4

But logical evaluations are not the deepest or most fundamental to which our audacious mistrust can descend: faith in reason, with which the validity of these judgments must stand or fall, is, as faith, a moral phenomenon . . . Perhaps German pessimism still has one last step to take? Perhaps it has once again to set beside one another in fearful fashion its credo and its absurdum? And if this book is pessimistic even into the realm of morality, even to the point of going beyond faith in morality  should it not for this very reason be a German book? For it does in fact exhibit a contradiction and is not afraid of it: in this book faith in morality is withdrawn  but why? Out of morality! Or what else should we call that which informs it  and us? for our taste is for more modest expressions. But there is no doubt that a 'thou shalt' still speaks to us too, that we too still obey a stern law set over us  and this is the last moral law which can make itself audible even to us, which even we know how to live, in this if in anything we too are still men of conscience: namely, in that we do not want to return to that which we consider outlived and decayed, to anything 'unworthy of belief', be it called God, virtue, truth, justice, charity; that we do not permit ourselves any bridges-of-lies to ancient ideals; that we are hostile from the heart to everything that wants to mediate and mix with us; hostile to every kind of faith and Christianness existing today; hostile to the half-and-halfness of all romanticism and fatherland-worship; hostile, too, towards the pleasure-seeking and lack of conscience of the artists which would like to persuade us to worship where we no longer believe  for we are artists; hostile, in short, to the whole of European feminism (or idealism, if you prefer that word), which is for ever 'drawing us upward' and precisely thereby for ever 'bringing us down':  it is only as men of this conscience that we still feel ourselves related to the German integrity, and piety of millennia, even if as its most questionable and final descendants, we immoralists, we godless men of today, indeed in a certain sense as its heirs, as the executors of its innermost will  a pessimistic will, as aforesaid, which does not draw back from denying itself because it denies with joy! In us there is accomplished  supposing you want a formula  the self-sublimation of morality.

Friedrich Nietzsche - Daybreak
Preface - Aphorism # 4

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