Day 710, Leaving in Hades.

Day 710-1

Friedrich Nietzsche

Human all too human

374.

Leaving in Hades.—We must leave many things in the Hades of half-conscious feeling, and not try to release them from their shadow-existence, or else they will become, as thoughts and words, our demoniacal tyrants, with cruel lust after our blood.

Day 704, The Freezing-Point of the Will.

Day 704-1

Friedrich Nietzsche

Human all too human

349.

The Freezing-Point of the Will.—“Some time the hour will come at last, the hour that will envelop you in the golden cloud of painlessness; when the soul enjoys its own weariness and, happy in patient playing with patience, resembles the waves of a lake, which on a quiet summer day, in the reflection of a many-hued evening sky, sip and sip at the shore and again are hushed—without end, without purpose, without satiety, without need—all calm rejoicing in change, all ebb and flow of Nature’s pulse.” Such is the feeling and talk of all invalids, but if they attain that hour, a brief period of enjoyment is followed by ennui. But this is the thawing-wind of the frozen will, which awakes, stirs, and once more begets desire upon desire.—Desire is a sign of convalescence or recovery.

Day 696, Art makes the thinker’s heart heavy.

Day 696-1

The winter is not gone yet, the snow comes and goes but the ground is still frozen. Maybe 2 more moths ore a bit longer.

Friedrich Nietzsche

Human all too human

153
Art makes the thinker’s heart heavy. – How strong the metaphysical need is, and how hard nature makes it to bid it a final farewell, can be seen from the fact that even when the free spirit has divested himself of everything metaphysical the highest effects of art can easily set the metaphysical strings, which have long been silent or indeed snapped apart, vibrating in sympathy; so it can happen, for example, that a passage in Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony will make him feel he is hovering above the earth in a dome of stars with the dream of immortality in his heart: all the stars seem to glitter around him and the earth seems to sink farther and farther away. – If he becomes aware of being in this condition he feels a profound stab in the heart and sighs for the man who will lead him back to his lost love, whether she be called religion or metaphysics. It is in such moments that his intellectual probity is put to the test.

Day 689, By the waterfall.

Day 689-1

Friedrich Nietzsche

Human all too human

106
By the waterfall. – At the sight of a waterfall we think we see in the countless curvings, twistings and breakings of the waves capriciousness and freedom of will; but everything here is necessary, every motion mathematically calculable. So it is too in the case of human actions; if one were all-knowing, one would be able to calculate every individual action, likewise every advance in knowledge, every error, every piece of wickedness. The actor himself, to be sure, is fixed in the illusion of free will; if for one moment the wheel of the world were to stand still, and there were an all-knowing, calculating intelligence there to make use of this pause, it could narrate the future of every creature to the remotest ages and describe every track along which this wheel had yet to roll. The actor’s deception regarding himself, the assumption of free-will, is itself part of the mechanism it would have to compute.

Day 686, The death penalty and Nietzsche.

Day 686-1

70 Execution. – How is it that every execution offends us more than a murder? It is the coldness of the judges, the scrupulous preparation, the insight that here a human being is being used as a means of deterring others. For it is not the guilt that is being punished, even when it exists: this lies in educators, parents, environment, in Is, not in the murderer – I mean the circumstances that caused him to become one.

This is an aphorism from Friedrich Nietzsche from his book Human all too human. I agree with him, executing someone is wrong, I see it like playing god, or pretending to know what we are and judge others according to your believe. As far as I know we are all clueless on why we are here. If you accept that than it should be obvious that you cannot decide to remove someone from this life. I know that the people that are condemned to be executed have often taken lives and should be restrained from doing that again, but it speaks for a society that condemns executions, that they admit that we are all in it together and that life is secret. Most countries that still have a death penalty are religious or have a strong ideological government like in China. These countries follow strict written rules that define the world like the rules you find in the bible or Koran or within a rigid ideology like communism. For people that follow these rules (maybe because their society tells them to) it’s much easier to ignore their guilty conscious and point at the specific chapter in their rule-books for confirmation, they can hide behind there believe without taking personal responsibility for their moral choices. Having a believe on a personal level might not be a choice, but a society can steer away from archaic believe systems.

But more important than Nietzsche opposition to the death penalty is his questioning of a personal responsibility for our actions. That is of course a topic he writes about in many places and this aphorism is just a little prick, to let the reader no what is important to him. Simply set: do we have an independent soul that is responsible for our actions or are we just a complicated machine that gives different outcomes depending on what you put in to it. Is the character you have at birth, your upbringing, environment, schooling, and other experiences define you in such a way that you don’t have much of a choice in what you become?

