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Beyond Good and Evil
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however, who have opened our eye and conscience to the question how and where the
plant "man" has hitherto grown most vigorously, believe that this has always taken place
under the opposite conditions, that for this end the dangerousness of his situation had to
be increased enormously, his inventive faculty and dissembling power (his "spirit") had
to develop into subtlety and daring under long oppression and compulsion, and his Will
to Life had to be increased to the unconditioned Will to Power--we believe that severity,
violence, slavery, danger in the street and in the heart, secrecy, stoicism, tempter's art and
devilry of every kind,--that everything wicked, terrible, tyrannical, predatory, and
serpentine in man, serves as well for the elevation of the human species as its opposite--
we do not even say enough when we only say THIS MUCH, and in any case we find
ourselves here, both with our speech and our silence, at the OTHER extreme of all
modern ideology and gregarious desirability, as their antipodes perhaps? What wonder
that we "free spirits" are not exactly the most communicative spirits? that we do not wish
to betray in every respect WHAT a spirit can free itself from, and WHERE perhaps it will
then be driven? And as to the import of the dangerous formula, "Beyond Good and Evil,"
with which we at least avoid confusion, we ARE something else than "libres-penseurs,"
"liben pensatori" "free-thinkers," and whatever these honest advocates of "modern ideas"
like to call themselves. Having been at home, or at least guests, in many realms of the
spirit, having escaped again and again from the gloomy, agreeable nooks in which
preferences and prejudices, youth, origin, the accident of men and books, or even the
weariness of travel seemed to confine us, full of malice against the seductions of
dependency which he concealed in honours, money, positions, or exaltation of the senses,
grateful even for distress and the vicissitudes of illness, because they always free us from
some rule, and its "prejudice," grateful to the God, devil, sheep, and worm in us,
inquisitive to a fault, investigators to the point of cruelty, with unhesitating fingers for the
intangible, with teeth and stomachs for the most indigestible, ready for any business that
requires sagacity and acute senses, ready for every adventure, owing to an excess of "free
will", with anterior and posterior souls, into the ultimate intentions of which it is difficult
to pry, with foregrounds and backgrounds to the end of which no foot may run, hidden
ones under the mantles of light, appropriators, although we resemble heirs and
spendthrifts, arrangers and collectors from morning till night, misers of our wealth and
our full-crammed drawers, economical in learning and forgetting, inventive in scheming,
sometimes proud of tables of categories, sometimes pedants, sometimes night-owls of
work even in full day, yea, if necessary, even scarecrows--and it is necessary nowadays,
that is to say, inasmuch as we are the born, sworn, jealous friends of SOLITUDE, of our
own profoundest midnight and midday solitude--such kind of men are we, we free spirits!
And perhaps ye are also something of the same kind, ye coming ones? ye NEW