Thus spoke Zarathustra is the classic full-text work by Friedrich Nietzsche. The book is considered among his most well-known and important. Title Page. THUS SPOKE ZARATHUSTRA by Friedrich Nietzsche. Based on the Thomas Common Translation. Extensively modified by Bill Chapko. CONTENTS. Thus Spake Zarathustra by Friedrich Nietzsche, trans. Thomas Common is a publication of the. Pennsylvania State University. This Portable Document file is.
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THUS SPOKE ZARATHUSTRA by Friedrich Nietzsche. An Adaptation. Based on the Thomas Common Translation. PLEASE NOTE: This HTML page is an. Download Thus Spoke Zarathustra free in PDF & EPUB format. Download FRIEDRICH NIETZSCHE's Thus Spoke Zarathustra for your kindle. (Science is after all, the knowledge of nature's laws.) The laws of nature express love, respond to gestures of love, Zarathustra, the Laughing Prophet: Talks on .
All these heaviest things the load-bearing spirit taketh upon itself: and like the camel, which, when laden, hasteneth into the wilderness, so hasteneth the spirit into its wilderness.
But in the loneliest wilderness happeneth the second metamorphosis: here the spirit becometh a lion; freedom will it capture, and lordship in its own wilderness.
Its last Lord it here seeketh: hostile will it be to him, and to its last God; for victory will it struggle with the great dragon. What is the great dragon which the spirit is no longer inclined to call Lord and God?
But the spirit of the lion saith, "I will. All values have already been created, and all created values—do I represent.
Verily, there shall be no 'I will' any more. Thus speaketh the dragon. My brethren, wherefore is there need of the lion in the spirit?
Why sufficeth not the beast of burden, which renounceth and is reverent? One should not have ones virtues in common. The creator will create new values, but will not impose them upon others: "This is my good; this I love; it pleases me Existentialism Thus Spoke Zarathustra Summary4 wholly; thus alone to I want the good.
I do not want it as divine law; I do not want it as human statute and need. In the eyes of the pale criminal Zarathustra finds the the great contempt: when ones contempt turns inward and one has contempt for oneselfwhen one longs for the ego to be overcome. Zarathustra is perhaps giving some hints about reading this text, a text written in blood and aphorisms.
What does it mean to write in blood? Perhaps that the writings of this philosopher are not at all impersonal? Anyway, there are some splendid aphorisms: "True, we love life, not because we are used to living but because we are used to loving.
There is always some madness in love. But there is also always some reason in madness. And when I saw my devil I found him serious, thorough, profound, and solemn: it was the spirit of gravitythrough him all things fall. Come let us kill the spirit of gravity! Is Nietzsche is a joker and this book a sort of joke?
Zarathustra gives advice to a youth. The soul is like a tree: the higher it reaches toward the heights with its branches, the deeper it must sink its roots into the earth. The soul is rooted in the body.
Those who preach of an eternal life beyond this life are ridiculed as preachers of death. The desire for eternal life is exposed as a weariness with this lifethe very source of nihilism.
This same point is made in Nietzsches commentary in Twilight of the Idols on Socrates last words. Due to its metaphor of warfare, a very troubling passagebut perhaps those who are repelled by its rhetoric have not noticed that the war Zarathustra speaks about takes place on the battlefield of knowledge.
The philosopher is a warrior because he seeks knowledge not contentment. Rather than seeking the peace of an unquestioned life, he accepts the challenge of questioning in the war of ideas.
A political critique of the state, on the coldest of cold monsters, which imposes a sameness upon all: no one is allowed to be a creator, no one is allowed to be original, to think for themselves, to think differently, to be different.
Difference is not tolerated in the state. The state turns the people into the Last Human. Only were the state ends can the Overhuman begin. Zarathustra encourages the friend, the one who would be a creator, to avoid the clamor of the market place and the rush for fame. These would only turn one into the Last Human. To be a creator one must go into solitude. In contrast to the traditional teachers of virtue, Zarathustra does not teach that one must turn away from the body and the senses.
I counsel the innocence of the senses. Do I counsel you to chastity? Chastity is a virtue in some, but almost a vice in many.
What is a true friend? Does a friend always only comfort a friend, or must a true friend sometimes be hard on a friend? For Zarathustra, In a friend one should have ones best enemy. Neither the slave nor the tyrant are capable of this friendship. In his travels through many lands Zarathustra finds a different tablet of good and evil over every people.
