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

By Friedrich Nietzsche

Page 73

the word Dionysus signifies: I know of no higher symbolism than
this Greek symbolism, this symbolism of the Dionysian phenomenon. In
it the profoundest instinct of life, the instinct that guarantees the
future of life and life eternal, is understood religiously,--the road
to life itself, procreation, is pronounced _holy,_ ... It was only
Christianity which, with its fundamental resentment against life, made
something impure out of sexuality: it flung _filth_ at the very basis,
the very first condition of our life.


The psychology of orgiasm conceived as the feeling of a superabundance
of vitality and strength, within the scope of which even pain _acts
as a stimulus,_ gave me the key to the concept _tragic_ feeling,
which has been misunderstood not only by Aristotle, but also even
more by our pessimists. Tragedy is so far from proving anything in
regard to the pessimism of the Greeks, as Schopenhauer maintains,
that it ought rather to be considered as the categorical repudiation
and _condemnation_ thereof. The saying of Yea to life, including
even its most strange and most terrible problems, the will to life
rejoicing over its own inexhaustibleness in the _sacrifice_ of its
highest types--this is what I called Dionysian, this is what I
divined as the bridge leading to the psychology of the _tragic_ poet
Not in order to escape from terror and pity, not to purify one's self
of a dangerous passion by discharging it with vehemence--this is how
Aristotle understood it--but to be far beyond terror and pity and to
be the eternal lust of Becoming itself--that lust which also involves
the _lust of destruction._ And with this I once more come into touch
with the spot from which I once set out---the "Birth of Tragedy" was
my first transvaluation of all values: with this I again take my stand
upon the soil from out of which my will and my capacity spring--I, the
last disciple of the philosopher Dionysus,--I, the prophet of eternal



"Why so hard!"--said the diamond once unto the charcoal; "are we then
not next of kin?"

"Why so soft? O my brethren; this is my question to you. For are ye
not--my brothers?

"Why so soft, so servile and yielding? Why are your hearts so fond of
denial and self-denial? How is it that so little fate looketh out from
your eyes?

"And if ye will not be men of fate and inexorable, how can ye hope one
day to conquer with me?

"And if your hardness will not sparkle, cut and divide, how can ye hope
one day to create with me?

"For all creators are hard. And it must

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Text Comparison with Beyond Good and Evil

