Human, All-Too-Human: A Book for Free Spirits, Part 1 Complete Works, Volume Six

By Friedrich Nietzsche

Page 132

insignificant truth that is the fruit which he knows how to shake down
from the tree of knowledge. Like Aristotle, he is not permitted to make
any distinction between the "bores" and the "wits," his _dæmon_ leads
him through the desert as well as through tropical vegetation, in order
that he may only take pleasure in the really actual, tangible, true. In
insignificant scholars this produces a general disdain and suspicion of
cleverness, and, on the other hand, clever people frequently have an
aversion to science, as have, for instance, almost all artists.


SENSE IN SCHOOL.--School has no task more important than to teach
strict thought, cautious judgment, and logical conclusions, hence
it must pay no attention to what hinders these operations, such as
religion, for instance. It can count on the fact that human vagueness,
custom, and need will later on unstring the bow of all-too-severe
thought. But so long as its influence lasts it should enforce that
which is the essential and distinguishing point in man: "Sense and
Science, the _very highest_ power of man"--as Goethe judges. The great
natural philosopher, Von Baer, thinks that the superiority of all
Europeans, when compared to Asiatics, lies in the trained capability
of giving reasons for that which they believe, of which the latter are
utterly incapable. Europe went to the school of logical and critical
thought, Asia still fails to know how to distinguish between truth
and fiction, and is not Conscious whether its convictions spring from
individual observation and systematic thought or from imagination.
Sense in the school has made Europe what it is; in the Middle Ages
it was on the road to become once more a part and dependent of
Asia,--forfeiting, therefore, the scientific mind which it owed to the


public school is seldom sought in those things which are really learnt
there and are carried away never to be lost, but in those things which
are learnt and which the pupil only acquires against his will, in order
to get rid of them again as soon as possible. Every educated person
acknowledges that the reading of the classics, as now practised, is
monstrous proceeding carried on before you people are ripe enough for
it by teachers who with every word, often by their appearance alone,
throw a mildew on a good author. But therein lies the value, generally
unrecognised, of these teachers who speak _the abstract language of the
higher culture,_ which, though dry and difficult to understand, is yet
a sort of higher gymnastics of the brain; and there is value in

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Text Comparison with Thoughts out of Season, Part I

Page 8
While this was going on in Europe, the originator of the merry game was quietly sitting upon his island smiling broadly at the excitable foreigners across the Channel, fishing as much as he could out of the water he himself had so cleverly disturbed, and thus in every way reaping the benefit from the mighty fight for the apple of Eros which he himself had thrown amongst them.
Page 22
I am conscious of this ecstasy and happiness, in the ineffable, truculent assurance of German journalists and manufacturers of novels, tragedies, poems, and histories (for it must be clear that these people belong to one category), who seem to have conspired to improve the leisure and ruminative hours--that is to say, "the intellectual lapses"--of the modern man, by bewildering him with their printed paper.
Page 29
In this way, a philosophy which veiled the Philistine confessions of its founder beneath neat twists and flourishes of language proceeded further to discover a formula for the canonisation of the commonplace.
Page 46
Page 49
So the asceticism and self-denial of the ancient anchorite and saint was merely a form of Katzenjammer? Jesus may be described as an enthusiast who nowadays would scarcely have escaped the madhouse, and the story of the Resurrection may be termed a "world-wide deception.
Page 52
Page 54
He refers to Bismarck and Moltke, "whose greatness is the less open to controversy as it manifests itself in the domain of tangible external facts.
Page 58
What kind of lantern would be needed here, in order to find men capable of a complete surrender to genius, and of an intimate knowledge of its depths--men possessed of sufficient courage and strength to exorcise the demons that have forsaken our age? Viewed from the outside, such quarters certainly do appear to possess the whole pomp of culture; with their imposing apparatus they resemble great arsenals fitted with huge guns and other machinery of war; we see preparations in progress and the most strenuous activity, as though the heavens themselves were to be stormed, and truth were to be drawn out of the deepest of all wells; and yet, in war, the largest machines are the most unwieldy.
Page 67
At last our pavilion-owner began to praise himself, and assured us that he who could not be happy under his roof was beyond help and could not be ripe for his standpoint, whereupon he offered us his coach, but with the polite reservation that he could not assert that it would fulfil every requirement, and that, owing to the stones on his road having been newly laid down, we were not to mind if we were very much jolted.
Page 74
161); "The religious domain in the human soul resembles the domain of the Red Indian in America" (p.
Page 77
Schopenhauer would probably have classed the whole lot as "new documents serving to swell the trumpery jargon of the present day"; for David Strauss may be comforted to hear (if what follows can be regarded as a comfort at all) that everybody now writes as he does; some, of course, worse, and that among the blind the one-eyed is king.
Page 81
No omens, no periods of transition, and no concessions preceded the enterprise at Bayreuth; no one except Wagner knew either the goal or the long road that was to lead to it.
Page 87
He has many means whereby he can attain to honour and might; peace and plenty persistently offer themselves to him, but only in that form recognised by the modern man, which to the straightforward artist is no better than choke-damp.
Page 94
And in this respect he is one of the greatest civilising forces of his age.
Page 105
For incorrect feeling governs and drills them unremittingly, and does not even give them time to become aware of their misery.
Page 114
the image of Nature and her wooer, hovers forward; it condenses into more human shapes; it spreads out in response to its heroically triumphant will, and to a most delicious collapse and cessation of will:--thus tragedy is born; thus life is presented with its grandest knowledge-- that of tragic thought; thus, at last, the greatest charmer and benefactor among mortals--the dithyrambic dramatist--is evolved.
Page 126
This is the most wonderful achievement of Wagner's talent; for the ability to give every work its own linguistic stamp and to find a fresh body and a new sound for every thought is a task which only the great master can successfully accomplish.
Page 127
Now Wagner, who was the first to detect the essential feeling in spoken drama, presents every dramatic action threefold: in a word, in a gesture, and in a sound.
Page 131
With the most consummate skill and precision, Wagner avails himself of every degree and colour in the realm of feeling; without the slightest hesitation or fear of its escaping him, he seizes upon the most delicate, rarest, and mildest emotion, and holds it fast, as though it had hardened at his touch, despite the fact that it may seem like the frailest butterfly to every one else.
Page 144
And now ask yourselves, ye generation of to-day, Was all this composed for you? Have ye the courage to point up to the stars of the whole of this heavenly dome of beauty and goodness and to say, This is our life, that Wagner has transferred to a place beneath the stars? Where are the men among you who are able to interpret the divine image of Wotan in the light of their own lives, and who can become ever greater while, like him, ye retreat? Who among you would renounce power, knowing and having learned that power is evil? Where are they who like Brunhilda abandon their knowledge to love, and finally rob their lives of the highest wisdom, "afflicted love, deepest sorrow, opened my eyes"? and where are the free and fearless, developing and blossoming in innocent egoism? and where are the Siegfrieds, among you? He who questions thus and does so in vain, will find himself compelled to look around him for signs of the future; and should his eye, on reaching an unknown distance, espy just that "people" which his own generation can read out of the signs contained in Wagnerian art, he will then also understand what Wagner will mean to this people--something that he cannot be to all of us, namely, not the prophet of the future, as perhaps he would fain appear to us, but the interpreter and clarifier of the past.