Human, All too Human

“I myself do not believe that anybody ever looked into the world with a distrust as deep as mine.”

Well, not exactly an optimist, eh?  That’s Nietzsche for you.  I think that here distrust means something closer to scrutiny and observation, rather than a judgement.  He goes on to characterize himself as the “enemy and challenger of God.”

I’m about 1/2 way through, Human, All too Human.  It’s written as a collection of short passages with clever titles like “No Within and Without in the World,” and “Some Backward Steps.”  Activate the Übermensch.  Here’s a few ALC-relevant lines…

“You had to acquire power over your aye and no and learn to hold and withhold them in accordance with your higher aims,” (15).

Rangordnung– the problem of grasping the relative importance of things (16).

“We organic beings are primordially interested in nothing whatever in any thing (Ding) except its relation to ourselves with reference to pleasure and pain,” (35).

“The individual fixes his mind too attentively upon his own brief lifetime and feels no strong inducement to aid in the foundation of institutions capable of enduring for centuries,” (39).

“As if any individual could determine off hand what course of conduct would conduce to the welfare of humanity… it is by no means desirable that all men should regulate their conduct according to the same principle,” (42).

“He lives only in order to grow continually in knowledge, and to learn to resign, without envy and without disappointment, much, yes nearly everything, that has value in the eyes of men,” (51) [Jedi]

“[In order to] let man become whatever he wills to become, his [to] will (Wollen) must precede his existence,” (59). [this reminds me of the sign Tomis put on the door years ago… “come as you are; leave as you will.”]

“Therefore:  only because man deems himself free, but not because he is free, does he experience remorse and the stings of consciousness,” (59).

“A lower enjoyment (for example, sensual pleasure) preferred to a more highly esteemed one (for example, health) rates as unethical, as does welfare preferred to freedom,” (61).

“The notion of good and bad has a two-fold historical origin: …the spirit of ruling races and castes [and] the spirit of the subjugated,” (62-63).

“[La Rochefoucauld] warns all those endowed with reason to be on their guard against compassion… in his (and Plato’s view) [it] deprives the heart of strength,” (65).

“Whoever desires no more of things than knowledge of them attains speedily to peace of mind and will at most err through lack of knowledge, but scarcely through eagerness for knowledge (or through sin, as the world calls it).  He will not ask that eagerness for knowledge be interdicted and rooted out; but his single, all powerful ambition to know as thoroughly and as fully as possible, will soothe him and moderate all that is strenuous in his circumstances,” (70).    [Faust]

“A good author, whose heart is really in his work, wishes that someone would arise and wholly refute him if only thereby his subject be wholly clarified and made plain,” (71).  [Watts]

**I will resume this post as I finish more of the book** until next time- Love and agility!

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