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

By Friedrich Nietzsche

Page 8

to which we are able to
endure life. We have _ceased_ from attaching any worth to what we
know, and we _dare_ not attach any more worth to that with which we
would fain deceive ourselves--from this antagonism there results a
process of dissolution.


This is the _antinomy_: In so far as we believe in morality, we condemn


The highest values in the service of which man ought to live, more
particularly when they oppressed and constrained him most--these
_social values, owing to their tone-strengthening_ tendencies,
were built over men's heads as though they were the will of God or
"reality," or the actual world, or even a hope of a world to come.
Now that the lowly origin of these values has become known, the
whole universe seems to have been transvalued and to have lost its
significance--but this is only an intermediate stage.


The consequence of _Nihilism_ (disbelief in all values) as a result
of a moral valuation:--_We have grown to dislike egotism_ (even
though we have realised the impossibility of altruism);--_we have
grown to dislike what is most necessary_ (although we have recognised
the impossibility of a _liberum arbitrium_ and of an "intelligible
freedom"[1]). We perceive that we do not reach the spheres in which we
have set our values--at the same time those other spheres in which we
live have _not_ thereby gained _one iota_ in value. On the contrary, we
are _tired,_ because we have lost the main incentive to live. "All in
vain hitherto!"


"Pessimism as a preparatory state to Nihilism."


A. Pessimism viewed as strength--_in what respect?_ In the energy of
its logic, as anarchy, Nihilism, and analysis.

B. Pessimism regarded as collapse--_in what sense?_ In the sense of
its being a softening influence, a sort of cosmopolitan befingering, a
"tout comprendre," and historical spirit.

_Critical tension_: extremes make their appearance and become dominant.


_The logic of Pessimism leads finally to Nihilism: what is the force at
work?_--The notion that _there are no values,_ and _no purpose_: the
recognition of the part that moral valuations have played in all other
lofty values.

Result: _moral valuations are condemnations, negations; morality is the
abdication of the will to live...._

[Footnote 1: This is a Kantian term. Kant recognised two kinds of
Freedom--the practical and the transcendental kind. The first belongs
to the phenomenal, the second to the intelligible world.--TRANSLATOR'S




Nihilism will have to manifest itself as a _psychological condition,
first_ when we have sought in all that has happened a purpose which
is not there: so that the seeker will ultimately lose courage.
Nihilism is therefore the coming into consciousness of the long
_waste_ of

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Text Comparison with The Case of Wagner Complete Works, Volume 8

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