You can come up with all kinds of scenarios where people get chances or not, are born at the wrong time, at the wrong place, you can make it as complicated as you want but my best guess is that there is only a small part of you that is so unique (because of all the specific circumstances in your life) that you can call it you. But this you is like a person on a rudderless oil tanker drifting at sea and the only thing you can steer this 300ft ship with is an paddle.

Day 679, The slow arrow of beauty.

Day 679-1

Friedrich Nietzsche

Human all too human

149
The slow arrow of beauty. – The noblest kind of beauty is not that which suddenly transports us, which makes a violent and intoxicating assault upon us (such beauty can easily excite disgust), but that which slowly infiltrates us, which we bear away with us almost without noticing and encounter again in dreams, but which finally, after having for long lain modestly in our heart, takes total possession of us, filling our eyes with
tears and our heart with longing. – What is it we long for at the sight of beauty? To be beautiful our self: we imagine we would be very happy if we were beautiful. – But that is an error.

Human all too human: 47. Hypochondria.

Reading Friedrich Nietzsche’s Human all too human

Read the introduction here You can read the aphorism I discuss here in English and German below the main article.

My take on it/synopsis.

  1. Sick for Christ.

DSCF8666

There are people who become hypochondriacal through their sympathy and concern for another person; the kind of sympathy which results therefrom is nothing but a disease. Thus, there is also a Christian hypochondria, which afflicts those solitary, religiously-minded people who keep constantly before their eyes the sufferings and death of Christ.


Text from the translation by Helen Zimmern and my take on it

There are people who become hypochondriacal through their sympathy and concern for another person ; the kind of sympathy which results therefrom is nothing but a disease. Thus there is also a Christian hypochondria, which afflicts those solitary, religiously-minded people who keep constantly before their eyes the sufferings and death of Christ.


Human, all too human a book for free spirits Part I translated by Helen Zimmern 1909

  1. HYPOCHONDRIA.—There are people who become hypochondriacal through their sympathy and concern for another person ; the kind of sympathy which results therefrom is nothing but a disease. Thus there is also a Christian hypochondria, which afflicts those solitary, religiously-minded people who keep constantly before their eyes the sufferings and death of Christ.

Menschliches allzu menschlich 1878/80

  1. Hypochondrie.- Es giebt Menschen, welche aus Mitgefühl und Sorge für eine andere Person hypochondrisch werden; die dabei entstehende Art des Mitleidens ist nichts Anderes, als eine Krankheit. So giebt es auch eine christliche Hypochondrie, welche jene einsamen, religiös bewegten Leute befällt, die sich das Leiden und Sterben Christi fortwährend vor Augen stellen.

Sources:

I will read a Dutch translation that is based on the work of researchers Colli and Montinari. I also use a translation from R.J.Hollingdale and the Gary Handwerk translation from the Colli-Montinari edition. Both are more modern than the copyright free translation I use here. This is a translation from 1909 by Helen Zimmern, who knew Nietzsche personally, but there was no critical study of Nietzsche’s work done back then and this translation suffers from that. The same goes for the translation from Alexander Harvey. My German is not good enough to pretend that I can translate it better than the professionals do but I will use the original as a referee.

  1. Menselijk al te menselijk een boek voor vrije geesten, translated by Thomas Graftdijk, 2000. Buy it here
  2. Human, all too human a book for free spirits, translated by R.J.Hollingdale, 1986
  3. Human, all too human a book for free spirits I V3, translated by Gary handwerk 1997
  4. Human, all too human a book for free spirits Part I, translated by Helen Zimmern 1909. Read it  here
  5. Human, all too human a book for free spirits, translated by Alexander Harvey, 1908. Read it here
  6. Menschliches allzu menschlich 1878/80. Read it here

 

 

Human all too human: 46. Sympathy stronger than suffering.

Reading Friedrich Nietzsche’s Human all too human

Read the introduction here You can read the aphorism I discuss here in English and German below the main article.

My take on it/synopsis.

  1. Your shame, my suffering.

DSCF8619-Edit

Sympathy can be stronger than suffering. You can feel more shame, for instance, when someone else does something shameful than you would feel yourself if you did the same. For one thing, we believe more in him then he does and even when his egoism suffers more than ours because of his mistake the un-egoistic* in us is more deeply wounded by his guilt than is the un-egoistic in him.

