“The Greek artists, the tragedians for example, poetized in order to conquer; their whole art cannot be thought of apart from contest: Hesiod’s good Eris, ambition, gave their genius its wings. Now this ambition demands above all that their work should preserve the highest excellence in their own eyes, as they understand excellence, that is to say, without reference to a dominating taste or the general opinion as to what constitutes excellence in a work of art; and thus Aeschylus and Euripides were for a long time unsuccessful until they had finally educated judges of art who assessed their work according to the standards they themselves laid down. It is thus they aspire to victory over their competitors as they understand victory, a victory before their own seat of judgment, they want actually to be more excellent; then they exact agreement from others as to their own assessment of themselves and confirmation of their own judgment. To aspire to honor here means: ‘to make oneself superior and to wish this superiority to be publicly acknowledged.’ If the former is lacking and the latter nonetheless still demanded, one speaks of vanity. If the latter is lacking and its absence not regretted, one speaks of pride.”
Redeemed from scepticism. — A: Others emerge out of a general moral scepticism ill-humoured and feeble, gnawed-at and worm-eaten, indeed half-consumed — but I do so braver and healthier than ever, again in possession of my instincts. Where a sharp wind blows, the sea rises high and there is no little danger to be faced, that is where I feel best. I have not become a worm, even though I have often had to work and tunnel like a worm. — B: You have just ceased to be a sceptic! For you deny! — A: And in doing so I have again learned to affirm.
What makes one heroic? — Going out to meet at the same time one’s highest suffering and one’s highest hope.
In what do you believe? — In this: that the weights of all things must be determined anew.
What does your conscience say? — “You shall become the person you are.”
Where are your greatest dangers? — In pity.
What do you love in others? — My hopes.
Whom do you call bad? — Those who always want to put to shame.
What do you consider most humane? — To spare someone shame.
What is the seal of liberation? — No longer being ashamed in front of oneself.
For the new year.– I still live, I still think: I still have to live, for I still have to think. Sum, ergo cogito: cogito, ergo sum. Today everybody permits himself the expression of his wish and his dearest thought; hence I , too, shall say what it is that I wish from myself today, and what was the first thought to run across my heart this year–what thought shall be for me the reason, warranty, and sweetness of my life henceforth. I want to learn more and more to see as beautiful what is necessary in things; then I shall be one of those who make things beautiful. Amor Fati: let that be my love henceforth! I do not want to wage war against what is ugly. I do not want to accuse; I do not even want to accuse those who accuse. Looking away shall be my only negation. And all in all and on the whole: some day I wish to be only a Yes-sayer.
Get on the ships! — Consider how every individual is affected by an overall philosophical justification of his way of living and thinking–he experiences it as a sun that shines especially for him and bestows warmth, blessings, and fertility on him, it makes him independent of praise and blame, self-sufficient, rich, liberal with happiness and good will; incessantly it fashions evil into good, leads all energies to bloom and ripen, and does not permit the petty weeds of grief and chagrin to come up at all. In the end then one exclaims: Oh how I wish that many such new suns were yet to be created! Those who are evil or unhappy and the exceptional human being–all these should also have their philosophy, their good right, their sunshine! What is needful is not pity for them!–we must learn to abandon this arrogant fancy, however long humanity has hitherto spent learning and practicing it–what these people need is not confession, conjuring of souls, and forgiveness of sins! What is needful is a new justice! And a new watchword! And new philosophers! The moral earth, too, is round! The moral earth, too, has its antipodes! The antipodes, too, have the right to exist! There is yet another world to be discovered–and more than one! Embark, philosophers!
To be sure, there is also quite another category of genius, that of justice; and I can in no way see fit to esteem that kind lower than any philosophical, political, or artistic genius. It is its way to avoid with hearty indignation everything which blinds and confuses our judgment about things; thus it is an enemy of convictions, for it wants to give each thing its due, be it living or dead, real or fictive–and to do so it must apprehend it clearly; it therefore places each thing in the best light and walks all around it with an attentive eye. Finally it will even give to its opponent, blind or shortsighted “conviction” (as men call it:–women call it “faith”), what is due to conviction–for the sake of truth.