!—But let us not forget this: it suffices to create new names and valuations and probabilities, in order in the long run to create new "things.
Page 85
and passionate in the same kind of music or romance? "The animal has its rights like man, so let it run about freely; and you, my dear fellow-man, are still this animal, in spite of all!"—that seems to me the moral of the case, and the peculiarity of southern humanity.
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_The Conceit of Artists.
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I set the following propositions against those of Schopenhauer:—Firstly, in order that Will may arise, an idea of pleasure and pain is necessary.
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_Against the Disparagers of Nature.
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_—Higher men are distinguished from lower, by seeing and hearing immensely more, and in a thoughtful manner—and it is precisely this that distinguishes man from the animal, and the higher animal from the lower.
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_In Doing we Leave Undone.
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There he enjoyed his spirit and his solitude, and for ten years did not weary of it.
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But there are ages entirely the reverse, the properly democratic ages, in which people tend to become more and more oblivious of this conviction, and a sort of impudent conviction and quite contrary mode of viewing things comes to the front, the Athenian conviction which is first observed in the epoch of Pericles, the American conviction of the present day, which wants also more and more to become an European conviction, whereby the individual is convinced that he can do almost anything, that he _can play almost any rôle_, whereby everyone makes experiments with himself, improvises, tries anew, tries with delight, whereby all nature ceases and becomes art.
Page 214
Let us take thirdly, the astonishing hit of _Hegel_, who stuck at no logical usage or fastidiousness when he ventured to teach that the conceptions of kinds develop _out of one another_: with which theory the thinkers in Europe were prepared for the last great scientific movement, for Darwinism—for without Hegel there would have been no Darwin.
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—I once made this clear with some trouble to a thorough-going Wagnerian, and I had reasons for adding:—"Do be a little more honest with yourself: we are not now in the theatre.
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While beauty in my face is, Be piety my care, For God, you know, loves lasses, And, more than all, the fair.