* this word is not to be taken too seriously, but only as a modification of the expression


Text from the translation by Helen Zimmern and my take on it

There are cases when sympathy is stronger than actual suffering. For instance, we are more pained when one of our friends is guilty of something shameful than when we do it ourselves. Sympathy can be stronger than suffering. You can feel more shame, for example, when someone else does something shameful than you would feel yourself doing the same. For one thing, we have more faith in the purity of his character than he has himself; then our love for him, probably on account of this very faith, is stronger than his love for himself. For one thing, we believe more in him then he does And even if his egoism suffers more thereby than our egoism, inasmuch as it has to bear more of the bad consequences of his fault, and even when his egoism suffers more than ours because of his mistake the un-egoistic in us—this word is not to be taken too seriously, but only as a modification of the expression—is more deeply wounded by his guilt than is the un-egoistic in him. the un-egoistic in us—this word is not to be taken too seriously, but only as a modification of the expression—is more deeply wounded by his guilt than is the un-egoistic in him.


Human, all too human a book for free spirits Part I translated by Helen Zimmern 1909

  1. SYMPATHY STRONGER THAN SUFFERING.—There are cases when sympathy is stronger than actual suffering. For instance, we are more pained when one of our friends is guilty of something shameful than when we do it ourselves. For one thing, we have more faith in the purity of his character than he has himself; then our love for him, probably on account of this very faith, is stronger than his love for himself. And even if his egoism suffers more thereby than our egoism, inasmuch as it has to bear more of the bad consequences of his fault, the un-egoistic in us—this word is not to be taken too seriously, but only as a modification of the expression—is more deeply wounded by his guilt than is the un-egoistic in him.

Menschliches allzu menschlich 1878/80

  1. Mitleiden stärker als Leiden. – Es giebt Fälle, wo das Mitleiden stärker ist, als das eigentliche Leiden. Wir empfinden es zum Beispiel schmerzlicher, wenn einer unserer Freunde sich etwas Schmähliches zu Schulden kommen lässt, als wenn wir selbst es thun. Einmal nämlich glauben wir mehr an die Reinheit seines Charakters, als er; sodann ist unsere Liebe zu ihm, wahrscheinlich eben dieses Glaubens wegen, stärker, als seine Liebe zu sich selbst. Wenn auch wirklich sein Egoismus mehr dabei leidet, als unser Egoismus, insofern er die übelen Folgen seines Vergehens stärker zu tragen hat, so wird das Unegoistische in uns – dieses Wort ist nie streng zu verstehen, sondern nur eine Erleichterung des Ausdrucks – doch stärker durch seine Schuld betroffen, als das Unegoistische in ihm.

Sources:

I will read a Dutch translation that is based on the work of researchers Colli and Montinari. I also use a translation from R.J.Hollingdale and the Gary Handwerk translation from the Colli-Montinari edition. Both are more modern than the copyright free translation I use here. This is a translation from 1909 by Helen Zimmern, who knew Nietzsche personally, but there was no critical study of Nietzsche’s work done back then and this translation suffers from that. The same goes for the translation from Alexander Harvey. My German is not good enough to pretend that I can translate it better than the professionals do but I will use the original as a referee.

  1. Menselijk al te menselijk een boek voor vrije geesten, translated by Thomas Graftdijk, 2000. Buy it here
  2. Human, all too human a book for free spirits, translated by R.J.Hollingdale, 1986
  3. Human, all too human a book for free spirits I V3, translated by Gary handwerk 1997
  4. Human, all too human a book for free spirits Part I, translated by Helen Zimmern 1909. Read it  here
  5. Human, all too human a book for free spirits, translated by Alexander Harvey, 1908. Read it here
  6. Menschliches allzu menschlich 1878/80. Read it here

 

 

Human all too human: 44. The Twofold early history of good and evil.

Reading Friedrich Nietzsche’s Human all too human

Read the introduction here You can read the aphorism I discuss here in English and German below the main article.

My take on it/synopsis.

  1. The good are a class, the bad are a mass.

DSCF8665The history of good and evil is twofold: First in the soul of the ruling class, who can repay good with good and evil with evil is good, whoever cannot do this is bad. As a good person you belong to the “good” community because of the shared value of requital. The bad person belongs to the “bad” community that is filled with powerless people without shared values. The good are a class, the bad are a mass. Good and bad have for a long time meant the same thing as noble and base or master and slave. But remember that an enemy is not necessary bad, it is not the one who injures us, but the one who is despicable, who is called bad. Good is inherited in the good community, no bad man can come from it and if a good person does bad the excuse will be the will of a god for instance. – Secondly, in the community of the bad people all man are looked upon as hostile and cruel no matter what his rank is, evil is the word they use for all living creatures. The signs of goodness, helpfulness and pity, are looked upon with fear, interpreted as meanness, the prelude to a terrible result. With such a disposition in the individual a community could hardly exist, or at most it could exist only in its crudest form, so that in all places where this conception of good and evil reigns, the downfall of the single individuals, of their tribes and races, is at hand. Our present civilization has grown up on the bottom of the ruling tribes and castes. 


