What did Friedrich Nietzsche mean by Slave Morality?

Quora is seriously beginning to suck, given that they’re deleting factual responses to questions now. It’s a fact that Nietzsche used the example I wrote down in his books; evidently, basing answers off facts that hurt Christian moral sensibilities is no longer allowed.

Update just now: It’s now collapsed, albeit restored. They asked for attribution even after I edited it with listed citations. This was my answer to the question: “According to Friedrich Nietzsche, what is an example of a slave moralist?

My answer was as follows, and I’ve added the attributions at the bottom. I’ve decided to place it here if anybody is curious about what Nietzsche actually meant by slave morality, the example he used, and why:

Apostle Paul.

Nietzsche argued in the Anti-Christ that he took Jesus Christ’s message of peace and pissed on it with psychotic nonsense like the resurrection story and the idea of a Second Coming. In effect, he was arguing Apostle Paul was the Anti-Christ because, in Nietzsche’s own views, Paul took the ideologies of Jesus Christ’s extreme non-violence (which Nietzsche shows influenced one component of his Ubermensch philosophy in Thus Spake; Zarathustra with the character “The Preacher On the Mount” who is a “Wandering Jew”) and Paul then trashed the idea of Extreme non-Violence by making Jesus’s sacrifice into some laughable story about a cosmic event in which every single historic event and future event must be tethered to the idea of Jesus resurrecting from the dead and coming back again. Nietzsche argues that the Book of Revelations is an insane and unintelligible psychotic rant that Christians celebrate and it shows that, by celebrating the so-called Second Coming, they don’t really love the historical Jesus Christ or even want to know what his message of extreme non-violence is really about.

Slave moralists, in their enmity and contempt of others who are more successful, argue in defense of their hate by shouting claims of equality among all men. Nietzsche points out this is a complete falsehood by the so-called “pious” men. In actuality, what happens? Nietzsche asks us to take a step back and examine what this “equality” entails. They form hierarchies in which they, the religious and especially the pastors/clergymen, are held as superior people to the outside world and these Clergymen/Pastors are seen as above their congregants because they’re perceived as closer to God than the Congregants. Also, the Congregants perceive themselves as closer to God than any outsiders who are supposedly “living in sin” — in short, religious people comfort their egos and their superiority complexes by first claiming that they’re really all about equality and then forming a hierarchy system in which they loathe anyone different from them or who believe in an interpretation of their God that is different from theirs. The leader of their Congregation (the Pastor/Clergyman) is seen as higher in hierarchical status to them.

Nietzsche goes on to argue that modern Christianity is really just celebrating Apostle Paul’s insane ravings and that religious hierarchies are just hierarchies based on conditioned insanity. With respect to Paul simply raving insanely, Nietzsche argues the Bible clearly shows this since Paul’s “visions” about Jesus are actually just Paul’s own desire for using Jesus’s name and image to parade himself as a God and pretend to be humble since he claimed to be doing it for the “true” Jesus — a person that Paul had never even met in real life according to the modern historical record. Jesus had died on the cross before Paul had ever joined the Church that Jesus had formed and Paul was kicked out of that Church as a heretic. In fact, the modern historical records detail how shockingly precise Nietzsche’s critique here is. The parts of Acts in which Paul claims to have reconciled with the Church are falsehoods written by Paul himself. He was kicked out as a heretic by Jesus’s Church and then claimed that very Church formed by Jesus was evil because it was filled with Jews who didn’t want Jesus’s message spread to Gentiles — but that was because it was strictly a Jewish reformation project.

In effect, while Noble Morality would have you form hierarchies based on talent and hard work; Nietzsche argues Slave morality first claims to be about equality, but is really about hatred for others for being different or more successful, then forms a hierarchy based on that hatred through raving insanity by pretending one man’s delusions should be worshiped; in Christianity’s case, Paul’s dreams about Jesus Christ, a man he never met. Nietzsche finishes his point by arguing that the reason religion continues on and that “special something” that keeps it alive and going is clergymen/Pastors having their selfish egos celebrated every week by using terms like Jesus Christ’s name, God, Eternity, Heaven, and so forth. They keep parading how “humble” they are for their God. Behind this supposedly selfless drive is merely the colloquial term “a humblebrag” and behind their reverence for a God is worshiping themselves as closely as possible to being a God. This is what really motivates them. They feel a sense of power from having control over other people’s sex drives, knowing about their personal problems and even having a privilege to know when someone “acts out” against the Church authority, and essentially, dictating how people live their entire lives. Behind it all isn’t just falsehoods about science, history, and logic . . . but also narcissism because they get power over you while you give them money and listen to their ego trips every week under the belief you’re closer to a God by listening to them rave about themselves.

Slave morality forms hierarchical systems that aren’t based upon real or beneficial hierarchies like managers and employees for a nuclear plant, electric facility, or water plant which provide tangible benefits to others for the good of all. Instead, the slave morality forms hierarchies of clergymen/pastors/godmen who rave about themselves by “humbling” themselves before an imaginary character who is supposedly omnipotent, but also doesn’t do anything and can only be reliably followed by the clergy/pastor/godman who you must pay to listen as he celebrates himself in his ego-trips. That’s the only way a man such as that can feel validated over people who do real work to help their communities and somehow he’s seen as more important than they are, even though they do far more hard work and help people more in just one day than that man ever will in his entire life.

Source in question for the modern historical record regarding Apostle Paul: It begins with the distortions on Jesus’s birth and goes from there.

Source for Nietzsche’s Anti-Christ and the specific Aphorisms:

The Project Gutenberg eBook of The Antichrist, by F. W. Nietzsche

40.

—The fate of the Gospels was decided by death—it hung on the “cross.”… It was only death, that unexpected and shameful death; it was only the cross, which was usually reserved for the canaille only—it was only this appalling paradox which brought the disciples face to face with the real riddle: “Who was it? what was it?”—The feeling of dis may, of profound affront and injury; the suspicion that such a death might involve a refutation of their cause; the terrible question, “Why just in this way?”—this state of mind is only too easy to understand. Here everything must be accounted for as necessary; everything must have a meaning, a reason, the highest sort of reason; the love of a disciple excludes all chance. Only then did the chasm of doubt yawn: “Whoput him to death? who was his natural enemy?”—this question flashed like a lightning-stroke. Answer: dominant Judaism, its ruling class. From that moment, one found one’s self in revolt against the established order, and began to understand Jesus as in revolt against the established order. Until then this militant, this nay-saying, nay-doing element in his character had been lacking; what is more, he had appeared to present its opposite. Obviously, the little community had not understood what was precisely the most important thing of all: the example offered by this way of dying, the freedom from and superiority to every feeling of ressentiment—a plain indication of how little he was understood at all! All that Jesus could hope to accomplish by his death, in itself, was to offer the strongest possible proof, or example, of his teachings in the most public manner…. But his disciples were very far from forgiving his death—though to have done so would have accorded with the Gospels in the highest degree; and neither were they prepared to offer themselves, with gentle and serene calmness of heart, for a similar death…. On the contrary, it was precisely the most unevangelical of feelings, revenge, that now possessed them. It seemed impossible that the cause should perish with his death: “recompense” and “judgment” became necessary (—yet what could be less evangelical than “recompense,” “punishment,” and “sitting in judgment”!). Once more the popular belief in the coming of a messiah appeared in the foreground; attention was rivetted upon an historical moment: the “kingdom of God” is to come, with judgment upon his enemies…. But in all this there was a wholesale misunderstanding: imagine the “kingdom of God” as a last act, as a mere promise! The Gospels had been, in fact, the incarnation, the fulfilment, the realization of this “kingdom of God.” It was only now that all the familiar contempt for and bitterness against Pharisees and theologians began to appear in the character of the Master—he was thereby turnedinto a Pharisee and theologian himself! On the other hand, the savage veneration of these completely unbalanced souls could no longer endure the Gospel doctrine, taught by Jesus, of the equal right of all men to be children of God: their revenge took the form of elevatingJesus in an extravagant fashion, and thus separating him from themselves: just as, in earlier times, the Jews, to revenge themselves upon their enemies, separated themselves from their God, and placed him on a great height. The One God and the Only Son of God: both were products of ressentiment….

