on human intellect

Nietzsche writes

There have been eternities when it did not exist; and when it is done for again, nothing will have happened. For this intellect has no further mission that would lead beyond human life. It is human, rather, and only its owner and producer gives it such importance, as if the world pivoted around it. But if we could communicate with the mosquito, then we would learn that he floats through the air with the same self-importance, feeling within itself the flying center of the world. There is nothing in nature so
despicable or insignificant that it cannot immediately be blown up like a bag by a slight breath of this power of knowledge; and just as every porter wants an admirer, the proudest human being, the philosopher, thinks that he sees on the eyes of the universe telescopically focused from all sides on his actions and thoughts.


Quotable quotes- Truth

I have always said I will fight for any course I believe is right but avoid the death if I can. In the Wanderer and his Shadow, Nietzsche expresses the same sentiments more eloquently

Dying for the “truth.”— We should not let ourselves be burnt by our opinions: we are
not that sure of them. But perhaps for this: that we may have and change our opinions.

A man can dream

Socrates.— If all goes well, the time will come when one will take up the memorabilia of Socrates rather than the Bible as a guide to morals and reason… The pathways of the most various philosophical modes of life lead back to him… Socrates excels the founder of Christianity in being able to be serious cheerfully and in possessing that wisdom full of roguishness that constitutes the finest state of the human soul. And he also possessed the finer intellect.

Nietzsche in The Wanderer and his shadow

Nietzsche on Morality

Let us finally consider how naive it is altogether to say: “Man ought to be such and such!” Reality shows us an enchanting wealth of types, the abundance of a lavish play and change of forms–and some wretched loafer of a moralist comments: “No! Man ought to be different.” He even knows what man should be like, this wretched bigot and prig: he paints himself on the wall and comments, “Ecce homo!” But even when the moralist addresses himself only to the single human being and says to him, “You ought to be such and such!” he does not cease to make himself ridiculous. The single human being is a piece of fatum from the front and from the rear, one law more, one necessity more for all that is yet to come and to be. To say to him, “Change yourself!” is to demand that everything be changed, even retroactively. And indeed there have been consistent moralists who wanted man to be different, that is, virtuous–they wanted him remade in their own image, as a prig: to that end, they negated the world! No small madness! No modest kind of immodesty!

Morality, insofar as it condemns for its own sake, and not out of regard for the concerns, considerations, and contrivances of life, is a specific error with which one ought to have no pity–an idiosyncrasy of degenerates which has caused immeasurable harm

We others, we immoralists, have, conversely, made room in our hearts for every kind of understanding, comprehending, and approving. We do not easily negate; we make it a point of honor to be affirmers. More and more, our eyes have opened to that economy which needs and knows how to utilize everything that the holy witlessness of the priest, the diseased reason in the priest, rejects–that economy in the law of life which finds an advantage even in the disgusting species of the prigs, the priests, the virtuous. What advantage? But we ourselves, we immoralists, are the answer.

Nietzsche, Twilight of the Idols

On the nature of man

What alone can be our doctrine? That no one gives a man his qualities- neither god, nor society, nor his parents and ancestors, nor he himself. No one is responsible for man’s being here at all, for his being is such and such, or for his being in these circumstances or in this environment. The fatality of his existence is not to be disentangled from the fatality of all that has been and will be. Human beings are not the effect of some special purpose or will or end; nor are they a medium through which society can realize an “ideal of humanity.” It is absurd to wish to devolve one’s essence on some end or other. We have invented the concept of “end”; in reality there is no end.

A man is necessary, a man is a piece of fatefulness, a man belongs to the whole, a man is in the whole; there is nothing that could judge, measure, compare or sentence his being, for that would mean judging, measuring, comparing or sentencing the whole. That nobody is held responsible any longer, that the mode of being may not be traced back to a primary cause, that the world does not form a unity either as a sensorium or as spirit that alone is the great liberation. With that idea alone, we absolve our becoming of any guilt. The concept of “god” was until now the greatest objection to existence. We deny god, we deny the responsibility that originates from god; and thereby we redeem the world.

Freidrich Nietzsche, Twilight of the Idols

The good death

Friends, many of us shudder at the mention of death, and indeed in some cultures I know it is taboo to even mention it. They argue mentioning death spells bad omen. Since, I don’t agree with them, I think death is a good thing and that we can’t live fully if we don’t appreciate the fact that we are here for a brief moment after which we will return to the deep abyss of nothingness from whence we had come. I don’t know about you, but my feeling is that dying is a good thing though I can’t say this authoritatively since I have not experienced death to be able to decisively describe how it feels to die.

In our times, I find Eric at Choice in dying to be one person, there could be many others, who argues for a good death, the philosopher’s death. A death that one chooses the way to die, to put differently, one takes matters into their own hands and become what, for lack of a better word, I will call god. It is this death as Socrates many years before us chose to die rather than to continue living after being sentenced by a jury of his peers for what was called by some of his accusers, corrupting the minds of the young men of Athens. It is the same death Cicero preferred to living as a slave and writes in his letters to his friend Atticus and his brother Quintus while in exile that he’d rather he kills himself if there is no hope of returning to the republic than to live in disgrace.

I find this words of Nietzsche to be agreeable to me in support of a good death, death on our terms.

To die proudly when it is no longer possible to live proudly. Death freely chosen, a death at the right time, brightly and cheerfully accomplished amid children and witnesses; then a real farewell is still possible, as the one who is taking leave is still there; also a real estimate of what one has achieved and what one has wished, drawing the sum of one’s life- all in opposition to the wretched and revolting comedy that Christianity has made of the hour of death. One should never forget that Christianity has exploited the weakness of the dying for a rape of the conscience and the manner of death itself, for value judgments about man and the past.

Here it is important to defy all the cowardice of prejudice and to establish, above all, the real, that is  the physiological, appreciation of so-called natural death- which is in the end also “unnatural”, a kind of suicide. One never perishes through anybody but oneself  But usually it is death under the most contemptible conditions, an unfree death, death not at the right time, a coward’s death. From love of live, one should desire a different death; free, conscious, without accident, without ambush.