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By Friedrich Nietzsche

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Extra resources for Ecce homo ;&, The Antichrist : how one becomes what one is : a curse on Christianity

Example text

And until then there will be no one who grasps the art that has been wasted here: no one has ever had artistic means to waste which were so new, so unheard of, and so expressly designed only for that purpose. That precisely such a thing was possible in the German language remained to be seen: I myself would have rejected it most harshly beforehand. Before me no one knew what could be done with the German language — what could be done with the language in general. ” I flew a thousand miles beyond that which was hitherto called poesy.

Therein a great prudence, perhaps the highest prudence, comes to be expressed: where nosce te ipsum would be the recipe for disaster, forgetting oneself, misunderstanding oneself, reducing oneself, narrowing oneself, mediocratizing oneself becomes good sense itself. In moral terms: neighborly love, living for others and other things can be a protective measure for the maintenance of the most vigorous selfhood. This is the exceptional case in which I take the side of the “selfless” drives, as opposed to my own rule and conviction: here they labor in the service of selfishness, of self-discipline.

Paris, Provence, Florence, Jerusalem, Athens — these names prove something: genius is conditioned by dry air, by pure skies — that means by rapid metabolism, by the possibility of supplying oneself over and over again with large, even enormous amounts of strength. I have in mind a case in which a spirit, freely inclined and of some consequence, became a narrow, withdrawn specialist and sourpuss simply due to a lack of subtle climatic instinct. And I myself might ultimately have arrived at this case had illness not forced me to see reason, to reflect upon reason in reality.

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