41.

—And from that time onward an absurd problem offered itself: “how could God allow it!” To which the deranged reason of the little community formulated an answer that was terrifying in its absurdity: God gave his son as a sacrifice for the forgiveness of sins. At once there was an end of the gospels! Sacrifice for sin, and in its most obnoxious and barbarous form: sacrifice of the innocent for the sins of the guilty! What appalling paganism!—Jesus himself had done away with the very concept of “guilt,” he denied that there was any gulf fixed between God and man; he lived this unity between God and man, and that was precisely his “glad tidings”…. And not as a mere privilege!—From this time forward the type of the Saviour was corrupted, bit by bit, by the doctrine of judgment and of the second coming, the doctrine of death as a sacrifice, the doctrine of the resurrection, by means of which the entire concept of “blessedness,” the whole and only reality of the gospels, is juggled away—in favour of a state of existence after death!… St. Paul, with that rabbinical impudence which shows itself in all his doings, gave a logical quality to that conception, that indecent conception, in this way: “If Christ did not rise from the dead, then all our faith is in vain!”—And at once there sprang from the Gospels the most contemptible of all unfulfillable promises, the shameless doctrine of personal immortality…. Paul even preached it as a reward….

42.

One now begins to see just what it was that came to an end with the death on the cross: a new and thoroughly original effort to found a Buddhistic peace movement, and so establish happiness on earth—real, not merely promised. For this remains—as I have already pointed out—the essential difference between the two religions of décadence: Buddhism promises nothing, but actually fulfils; Christianity promises everything, but fulfils nothing.—Hard upon the heels of the “glad tidings” came the worst imaginable: those of Paul. In Paul is incarnated the very opposite of the “bearer of glad tidings”; he represents the genius for hatred, the vision of hatred, the relentless logic of hatred. What, indeed, has not this dysangelist sacrificed to hatred! Above all, the Saviour: he nailed him to his own cross. The life, the example, the teaching, the death of Christ, the meaning and the law of the whole gospels—nothing was left of all this after that counterfeiter in hatred had reduced it to his uses. Surely not reality; surely not historical truth!… Once more the priestly instinct of the Jew perpetrated the same old master crime against history—he simply struck out the yesterday and the day before yesterday of Christianity, and invented his own history of Christian beginnings. Going further, he treated the history of Israel to another falsification, so that it became a mere prologue to his achievement: all the prophets, it now appeared, had referred to his “Saviour.”… Later on the church even falsified the history of man in order to make it a prologue to Christianity…. The figure of the Saviour, his teaching, his way of life, his death, the meaning of his death, even the consequences of his death—nothing remained untouched, nothing remained in even remote contact with reality. Paul simply shifted the centre of gravity of that whole life to a place behind this existence—in the lie of the “risen” Jesus. At bottom, he had no use for the life of the Saviour—what he needed was the death on the cross, and something more. To see anything honest in such a man as Paul, whose home was at the centre of the Stoical enlightenment, when he converts an hallucination into a proof of the resurrection of the Saviour, or even to believe his tale that he suffered from this hallucination himself—this would be a genuine niaiserie in a psychologist. Paul willed the end; therefore he also willed the means…. What he himself didn’t believe was swallowed readily enough by the idiots among whom he spread his teaching.—What he wanted was power; in Paul the priest once more reached out for power—he had use only for such concepts, teachings and symbols as served the purpose of tyrannizing over the masses and organizing mobs. What was the only part of Christianity that Mohammed borrowed later on? Paul’s invention, his device for establishing priestly tyranny and organizing the mob: the belief in the immortality of the soul—that is to say, the doctrine of “judgment”….

43.

When the centre of gravity of life is placed, not in life itself, but in “the beyond”—in nothingness—then one has taken away its centre of gravity altogether. The vast lie of personal immortality destroys all reason, all natural instinct—henceforth, everything in the instincts that is beneficial, that fosters life and that safeguards the future is a cause of suspicion. So to live that life no longer has any meaning: this is now the “meaning” of life…. Why be public-spirited? Why take any pride in descent and forefathers? Why labour together, trust one another, or concern one’s self about the common welfare, and try to serve it?… Merely so many “temptations,” so many strayings from the “straight path.”—“One thing only is necessary”…. That every man, because he has an “immortal soul,” is as good as every other man; that in an infinite universe of things the “salvation” of every individual may lay claim to eternal importance; that insignificant bigots and the three-fourths insane may assume that the laws of nature are constantly suspended in their behalf—it is impossible to lavish too much contempt upon such a magnification of every sort of selfishness to infinity, to insolence. And yet Christianity has to thank precisely this miserable flattery of personal vanity for its triumph—it was thus that it lured all the botched, the dissatisfied, the fallen upon evil days, the whole refuse and off-scouring of humanity to its side. The “salvation of the soul”—in plain English: “the world revolves around me.”… The poisonous doctrine, “equal rights for all,” has been propagated as a Christian principle: out of the secret nooks and crannies of bad instinct Christianity has waged a deadly war upon all feelings of reverence and distance between man and man, which is to say, upon the first prerequisite to every step upward, to every development of civilization—out of the ressentiment of the masses it has forged its chief weapons against us, against everything noble, joyous and high-spirited on earth, against our happiness on earth…. To allow “immortality” to every Peter and Paul was the greatest, the most vicious outrage upon noble humanity ever perpetrated.—And let us not underestimate the fatal influence that Christianity has had, even upon politics! Nowadays no one has courage any more for special rights, for the right of dominion, for feelings of honourable pride in himself and his equals—for the pathos of distance…. Our politics is sick with this lack of courage!—The aristocratic attitude of mind has been undermined by the lie of the equality of souls; and if belief in the “privileges of the majority” makes and will continue to make revolutions—it is Christianity, let us not doubt, and Christian valuations, which convert every revolution into a carnival of blood and crime! Christianity is a revolt of all creatures that creep on the ground against everything that is lofty: the gospel of the “lowly” lowers….

44.