Text from the translation by Helen Zimmern and my take on it

The conception of good and evil has a twofold early history, namely, once in the soul of the ruling tribes and castes. Whoever has the power of returning good for good, evil for evil, and really practises requital, and who is, therefore, grateful and revengeful, is called good ; The history of good and evil is twofold: First in the soul of the ruling class, who can requital or repay good with good and evil with evil is good, whoever is powerless, and unable to requite, is reckoned as bad. whoever cannot do this is bad. As a good man one is reckoned among the “good,” a community which has common feelings because the single individuals are bound to one another by the sense of requital. As a good person you belong to the “good” community because of the shared value of requital. As a bad man one belongs to the “bad,” to a party of subordinate, powerless people who have no common feeling. The bad person belongs to the “bad” community filled with powerless people without shared values. The good are a caste, the bad are a mass like dust. The good are a class, the bad are a mass. Good and bad have for a long time meant the same thing as noble and base, master and slave. Good and bad have for a long time meant the same thing as noble and base, master and slave. On the other hand, the enemy is not looked upon as evil, he can requite. In Homer the Trojan and the Greek are both good. It is not the one who injures us, but the one who is despicable, who is called bad. But remember that an enemy is not necessary bad, It is not the one who injures us, but the one who is despicable, who is called bad. Good is inherited in the community of the good ; it is impossible that a bad man could spring from such good soil. If, nevertheless, one of the good ones does something which is unworthy of the good, refuge is sought in excuses; the guilt is thrown upon a god, for instance ; it is said that he has struck the good man with blindness and madness.— Good is inherited in the good community, no bad man can come from it and if a good person does bad the excuse will be the will of a god. Then in the soul of the oppressed and powerless. Here every other man is looked upon as hostile, inconsiderate, rapacious, cruel, cunning, be he noble or base ; evil is the distinguishing word for man, even for every conceivable living creature, e.g. for a god ; human, divine, is the same thing as devilish, evil. In the community of the bad people all man are looked upon as hostile and cruel disregarding his rank, evil is the distinguishing word for all living creatures. The signs of goodness, helpfulness, pity, are looked upon with fear as spite, the prelude to a terrible result, stupefaction and out-witting,—in short, as refined malice. The signs of goodness, helpfulness and pity, are looked upon with fear as meanness, the prelude to a terrible result. With such a disposition in the individual a community could hardly exist, or at most it could exist only in its crudest form, so that in all places where this conception of good and evil obtains, the downfall of the single individuals, of their tribes and races, is at hand.—Our present civilisation has grown up on the soil of the ruling tribes and castes. With such a disposition in the individual a community could hardly exist, or at most it could exist only in its crudest form, so that in all places where this conception of good and evil obtains, the downfall of the single individuals, of their tribes and races, is at hand.—Our present civilisation has grown up on the soil of the ruling tribes and castes.


Human, all too human a book for free spirits Part I translated by Helen Zimmern 1909

  1. THE TWOFOLD EARLY HISTORY OF GOOD AND EVIL.—The conception of good and evil has a twofold early history, namely, once in the soul of the ruling tribes and castes. Whoever has the power of returning good for good, evil for evil, and really practises requital, and who is, therefore, grateful and revengeful, is called good ; whoever is powerless, and unable to requite, is reckoned as bad. As a good man one is reckoned among the “good,” a community which has common feelings because the single individuals are bound to one another by the sense of requital. As a bad man one belongs to the “bad,” to a party of subordinate, powerless people who have no common feeling. The good are a caste, the bad are a mass like dust. Good and bad have for a long time meant the same thing as noble and base, master and slave. On the other hand, the enemy is not looked upon as evil, he can requite. In Homer the Trojan and the Greek are both good. It is not the one who injures us, but the one who is despicable, who is called bad. Good is inherited in the community of the good ; it is impossible that a bad man could spring from such good soil. If, nevertheless, one of the good ones does something which is unworthy of the good, refuge is sought in excuses; the guilt is thrown upon a god, for instance ; it is said that he has struck the good man with blindness and madness.—Then in the soul of the oppressed and powerless. Here every other man is looked upon as hostile, inconsiderate, rapacious, cruel, cunning, be he noble or base ; evil is the distinguishing word for man, even for every conceivable living creature, e.g. for a god ; human, divine, is the same thing as devilish, evil. The signs of goodness, helpfulness, pity, are looked upon with fear as spite, the prelude to a terrible result, stupefaction and out-witting,—in short, as refined malice. With such a disposition in the individual a community could hardly exist, or at most it could exist only in its crudest form, so that in all places where this conception of good and evil obtains, the downfall of the single individuals, of their tribes and races, is at hand.—Our present civilisation has grown up on the soil of the ruling tribes and castes.

