Thus Spake Zarathustra: A Book for All and None

By Friedrich Nietzsche

Page 235

back to the conventions of
the age they intended reforming. The French then say "le diable se fait
hermite," but these men, as a rule, have never been devils, neither
do they become angels; for, in order to be really good or evil, some
strength and deep breathing is required. Those who are more interested
in supporting orthodoxy than in being over nice concerning the kind of
support they give it, often refer to these people as evidence in favour
of the true faith.

Chapter LIII. The Return Home.

This is an example of a class of writing which may be passed over too
lightly by those whom poetasters have made distrustful of poetry. From
first to last it is extremely valuable as an autobiographical note. The
inevitable superficiality of the rabble is contrasted with the peaceful
and profound depths of the anchorite. Here we first get a direct hint
concerning Nietzsche's fundamental passion--the main force behind all
his new values and scathing criticism of existing values. In verse 30
we are told that pity was his greatest danger. The broad altruism of the
law-giver, thinking over vast eras of time, was continually being pitted
by Nietzsche, in himself, against that transient and meaner sympathy for
the neighbour which he more perhaps than any of his contemporaries had
suffered from, but which he was certain involved enormous dangers not
only for himself but also to the next and subsequent generations (see
Note B., where "pity" is mentioned among the degenerate virtues). Later
in the book we shall see how his profound compassion leads him into
temptation, and how frantically he struggles against it. In verses 31
and 32, he tells us to what extent he had to modify himself in order
to be endured by his fellows whom he loved (see also verse 12 in "Manly
Prudence"). Nietzsche's great love for his fellows, which he confesses
in the Prologue, and which is at the root of all his teaching, seems
rather to elude the discerning powers of the average philanthropist and
modern man. He cannot see the wood for the trees. A philanthropy that
sacrifices the minority of the present-day for the majority constituting
posterity, completely evades his mental grasp, and Nietzsche's
philosophy, because it declares Christian values to be a danger to the
future of our kind, is therefore shelved as brutal, cold, and hard (see
Note on Chapter XXXVI.). Nietzsche tried to be all things to all men;
he was sufficiently fond of his fellows for that: in the Return Home he
describes how he ultimately returns to loneliness in order to recover
from the effects

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Text Comparison with The Twilight of the Idols - The Antichrist Complete Works, Volume Sixteen

Page 1
_ Here Nietzsche is quite at his best.
Page 3
The Immoralist.
Page 32
A small, and at bottom perfectly insignificant fact, known as the _"pia fraus,"_ first gave me access to this problem: the _pia fraus,_ the heirloom of all philosophers and priests who "improve" mankind.
Page 34
Germany is becoming ever more and more the Flat-land of Europe.
Page 49
Page 50
We are soaked in the oil of indulgence and of sympathy, we are absurdly just we forgive everything.
Page 75
And they ought even to be helped to perish.
Page 92
The old God was no longer able to do what he had done formerly.
Page 99
But one should guard against seeing anything more than a language of signs, semiotics, an opportunity for parables in all this.
Page 100
_ The idea, _experience,_ "life" as he alone knows it, is, according to him, opposed to every kind of word, formula, law, faith and dogma.
Page 101
"--A new life and _not_ a new faith.
Page 116
-- The old God, entirely "spirit," a high-priest through and through, and wholly perfect, is wandering in a leisurely fashion round his garden; but he is bored.
Page 119
Christianity is in _need_ of illness, just as Ancient Greece was in need of a superabundance of health.
Page 125
German historians, for instance, are convinced that Rome stood for despotism, whereas the Teutons introduced the spirit of freedom into the world: what difference is there between this conviction and a lie? After this is it to be wondered at, that all parties, including German historians, instinctively adopt the grandiloquent phraseology of morality,--that morality almost owes its _survival_ to the fact that the man who belongs to a party, no matter what it may be, is in need of morality every moment?--"This is our conviction: we confess it to the whole world, we live and die for it,--let us respect every thing that has a conviction!"--I have actually heard antisemites speak in this way.
Page 128
Consequently, that which has to be avoided, above all, is any further experimentation, the continuation of the state when values are still fluid, the testing, choosing, and criticising of values _in infinitum.
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58 In point of fact, it matters greatly to what end one lies: whether one preserves or _destroys_ by means of falsehood.
Page 140
We are therefore forced to conclude: (1) either that the universe began its activity at a given moment of time and will end in a similar fashion,--but the beginning of activity is absurd; if a state of equilibrium had been reached it would have persisted to all eternity; (2) Or there is no such thing as an endless number of changes, but a circle consisting of a definite number of them which continually recurs: activity is eternal, the number of the products and states of energy is limited.
Page 146
And then you will find every pain and every pleasure, every friend and every enemy, every hope and every error, every blade of grass and every ray of sunshine once more, and the whole fabric of things that makes up your life.
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He, alone, who will regard his existence as capable of eternal recurrence will remain over: but among such as these a state will be possible of which the imagination of no utopist has ever dreamt! 33 Ye fancy that ye will have a long rest ere your second birth takes place,--but do not deceive yourselves! 'Twixt your last moment of consciousness and the first ray of the dawn of your new life no time will elapse,--as a flash of lightning will the space go by, even though living creatures think it is billions of years, and are not even able to reckon it.
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Simple and well-nigh arid as it is, this thought must not even require eloquence to uphold it.