—The gospels are invaluable as evidence of the corruption that was already persistent within the primitive community. That which Paul, with the cynical logic of a rabbi, later developed to a conclusion was at bottom merely a process of decay that had begun with the death of the Saviour.—These gospels cannot be read too carefully; difficulties lurk behind every word. I confess—I hope it will not be held against me—that it is precisely for this reason that they offer first-rate joy to a psychologist—as the opposite of all merely naïve corruption, as refinement par excellence, as an artistic triumph in psychological corruption. The gospels, in fact, stand alone. The Bible as a whole is not to be compared to them. Here we are among Jews: this is the first thing to be borne in mind if we are not to lose the thread of the matter. This positive genius for conjuring up a delusion of personal “holiness” unmatched anywhere else, either in books or by men; this elevation of fraud in word and attitude to the level of an art—all this is not an accident due to the chance talents of an individual, or to any violation of nature. The thing responsible is race. The whole of Judaism appears in Christianity as the art of concocting holy lies, and there, after many centuries of earnest Jewish training and hard practice of Jewish technic, the business comes to the stage of mastery. The Christian, that ultima ratio of lying, is the Jew all over again—he is threefold the Jew…. The underlying will to make use only of such concepts, symbols and attitudes as fit into priestly practice, the instinctive repudiation of every other mode of thought, and every other method of estimating values and utilities—this is not only tradition, it is inheritance: only as an inheritance is it able to operate with the force of nature. The whole of mankind, even the best minds of the best ages (with one exception, perhaps hardly human—), have permitted themselves to be deceived. The gospels have been read as a book of innocence … surely no small indication of the high skill with which the trick has been done.—Of course, if we could actually see these astounding bigots and bogus saints, even if only for an instant, the farce would come to an end,—and it is precisely because I cannot read a word of theirs without seeing their attitudinizing that I have made an end of them…. I simply cannot endure the way they have of rolling up their eyes.—For the majority, happily enough, books are mere literature.—Let us not be led astray: they say “judge not,” and yet they condemn to hell whoever stands in their way. In letting God sit in judgment they judge themselves; in glorifying God they glorify themselves; in demanding that every one show the virtues which they themselves happen to be capable of—still more, which they must have in order to remain on top—they assume the grand air of men struggling for virtue, of men engaging in a war that virtue may prevail. “We live, we die, we sacrifice ourselves for the good” (—“the truth,” “the light,” “the kingdom of God”): in point of fact, they simply do what they cannot help doing. Forced, like hypocrites, to be sneaky, to hide in corners, to slink along in the shadows, they convert their necessity into a duty: it is on grounds of duty that they account for their lives of humility, and that humility becomes merely one more proof of their piety…. Ah, that humble, chaste, charitable brand of fraud! “Virtue itself shall bear witness for us.”… One may read the gospels as books of moral seduction: these petty folks fasten themselves to morality—they know the uses of morality! Morality is the best of all devices for leading mankind by the nose!—The fact is that the conscious conceit of the chosen here disguises itself as modesty: it is in this way that they, the “community,” the “good and just,” range themselves, once and for always, on one side, the side of “the truth”—and the rest of mankind, “the world,” on the other…. In that we observe the most fatal sort of megalomania that the earth has ever seen: little abortions of bigots and liars began to claim exclusive rights in the concepts of “God,” “the truth,” “the light,” “the spirit,” “love,” “wisdom” and “life,” as if these things were synonyms of themselves and thereby they sought to fence themselves off from the “world”; little super-Jews, ripe for some sort of madhouse, turned values upside down in order to meet their notions, just as if the Christian were the meaning, the salt, the standard and even the last judgment of all the rest…. The whole disaster was only made possible by the fact that there already existed in the world a similar megalomania, allied to this one in race, to wit, the Jewish: once a chasm began to yawn between Jews and Judaeo-Christians, the latter had no choice but to employ the self-preservative measures that the Jewish instinct had devised, even against the Jews themselves, whereas the Jews had employed them only against non-Jews. The Christian is simply a Jew of the “reformed” confession.—

45.

—I offer a few examples of the sort of thing these petty people have got into their heads—what they have put into the mouth of the Master: the unalloyed creed of “beautiful souls.”—

“And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear you, when ye depart thence, shake off the dust under your feet for a testimony against them. Verily I say unto you, it shall be more tolerable for Sodom and Gomorrha in the day of judgment, than for that city” (Mark vi, 11)—How evangelical!…

“And whosoever shall offend one of these little ones that believe in me, it is better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he were cast into the sea” (Mark ix, 42).—How evangelical!…

“And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out: it is better for thee to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye, than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire; Where the worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched.” (Mark ix, 47.[15])—It is not exactly the eye that is meant….

[15]To which, without mentioning it, Nietzsche adds verse 48.

“Verily I say unto you, That there be some of them that stand here, which shall not taste of death, till they have seen the kingdom of God come with power.” (Mark ix, 1.)—Well lied, lion![16]….

[16]A paraphrase of Demetrius’ “Well roar’d, Lion!” in act v, scene 1 of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” The lion, of course, is the familiar Christian symbol for Mark.

“Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. For…” (Note of a psychologist. Christian morality is refuted by its fors: its reasons are against it,—this makes it Christian.) Mark viii, 34.—

“Judge not, that ye be not judged. With what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.” (Matthew vii, 1.[17])—What a notion of justice, of a “just” judge!…

[17]Nietzsche also quotes part of verse 2.

“For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same? And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so?” (Matthew v, 46.[18])—Principle of “Christian love”: it insists upon being well paid in the end….

[18]The quotation also includes verse 47.

“But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.” (Matthew vi, 15.)—Very compromising for the said “father.”…

“But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” (Matthew vi, 33.)—All these things: namely, food, clothing, all the necessities of life. An error, to put it mildly…. A bit before this God appears as a tailor, at least in certain cases….

“Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward is great in heaven: for in the like manner did their fathers unto the prophets.” (Luke vi, 23.)—Impudentrabble! It compares itself to the prophets….

“Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the spirit of God dwelleth in you? If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.” (Paul, 1 Corinthians iii, 16.[19])—For that sort of thing one cannot have enough contempt….

[19]And 17.

“Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters?” (Paul, 1 Corinthians vi, 2.)—Unfortunately, not merely the speech of a lunatic…. This frightful impostor then proceeds: “Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more things that pertain to this life?”…

“Hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe…. Not many wise men after the flesh, not men mighty, not many noble are called: But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: That no flesh should glory in his presence.” (Paul, 1 Corinthians i, 20ff.[20])—In order to understand this passage, a first-rate example of the psychology underlying every Chandala-morality, one should read the first part of my “Genealogy of Morals”: there, for the first time, the antagonism between a noblemorality and a morality born of ressentiment and impotent vengefulness is exhibited. Paul was the greatest of all apostles of revenge….

[20]Verses 20, 21, 26, 27, 28, 29.

46.