In contrast to Plato, there is no one true good and evil for all people. Every people, every culture, has their own tablet of good and evil. Tablets of good and evil are recognized as human creations. Morality has a human origin; it is not handed down to us on tablets written by God, but rather, in Nietzsches famous phrase, is only humanall too human.
A tablet of the good hangs over every people. Behold, it is the tablet of their overcomings; behold, it is the voice of their will to power. This is the first mention of the important concept will to power. From this context it is clear that Zarathustra is not speaking of a desire for power, a desire which we could, if we so chose, to hold in check.
The will to power is that within a people, within a human being, which values. It is not something that we could choose not to have. In a sense, it is that which makes life possible. One simply could not live without valuing, without selecting some things as valuable and some things as not. The tablets of good and evil that hang over every people are a product of this valuing. Zarathustra draws a contrast between the friend and the neighbor.
The neighbor only wants to comfort. The friend is the one who is capable of being an enemy, i. The friend is the one with an overflowing heartthe one whose love is like a gift that seeks no return. After encouraging the friend to go into solitude in order to be a creator, now Zarathustra speaks of the difficulties that await the way of the creator.
Can you be your own judge and avenger of your law?
Terrible it is to be alone with the judge and avenger of one's own law. Thus is a star thrown out into the void and into the icy breath of solitude. A very obscure and troubling passage about men, women, love, pregnancy, and childbirth. Perhaps it is good to remember not to take any of this literally.
As the theme of the whole of the First Part of Zarathustra concerns the metamorphosis of the spirit from the camel to the childthe stage of the creator, the one who would overcome himself, the one who would become Overhumanperhaps when Zarathustra is speaking of women he is not referring to the female sex but rather to the child-bearer in all of us. A adder bites Zarathustra but Zarathustra tells the snake that it is not rich enough to give. Incapable of truly giving the adder licks the wound and takes back the gift.
Another obscure passage, but some more fine aphorisms: It is nobler to declare oneself wrong than to insist on being rightespecially when one is right. Only one must be rich enough for that. More on love and the creation of the child: Marriage: thus I name the will of two to create the one that is more than those who created it. Reverence for each other, as for those willing with such a will, is what I name marriage. But even your best love is merely an ecstatic parable and a painful ardor.
It is a torch that should light up higher paths for you. Over and beyond yourselves you shall love one day. Thus learn first to love. And for that you had to drain the bitter cup of your love. On dying at the right time, not too early, not too late. Remember that the overcoming requires a going under, a perishing of a sort. Thus I want to die myself that you, my friends, may love the earth more for my sake; and to the earth I want to return that I may find rest in her who gave birth to me.
At the close of the First Part a restatement of the major themes: a critique of the longing for afterworlds and a teaching of the gift-giving love expressed in the imagery of a golden sun. Remain faithful to the earth, my brothers, with the power of your virtue.
Let your gift-giving love and your knowledge serve the meaning of the earth. Thus I beg and beseech you. Do not let them fly away from earthly things and beat with their wings against eternal walls. Alas, there has always been so much virtue that has flown away. Lead back to the earth the virtue that flew away, as I doback to the body, back to life, that it may give the earth a meaning, a human meaning.
Zarathustra returns to his mountain and the solitude of his cave and is startled by a dream in which he looks into a mirror carried by a child. He is startled because he sees in the mirror not himself but a devil.
As Zarathustra interprets the dream, his teachings are in danger of being misunderstood: "my teaching is in danger; weeds pose as wheat. My enemies have grown powerful and have distorted my teachings till those dearest to me must be ashamed of the gifts I gave them. I have lost my friends; the hour has come to seek my lost ones. He knows that his wild wisdom may frighten his friends. They may even want to run from it, along with his enemies.
Upon arriving at the blessed isles where his friends are, Zarathustra begins to review his teachings which are like ripe figs falling from trees. The first of these figs is that his friends should stop thinking about God and think about Overhuman instead. Zarathustra says that God is a conjecture. This is not necessarily to say that God does not exist. Whether God exists or not, any image or idea of God that a human being may have is only a human conjecture, a hypothesis, a supposition, a guess It would be impossible to determine whether there exists a God apart from human interpretation, human conjecture.
If one follows out the thread of Nietzsches perspectivism, the truth of the matter would actually be irrelevantas it is impossible to know anything apart from human perspective. Nietzsches first point is that all of human knowledge is just thathuman, all too human. To pretend otherwise, to claim to have the truth apart from any human perspective, is simply to avoid taking responsibility for the conjecture.
