The Twilight of the Idols - The Antichrist Complete Works, Volume Sixteen

By Friedrich Nietzsche

Page 103

contradiction to the gospel....

Whoever might seek for signs pointing to the guiding fingers of an
ironical deity behind the great comedy of existence, would find no
small argument in the _huge note of interrogation_ that is called
Christianity. The fact that mankind is on its knees before the reverse
of that which formed the origin, the meaning and the _rights_ of
the gospel; the fact that, in the idea "Church," precisely that is
pronounced holy which the "messenger of glad tidings" regarded as
_beneath_ him, as _behind_ him--one might seek in vain for a more
egregious example _of world-historic_ irony---


--Our age is proud of its historical sense: how could it allow
itself to be convinced of the nonsensical idea that at the beginning
Christianity consisted only of the _clumsy fable of the thaumaturgist
and of the Saviour,_ and that all its spiritual and symbolic
side was only developed later? On the contrary: the history of
Christianity--from the death on the cross onwards--is the history of
a gradual and ever coarser misunderstanding of an original symbolism.
With every extension of Christianity over ever larger and ruder
masses, who were ever less able to grasp its first principles, the
need of _vulgarising and barbarising it_ increased proportionately--it
absorbed the teachings and rites of all the _subterranean_ cults of the
_imperium Romanum,_ as well as the nonsense of every kind of morbid
reasoning. The fatal feature of Christianity lies in the necessary
fact that its faith had to become as morbid, base and vulgar as the
needs to which it had to minister were morbid, base and vulgar. _Morbid
barbarism_ at last braces itself together for power in the form of the
Church--the Church, this deadly hostility to all honesty, to all
loftiness of the soul, to all discipline of the mind, to all frank and
kindly humanity.--_Christian_ and _noble_ values: only we spirits _who
have become free have_ re-established this contrast in values which is
the greatest that has ever existed on earth!--


--I cannot, at this point, stifle a sigh. There are days when I
am visited by a feeling blacker than the blackest melancholy--the
_contempt of man._ And in order that I may leave you in no doubt as
to what I despise, _whom_ I despise: I declare that it is the man of
to-day, the man with whom I am fatally contemporaneous. The man of
to-day, I am asphyxiated by his foul breath.... Towards the past, like
all knights of knowledge, I am profoundly tolerant,--that is to say,
I exercise a sort of _generous_ self-control: with gloomy caution I
pass through whole millennia of this mad-house

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Text Comparison with Beyond Good and Evil

Page 5
But whoever considers the fundamental impulses of man with a view to determining how far they may have here acted as INSPIRING GENII (or as demons and cobolds), will find that they have all practiced philosophy at one time or another, and that each one of them would have been only too glad to look upon itself as the ultimate end of existence and the legitimate LORD over all the other impulses.
Page 6
a mushroom specialist, or a chemist; he is not CHARACTERISED by becoming this or that.
Page 12
"--In place of the "immediate certainty" in which the people may believe in the special case, the philosopher thus finds a series of metaphysical questions presented to him, veritable conscience questions of the intellect, to wit: "Whence did I get the notion of 'thinking'? Why do I believe in cause and effect? What gives me the right to speak of an 'ego,' and even of an 'ego' as cause, and finally of an 'ego' as cause of thought?" He who ventures to answer these metaphysical questions at once by an appeal to a sort of INTUITIVE perception, like the person who says, "I think, and know that this, at least, is true, actual, and certain"--will encounter.
Page 22
Lessing is an exception, owing to his histrionic nature, which understood much, and was versed in many things; he who was not the translator of Bayle to no purpose, who took refuge willingly in the shadow of Diderot and Voltaire, and still more willingly among the Roman.
Page 28
"Will" can naturally only operate on "will"--and not on "matter" (not on "nerves," for instance): in short, the hypothesis must be hazarded, whether will does not operate on will wherever "effects" are recognized--and whether all mechanical action, inasmuch as a power operates therein, is.
Page 41
has exercised its acuteness and profundity has just been an occasion for its exercise, something of a game, something for children and childish minds.
Page 51
It is not enough to possess a talent: one must also have your permission to possess it;--eh, my friends? 152.
Page 52
There is an innocence in lying which is the sign of good faith in a cause.
Page 58
When we hear another language spoken, we involuntarily attempt to form the sounds into words with which we are more familiar and conversant--it was thus, for example, that the Germans modified the spoken word ARCUBALISTA into ARMBRUST (cross-bow).
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"--This also for the chapter: "Morals as Timidity.
Page 66
Apparently in opposition to the peacefully industrious democrats and Revolution-ideologues, and still more so to the awkward philosophasters and fraternity-visionaries who call themselves Socialists and want a "free society," those are really at one with them all in their thorough and instinctive hostility to every form of society other than that of the AUTONOMOUS herd (to the extent even of repudiating the notions "master" and "servant"--ni dieu ni maitre, says a socialist formula); at one in their tenacious opposition to every special claim, every special right and privilege (this means ultimately opposition to EVERY right, for when all are equal, no one needs "rights" any longer); at one in their distrust of punitive justice (as though it were a violation of the weak, unfair to the NECESSARY consequences of all former society); but equally at one in their religion of sympathy, in their compassion for all that feels, lives, and suffers (down to the very animals, up even to "God"--the extravagance of "sympathy for God" belongs to a democratic age); altogether at one in the cry and impatience of their sympathy, in their deadly hatred of suffering generally, in their almost feminine incapacity for witnessing it or ALLOWING it; at one in their involuntary beglooming and heart-softening, under the spell of which Europe seems to be threatened with a new Buddhism; at one in their belief in the morality of MUTUAL sympathy, as though it were morality in itself, the climax, the ATTAINED climax of mankind, the sole hope of the future, the consolation of the present, the great discharge from all the obligations of the past; altogether at one in their belief in the community as the DELIVERER, in the herd, and therefore in "themselves.
Page 67
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 85
For instance, in a person created and destined for command, self-denial and modest retirement, instead of being virtues, would be the waste of virtues: so it seems to me.
Page 89
Page 92
I perhaps risk something when I allow such a truth to escape; let others capture it again and give it so much "milk of pious sentiment" [FOOTNOTE: An expression from Schiller's William Tell, Act IV, Scene 3.
Page 108
In the ancient sense, a period is above all a physiological whole, inasmuch as it is comprised in one breath.
Page 113
There is also something else common to them: a predilection to resist intellectual Germanizing--and a still greater inability to do so! In this France of intellect, which is also a France of pessimism, Schopenhauer has perhaps become more at home, and more indigenous than he has ever been in Germany; not to speak of Heinrich Heine, who has long ago been re-incarnated in the more refined and fastidious lyrists of Paris; or of Hegel, who at present, in the form of Taine--the FIRST of living historians--exercises an almost tyrannical influence.
Page 114
FIRSTLY, the capacity for artistic emotion, for devotion to "form," for which the expression, L'ART POUR L'ART, along with numerous others, has been invented:--such capacity has not been lacking in France for three centuries; and owing to its reverence for the "small number," it has again and again made a sort of chamber music of literature possible, which is sought for in vain elsewhere in Europe.
Page 124
A SPECIES originates, and a type becomes established and strong in the long struggle with essentially constant UNFAVOURABLE conditions.
Page 143
Oh! Friends no more! They are--what name for those?-- .