—What follows, then? That one had better put on gloves before reading the New Testament. The presence of so much filth makes it very advisable. One would as little choose “early Christians” for companions as Polish Jews: not that one need seek out an objection to them…. Neither has a pleasant smell.—I have searched the New Testament in vain for a single sympathetic touch; nothing is there that is free, kindly, open-hearted or upright. In it humanity does not even make the first step upward—the instinct for cleanliness is lacking…. Only evil instincts are there, and there is not even the courage of these evil instincts. It is all coward ice; it is all a shutting of the eyes, a self-deception. Every other book becomes clean, once one has read the New Testament: for example, immediately after reading Paul I took up with delight that most charming and wanton of scoffers, Petronius, of whom one may say what Domenico Boccaccio wrote of Cæsar Borgia to the Duke of Parma: “è tutto festo”—immortally healthy, immortally cheerful and sound…. These petty bigots make a capital miscalculation. They attack, but everything they attack is thereby distinguished. Whoever is attacked by an “early Christian” is surely not befouled…. On the contrary, it is an honour to have an “early Christian” as an opponent. One cannot read the New Testament without acquired admiration for whatever it abuses—not to speak of the “wisdom of this world,” which an impudent wind-bag tries to dispose of “by the foolishness of preaching.”… Even the scribes and pharisees are benefitted by such opposition: they must certainly have been worth something to have been hated in such an indecent manner. Hypocrisy—as if this were a charge that the “early Christians” dared to make!—After all, they were the privileged, and that was enough: the hatred of the Chandala needed no other excuse. The “early Christian”—and also, I fear, the “last Christian,” whom I may perhaps live to see—is a rebel against all privilege by profound instinct—he lives and makes war for ever for “equal rights.”… Strictly speaking, he has no alternative. When a man proposes to represent, in his own person, the “chosen of God”—or to be a “temple of God,” or a “judge of the angels”—then every other criterion, whether based upon honesty, upon intellect, upon manliness and pride, or upon beauty and freedom of the heart, becomes simply “worldly”—evil in itself…. Moral: every word that comes from the lips of an “early Christian” is a lie, and his every act is instinctively dishonest—all his values, all his aims are noxious, but whoever he hates, whatever he hates, has real value…. The Christian, and particularly the Christian priest, is thus a criterion of values.

—Must I add that, in the whole New Testament, there appears but a solitary figure worthy of honour? Pilate, the Roman viceroy. To regard a Jewish imbroglio seriously—that was quite beyond him. One Jew more or less—what did it matter?… The noble scorn of a Roman, before whom the word “truth” was shamelessly mishandled, enriched the New Testament with the only saying that has any value—and that is at once its criticism and its destruction: “What is truth?…”

47.

—The thing that sets us apart is not that we are unable to find God, either in history, or in nature, or behind nature—but that we regard what has been honoured as God, not as “divine,” but as pitiable, as absurd, as injurious; not as a mere error, but as a crime against life…. We deny that God is God…. If any one were to show us this Christian God, we’d be still less inclined to believe in him.—In a formula: deus, qualem Paulus creavit, dei negatio.—Such a religion as Christianity, which does not touch reality at a single point and which goes to pieces the moment reality asserts its rights at any point, must be inevitably the deadly enemy of the “wisdom of this world,” which is to say, of science—and it will give the name of good to whatever means serve to poison, calumniate and cry down all intellectual discipline, all lucidity and strictness in matters of intellectual conscience, and all noble coolness and freedom of the mind. “Faith,” as an imperative, vetoes science—in praxi, lying at any price…. Paul well knew that lying—that “faith”—was necessary; later on the church borrowed the fact from Paul.—The God that Paul invented for himself, a God who “reduced to absurdity” “the wisdom of this world” (especially the two great enemies of superstition, philology and medicine), is in truth only an indication of Paul’s resolute determination to accomplish that very thing himself: to give one’s own will the name of God, thora—that is essentially Jewish. Paul wants to dispose of the “wisdom of this world”: his enemies are the good philologians and physicians of the Alexandrine school—on them he makes his war. As a matter of fact no man can be a philologian or a physician without being also Antichrist. That is to say, as a philologian a man sees behind the “holy books,” and as a physician he sees behind the physiological degeneration of the typical Christian. The physician says “incurable”; the philologian says “fraud.”…

48.

—Has any one ever clearly understood the celebrated story at the beginning of the Bible—of God’s mortal terror of science?… No one, in fact, has understood it. This priest-book par excellence opens, as is fitting, with the great inner difficulty of the priest: he faces only one great danger; ergo, “God” faces only one great danger.—

The old God, wholly “spirit,” wholly the high-priest, wholly perfect, is promenading his garden: he is bored and trying to kill time. Against boredom even gods struggle in vain.[21]What does he do? He creates man—man is entertaining…. But then he notices that man is also bored. God’s pity for the only form of distress that invades all paradises knows no bounds: so he forthwith creates other animals. God’s first mistake: to man these other animals were not entertaining—he sought dominion over them; he did not want to be an “animal” himself.—So God created woman. In the act he brought boredom to an end—and also many other things! Woman was the second mistake of God.—“Woman, at bottom, is a serpent, Heva”—every priest knows that; “from woman comes every evil in the world”—every priest knows that, too. Ergo, she is also to blame for science…. It was through woman that man learned to taste of the tree of knowledge.—What happened? The old God was seized by mortal terror. Man himself had been his greatest blunder; he had created a rival to himself; science makes men godlike—it is all up with priests and gods when man becomes scientific!—Moral: science is the forbidden per se; it alone is forbidden. Science is the first of sins, the germ of all sins, the original sin. This is all there is of morality.—“Thou shall not know”:—the rest follows from that.—God’s mortal terror, however, did not hinder him from being shrewd. How is one to protect one’s self against science? For a long while this was the capital problem. Answer: Out of paradise with man! Happiness, leisure, foster thought—and all thoughts are bad thoughts!—Man must not think.—And so the priest invents distress, death, the mortal dangers of childbirth, all sorts of misery, old age, decrepitude, above all, sickness—nothing but devices for making war on science! The troubles of man don’t allow him to think…. Nevertheless—how terrible!—, the edifice of knowledge begins to tower aloft, invading heaven, shadowing the gods—what is to be done?—The old God invents war; he separates the peoples; he makes men destroy one another (—the priests have always had need of war….). War—among other things, a great disturber of science!—Incredible! Knowledge, deliverance from the priests, prospers in spite of war.—So the old God comes to his final resolution: “Man has become scientific—there is no help for it: he must be drowned!”…

[21]A paraphrase of Schiller’s “Against stupidity even gods struggle in vain.”

49.

—I have been understood. At the opening of the Bible there is the whole psychology of the priest.—The priest knows of only one great danger: that is science—the sound comprehension of cause and effect. But science flourishes, on the whole, only under favourable conditions—a man must have time, he must have an overflowing intellect, in order to “know.”… “Therefore, man must be made unhappy,”—this has been, in all ages, the logic of the priest.—It is easy to see just what, by this logic, was the first thing to come into the world:—“sin.”… The concept of guilt and punishment, the whole “moral order of the world,” was set up against science—against the deliverance of man from priests…. Man must not look outward; he must look inward. He must not look at things shrewdly and cautiously, to learn about them; he must not look at all; he must suffer…. And he must suffer so much that he is always in need of the priest.—Away with physicians! What is needed is a Saviour.—The concept of guilt and punishment, including the doctrines of “grace,” of “salvation,” of “forgiveness”—lies through and through, and absolutely without psychological reality—were devised to destroy man’s sense of causality: they are an attack upon the concept of cause and effect!—And not an attack with the fist, with the knife, with honesty in hate and love! On the contrary, one inspired by the most cowardly, the most crafty, the most ignoble of instincts! An attack of priests! An attack of parasites! The vampirism of pale, subterranean leeches!… When the natural consequences of an act are no longer “natural,” but are regarded as produced by the ghostly creations of superstition—by “God,” by “spirits,” by “souls”—and reckoned as merely “moral” consequences, as rewards, as punishments, as hints, as lessons, then the whole ground-work of knowledge is destroyed—then the greatest of crimes against humanity has been perpetrated.—I repeat that sin, man’s self-desecration par excellence, was invented in order to make science, culture, and every elevation and ennobling of man impossible; the priest rules through the invention of sin.—

50.

