Thus Spake Zarathustra: A Book for All and None

By Friedrich Nietzsche

Page 15

life are they, decaying ones and poisoned ones themselves,
of whom the earth is weary: so away with them!

Once blasphemy against God was the greatest blasphemy; but God died,
and therewith also those blasphemers. To blaspheme the earth is now the
dreadfulest sin, and to rate the heart of the unknowable higher than the
meaning of the earth!

Once the soul looked contemptuously on the body, and then that contempt
was the supreme thing:--the soul wished the body meagre, ghastly, and
famished. Thus it thought to escape from the body and the earth.

Oh, that soul was itself meagre, ghastly, and famished; and cruelty was
the delight of that soul!

But ye, also, my brethren, tell me: What doth your body say about
your soul? Is your soul not poverty and pollution and wretched

Verily, a polluted stream is man. One must be a sea, to receive a
polluted stream without becoming impure.

Lo, I teach you the Superman: he is that sea; in him can your great
contempt be submerged.

What is the greatest thing ye can experience? It is the hour of great
contempt. The hour in which even your happiness becometh loathsome unto
you, and so also your reason and virtue.

The hour when ye say: "What good is my happiness! It is poverty and
pollution and wretched self-complacency. But my happiness should justify
existence itself!"

The hour when ye say: "What good is my reason! Doth it long for
knowledge as the lion for his food? It is poverty and pollution and
wretched self-complacency!"

The hour when ye say: "What good is my virtue! As yet it hath not made
me passionate. How weary I am of my good and my bad! It is all poverty
and pollution and wretched self-complacency!"

The hour when ye say: "What good is my justice! I do not see that I am
fervour and fuel. The just, however, are fervour and fuel!"

The hour when ye say: "What good is my pity! Is not pity the cross on
which he is nailed who loveth man? But my pity is not a crucifixion."

Have ye ever spoken thus? Have ye ever cried thus? Ah! would that I had
heard you crying thus!

It is not your sin--it is your self-satisfaction that crieth unto
heaven; your very sparingness in sin crieth unto heaven!

Where is the lightning to lick you with its tongue? Where is the frenzy
with which ye should be inoculated?

Lo, I teach you the Superman: he is that lightning, he is that frenzy!--

When Zarathustra had thus spoken, one of the people called out: "We have
now heard

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Text Comparison with The Genealogy of Morals The Complete Works, Volume Thirteen, edited by Dr. Oscar Levy.

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For analytical power, more especially in those parts where Nietzsche examines the ascetic ideal, _The Genealogy of Morals_ is unequalled by any other of his works; and, in the light which it throws upon the attitude of the ecclesiast to the man of resentment and misfortune, it is one of the most valuable contributions to sacerdotal psychology.
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Fortunately I soon learned to separate theological from moral prejudices, and I gave up looking for a _supernatural_ origin of evil.
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" This method of explanation is also, as I have said, wrong, but at any rate the explanation itself is coherent, and psychologically tenable.
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Bonus accordingly as the man of discord, of variance, "entzweiung" (_duo_), as the warrior: one sees what in ancient Rome "the good" meant for a man.
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Take, for instance, certain kinds of diet (abstention from flesh), fasts, sexual continence, flight into the wilderness (a kind of Weir-Mitchell isolation, though of course without that system of excessive feeding and fattening which is the most efficient antidote to all the hysteria of the ascetic ideal); consider too the whole metaphysic of the priests, with its war on the senses, its enervation, its hair-splitting; consider its self-hypnotism on the fakir and Brahman principles (it uses Brahman as a glass disc and obsession), and that climax which we can understand only too well of an unusual satiety with its panacea of _nothingness_ (or God:--the demand for a _unio mystica_ with God is the demand of the Buddhist for nothingness, Nirvana--and nothing else!).
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It seems that it fetters and retards this tendency, instead of accelerating it.
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When the resentment of the aristocratic man manifests itself, it fulfils and exhausts itself in an immediate reaction, and consequently instills no _venom_: on the other hand, it never manifests itself at all in countless instances, when in the case of the feeble and weak it would be inevitable.
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And when the lambs say among themselves, "These birds of prey are evil, and he who is as far removed from being a bird of prey, who is rather its opposite, a lamb,--is he not good?" then there is nothing to cavil at in the setting up of this ideal, though it may also be that the birds of prey will regard it a little sneeringly, and perchance say to themselves, "_We_ bear no grudge against them, these good lambs, we even like them: nothing is tastier than a tender lamb.
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'" Further! "They are now giving me to understand, that not only are they better men than the mighty, the lords of the earth, whose spittle they have got to lick (not out of fear, not at all out of fear! But because God ordains that.
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And secondarily, that the fitting of a hitherto unchecked and amorphous population into a fixed form, starting as it had done in an act of violence, could only be accomplished by acts of violence and nothing else--that the oldest "State" appeared consequently as a ghastly tyranny, a grinding ruthless piece of machinery, which went on working, till this raw material of a semi-animal populace was not only thoroughly kneaded and elastic, but also _moulded_.
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--So much provisionally for the origin of "altruism" as a _moral_ value, and the marking out the ground from which this value has grown: it is only the bad conscience, only the will for self-abuse, that provides the necessary conditions for the existence of altruism as a _value_.
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We will later on glance again at the ennobling and promotion of the gods (which of course is totally distinct from their "sanctification"): let us now provisionally follow to its end the course of the whole of this development of the consciousness of "owing.
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reason, every animal shudders mortally at every kind of disturbance and hindrance which obstructs or could obstruct his way to that optimum (it is not his way to happiness of which I am talking, but his way to power, to action, the most powerful action, and in point of fact in many cases his way to unhappiness).
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Further, the _desert_, of which I just spoke, in which the strong, independent, and well-equipped spirits retreat into their hermitage--oh, how different is it from the cultured classes' dream of a desert! In certain cases, in fact, the cultured classes themselves are the desert.
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This third one speaks aggressively, he comes too near our body, his breath blows on us--we shut our mouth involuntarily, although he speaks to us through a book: the tone of his style supplies the reason--he has no time, he has small faith in himself, he finds expression now or never.
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But just once put yourself into that point of view, of which the priests have a monopoly, you will find it hard to exhaust your amazement, at what from that standpoint he has completely seen, sought, and found.
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Neither in the Indian nor in the Christian doctrine is this "Redemption" regarded as attainable by means of virtue and moral improvement, however high they may place the value of the hypnotic efficiency of virtue: keep clear on this point--indeed it simply corresponds with the facts.