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

By Friedrich Nietzsche

Page 181

better still,
πραῢτης. A Buddhist for Greece, bred amid the tumult of the
Schools; born alter his time; weary; an example of the protest of
weariness against the eagerness of dialecticians; the incredulity of
the tired man in regard to the importance of everything. He had seen
_Alexander_; he had seen the _Indian penitents._ To such late-arrivals
and creatures of great subtlety, everything lowly, poor, and idiotic,
is seductive. It narcoticises: it gives them relaxation (Pascal).
On the other hand, they mix with the crowd, and get confounded
with the rest. These weary creatures need warmth.... To overcome
contradiction; to do away with contests; to have no will to excel in
any way; to deny the _Greek_ instincts (Pyrrho lived with his sister,
who was a midwife.) To rig out wisdom in such a way that it no longer
distinguishes; to give it the ragged mantle of poverty; to perform
the lowest offices, and to go to market and sell sucking-pigs....
Sweetness, clearness, indifference; no need of virtues that require
attitudes; to be equal to all even in virtue: final conquest of one's
self, final indifference.

Pyrrho and Epicurus;--two forms of Greek decadence; they are related
in their hatred of dialectics and all _theatrical_ virtues. These
two things together were then called philosophy; Pyrrho and Epicurus
intentionally held that which they loved in low esteem; they chose
common and even contemptible names for it, and they represented a state
in which one is neither ill, healthy, lively, nor dead.... Epicurus was
more _naïf,_ more idyllic, more grateful; Pyrrho had more experience of
the world, had travelled more, and was more nihilistic. His life was a
protest against the great _doctrine of Identity_ (Happiness = Virtue =
Knowledge). The proper way of living is not promoted by science: wisdom
does not make "wise." ... The proper way of living does not desire
happiness, it turns away from happiness....


The war against the "old faith," as Epicurus waged it, was, strictly
speaking, a struggle against _pre-existing_ Christianity--the struggle
against a world then already gloomy, moralised, acidified throughout
with feelings of guilt, and grown old and sick.

Not the "moral corruption" of antiquity, but precisely its _moral
infectedness_ was the prerequisite which enabled Christianity to become
its master. Moral fanaticism (in short: Plato) destroyed paganism by
transvaluing its values and poisoning its innocence. We ought at last
to understand that what was then destroyed was _higher_ than what
prevailed! Christianity grew on the soil of psychological corruption,
and could only take root in rotten ground.


Science: as a disciplinary measure or as an instinct--I see a decline
of the instincts in Greek philosophers: otherwise they

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Text Comparison with Thoughts out of Season, Part I

Page 8
It is a striking parallel, which will specially appeal to those religious souls amongst you who consider themselves the lost tribes of our race (and who are perhaps even more lost than they think),--and it is this: Just as the Jews have brought Christianity into the world, but never accepted it themselves, just as they, in spite of their democratic offspring, have always remained the most conservative, exclusive, aristocratic, and religious people, so have the English never allowed themselves to be intoxicated by the strong drink of the natural equality of men, which they once kindly offered to all Europe to quaff; but have, on the contrary, remained the most sober, the most exclusive, the most feudal, the most conservative people of our continent.
Page 25
For all those who think with the public mind have blindfolded their eyes and closed their ears.
Page 26
If he have to choose between a stylish act and its opposite, he will invariably adopt the latter, and, since this rule holds good throughout, every one of his acts bears the same negative stamp.
Page 33
But surely no evil spirit could speak as Strauss speaks of his new faith.
Page 37
] Thus cries the Philistine; and if we are not quite so satisfied as he, it is merely owing to the fact that we wanted to know more.
Page 39
Their arms and eyes moved, and a screw inside them creaked an accompaniment to their movements.
Page 40
" The last quality, as a rule, is just as characteristic of the great writer as of the little one; as a rule, a narrow head agrees only too fatally with a narrow heart.
Page 42
432); then, to our minds, one thing, and one thing alone, became certain--namely, that his Sweetmeat-Beethoven is not our Beethoven, and his Soup-Haydn is not our Haydn.
Page 59
What could they do against the uniform belief of the thousands who have enlisted public opinion in their cause, and who mutually defend each other in this belief? What purpose can it serve when one individual openly declares war against Strauss, seeing that a crowd have decided in his favour, and that the masses led by this.
Page 68
When taking up his pen to write, he seems to be continually posing for his portrait; and whereas at times his features are drawn to look like Lessing's, anon they are made to assume the Voltairean mould.
Page 78
--Nietzsche here proceeds to quote those passages he has culled from The Old and the New Faith with which he undertakes to substantiate all he has said relative to Strauss's style; as, however, these passages, with his comments upon them, lose most of their point when rendered into English, it was thought best to omit them altogether.
Page 101
If one examines a little more closely the impression which this vehement and kaleidoscopic play of colours makes upon one, does not the whole seem to blaze with the shimmer and sparkle of innumerable little stones borrowed from former civilisations? Is not everything one sees merely a complex of inharmonious bombast, aped gesticulations, arrogant superficiality?--a ragged suit of motley for the naked and the shivering? A seeming dance of joy enjoined upon a sufferer? Airs of overbearing pride assumed by one who is sick to the backbone? And the whole moving with such rapidity and confusion that it is disguised and masked-- sordid impotence, devouring dissension, assiduous ennui, dishonest distress! The appearance of present-day humanity is all appearance, and nothing else: in what he now represents man himself has become obscured and concealed; and the vestiges of the creative faculty in art, which still cling to such countries as France and Italy, are all concentrated upon this one task of concealing.
Page 104
Or, worse still, art is taken more or less seriously, and then it is itself expected to provoke a kind of hunger and craving, and to fulfil its mission in this artificially induced excitement.
Page 113
But how peculiarly this feeling is crossed, when another force happens to join his quivering pride, the craving of the heights for the depths, the affectionate yearning for earth, for happiness and for fellowship--then, when he thinks of all he misses as a hermit-creator, he feels as though he ought to descend to the earth like a god, and bear all that is weak, human, and lost, "in fiery arms up to heaven," so as to obtain love and no longer worship only, and to be able to lose himself completely in his love.
Page 115
his taste and his aspirations--all of which have ever been as closely related as key to lock--grew and attained to freedom together; but there was a time when it was not so.
Page 121
upon score, something happened which caused him to stop and listen: friends were coming, a kind of subterranean movement of many souls approached with a message for him--it was still far from being the people that constituted this movement and which wished to bear him news, but it may have been the nucleus and first living source of a really human community which would reach perfection in some age still remote.
Page 124
We shall feel as though Siegfried from some place far away were relating his deeds to us: the most blissful of touching recollections are always draped in the deep mourning of waning summer, when all nature lies still in the sable twilight.
Page 127
But in real life passion is seldom eloquent: in spoken drama it perforce must be, in order to be able to express itself at all.
Page 130
The means ill befit the intention, and the intention is, on the whole, not sufficiently.
Page 143
short moment of thrilling happiness, just as though they had actually escaped from the present, from illusions and from life: the theme of Tristan and Isolde.