—In this place I can’t permit myself to omit a psychology of “belief,” of the “believer,” for the special benefit of “believers.” If there remain any today who do not yet know how indecent it is to be “believing”—or how much a sign of décadence, of a broken will to live—then they will know it well enough tomorrow. My voice reaches even the deaf.—It appears, unless I have been incorrectly informed, that there prevails among Christians a sort of criterion of truth that is called “proof by power.” “Faith makes blessed: therefore it is true.”—It might be objected right here that blessedness is not demonstrated, it is merely promised: it hangs upon “faith” as a condition—one shall be blessed because one believes…. But what of the thing that the priest promises to the believer, the wholly transcendental “beyond”—how is that to be demonstrated?—The “proof by power,” thus assumed, is actually no more at bottom than a belief that the effects which faith promises will not fail to appear. In a formula: “I believe that faith makes for blessedness—therefore, it is true.”… But this is as far as we may go. This “therefore” would be absurdum itself as a criterion of truth.—But let us admit, for the sake of politeness, that blessedness by faith may be demonstrated (—not merely hoped for, and not merely promised by the suspicious lips of a priest): even so, could blessedness—in a technical term, pleasure—ever be a proof of truth? So little is this true that it is almost a proof against truth when sensations of pleasure influence the answer to the question “What is true?” or, at all events, it is enough to make that “truth” highly suspicious. The proof by “pleasure” is a proof of “pleasure”—nothing more; why in the world should it be assumed that true judgments give more pleasure than false ones, and that, in conformity to some pre-established harmony, they necessarily bring agreeable feelings in their train?—The experience of all disciplined and profound minds teaches the contrary. Man has had to fight for every atom of the truth, and has had to pay for it almost everything that the heart, that human love, that human trust cling to. Greatness of soul is needed for this business: the service of truth is the hardest of all services.—What, then, is the meaning of integrity in things intellectual? It means that a man must be severe with his own heart, that he must scorn “beautiful feelings,” and that he makes every Yea and Nay a matter of conscience!—Faith makes blessed: therefore, it lies….

51.

The fact that faith, under certain circumstances, may work for blessedness, but that this blessedness produced by an idée fixe by no means makes the idea itself true, and the fact that faith actually moves no mountains, but instead raises them up where there were none before: all this is made sufficiently clear by a walk through a lunatic asylum. Not, of course, to a priest: for his instincts prompt him to the lie that sickness is not sickness and lunatic asylums not lunatic asylums. Christianity finds sickness necessary, just as the Greek spirit had need of a superabundance of health—the actual ulterior purpose of the whole system of salvation of the church is to make people ill. And the church itself—doesn’t it set up a Catholic lunatic asylum as the ultimate ideal?—The whole earth as a madhouse?—The sort of religious man that the church wants is a typical décadent; the moment at which a religious crisis dominates a people is always marked by epidemics of nervous disorder; the “inner world” of the religious man is so much like the “inner world” of the overstrung and exhausted that it is difficult to distinguish between them; the “highest” states of mind, held up before mankind by Christianity as of supreme worth, are actually epileptoid in form—the church has granted the name of holy only to lunatics or to gigantic frauds in majorem dei honorem…. Once I ventured to designate the whole Christian system of training[22] in penance and salvation (now best studied in England) as a method of producing a folie circulaire upon a soil already prepared for it, which is to say, a soil thoroughly unhealthy. Not every one may be a Christian: one is not “converted” to Christianity—one must first be sick enough for it…. We others, who have the courage for health and likewise for contempt,—we may well despise a religion that teaches misunderstanding of the body! that refuses to rid itself of the superstition about the soul! that makes a “virtue” of insufficient nourishment! that combats health as a sort of enemy, devil, temptation! that persuades itself that it is possible to carry about a “perfect soul” in a cadaver of a body, and that, to this end, had to devise for itself a new concept of “perfection,” a pale, sickly, idiotically ecstatic state of existence, so-called “holiness”—a holiness that is itself merely a series of symptoms of an impoverished, enervated and incurably disordered body!… The Christian movement, as a European movement, was from the start no more than a general uprising of all sorts of outcast and refuse elements (—who now, under cover of Christianity, aspire to power). It does not represent the decay of a race; it represents, on the contrary, a conglomeration of décadence products from all directions, crowding together and seeking one another out. It was not, as has been thought, the corruption of antiquity, of noble antiquity, which made Christianity possible; one cannot too sharply challenge the learned imbecility which today maintains that theory. At the time when the sick and rotten Chandala classes in the whole imperium were Christianized, the contrary type, the nobility, reached its finest and ripest development. The majority became master; democracy, with its Christian instincts, triumphed…. Christianity was not “national,” it was not based on race—it appealed to all the varieties of men disinherited by life, it had its allies everywhere. Christianity has the rancour of the sick at its very core—the instinct against the healthy, against health. Everything that is well-constituted, proud, gallant and, above all, beautiful gives offence to its ears and eyes. Again I remind you of Paul’s priceless saying: “And God hath chosen the weak things of the world, the foolish things of the world, the base things of the world, and things which are despised”:[23]this was the formula; in hoc signo the décadence triumphed.—God on the cross—is man always to miss the frightful inner significance of this symbol?—Everything that suffers, everything that hangs on the cross, is divine…. We all hang on the cross, consequently we are divine…. We alone are divine…. Christianity was thus a victory: a nobler attitude of mind was destroyed by it—Christianity remains to this day the greatest misfortune of humanity.—

[22]The word training is in English in the text.

[23]

1

Corinthians i, 27, 28.

52.

Christianity also stands in opposition to all intellectual well-being,—sick reasoning is the only sort that it can use as Christian reasoning; it takes the side of everything that is idiotic; it pronounces a curse upon “intellect,” upon the superbia of the healthy intellect. Since sickness is inherent in Christianity, it follows that the typically Christian state of “faith” must be a form of sickness too, and that all straight, straightforward and scientific paths to knowledge must be banned by the church as forbidden ways. Doubt is thus a sin from the start…. The complete lack of psychological cleanliness in the priest—revealed by a glance at him—is a phenomenon resulting from décadence,—one may observe in hysterical women and in rachitic children how regularly the falsification of instincts, delight in lying for the mere sake of lying, and incapacity for looking straight and walking straight are symptoms of décadence. “Faith” means the will to avoid knowing what is true. The pietist, the priest of either sex, is a fraud because he is sick: his instinct demands that the truth shall never be allowed its rights on any point. “Whatever makes for illness is good; whatever issues from abundance, from superabundance, from power, is evil”: so argues the believer. The impulse to lie—it is by this that I recognize every foreordained theologian.—Another characteristic of the theologian is his unfitness for philology. What I here mean by philology is, in a general sense, the art of reading with profit—the capacity for absorbing facts without interpreting them falsely, and without losing caution, patience and subtlety in the effort to understand them. Philology as ephexis[24] in interpretation: whether one be dealing with books, with newspaper reports, with the most fateful events or with weather statistics—not to mention the “salvation of the soul.”… The way in which a theologian, whether in Berlin or in Rome, is ready to explain, say, a “passage of Scripture,” or an experience, or a victory by the national army, by turning upon it the high illumination of the Psalms of David, is always so daring that it is enough to make a philologian run up a wall. But what shall he do when pietists and other such cows from Suabia[25] use the “finger of God” to convert their miserably commonplace and huggermugger existence into a miracle of “grace,” a “providence” and an “experience of salvation”? The most modest exercise of the intellect, not to say of decency, should certainly be enough to convince these interpreters of the perfect childishness and unworthiness of such a misuse of the divine digital dexterity. However small our piety, if we ever encountered a god who always cured us of a cold in the head at just the right time, or got us into our carriage at the very instant heavy rain began to fall, he would seem so absurd a god that he’d have to be abolished even if he existed. God as a domestic servant, as a letter carrier, as an almanac-man—at bottom, he is a mere name for the stupidest sort of chance…. “Divine Prov idence,” which every third man in “educated Germany” still believes in, is so strong an argument against God that it would be impossible to think of a stronger. And in any case it is an argument against Germans!…

[24]That is, to say, scepticism. Among the Greeks scepticism was also occasionally called ephecticism.

