The conjurer and his opposite.  What is astonishing in the realm of science is the opposite of what is astonishing in the art of the conjurer. For the latter wants to persuade us to see a very simple causality where in truth a very complicated causality is at work. Science, on the contrary, compels us to abandon belief in simple causalities precisely where everything seems so easy to comprehend and we are the fools of appearance. The 'simplest' things are very complicated  a fact at which one can never cease to marvel!

Friedrich NietzscheDaybreak: Book I - Aphorism #622813 years, 5 months ago 


Learning to feel differently about space.  Is it the real things or the imaginary things which have contributed most to human happiness? What is certain is that the extent of the space between the highest happiness and the deepest unhappiness has been produced only with the aid of the imaginary things. This kind of feeling of space is, consequently, being continually reduced under the influence of science: just as science has taught us, and continues to teach us, to feel that the earth is small and the solar-system itself no more than a point.

Friedrich NietzscheDaybreak: Book I - Aphorism #722013 years, 5 months ago 


Transfiguration.  Those that suffer helplessly, those that dream confusedly, those that are entranced by things supernatural  these are the three divisions into which Raphael11 divided mankind. This is no longer how we see the world  and Raphael too would no longer be able to see it as he did: he would behold a new transfiguration.

11. Raphael: Raffaello Santi, or Sanzio (1483-1520): Italian painter, one of the greatest of the Italian Renaissance. Among his most famous paintings are the Sistine Madonna, the Marriage of the Virgin and the School of Athens.
Friedrich NietzscheDaybreak: Book I - Aphorism #823113 years, 5 months ago 


Concept of morality of custom.  In comparison with the mode of life of whole millennia of mankind we present-day men live in a very immoral age: the power of custom is astonishingly enfeebled and the moral sense so rarefied and lofty it may be described as having more or less evaporated. That is why the fundamental insights into the origin of morality are so difficult for us latecomers, and even when we have acquired them we find it impossible to enunciate them, because they sound so uncouth or because they seem to slander morality! This is, for example, already the case with the chief proposition: morality is nothing other (therefore no more!) than obedience to customs, of whatever kind they may be; customs, however, are the traditional way of behaving and evaluating. In things in which no tradition commands there is no morality; and the less life is determined by tradition, the smaller the circle of morality. The free human being is immoral because in all things he is determined to depend upon himself and not upon a tradition: in all the original conditions of mankind, 'evil' signifies the same as 'individual', 'free', 'capricious', 'unusual', 'unforeseen', 'incalculable'. Judged by the standard of these conditions, if an action is performed not because tradition commands it but for other motives (because of its usefulness to the individual, for example), even indeed for precisely the motives which once founded the tradition, it is called immoral and is felt to be so by him who performed it: for it was not performed in obedience to tradition. What is tradition? A higher authority which one obeys, not because it commands what is useful to us, but because it commands.  What distinguishes this feeling in the presence of tradition from the feeling of fear in general? It is fear in the presence of a higher intellect which here commands, of an incomprehensible, indefinite power, of something more than personal  there is superstition in this fear.  Originally all education and care of health, marriage, cure of sickness, agriculture, war, speech and silence, traffic with one another and with the gods belonged within the domain of morality: they demanded one observe prescriptions without thinking of oneself as an individual. Originally, therefore, everything was custom, and whoever wanted to elevate himself above it had to become lawgiver and medicine man and a kind of demi-god: that is to say, he had to make customs  a dreadful, mortally dangerous thing! Who is the most moral man? First, he who obeys the law most frequently: who, like the Brahmin12, bears a consciousness of the law with him everywhere and into every minute division of time, so that he is continually inventive in creating opportunities for obeying the law. Then, he who obeys it even in the most difficult cases. The most moral man is he who sacrifices the most to custom: what, however, are the greatest sacrifices? The way in which this question is answered determines the development of several divers kinds of morality; but the most important distinction remains that which divides the morality of most frequent obedience from that of the most difficult obedience. Let us not deceive ourselves as to the motivation of that morality which demands difficulty of obedience to custom as the mark of morality! Self-overcoming is demanded, not on account of the useful consequences it may have for the individual, but so that the hegemony of custom, tradition, shall be made evident in despite of the private desires and advantages of the individual: the individual is to sacrifice himself  that is the commandment of morality of custom.  Those moralists, on the other hand, who, following in the footsteps of Socrates, offer the individual a morality of self-control and temperance as a means to his own advantage, as his personal key to happiness, are the exceptions  and if it seems otherwise to us that is because we have been brought up in their after-effect: they all take a new path under the highest disapprobation of all advocates of morality of custom  they cut themselves off from the community, as immoral men, and are in the profoundest sense evil. Thus to a virtuous Roman of the old stamp every Christian who 'considered first of all his own salvation' appeared  evil.  Everywhere that a community, and consequently a morality of custom exists, the idea also predominates that punishment for breaches of custom will fall before all on the community: that supernatural punishment whose forms of expression and limitations are so hard to comprehend and are explored with so much superstitious fear. The community can compel the individual to compensate another individual or the community for the immediate injury his action has brought in its train; it can also take a kind of revenge on the individual for having, as a supposed after-effect of his action, caused the clouds and storms of divine anger to have gathered over the community  but it feels the individual's guilt above all as its own guilt and bears the punishment as its own punishment  : 'customs have grown lax', each wails in his soul, 'if such actions as this are possible'. Every individual action, every individual mode of thought arouses dread; it is impossible to compute what precisely the rarer, choicer, more original spirits in the whole course of history have had to suffer through being felt as evil and dangerous, indeed through feeling themselves to be so. Under the dominion of the morality of custom, originality of every kind has acquired a bad conscience; the sky above the best men is for this reason to this very moment gloomier than it need be.

12. Brahmin: one of the priestly class of the orthodox Hindus, the highest of the four varnas, or castes. Since they had almost exclusive access to the Rig Veda, they were responsible for transmission of the Sanskritic sacred traditions and for executing the sacrificial rituals.
Friedrich NietzscheDaybreak: Book I - Aphorism #946013 years, 5 months ago 


Sense for morality and sense for causality in counteraction.  In the same measure as the sense for causality increases, the extent of the domain of morality decreases: for each time one has understood the necessary effects and has learned how to segregate them from all the accidental effects and incidental consequences (post hoc), one has destroyed a countless number of imaginary causalities hitherto believed in as the foundations of customs  the real world is much smaller than the imaginary  and each time a piece of anxiety and constraint has vanished from the world, each time too a piece of respect for the authority of custom: morality as a whole has suffered a diminution. He who wants, on the contrary, to augment it must know how to prevent the results from being subject to control.

Friedrich NietzscheDaybreak: Book I - Aphorism #1024113 years, 5 months ago