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

By Friedrich Nietzsche

Page 89

man is something absolutely
_necessary_ (even in those so-called contradictions), but we do not
always recognise this necessity. The imaginary man, the phantasm,
signifies something necessary, but only to those who understand a
real man only in a crude, unnatural simplification, so that a few
strong, oft-repeated traits, with a great deal of light and shade
and half-light about them, amply satisfy their notions. They are,
therefore, ready to treat the phantasm as a genuine, necessary man,
because with real men they are accustomed to regard a phantasm, an
outline, an intentional abbreviation as the whole. That the painter
and the sculptor express the "idea" of man is a vain imagination and
delusion; whoever says this is in subjection to the eye, for this only
sees the' surface, the epidermis of the human body,--the inward body,
however, is equally a part of the idea. Plastic art wishes to make
character visible on the surface; histrionic art employs speech for
the same purpose, it reflects character in sounds. Art starts from the
natural _ignorance_ of man about his interior condition (in body and
character); it is not meant for philosophers or natural scientists.


PHILOSOPHERS.--We are all prone to think that the excellence of a
work of art or of an artist is proved when it moves and touches us.
But there _our own excellence_ in judgment and sensibility must have
been proved first, which is not the case. In all plastic art, who
had greater power to effect a charm than Bernini, who made a greater
effect than the orator that appeared after Demosthenes introduced the
Asiatic style and gave it a predominance which lasted throughout two
centuries? This predominance during whole centuries is not a proof of
the excellence and enduring validity of a style; therefore we must
not be too certain in our good opinion of any artist,--this is not
only belief in the truthfulness of our sensations but also in the
infallibility of our judgment, whereas judgment or sensation, or even
both, may be too coarse or too fine, exaggerated or crude. Neither are
the blessings and blissfulness of a philosophy or of a religion proofs
of its truth; just as little as the happiness which an insane person
derives from his fixed idea is a proof of the reasonableness of this


THE CULT OF GENIUS FOR THE SAKE OF VANITY.--Because we think well of
ourselves, but nevertheless do not imagine that we are capable of the
conception of one of Raphael's pictures or of a scene such as those of
one of Shakespeare's dramas, we

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Text Comparison with The Birth of Tragedy; or, Hellenism and Pessimism

Page 5
He did not, however, forget to discriminate among them, but tested and criticised the currents of thought he encountered, and selected accordingly.
Page 12
_ Later on the title was changed to _The Birth of Tragedy, or Hellenism and Pessimism.
Page 17
Page 18
The hatred of the "world," the curse on the affections, the fear of beauty and sensuality, another world, invented for the purpose of slandering this world the more, at bottom a longing for.
Page 21
of _Faust.
Page 24
But also that delicate line, which the dream-picture must not overstep--lest it act pathologically (in which case appearance, being reality pure and simple, would impose upon us)--must not be wanting in the picture of Apollo: that measured limitation, that freedom from the wilder emotions, that philosophical calmness of the sculptor-god.
Page 29
Here we observe first of all the glorious _Olympian_ figures of the gods, standing on the gables of this structure, whose deeds, represented in far-shining reliefs, adorn its friezes.
Page 44
An infinitely more valuable insight into the signification of the chorus had already been displayed by Schiller in the celebrated Preface to his Bride of Messina, where he regarded the chorus as a living wall which tragedy draws round herself to guard her from contact with the world of reality, and to preserve her ideal domain and poetical freedom.
Page 45
The metaphysical comfort,--with which, as I have here intimated, every true tragedy dismisses us--that, in spite of the perpetual change of phenomena, life at bottom is indestructibly powerful and pleasurable, this comfort appears with corporeal lucidity as the satyric chorus, as the chorus of natural beings, who live ineradicable as it were behind all civilisation, and who, in spite of the ceaseless change of generations and the history of nations, remain for ever the same.
Page 56
This Titanic impulse, to become as it were the Atlas of all individuals, and to carry them on broad shoulders higher and higher, farther and farther, is what the Promethean and the Dionysian have in common.
Page 61
Through him the commonplace individual forced his way from the spectators' benches to the stage itself; the mirror in which formerly only great and bold traits found expression now showed the painful exactness that conscientiously reproduces even the abortive lines of nature.
Page 65
Dionysus had already been scared from the tragic stage, and in fact by a demonic power which spoke through Euripides.
Page 71
He who has experienced even a breath of the divine naïveté and security of the Socratic course of life in the Platonic writings, will also feel that the enormous driving-wheel of logical Socratism is in motion, as it were, _behind_ Socrates, and that it must be viewed through Socrates as through a shadow.
Page 79
But now science, spurred on by its powerful illusion, hastens irresistibly to its limits, on which its optimism, hidden in the essence of logic, is wrecked.
Page 80
In so doing I shall leave out of consideration all other antagonistic tendencies which at all times oppose art, especially tragedy, and which at present again extend their sway triumphantly, to such an extent that of the theatrical arts only the farce and the ballet, for example, put forth their blossoms, which perhaps not every one cares to smell, in tolerably rich luxuriance.
Page 85
In spite of fear and pity, we are the happy living beings, not as individuals, but as the _one_ living being, with whose procreative joy we are blended.
Page 92
Page 102
There is only one way from orgasm for a people,--the way to Indian Buddhism,.
Page 105
" And when, breathless, we thought to expire by a convulsive distention of all our feelings, and only a slender tie bound us to our present existence, we now hear and see only the hero wounded to death and still not dying, with his despairing cry: "Longing! Longing! In dying still longing! for longing not dying!" And if formerly, after such a surplus and superabundance of consuming agonies, the jubilation of the born rent our hearts almost like the very acme of agony, the rejoicing Kurwenal now stands between us and the "jubilation as such," with face turned toward the ship which carries Isolde.
Page 121
The two decisive _innovations_ of the book are, on the one hand, the comprehension of the _Dionysian_ phenomenon among the Greeks (it gives the first psychology thereof, it sees therein the One root of all Grecian art); on the other, the comprehension of Socratism: Socrates diagnosed for the first time as the tool of Grecian dissolution, as a typical decadent.