Page 4
The falseness of an opinion is not for us any objection to it: it is here, perhaps, that our new language sounds most strangely.
Page 11
In this overcoming of the world, and interpreting of the world in the manner of Plato, there was an ENJOYMENT different from that which the physicists of today offer us--and likewise the Darwinists and anti-teleologists among the physiological workers, with their principle of the "smallest possible effort," and the greatest possible blunder.
Page 12
For if I had not already decided within myself what it is, by what standard could I determine whether that which is just happening is not perhaps 'willing' or 'feeling'? In short, the assertion 'I think,' assumes that I COMPARE my state at the present moment with other states of myself which I know, in order to determine what it is; on account of this retrospective connection with further 'knowledge,' it has, at any rate, no immediate certainty for me.
Page 16
If any one should find out in this manner the crass stupidity of the celebrated conception of "free will" and put it out of his head altogether, I beg of him to carry his "enlightenment" a step further, and also put out of his head the contrary of this monstrous conception of "free will": I mean "non-free will," which is tantamount to a misuse of cause and effect.
Page 27
Why NOT? It is nothing more than a moral prejudice that truth is worth more than semblance; it is, in fact, the worst proved supposition in the world.
Page 50
Page 51
The sense of the tragic increases and declines with sensuousness.
Page 64
The lofty independent spirituality, the will to stand alone, and even the cogent reason, are felt to be dangers, everything that elevates the individual above the herd, and is a source of fear to the neighbour, is henceforth called EVIL, the tolerant, unassuming, self-adapting, self-equalizing disposition, the MEDIOCRITY of desires, attains to moral distinction and honour.
Page 65
We know well enough how offensive it sounds when any one plainly, and without metaphor, counts man among the animals, but it will be accounted to us almost a CRIME, that it is precisely in respect to men of "modern ideas" that we have constantly applied the terms "herd," "herd-instincts," and such like expressions.
Page 72
However gratefully one may welcome the OBJECTIVE spirit--and who has not been sick to death of all subjectivity and its confounded IPSISIMOSITY!--in the end, however, one must learn caution even with regard to one's gratitude, and put a stop to the exaggeration with which the unselfing and depersonalizing of the spirit has recently been celebrated, as if it were the goal in itself, as if it were salvation and glorification--as is especially accustomed to happen in the pessimist school, which has also in its turn good reasons for paying the highest honours to "disinterested knowledge" The objective man, who no longer curses and scolds like the pessimist, the IDEAL man of learning in whom the scientific instinct blossoms forth fully after a thousand complete and partial failures, is assuredly one of the most costly instruments that exist, but his place is in the hand of one who is more powerful He is only an instrument, we may say, he is a MIRROR--he is no "purpose in himself" The objective man is in truth a mirror accustomed to prostration before everything that wants to be known, with such desires only as knowing or "reflecting" implies--he waits until something comes, and then expands himself sensitively, so that even the light footsteps and gliding-past of spiritual beings may not be lost on his surface and film Whatever "personality" he still possesses seems to him accidental, arbitrary, or still oftener, disturbing, so much has he come to regard himself as the passage and reflection of outside forms and events He calls up the recollection of "himself" with an effort, and not infrequently wrongly, he readily confounds himself with other persons, he makes mistakes with regard to his own needs, and here only is he unrefined and negligent Perhaps he is troubled about the health, or the pettiness and confined atmosphere of wife and friend, or the lack of companions and society--indeed, he sets.
Page 77
in the background the great bloodsucker, the spider skepticism; he suspected the incurable wretchedness of a heart no longer hard enough either for evil or good, and of a broken will that no longer commands, is no longer ABLE to command.
Page 85
" But this is a realm of questions and answers in which a more fastidious spirit does not like to stay: for here truth has to stifle her yawns so much when she is obliged to answer.
Page 88
Whether it be hedonism, pessimism, utilitarianism, or eudaemonism, all those modes of thinking which measure the worth of things according to PLEASURE and PAIN, that is, according to accompanying circumstances and secondary considerations, are plausible modes of thought and naivetes, which every one conscious of CREATIVE powers and an artist's conscience will look down upon with scorn, though not without sympathy.
Page 89
for the hereditarily vicious and defective who lie on the ground around us; still less is it sympathy for the grumbling, vexed, revolutionary slave-classes who strive after power--they call it "freedom.
Page 106
This whole music of Romanticism, besides, was not noble enough, was not musical enough, to maintain its position anywhere but in the theatre and before the masses; from the beginning it was second-rate music, which was little thought of by genuine musicians.
Page 110
The Jews, however, are beyond all doubt the strongest, toughest, and purest race at present living in Europe, they know how to succeed even under the worst conditions (in fact better than under favourable ones), by means of virtues of some sort, which one would like nowadays to label as vices--owing above all to a resolute faith which does not need to be ashamed before "modern ideas", they alter only, WHEN they do alter, in the same way that the Russian Empire makes its conquest--as an empire that has plenty of time and is not of yesterday--namely, according to the principle, "as slowly as possible"! A thinker who has the future of Europe at heart, will, in all his perspectives concerning the future, calculate upon the Jews, as he will calculate upon the Russians, as above all the surest and likeliest factors in the great play and battle of forces.
Page 116
EUROPE WISHES TO BE ONE, are now overlooked, or arbitrarily and falsely misinterpreted.
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low in him, and in the foreground--and thereby betrays himself.
Page 135
To conserve one's three hundred foregrounds; also one's black spectacles: for there are circumstances when nobody must look into our eyes, still less into our "motives.