[25]A reference to the University of Tübingen and its famous school of Biblical criticism. The leader of this school was F. C. Baur, and one of the men greatly influenced by it was Nietzsche’s pet abomination, David F. Strauss, himself a Suabian. Vide § 10 and § 28.

53.

—It is so little true that martyrs offer any support to the truth of a cause that I am inclined to deny that any martyr has ever had anything to do with the truth at all. In the very tone in which a martyr flings what he fancies to be true at the head of the world there appears so low a grade of intellectual honesty and such insensibility to the problem of “truth,” that it is never necessary to refute him. Truth is not something that one man has and another man has not: at best, only peasants, or peasant-apostles like Luther, can think of truth in any such way. One may rest assured that the greater the degree of a man’s intellectual conscience the greater will be his modesty, his discretion, on this point. To know in five cases, and to refuse, with delicacy, to know anything further…. “Truth,” as the word is understood by every prophet, every sectarian, every free-thinker, every Socialist and every churchman, is simply a complete proof that not even a beginning has been made in the intellectual discipline and self-control that are necessary to the unearthing of even the smallest truth.—The deaths of the martyrs, it may be said in passing, have been misfortunes of history: they have misled…. The conclusion that all idiots, women and plebeians come to, that there must be something in a cause for which any one goes to his death (or which, as under primitive Christianity, sets off epidemics of death-seeking)—this conclusion has been an unspeakable drag upon the testing of facts, upon the whole spirit of inquiry and investigation. The martyrs have damaged the truth…. Even to this day the crude fact of persecution is enough to give an honourable name to the most empty sort of sectarianism.—But why? Is the worth of a cause altered by the fact that some one had laid down his life for it?—An error that becomes honourable is simply an error that has acquired one seductive charm the more: do you suppose, Messrs. Theologians, that we shall give you the chance to be martyred for your lies?—One best disposes of a cause by respectfully putting it on ice—that is also the best way to dispose of theologians…. This was precisely the world- historical stupidity of all the persecutors: that they gave the appearance of honour to the cause they opposed—that they made it a present of the fascination of martyrdom…. Women are still on their knees before an error because they have been told that some one died on the cross for it. Is the cross, then, an argument?—But about all these things there is one, and one only, who has said what has been needed for thousands of years—Zarathustra.

They made signs in blood along the way that they went, and their folly taught them that the truth is proved by blood.

But blood is the worst of all testimonies to the truth; blood poisoneth even the purest teaching and turneth it into madness and hatred in the heart.

And when one goeth through fire for his teaching—what doth that prove? Verily, it is more when one’s teaching cometh out of one’s own burning![26]

[26]The quotations are from “Also sprach Zarathustra” ii, 24: “Of Priests.”

54.

Do not let yourself be deceived: great intellects are sceptical. Zarathustra is a sceptic. The strength, the freedom which proceed from intellectual power, from a superabundance of intellectual power, manifest themselves as scep ticism. Men of fixed convictions do not count when it comes to determining what is fundamental in values and lack of values. Men of convictions are prisoners. They do not see far enough, they do not see what is below them: whereas a man who would talk to any purpose about value and non-value must be able to see five hundred convictions beneath him—and behind him…. A mind that aspires to great things, and that wills the means thereto, is necessarily sceptical. Freedom from any sort of conviction belongs to strength, and to an independent point of view…. That grand passion which is at once the foundation and the power of a sceptic’s existence, and is both more enlightened and more despotic than he is himself, drafts the whole of his intellect into its service; it makes him unscrupulous; it gives him courage to employ unholy means; under certain circumstances it does not begrudge him even convictions. Conviction as a means: one may achieve a good deal by means of a conviction. A grand passion makes use of and uses up convictions; it does not yield to them—it knows itself to be sovereign.—On the contrary, the need of faith, of something unconditioned by yea or nay, of Carlylism, if I may be allowed the word, is a need of weakness. The man of faith, the “believer” of any sort, is necessarily a dependent man—such a man cannot posit himself as a goal, nor can he find goals within himself. The “believer” does not belong to himself; he can only be a means to an end; he must be used up; he needs some one to use him up. His instinct gives the highest honours to an ethic of self-effacement; he is prompted to embrace it by everything: his prudence, his experience, his vanity. Every sort of faith is in itself an evidence of self-effacement, of self-estrangement…. When one reflects how necessary it is to the great majority that there be regulations to restrain them from without and hold them fast, and to what extent control, or, in a higher sense, slavery, is the one and only condition which makes for the well-being of the weak-willed man, and especially woman, then one at once understands conviction and “faith.” To the man with convictions they are his backbone. To avoid seeing many things, to be impartial about nothing, to be a party man through and through, to estimate all values strictly and infallibly—these are conditions necessary to the existence of such a man. But by the same token they are antagonists of the truthful man—of the truth…. The believer is not free to answer the question, “true” or “not true,” according to the dictates of his own conscience: integrity on this point would work his instant downfall. The pathological limitations of his vision turn the man of convictions into a fanatic—Savonarola, Luther, Rousseau, Robespierre, Saint-Simon—these types stand in opposition to the strong, emancipated spirit. But the grandiose attitudes of these sick intellects, these intellectual epileptics, are of influence upon the great masses—fanatics are picturesque, and mankind prefers observing poses to listening to reasons….

55.

