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The Genealogy of Morals

This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can usually download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1897 edition. Excerpt: ... THIRD ESSAY WHAT DO ASCETIC IDEALS MEAN? Regardless, mocking, violent, thus wisdom wisheth us: she is a woman, she ever loveth a warrior only. Thus Spake Zarathustra What do ascetic ideals mean ? -- In the case of artists nothing or too many things; in the case of philosophers and scholars something like a scenting and instinct of the most favourable conditions of high intellectuality; in the case of woman, at best, an additional amiableness for seduction, a little morbidezza on a pretty piece of flesh, the saintliness of some fine, fat animal; in the case of the physiologically aborted and depressed (the majority of mortals) an attempt to think themselves "too good" for this world, a sacred form of dissipation, their chief weapon in the struggle with slow pain and ennui; in the case of priests the specific priestly creed, their most effective instrument of power, also their "supreme" license to power; and finally in the case of saints a pretext for going into hibernation, their novissima gloric e cupido, their rest in the nothing (" God "), their form of madness. But the fact that the ascetic ideal has meant so much for man, expresses that other fundamental fact of human will, its horror vacui. It needs a goal, -- and it will rather will nothingness, than not will at all. -- Am I understood? . . . . Have I been understood? . . . . "By no means, Sir!" -- Well let us, then, begin at the beginning! What do ascetic ideals mean ? -- Or, to pick out a single case, in regard to which I have often enough been asked my advice: what does it mean, for instance, when an artist like Richard Wagner, in the eve of his life, gives an ovation to chastity? In a certain sense, it is true, he has always done so; but in an ascetic sense only in his very...
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