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

By Friedrich Nietzsche

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such violent tension.
Dissatisfaction, Nihilism, _might be a good sign._


_General survey._--As a matter of fact, all abundant growth involves a
concomitant process of _crumbling to bits_ and _decay_: suffering and
the symptoms of decline _belong_ to ages of enormous progress; every
fruitful and powerful movement of mankind has always _brought about_
a concurrent Nihilistic movement. Under certain circumstances, the
appearance of _the extremest_ form of Pessimism and actual _Nihilism_
might be the sign of a process of incisive and most essential growth,
and of mankind's transit into completely new conditions of existence.
_This is what I have understood._



Starting out with a thoroughly courageous _appreciation_ of our men of
to-day:--we must not allow ourselves to be deceived by appearance: this
mankind is much less effective, but it gives quite different pledges
of _lasting strength,_ its tempo is slower, but the rhythm itself is
richer. _Healthiness_ is increasing, the real conditions of a healthy
body are on the point of being known, and will gradually be created,
"asceticism" is regarded with irony. The fear of extremes, a certain
confidence in the "right way," no raving: a periodical self-habituation
to narrower values (such as "mother-land," "science," etc.).

This whole picture, however, would still be _ambiguous_: it might be a
movement either of _increase_ or _decline_ in Life.


The belief in "progress"--in lower spheres of intelligence, appears as
increasing life: but this is self-deception;

in higher spheres of intelligence it is a sign of
_declining_ life.

Description of the symptoms.

The unity of the aspect: uncertainty in regard to the standard of

Fear of a general "in vain."



As a matter of fact, we are no longer so urgently in need of an
antidote against the first Nihilism: Life is no longer so uncertain,
accidental, and senseless in modern Europe. All such tremendous
_exaggeration_ of the value of men, of the value of evil, etc., are
not so necessary now; we can endure a considerable diminution of this
value, we may grant a great deal of nonsense and accident: the _power_
man has acquired now allows of a _lowering_ of the means of discipline,
of which the strongest was the moral interpretation of the universe.
The hypothesis "God" is much too extreme.


If anything shows that our _humanisation_ is a genuine sign of
_progress,_ it is the fact that we no longer require excessive
contraries, that we no longer require contraries at all....

We may love the senses; for we have spiritualised them in every way and
made them artistic;

We have a right to all things which hitherto have been most


_The reversal of the order of

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Text Comparison with Ecce Homo Complete Works, Volume Seventeen

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