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

By Friedrich Nietzsche

Page 12

from it as if it had been an _a priori_ and
_absolute fact_: "God" at the head, as the _given quantity_--Truth. "To
become like God," "to be absorbed into the Divine Being"--these were
for centuries the most ingenuous and most convincing desiderata (but
that which convinces is not necessarily true on that account: it is
_nothing more nor less than convincing._ An observation for donkeys).

The granting of a _personal-reality_ to this accretion of ideals
has been unlearned: people have become atheistic. But has the ideal
actually been abandoned? The latest metaphysicians, as a matter of
fact, still seek their true "reality" in it--the "thing-in-itself"
beside which everything else is merely appearance. Their dogma is, that
because our world of appearance is so obviously _not_ the expression
of that ideal, it therefore cannot be "true"--and at bottom does not
even lead back to that metaphysical world as cause. The unconditioned,
in so far as it stands for that highest degree of perfection, cannot
possibly be the reason of all the conditioned. Schopenhauer, who
desired it otherwise, was obliged to imagine this metaphysical basis as
the antithesis to the ideal, as "an evil, blind will": thus it could
be "that which appears," that which manifests itself in the world of
appearance. But even so, he did not give up that ideal absolute--he
circumvented it....

(Kant seems to have needed the hypothesis of "intelligible freedom,"[3]
in order to relieve the _ens perfectum_ of the responsibility of having
contrived this world as it is, in short, in order to explain evil:
scandalous logic for a philosopher!).

[Footnote 3: See Note on p. 11.]


_The most general sign of modern times_: in his own estimation, man has
lost an infinite amount of _dignity._ For a long time he was the centre
and tragic hero of life in general; then he endeavoured to demonstrate
at least his relationship to the most essential and in itself most
valuable side of life--as all metaphysicians do, who wish to hold fast
to the _dignity of man,_ in their belief that moral values are cardinal
values. He who has let God go, clings all the more strongly to the
belief in morality.


Every purely _moral_ valuation (as, for instance, the Buddhistic)
_terminates in Nihilism_: Europe must expect the same thing! It is
supposed that one can get along with a morality bereft of a religious
background; but in this direction the road to Nihilism is opened. There
is nothing in religion which compels us to regard ourselves as valuing


The question which Nihilism puts, namely, "to what purpose?" is the
outcome of a habit, hitherto, to regard the purpose

Last Page Next Page

Text Comparison with The Antichrist

Page 2
One notes, in her biography of him--a useful but not always accurate work--an evident desire to purge him of the accusation of mocking at sacred things.
Page 8
I believe nothing of the sort.
Page 13
Page 20
Definition of Protestantism: hemiplegic paralysis of Christianity--_and_ of reason.
Page 22
Page 29
Christian, too, is a certain cruelty toward one's self and toward others; hatred of unbelievers; the will to persecute.
Page 30
Truth and _faith_: here we have two wholly distinct worlds of ideas, almost two diametrically _opposite_ worlds--the road to the one and the road to the other lie miles apart.
Page 38
Page 46
Page 47
Page 53
Page 55
[19] And 17.
Page 59
But what of the thing that the priest promises to the believer, the wholly transcendental "beyond"--how is _that_ to be demonstrated?--The "proof by power," thus assumed, is actually no more at bottom than a belief that the effects which faith promises will not fail to appear.
Page 60
Page 64
Page 66
On the contrary, gentlemen! An anti-Semite surely does not become more respectable because he lies on principle.
Page 68
Page 70
_order of castes_, the highest, the dominating law, is merely the ratification of an _order of nature_, of a natural law of the first rank, over which no arbitrary fiat, no "modern idea," can exert any influence.
Page 75
The German nobility stands _outside_ the history of the higher civilization: the reason is obvious.
Page 76