3

It may be conjectured that the decisive event for a spirit in whom the type of the "free spirit" is one day to ripen to sweet perfection has been a great separation,7 and that before it, he was probably all the more a bound spirit, and seemed to be chained forever to his corner, to his post. What binds most firmly? Which cords can almost not be torn? With men of a high and select type, it will be their obligations: that awe which befits the young, their diffidence and delicacy before all that is time?honored and dignified, their gratitude for the ground out of which they grew, for the hand that led them, for the shrine where they learned to worship--their own highest moments will bind them most firmly and oblige them most lastingly.For such bound people the great separation comes suddenly, like the shock of an earthquake: all at once the young soul is devastated, torn loose, torn out--it itself does not know what is happening. An urge, a pressure governs it, mastering the soul like a command: the will and wish awaken to go away, anywhere, at any cost: a violent, dangerous curiosity for an undiscovered world flames up and flickers in all the senses. "Better to die than live here," so sounds the imperious and seductive voice. And this "here," this" at home" is everything which it had loved until then! A sudden horror and suspicion of that which it loved; a lightning flash of contempt toward that which was its "obligation"; a rebellious, despotic, volcanically jolting desire to roam abroad, to become alienated, cool, sober, icy: a hatred of love, perhaps a desecratory reaching and glancing backward, to where it had until then worshiped and loved; perhaps a blush of shame at its most recentact, and at the same time, jubilation that it was done; a drunken, inner, jubilant shudder, which betrays a victory?a victory? over what? over whom? - a puzzling, questioning, questionable victory, but the first victory nevertheless: such bad and painful things are part of the history of the great separation. It is also a disease that can destroy man, this first outburst of strength and will to self?determination, self?valorization, this will to free will: and how much disease is expressed by the wild attempts and peculiarities with which the freed man, the separated man, now tries to prove his rule over things! He wanders about savagely with an unsatisfied lust; his booty must atone for the dangerous tension of his pride; he rips apart what attracts him.8 With an evil laugh he overturns what he finds concealed, spared until then by some shame; he investigates how these things look if they are overturned. There is some arbitrariness and pleasure in arbitrariness to it, if he then perhaps directs his favor to that which previously stood in disrepute--if he creeps curiously and enticingly around what is most forbidden. Behind his ranging activity (for he is journeying restlessly and aimlessly, as in a desert) stands the question mark of an ever more dangerous curiosity. "Cannot all values be overturned? And is Good perhaps Evil? And God only an invention, a nicety of the devil? Is everything perhaps ultimately false? And if we are deceived, are we not for that very reason also deceivers? Must we not be deceivers, too?" Such thoughts lead and mislead9 him, always further onward, always further away. Loneliness surrounds him, curls round him, ever more threatening, strangling, heart?constricting, that fearful goddess and mater saevacupidinum10--but who today knows what loneliness is?

7. Loslösung
8. er zerreist was ihn reitzt
9. führen und verführen ihn
10. wild mother of the passions

Friedrich Nietzsche - Human, All Too Human
Preface - Aphorism # 3

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