—One step further in the psychology of conviction, of “faith.” It is now a good while since I first proposed for consideration the question whether convictions are not even more dangerous enemies to truth than lies. (“Human, All-Too-Human,” I, aphorism 483.)[27] This time I desire to put the question definitely: is there any actual difference between a lie and a conviction?—All the world believes that there is; but what is not believed by all the world!—Every conviction has its history, its primitive forms, its stage of tentativeness and error: it becomes a conviction only after having been, for a long time, not one, and then, for an even longer time, hardly one. What if falsehood be also one of these embryonic forms of conviction?—Sometimes all that is needed is a change in persons: what was a lie in the father becomes a conviction in the son.—I call it lying to refuse to see what one sees, or to refuse to see it as it is: whether the lie be uttered before witnesses or not before witnesses is of no consequence. The most common sort of lie is that by which a man deceives himself: the deception of others is a relatively rare offence.—Now, this will not to see what one sees, this will not to see it as it is, is almost the first requisite for all who belong to a party of whatever sort: the party man becomes inevitably a liar. For example, the German historians are convinced that Rome was synonymous with despotism and that the Germanic peoples brought the spirit of liberty into the world: what is the difference between this conviction and a lie? Is it to be wondered at that all partisans, including the German historians, instinctively roll the fine phrases of morality upon their tongues—that morality almost owes its very survival to the fact that the party man of every sort has need of it every moment?—“This is our conviction: we publish it to the whole world; we live and die for it—let us respect all who have convictions!”—I have actually heard such sentiments from the mouths of anti-Semites. On the contrary, gentlemen! An anti-Semite surely does not become more respectable because he lies on principle…. The priests, who have more finesse in such matters, and who well understand the objection that lies against the notion of a conviction, which is to say, of a falsehood that becomes a matter of principle because it serves a purpose, have borrowed from the Jews the shrewd device of sneaking in the concepts, “God,” “the will of God” and “the revelation of God” at this place. Kant, too, with his categorical imperative, was on the same road: this was his practical reason.[28] There are questions regarding the truth or untruth of which it is not for man to decide; all the capital questions, all the capital problems of valuation, are beyond human reason…. To know the limits of reason—that alone is genuine philosophy…. Why did God make a revelation to man? Would God have done anything superfluous? Man could not find out for himself what was good and what was evil, so God taught him His will…. Moral: the priest does not lie—the question, “true” or “untrue,” has nothing to do with such things as the priest discusses; it is impossible to lie about these things. In order to lie here it would be necessary to know what is true. But this is more than man can know; therefore, the priest is simply the mouthpiece of God.—Such a priestly syllogism is by no means merely Jewish and Christian; the right to lie and the shrewd dodge of “revelation” belong to the general priestly type—to the priest of the décadence as well as to the priest of pagan times (—Pagans are all those who say yes to life, and to whom “God” is a word signifying acquiescence in all things).—The “law,” the “will of God,” the “holy book,” and “inspiration”—all these things are merely words for the conditions under which the priest comes to power and with which he maintains his power,—these concepts are to be found at the bottom of all priestly organizations, and of all priestly or priestly-philosophical schemes of governments. The “holy lie”—common alike to Confucius, to the Code of Manu, to Mohammed and to the Christian church—is not even wanting in Plato. “Truth is here”: this means, no matter where it is heard, the priest lies….

[27]The aphorism, which is headed “The Enemies of Truth,” makes the direct statement: “Convictions are more dangerous enemies of truth than lies.”

[28]A reference, of course, to Kant’s “Kritik der praktischen Vernunft” (Critique of Practical Reason).

56.

—In the last analysis it comes to this: what is the end of lying? The fact that, in Christianity, “holy” ends are not visible is my objection to the means it employs. Only bad ends appear: the poisoning, the calumniation, the denial of life, the despising of the body, the degradation and self-contamination of man by the concept of sin—therefore, its means are also bad.—I have a contrary feeling when I read the Code of Manu, an incomparably more intellectual and superior work, which it would be a sin against the intelligence to so much as name in the same breath with the Bible. It is easy to see why: there is a genuine philosophy behind it, in it, not merely an evil-smelling mess of Jewish rabbinism and superstition,—it gives even the most fastidious psychologist something to sink his teeth into. And, not to forget what is most important, it differs fundamentally from every kind of Bible: by means of it the nobles, the philosophers and the warriors keep the whip-hand over the majority; it is full of noble valuations, it shows a feeling of perfection, an acceptance of life, and triumphant feeling toward self and life—the sun shines upon the whole book.—All the things on which Christianity vents its fathomless vulgarity—for example, procreation, women and marriage—are here handled earnestly, with reverence and with love and confidence. How can any one really put into the hands of children and ladies a book which contains such vile things as this: “to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband; … it is better to marry than to burn”?[29] And is it possible to be a Christian so long as the origin of man is Christianized, which is to say, befouled, by the doctrine of the immaculata conceptio?… I know of no book in which so many delicate and kindly things are said of women as in the Code of Manu; these old grey-beards and saints have a way of being gallant to women that it would be impossible, perhaps, to surpass. “The mouth of a woman,” it says in one place, “the breasts of a maiden, the prayer of a child and the smoke of sacrifice are always pure.” In another place: “there is nothing purer than the light of the sun, the shadow cast by a cow, air, water, fire and the breath of a maiden.” Finally, in still another place—perhaps this is also a holy lie—: “all the orifices of the body above the navel are pure, and all below are impure. Only in the maiden is the whole body pure.”

[29]

1

Corinthians vii, 2, 9.

57.

One catches the unholiness of Christian means in flagranti by the simple process of putting the ends sought by Christianity beside the ends sought by the Code of Manu—by putting these enormously antithetical ends under a strong light. The critic of Christianity cannot evade the necessity of making Christianity contemptible.—A book of laws such as the Code of Manu has the same origin as every other good law-book: it epitomizes the experience, the sagacity and the ethical experimentation of long centuries; it brings things to a conclusion; it no longer creates. The prerequisite to a codification of this sort is recognition of the fact that the means which establish the authority of a slowly and painfully attained truth are fundamentally different from those which one would make use of to prove it. A law-book never recites the utility, the grounds, the casuistical antecedents of a law: for if it did so it would lose the imperative tone, the “thou shall,” on which obedience is based. The problem lies exactly here.—At a certain point in the evolution of a people, the class within it of the greatest insight, which is to say, the greatest hindsight and foresight, declares that the series of experiences determining how all shall live—or can live—has come to an end. The object now is to reap as rich and as complete a harvest as possible from the days of experiment and hard experience. In consequence, the thing that is to be avoided above everything is further experimentation—the continuation of the state in which values are fluent, and are tested, chosen and criticized ad infinitum. Against this a double wall is set up: on the one hand, revelation, which is the assumption that the reasons lying behind the laws are not of human origin, that they were not sought out and found by a slow process and after many errors, but that they are of divine ancestry, and came into being complete, perfect, without a history, as a free gift, a miracle…; and on the other hand, tradition, which is the assumption that the law has stood unchanged from time immemorial, and that it is impious and a crime against one’s forefathers to bring it into question. The authority of the law is thus grounded on the thesis: God gave it, and the fathers lived it.—The higher motive of such procedure lies in the design to distract consciousness, step by step, from its concern with notions of right living (that is to say, those that have been proved to be right by wide and carefully considered experience), so that instinct attains to a perfect automatism—a primary necessity to every sort of mastery, to every sort of perfection in the art of life. To draw up such a law-book as Manu’s means to lay before a people the possibility of future mastery, of attainable perfection—it permits them to aspire to the highest reaches of the art of life. To that end the thing must be made unconscious: that is the aim of every holy lie.—The order of castes, the highest, the dominating law, is merely the ratification of an order of nature, of a natural law of the first rank, over which no arbitrary fiat, no “modern idea,” can exert any influence. In every healthy society there are three physiological types, gravitating toward differentiation but mutually conditioning one another, and each of these has its own hygiene, its own sphere of work, its own special mastery and feeling of perfection. It is not Manu but nature that sets off in one class those who are chiefly intellectual, in another those who are marked by muscular strength and temperament, and in a third those who are distinguished in neither one way or the other, but show only mediocrity—the last-named represents the great majority, and the first two the select. The superior caste—I call it the fewest—has, as the most perfect, the privileges of the few: it stands for happiness, for beauty, for everything good upon earth. Only the most intellectual of men have any right to beauty, to the beautiful; only in them can goodness escape being weakness. Pulchrum est paucorum hominum:[30] goodness is a privilege. Nothing could be more unbecoming to them than uncouth manners or a pessimistic look, or an eye that sees ugliness—or indignation against the general aspect of things. Indignation is the privilege of the Chandala; so is pessimism. “The world is perfect”—so prompts the instinct of the intellectual, the instinct of the man who says yes to life. “Imperfection, whatever is inferior to us, distance, the pathos of distance, even the Chandala themselves are parts of this perfection.” The most intelligent men, like the strongest, find their happiness where others would find only disaster: in the labyrinth, in being hard with themselves and with others, in effort; their delight is in self-mastery; in them asceticism becomes second nature, a necessity, an instinct. They regard a difficult task as a privilege; it is to them a recreation to play with burdens that would crush all others…. Knowledge—a form of asceticism.—They are the most honourable kind of men: but that does not prevent them being the most cheerful and most amiable. They rule, not because they want to, but because they are; they are not at liberty to play second.—The second caste: to this belong the guardians of the law, the keepers of order and security, the more noble warriors, above all, the king as the highest form of warrior, judge and preserver of the law. The second in rank constitute the executive arm of the intellectuals, the next to them in rank, taking from them all that is rough in the business of ruling—their followers, their right hand, their most apt disciples.—In all this, I repeat, there is nothing arbitrary, nothing “made up”; whatever is to the contrary is made up—by it nature is brought to shame…. The order of castes, the order of rank, simply formulates the supreme law of life itself; the separation of the three types is necessary to the maintenance of society, and to the evolution of higher types, and the highest types—the inequality of rights is essential to the existence of any rights at all.—A right is a privilege. Every one enjoys the privileges that accord with his state of existence. Let us not underestimate the privileges of the mediocre. Life is always harder as one mounts the heights—the cold increases, responsibility increases. A high civilization is a pyramid: it can stand only on a broad base; its primary prerequisite is a strong and soundly consolidated mediocrity. The handicrafts, commerce, agriculture, science, the greater part of art, in brief, the whole range of occupational activities, are compatible only with mediocre ability and aspiration; such callings would be out of place for exceptional men; the instincts which belong to them stand as much opposed to aristocracy as to anarchism. The fact that a man is publicly useful, that he is a wheel, a function, is evidence of a natural predisposition; it is not society, but the only sort of happiness that the majority are capable of, that makes them intelligent machines. To the mediocre mediocrity is a form of happiness; they have a natural instinct for mastering one thing, for specialization. It would be altogether unworthy of a profound intellect to see anything objectionable in mediocrity in itself. It is, in fact, the first prerequisite to the appearance of the exceptional: it is a necessary condition to a high degree of civilization. When the exceptional man handles the mediocre man with more delicate fingers than he applies to himself or to his equals, this is not merely kindness of heart—it is simply his duty…. Whom do I hate most heartily among the rabbles of today? The rabble of Socialists, the apostles to the Chandala, who undermine the workingman’s instincts, his pleasure, his feeling of contentment with his petty existence—who make him envious and teach him revenge…. Wrong never lies in unequal rights; it lies in the assertion of “equal” rights…. What is bad? But I have already answered: all that proceeds from weakness, from envy, from revenge.—The anarchist and the Christian have the same ancestry….