Menschliches allzu menschlich 1878/80

  1. Doppelte Vorgeschichte von Gut und Böse. – Der Begriff gut und böse hat eine doppelte Vorgeschichte: nämlich einmal in der Seele der herrschenden Stämme und Kasten. Wer die Macht zu vergelten hat, Gutes mit Gutem, Böses mit Bösem, und auch wirklich Vergeltung übt, also dankbar und rachsüchtig ist, der wird gut genannt; wer unmächtig ist und nicht vergelten kann, gilt als schlecht. Man gehört als Guter zu den “Guten”, einer Gemeinde, welche Gemeingefühl hat, weil alle Einzelnen durch den Sinn der Vergeltung mit einander verflochten sind. Man gehört als Schlechter zu den “Schlechten”, zu einem Haufen unterworfener, ohnmächtiger Menschen, welche kein Gemeingefühl haben. Die Guten sind eine Kaste, die Schlechten eine Masse wie Staub. Gut und schlecht ist eine Zeit lang so viel wie vornehm und niedrig, Herr und Sclave. Dagegen sieht man den Feind nicht als böse an: er kann vergelten. Der Troer und der Grieche sind bei Homer beide gut. Nicht Der, welcher uns Schädliches zufügt, sondern Der, welcher verächtlich ist, gilt als schlecht. In der Gemeinde der Guten vererbt sich das Gute; es ist unmöglich, dass ein Schlechter aus so gutem Erdreiche hervorwachse. Thut trotzdem Einer der Guten Etwas, das der Guten unwürdig ist, so verfällt man auf Ausflüchte; man schiebt zum Beispiel einem Gott die Schuld zu, indem man sagt: er habe den Guten mit Verblendung und Wahnsinn geschlagen. – Sodann in der Seele der Unterdrückten, Machtlosen. Hier gilt jeder andere Mensch als feindlich, rücksichtslos, ausbeutend, grausam, listig, sei er vornehm oder niedrig; böse ist das Charakterwort für Mensch, ja für jedes lebende Wesen, welches man voraussetzt, zum Beispiel für einen Gott; menschlich, göttlich gilt so viel wie teuflisch, böse. Die Zeichen der Güte, Hülfebereitschaft, Mitleid, werden angstvoll als Tücke, Vorspiel eines schrecklichen Ausgangs, Betäubung und Ueberlistung aufgenommen, kurz als verfeinerte Bosheit. Bei einer solchen Gesinnung des Einzelnen kann kaum ein Gemeinwesen entstehen, höchstens die roheste Form desselben: so dass überall, wo diese Auffassung von gut und böse herrscht, der Untergang der Einzelnen, ihrer Stämme und Rassen nahe ist. – Unsere jetzige Sittlichkeit ist auf dem Boden der herrschenden Stämme und Kasten aufgewachsen.

Sources:

I will read a Dutch translation that is based on the work of researchers Colli and Montinari. I also use a translation from R.J.Hollingdale and the Gary Handwerk translation from the Colli-Montinari edition. Both are more modern than the copyright free translation I use here. This is a translation from 1909 by Helen Zimmern, who knew Nietzsche personally, but there was no critical study of Nietzsche’s work done back then and this translation suffers from that. The same goes for the translation from Alexander Harvey. My German is not good enough to pretend that I can translate it better than the professionals do but I will use the original as a referee.

  1. Menselijk al te menselijk een boek voor vrije geesten, translated by Thomas Graftdijk, 2000. Buy it here
  2. Human, all too human a book for free spirits, translated by R.J.Hollingdale, 1986
  3. Human, all too human a book for free spirits I V3, translated by Gary handwerk 1997
  4. Human, all too human a book for free spirits Part I, translated by Helen Zimmern 1909. Read it  here
  5. Human, all too human a book for free spirits, translated by Alexander Harvey, 1908. Read it here
  6. Menschliches allzu menschlich 1878/80. Read it here

 

 

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