Thoughts Out of Season, Part II

By Friedrich Nietzsche

Page 98

failure of Nature's handiwork and a testimony to
her larger ideas. "She has succeeded badly," he should say; "but I
will do honour to her great idea by being a means to its better
success."

With these thoughts he will enter the circle of culture, which is the
child of every man's self-knowledge and dissatisfaction. He will
approach and say aloud: "I see something above me, higher and more
human than I: let all help me to reach it, as I will help all who
know and suffer as I do, that the man may arise at last who feels his
knowledge and love, vision and power, to be complete and boundless,
who in his universality is one with nature, the critic and judge of
existence." It is difficult to give any one this courageous
self-consciousness, because it is impossible to teach love; from love
alone the soul gains, not only the clear vision that leads to
self-contempt, but also the desire to look to a higher self which is
yet hidden, and strive upward to it with all its strength. And so he
who rests his hope on a future great man, receives his first
"initiation into culture." The sign of this is shame or vexation at
one's self, a hatred of one's own narrowness, a sympathy with the
genius that ever raises its head again from our misty wastes, a
feeling for all that is struggling into life, the conviction that
Nature must be helped in her hour of need to press forward to the
man, however ill she seem to prosper, whatever success may attend her
marvellous forms and projects: so that the men with whom we live are
like the débris of some precious sculptures, which cry out--"Come and
help us! Put us together, for we long to become complete."

I called this inward condition the "first initiation into culture." I
have now to describe the effects of the "second initiation," a task
of greater difficulty. It is the passage from the inner life to the
criticism of the outer life. The eye must be turned to find in the
great world of movement the desire for culture that is known from the
immediate experience of the individual; who must use his own
strivings and aspirations as the alphabet to interpret those of
humanity. He cannot rest here either, but must go higher. Culture
demands from him not only that inner experience, not only the
criticism of the outer world surrounding him, but action too to crown
them all, the fight for culture against the influences and
conventions and institutions where he cannot

Last Page Next Page

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

Page 4
_ In modern times it is not the art-needing man but the slave who determines the general conceptions, the slave who according to his nature must give deceptive names to all conditions in order to be able to live.
Page 9
For this Helena the State waged those wars--and what grey-bearded judge could here condemn?-- Under this mysterious connection, which we here divine between State and art, political greed and artistic creation, battlefield and work of art, we understand by the State, as already remarked, only the cramp-iron, which compels the Social process; whereas without the State, in the natural _bellum omnium contra omnes_ Society cannot strike root at all on a larger scale and beyond the reach of the family.
Page 18
us--as I am forced to insert here in opposition to Schopenhauer--after a most rigid self-examination, not according to its essence but merely as conception; and we may well be permitted to say, that even Schopenhauer's "Will" is nothing else but the most general phenomenal form of a Something otherwise absolutely indecipherable.
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 36
The world has been at all times full of trivialities and nonentities; to your historic hankering just these and only these unveil themselves.
Page 38
" Whoever on the contrary finds any pleasure at all in great men finds pleasure also in such systems, be they ever so erroneous, for they all have in them one point which is irrefutable, a personal touch, and colour; one can use them in order to form a picture of the philosopher, just as from a plant growing in a certain place one can form conclusions as to the soil.
Page 39
She is dangerous where she is not in her full right, and it is only the health of a nation but not that of every nation which gives her this right.
Page 44
But we will not lament but rather take the advice of the reproving and consolatory words which Hamann addresses to scholars who lament over lost works.
Page 48
The Greek word which designates the Sage belongs etymologically to _sapio,_ I taste, _sapiens,_ the tasting one, _sisyphos,_ the man of the most delicate taste; the peculiar art of the philosopher therefore consists, according to the opinion of the people, in a delicate selective judgment by taste, by discernment, by significant differentiation.
Page 54
If now Heraclitus considered time in this fashion, dissociated from all experiences, he had in it the most instructive monogram of all that which falls within the realm of intuitive conception.
Page 56
And after all: The One is The Many.
Page 62
Never for example would one be able to imagine the pride of Heraclitus as an idle possibility.
Page 67
After all it seems to me quite accidental that in the same place in Elea two men lived together for a time, each of whom carried in his head a conception of unity; they formed no school and had nothing in common which perhaps the one might have learned from the other and then might have handed on.
Page 68
His unity scarcely had expression and word in common with the one "Being" of Parmenides, and certainly had not the same origin.
Page 71
Experience offered him nowhere a "Being" as he imagined it to himself, but from the fact that he could conceive of it he concluded that it must exist; a conclusion which rests upon the supposition that we have an organ of knowledge which reaches into the nature of things and is independent of experience.
Page 88
As a matter of course one would assume that the pressure of all the remaining matter would have crushed out this small circular movement when it had scarcely begun; that this does not happen presupposes on the part of the stimulating Nous, that the latter began to work suddenly with awful force, or at any rate so quickly, that we must call the motion a whirl: such a whirl as Democritus himself imagined.
Page 93
How do distant things operate on one another, sun upon earth? If everything were still in a whirl, that would be impossible.
Page 94
Some day everything will be again one _single life,_ the most blissful state.
Page 99
the pure ineffective truth) is also quite incomprehensible to the creator of language and not worth making any great endeavour to obtain.
Page 100
We call a man "honest"; we ask, why has he acted so honestly to-day? Our customary answer runs, "On account of his honesty.