[30]Few men are noble.

58.

In point of fact, the end for which one lies makes a great difference: whether one preserves thereby or destroys. There is a perfect likeness between Christian and anarchist: their object, their instinct, points only toward destruction. One need only turn to history for a proof of this: there it appears with appalling distinctness. We have just studied a code of religious legislation whose object it was to convert the conditions which cause life to flourish into an “eternal” social organization,—Christianity found its mission in putting an end to such an organization, because life flourished under it. There the benefits that reason had produced during long ages of experiment and insecurity were applied to the most remote uses, and an effort was made to bring in a harvest that should be as large, as rich and as complete as possible; here, on the contrary, the harvest is blighted overnight…. That which stood there aere perennis, the imperium Romanum, the most magnificent form of organization under difficult conditions that has ever been achieved, and compared to which everything before it and after it appears as patchwork, bungling, dilletantism—those holy anarchists made it a matter of “piety” to destroy “the world,” which is to say, the imperium Romanum, so that in the end not a stone stood upon another—and even Germans and other such louts were able to become its masters…. The Christian and the anarchist: both are décadents; both are incapable of any act that is not disintegrating, poisonous, degenerating, blood-sucking; both have an instinct of mortal hatred of everything that stands up, and is great, and has durability, and promises life a future…. Christianity was the vampire of the imperium Romanum,—overnight it destroyed the vast achievement of the Romans: the conquest of the soil for a great culture that could await its time. Can it be that this fact is not yet understood? The imperium Romanum that we know, and that the history of the Roman provinces teaches us to know better and better,—this most admirable of all works of art in the grand manner was merely the beginning, and the structure to follow was not to prove its worth for thousands of years. To this day, nothing on a like scale sub specie aeterni has been brought into being, or even dreamed of!—This organization was strong enough to withstand bad emperors: the accident of personality has nothing to do with such things—the first principle of all genuinely great architecture. But it was not strong enough to stand up against the corruptest of all forms of corruption—against Christians…. These stealthy worms, which under the cover of night, mist and duplicity, crept upon every individual, sucking him dry of all earnest interest in real things, of all instinct for reality—this cowardly, effeminate and sugar-coated gang gradually alienated all “souls,” step by step, from that colossal edifice, turning against it all the meritorious, manly and noble natures that had found in the cause of Rome their own cause, their own serious purpose, their own pride. The sneakishness of hypocrisy, the secrecy of the conventicle, concepts as black as hell, such as the sacrifice of the innocent, the unio mystica in the drinking of blood, above all, the slowly rekindled fire of revenge, of Chandala revenge—all that sort of thing became master of Rome: the same kind of religion which, in a pre-existent form, Epicurus had combatted. One has but to read Lucretius to know what Epicurus made war upon—not paganism, but “Christianity,” which is to say, the corruption of souls by means of the concepts of guilt, punishment and immortality.—He combatted the subterranean cults, the whole of latent Christianity—to deny immortality was already a form of genuine salvation.—Epicurus had triumphed, and every respectable intellect in Rome was Epicurean—when Paul appeared … Paul, the Chandala hatred of Rome, of “the world,” in the flesh and inspired by genius—the Jew, the eternal Jew par excellence…. What he saw was how, with the aid of the small sectarian Christian movement that stood apart from Judaism, a “world conflagration” might be kindled; how, with the symbol of “God on the cross,” all secret seditions, all the fruits of anarchistic intrigues in the empire, might be amalgamated into one immense power. “Salvation is of the Jews.”—Christianity is the formula for exceeding and summing up the subterranean cults of all varieties, that of Osiris, that of the Great Mother, that of Mithras, for instance: in his discernment of this fact the genius of Paul showed itself. His instinct was here so sure that, with reckless violence to the truth, he put the ideas which lent fascination to every sort of Chandala religion into the mouth of the “Saviour” as his own inventions, and not only into the mouth—he made out of him something that even a priest of Mithras could understand…. This was his revelation at Damascus: he grasped the fact that he needed the belief in immortality in order to rob “the world” of its value, that the concept of “hell” would master Rome—that the notion of a “beyond” is the death of life…. Nihilist and Christian: they rhyme in German, and they do more than rhyme….

Gutenberg is free for anyone to download from and the quality is impeccable, if anyone actually wants to read Nietzsche instead of listing him off as crazy because he doesn’t appeal to Christian moral values that are effectively obsolete in our modern era.