All of human knowledge, whether of God or of anything, is a product of the human creative drive to interpret the world. As Zarathustra puts it: "And what you have called world, that shall be created only by you: your reason, your image, your will, your love shall thus be realized. One of the consequences of the Western conjecture about God is that human beings are regarded as weak and sinful, and ultimately incapable of the kind of transformation that Zarathustra calls Overhuman.
In this respect, Zarathustras teaching is not unlike Buddhismas the whole focus of the religion concerns a transformation of human beings rather than worship of a God. The target of Zarathustras criticism of the conjecture of God is the metaphysical supposition that true reality is unchanging, and all that changes, all that passes in time, all that is impermanent, is not real: "God is a thought that makes crooked all that is straight, and makes turn whatever stands. Should time be gone, and all that is impermanent a mere lie?
To think this is a dizzy whirl for human bones. This again draws a comparison with Buddhismfor the transformation of human being known as nirvana involves an acceptance of impermanence one of the primary Buddhist teachings is that everything is impermanent.
Perhaps the underlying motive for the metaphysical denial of impermanence is that with change there inevitably comes suffering. As with Buddhism, the central problem in the transformation of human being Zarathustra speaks of is the problem of suffering. The solution to the problem of suffering, according to Zarathustra, involves the metamorphosis of the spirit to the child, the creator.
Go rather to the animals!
Why not be like me—a bear amongst bears, a bird amongst birds? The saint answered: With singing, weeping, laughing, and mumbling do I praise the God who is my God. But what dost thou bring us as a gift? Let me rather hurry hence lest I take aught away from thee! When Zarathustra was alone, however, he said to his heart: When Zarathustra arrived at the nearest town which adjoineth the forest, he found many people assembled in the market-place; for it had been announced that a rope-dancer would give a performance.
And Zarathustra spake thus unto the people: Man is something that is to be surpassed. What have ye done to surpass man? All beings hitherto have created something beyond themselves: What is the ape to man? A laughing-stock, a thing of shame. And just the same shall man be to the Superman: Ye have made your way from the worm to man, and much within you is still worm. Once were ye apes, and even yet man is more of an ape than any of the apes.
Even the wisest among you is only a disharmony and hybrid of plant and phantom. But do I bid you become phantoms or plants? Lo, I teach you the Superman! The Superman is the meaning of the earth. Let your will say: Poisoners are they, whether they know it or not. Despisers of life are they, decaying ones and poisoned ones themselves, of whom the earth is weary: Once blasphemy against God was the greatest blasphemy; but God died, and therewith also those blasphemers.
To blaspheme the earth is now the dreadfulest sin, and to rate the heart of the unknowable higher than the meaning of the earth! Once the soul looked contemptuously on the body, and then that contempt was the supreme thing: Thus it thought to escape from the body and the earth. Oh, that soul was itself meagre, ghastly, and famished; and cruelty was the delight of that soul!
But ye, also, my brethren, tell me: What doth your body say about your soul? Is your soul not poverty and pollution and wretched self-complacency? Verily, a polluted stream is man. One must be a sea, to receive a polluted stream without becoming impure. Lo, I teach you the Superman: What is the greatest thing ye can experience? It is the hour of great contempt.
The hour in which even your happiness becometh loathsome unto you, and so also your reason and virtue. The hour when ye say: It is poverty and pollution and wretched self-complacency.
But my happiness should justify existence itself! Doth it long for knowledge as the lion for his food? It is poverty and pollution and wretched self-complacency!
As yet it hath not made me passionate. How weary I am of my good and my bad! It is all poverty and pollution and wretched self-complacency! I do not see that I am fervour and fuel.
The just, however, are fervour and fuel! Is not pity the cross on which he is nailed who loveth man? But my pity is not a crucifixion. Have ye ever cried thus? It is not your sin—it is your self-satisfaction that crieth unto heaven; your very sparingness in sin crieth unto heaven! Where is the lightning to lick you with its tongue? Where is the frenzy with which ye should be inoculated? But the rope-dancer, who thought the words applied to him, began his performance.
Zarathustra, however, looked at the people and wondered. Then he spake thus: Man is a rope stretched between the animal and the Superman—a rope over an abyss. A dangerous crossing, a dangerous wayfaring, a dangerous looking-back, a dangerous trembling and halting.
What is great in man is that he is a bridge and not a goal: