Day 2187,

Day's pictures

Friedrich Nietzsche

On the genealogy of morality

Third Treatise: What Do Ascetic Ideals Mean?

5. What then do ascetic ideals mean? In the case of an artist, as we have grasped by now: absolutely nothing! … Or so many things that it is as good as absolutely nothing! … Let us first of all eliminate artists: they are far from standing independently enough in the world and against the world for their valuations and the changes in these to deserve interest in themselves! In all ages they have been valets of a morality or philosophy or religion; quite apart from the fact that, unfortunately, they have often enough been the all-too-pliant courtiers of their disciples and patrons, and flatterers with a good nose for old or newly rising powers. At the very least they always need a protective armor, a backing, a previously established authority: artists never stand by themselves, standing alone goes against their deepest instincts…

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Day 2087, Bad air!

Day's pictures

Friedrich Nietzsche

On the Genealogy of Morals

First essay: ‘Good and Evil’, ‘Good and Bad’

12 – At this juncture I cannot suppress a sigh and one last hope. What do I find absolutely intolerable? Something which I just cannot cope alone with and which suffocates me and makes me feel faint? Bad air! Bad air! That something failed comes near me, that I have to smell the bowels of a failed soul! … Apart from that, what cannot be borne in the way of need, deprivation, bad weather, disease, toil, solitude? Basically we can cope with everything else, born as we are to an underground and battling existence; again and again we keep coming up to the light, again and again we experience our golden hour of victory, – and then there we stand, the way we were born, unbreakable, tense, ready for new, more difficult and distant things, like a bow that is merely stretched tauter by affliction. – But

Day 633, On the Genealogy of Morals 2.

Day's pictures, Philosophy

Day 663-1

Friedrich Nietzsche

On the Genealogy of Morals

Preface

2

My ideas on the origin of our moral prejudices—for this is the subject ofthis polemic—received their first, brief, and provisional expression in the collection of aphorisms that bears the title Human, All-Too-Human. A Book for Free Spirits. This book was begun in Sorrento during a winter when it was given to me to pause as a wanderer pauses and look back across the broad and dangerous country my spirit had traversed up to that time. This was in the winter of 1876–77; the ideas themselves are older. They were already in essentials the same ideas that I take up again in the present treatises—let us hope the long interval has done them good, that they have become riper, clearer, stronger, more perfect! That I still cleave to them today, however, that they have become in the meantime more and more firmly attached to one another, indeed entwined and interlaced with one another, strengthens my joyful assurance that they might have arisen in me from the first not as isolated, capricious, or sporadic things but from a common root, from a fundamental will of knowledge, pointing imperiously into the depths, speaking more and more precisely, demanding greater and greater precision. For this alone is fitting for a philosopher. We have no right to isolated acts of any kind: we may not make isolated errors or hit upon isolated truths. Rather do our ideas, our values, our yeas and nays, our ifs and buts, grow out of us with the necessity with which a tree bears fruit—related and each with an affinity to each, and evidence of one will,one health, one soil, one sun.—Whether you like them, these fruits of ours?—But what is that to the trees! What is that to us, to us philosophers!

Day 661, On the Genealogy of Morals.

Day's pictures, On the Genealogy of Morals

Day 661-1

Friedrich Nietzsche

On the Genealogy of Morals

Preface

1

We are unknown to ourselves, we men of knowledge—and with good reason. We have never sought ourselves—how could it happen that we should ever find ourselves? It has rightly been said: “Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also”1 our treasure is where the beehives of our knowledge are. We are constantly making for them, being by nature winged creatures and honey-gatherers of the spirit; there is one thing alone we really care about from the heart—“bringing something home.” Whatever else there is in life, so-called “experiences”—which of us has sufficient earnestness for them? Or sufficient time? Present experience has, I am afraid, always found us “absent-minded”: we cannot give our hearts to it—not even our ears! Rather, as one divinely preoccupied and immersed inhimself into whose ear the bell has just boomed with all its strength the twelve beats of noon suddenly starts up and asks himself: “what really was that which just struck?” so we sometimes rub our ears afterward and ask, utterly surprised and disconcerted, ”what really was that which we have just experienced?” and moreover: “who are we really?” and, afterward as aforesaid, count the twelve trembling bell-strokes of our experience, our life, our being—and alas! miscount them.—So we are necessarily strangers to ourselves, we do not comprehend ourselves, we have to misunderstand ourselves, for us the law “Each is furthest from himself” applies to all eternity—we are not “men of knowledge” with respect to ourselves.

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