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

By Friedrich Nietzsche

Page 6

the deceived, are we not thereby also deceivers? _Must_ we
not also be deceivers?"--Such thoughts lead and mislead him more and
more, onward and away. Solitude encircles and engirdles him, always
more threatening, more throttling, more heart-oppressing, that terrible
goddess and _mater sæva cupidinum_--but who knows nowadays what
_solitude_ is?...


4.

From this morbid solitariness, from the desert of such years of
experiment, it is still a long way to the copious, overflowing safety
and soundness which does not care to dispense with disease itself as
an instrument and angling-hook of knowledge;--to that _mature_ freedom
of spirit which is equally self-control and discipline of the heart,
and gives access to many and opposed modes of thought;--to that inward
comprehensiveness and daintiness of superabundance, which excludes any
danger of the spirit's becoming enamoured and lost in its own paths,
and lying intoxicated in some corner or other; to that excess of
plastic, healing, formative, and restorative powers, which is exactly
the sign of _splendid_ health, that excess which gives the free spirit
the dangerous prerogative of being entitled to live by _experiments_
and offer itself to adventure; the free spirit's prerogative of
mastership! Long years of convalescence may lie in between, years full
of many-coloured, painfully-enchanting magical transformations, curbed
and led by a tough _will to health,_ which often dares to dress and
disguise itself as actual health. There is a middle condition therein,
which a man of such a fate never calls to mind later on without
emotion; a pale, delicate light and a sunshine-happiness are peculiar
to him, a feeling of bird-like freedom, prospect, and haughtiness, a
_tertium quid_ in which curiosity and gentle disdain are combined. A
"free spirit"--this cool expression does good in every condition, it
almost warms. One no longer lives, in the fetters of love and hatred,
without Yea, without Nay, voluntarily near, voluntarily distant,
preferring to escape, to turn aside, to flutter forth, to fly up and
away; one is fastidious like every one who has once seen an immense
variety _beneath_ him,--and one has become the opposite of those who
trouble themselves about things which do not concern them. In fact, it
is nothing but things which now concern the free spirit,--and how many
things!--which no longer _trouble_ him!


5.

A step further towards recovery, and the free spirit again draws
near to life; slowly, it is true, and almost stubbornly, almost
distrustfully. Again it grows warmer around him, and, as it were,
yellower; feeling and sympathy gain depth,. thawing winds of every
kind pass lightly over him. He almost feels as if his eyes were now
first opened to what is _near._ He marvels and

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