Morality as Anti-Nature


Let us consider finally what naïvety it is to say 'man ought to be thus and thus!' Reality shows us an enchanting wealth of types, the luxuriance of a prodigal play and change of forms: and does some pitiful journeyman moralist say at the sight of it: 'No! man ought to be different'? ... He even knows how man ought to be, this bigoted wretch; he paints himself on the wall and says 'ecco homo'! (Behold the man!)... But even when the moralist merely turns to the individual and says to him: 'You ought to be thus and thus' he does not cease to make himself ridiculous. The individual is, in his future and in his past, a piece of fate, one law more, one necessity more for everything that is and everything that will be. To say to him 'change yourself' means to demand that everything should change, even the past. ... And there have indeed been consistent moralists who wanted him in their own likeness, namely that of a bigot: to that end they denied the world! No mean madness! No modest presumption! ... In so far as morality condemns as morality and not with regard to the aims and objects of life, it is a specific error with which one should show no sympathy, an idiosyncrasy of the degenerate which has caused an unspeakable amount of harm! ... We others, we immoralists, have on the contrary opened wide our hearts to every kind of understanding, comprehension, approval. We do not readily deny, we seek our honour in affirming. We have come more and more to appreciate that economy which needs and knows how to use all that which the holy lunacy of the priest, the diseased reason of the priest rejects; that economy in the law of life which derives advantage even from the repellent species of the bigot, the priest, the virtuous man - what advantage? - But we ourselves, we immoralists, are the answer to that...

Friedrich Nietzsche - Twilight Of The Idols

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