The Will to Power, Book I and II An Attempted Transvaluation of all Values

By Friedrich Nietzsche

Page 115



The instinct of the herd values the _juste milieu_ and the _average_
as the highest and most precious of all things: the spot where the
majority is to be found, and the air that it breathes there. In this
way it is the opponent of all order of rank; it regards a climb from
the level to the heights in the same light as a descent from the
majority to the minority. The herd regards the _exception,_ whether
it be above or beneath its general level, as something which is
antagonistic and dangerous to itself. Their trick in dealing with
the exceptions above them, the strong, the mighty, the wise, and the
fruitful, is to persuade them to become guardians, herdsmen, and
watchmen--in fact, to become their _head-servants_: thus they convert
a danger into a thing which is useful. In the middle, fear ceases:
here a man is alone with nothing; here there is not much room even for
misunderstandings; here there is equality; here a man's individual
existence is not felt as a reproach, but as the _right_ existence;
here contentment reigns supreme. Mistrust is active only towards the
exceptions; to be an exception is to be a sinner.


If, in compliance with our communal instincts, we make certain
regulations for, ourselves and forbid certain acts, we do not of
course, in common reason, forbid a certain kind of "existence," nor
a certain attitude of mind, but only a particular application and
development of this "existence" and "attitude of mind." But then the
idealist of virtue, the _moralist,_ comes along and says: "God sees
into the human heart! What matters it that ye abstain from certain
acts: ye are not any better on that account!" Answer: Mr. Longears
and Virtue-Monger, we do not want to be better at all, we are quite
satisfied with ourselves, all we desire is that we should not _harm_
one another--and that is why we forbid certain actions when they take
a particular direction--that is to say, when they are against our
own interests: but that does not alter the fact that when these same
actions are directed against the enemies of our community--against
you, for instance--we are at a loss to know how to pay them sufficient
honour. We educate our children up to them; we develop them to the
fullest extent. Did we share that "god-fearing" radicalism which your
holy craziness recommends, if we were green-horns enough to condemn
the source of those forbidden "acts" by condemning the "heart" and the
"attitude of mind" which recommends them, that would mean condemning
our very existence, and with it its greatest

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Text Comparison with Early Greek Philosophy & Other Essays Collected Works, Volume Two

Page 5
That feeling by which the process of procreation is considered as something shamefacedly to be hidden, although by it man serves a higher purpose than his individual preservation, the same feeling veiled also the origin of the great works of art, in spite of the fact that through them a higher form of existence is inaugurated, just as through that other act comes a new generation.
Page 8
again we see with what pitiless inflexibility Nature, in order to arrive at Society, forges for herself the cruel tool of the State--namely, that _conqueror_ with the iron hand, who is nothing else than the objectivation of the instinct indicated.
Page 18
The whole realm of the consonantal and vocal we believe we may reckon only under gesture-symbolism: consonants _and_ vowels without that fundamental tone which is necessary above all else, are nothing but _positions_ of the organs of speech, in short, gestures--; as soon as we imagine the _word_ proceeding out of the mouth of man, then first of all the root of the word, and the basis of that gesture-symbolism, the _tonal subsoil,_ the echo of the pleasure-and-displeasure-sensations originate.
Page 20
Then what exactly? Here now we may be met on the ground of a favourite æsthetic notion with the proposition, "It is not the poem which gives birth to the setting but the _sentiment_ created by the poem.
Page 27
Woe-begone dramatic musicians! "Draw near and view your Patrons' faces! The half are coarse, the half are cold.
Page 29
The Hellenic genius had ready yet another answer to the question: what does a life of fighting and of victory mean? and gives this answer in the whole breadth of Greek history.
Page 34
He forms a clandestine and godless connection with Timo a priestess of Demeter, and enters at night the sacred temple, from which every man was excluded.
Page 35
his fall and to crush him.
Page 38
Those doctrines, however, have been selected in which the personal element of the philosopher re-echoes most.
Page 41
They all stand before us in magnificent solitude as the only ones who then devoted their life exclusively to knowledge.
Page 47
Especially powerful is the strength of Fancy in the lightning-like seizing and illuminating of similarities; afterwards reflection applies its standards and models and seeks to substitute the similarities by equalities, that which was seen side by side by causalities.
Page 53
Louder than Anaximander, Heraclitus exclaimed: "I see nothing but Becoming.
Page 55
very appropriately called in German _Wirklichkeit_ (actuality)--a word which is far more expressive than _Realität_ (reality).
Page 69
That which is true must exist in eternal presence, about it cannot be said "it was," "it will be.
Page 72
Nothing Infinite can.
Page 83
He proved it thus: if even the contrary could originate out of the contrary, _e.
Page 90
And as the most wondrous and appropriate action of the Nous was that circular primal-motion, since at that time the Mind was still together, undivided, in Itself, thus to the listening Anaxagoras the effect of the Periclean speech often appeared perhaps as a simile of that circular primal-motion; for here too he perceived a whirl of thoughts moving itself at first with awful force but in an orderly manner, which in concentric circles gradually caught and carried away the nearest and farthest and which, when it reached its end, had reshaped--organising and segregating--the whole nation.
Page 100
Now man of course forgets that matters are going thus with him; he therefore lies in that fashion pointed out unconsciously and according to habits of centuries' standing--and by _this very unconsciousness,_ by this very forgetting, he arrives at a sense for truth.
Page 102
The seeker after such truths seeks at the bottom only the metamorphosis of the world in man, he strives for an understanding of the world as a human-like thing and by his battling gains at best the feeling of an assimilation.
Page 104
to contradict one another.