The Dance of Albion (Day of Joy) (1794–1796), by William Blake.
The Dance of Albion (Day of Joy) (1794–1796), by William Blake.

Friedrich Nietzsche (1844–1900) was a German philosopher of the late 19th century. He wrote Thus Spoke Zarathustra. In it, the character Zarathustra speaks of a next-step, superior being which would surpass and replace humans. Sometimes called “Superman” in English, the Übermensch is more precisely translated as the Overhuman which also distinguishes it from the comic book character. In Goethe’s Faust there is a homunculus, a small human-like spirit who yearns to be real. Homunculus is a human-made creature formed alchemically and not an Übermensch. The Übermensch is a step above Faust.

— trans. Thomas Common, Thus Spoke Zarathustra, Part I, Section XXII,3.

Nietzsche’s Übermensch is heir to Goethe’s Faust. Faust can be compared to Nietzsche’s Übermensch, but Faust is a human only, and a subject of God or the Devil, although he grows through experience.

“Man is something that must be surpassed”:—it is a matter of tempo: the Greeks were wonderful, there was no haste about them.—My predecessors: Heraclitus, Empedocles, Spinoza, Goethe.” — The Twilight of the Idols; or, How to Philosophize with the Hammer. The Antichrist

The Übermensch finds meaning in life as opposed to Christian focus on the after-life, with a morality derived not from God’s laws, but from a love of life and of the earth. However, the Übermensch wouldn’t have a moral duty to humans, and we mere humans might not like what they do. Zarathustra says “today the petty people have become master.” He urges humans to prepare the way for the Übermensch: to sacrifice for the Übergoober :

“The most careful ask to-day: “How is man to be maintained?” Zarathustra however asketh, as the first and only one: “How is man to be SURPASSED?”
The Superman, I have at heart; THAT is the first and only thing to me—and NOT man: not the neighbour, not the poorest, not the sorriest, not the best.—
O my brethren, what I can love in man is that he is an over-going and a down-going. And also in you there is much that maketh me love and hope.
In that ye have despised, ye higher men, that maketh me hope. For the great despisers are the great reverers.
In that ye have despaired, there is much to honour. For ye have not learned to submit yourselves, ye have not learned petty policy.
For to-day have the petty people become master: they all preach submission and humility and policy and diligence and consideration and the long et cetera of petty virtues.”
– https://www.gutenberg.org/files/1998/1998-h/1998-h.htm. The Project Gutenberg eBook of Thus Spake Zarathustra, by Friedrich Nietzsche

Ain’t that swell writing? In the details though, Nietzsche can be vague and hard to understand and often readers can find and believe what they chose to.

In the beginning was the deed. Faust by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Nietzsche celebrated the creative independence of a superior next-human. This is Faust at his best, striving, acting, living life fully, dangerously, striding into the future bravely, with his sleeves rolled up, overwhelming obstacles, creating, building, gaining extensive knowledge and power bound by his own morality, necessarily different, his own Übermenschity. He risks it all and offers the highest price for enlightenment and transcendence, having exhausted the common routes of human knowledge. Implicit in the modern worship of “the deed” is the subsumption and sacrifice of the person to progress. Perhaps progress is Nietzsche’s Übermensch.

Contrary to Faust’s Lutheran Protestant origins which determined that faith alone led to salvation (and that good works followed), the modern world settled on salvation in a world paradise built through works. Faith is always necessary: faith in the mission, faith in the outcome and faith in themselves; but without works there is no salvation. Over the hundreds of years since Faust was first written the fate of Faust reflects the changing times. First Faust is damned in the sixteenth century, then in 1830 Goethe saves him because he strives. In the material world, faith without works is empty.

Goethe’s Faust foreshadowed Nietsche’s concept of a more advanced human, the Overman, or Übermensch but Faust isn’t necessarily an Übermensch, perhaps just an aspirant, still a subject of God. At least he isn’t Nietzsche’s Last Man (German: Letzter Mensch) .1

‘“We have discovered happiness,”—say the last men, and blink thereby.—’

Decades before Nietzsche, Goethe introduced into literature the term ‘Übermensch’ in his Faust. It appears early in the play. In the passage, Faust has summoned the Earth Spirit and the spirit mocks him for his presumption that Faust is its peer with the dismissive “Thou’rt like the Spirit which thou comprehendest, Not me!”

(He seizes the book, and mysteriously pronounces the sign of
the Spirit. A ruddy flame flashes: the Spirit appears in
the flame.)


Who calls me?

FAUST (with averted head)

Terrible to see!


Me hast thou long with might attracted,
Long from my sphere thy food exacted,
And now—


Woe! I endure not thee!


To view me is thine aspiration,
My voice to hear, my countenance to see;
Thy powerful yearning moveth me,
Here am I!—what mean perturbation
Thee, superhuman, shakes? Thy soul’s high calling, where?2
Where is the breast, which from itself a world did bear,
And shaped and cherished—which with joy expanded,
To be our peer, with us, the Spirits, banded?
Where art thou, Faust, whose voice has pierced to me,
Who towards me pressed with all thine energy?
He art thou, who, my presence breathing, seeing,
Trembles through all the depths of being,
A writhing worm, a terror-stricken form?


Thee, form of flame, shall I then fear?
Yes, I am Faust: I am thy peer!


In the tides of Life, in Action’s storm,
A fluctuant wave,
A shuttle free,
Birth and the Grave,
An eternal sea,
A weaving, flowing
Life, all-glowing,
Thus at Time’s humming loom ’tis my hand prepares
The garment of Life which the Deity wears!


Thou, who around the wide world wendest,
Thou busy Spirit, how near I feel to thee!


Thou’rt like the Spirit which thou comprehendest,
Not me!


FAUST (overwhelmed)

Not thee!
Whom then?
I, image of the Godhead!
Not even like thee!

(A knock)….

–The Project Gutenberg EBook of Faust, by Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe

The Earth Spirit acknowledges Faust’s limited perception and perspective, something which Nietzsche later would declare distorted everybody’s impression of the truth, including a lot of people who think wrongly they are the Übermenschen and that they are justified in violence and domination. This is where Nietzsche’s philosophy become dangerous.

“Overmen” are alluded to briefly in Nietsche’s earlier The Gay Science:

“The inventing of Gods, heroes and supermen of all kinds, as well as co-ordinate men and undermen—dwarfs, fairies, centaurs, satyrs, demons, devils—was the inestimable preliminary to the justification of the selfishness and sovereignty of the individual: the freedom which was granted to one God in respect to other Gods, was at last given to the individual himself in respect to laws, customs and neighbours.” (https://www.gutenberg.org/files/52881/52881-h/52881-h.htm.)

But it is in Thus Spoke Zarathustra that the Übermensch is properly introduced in the story of the rope dancer in the village. In the story, Zarathustra having gone up to the mountain, goes down to teach of the Übermensch. When the villagers react with laughter and mockery he tries to warn and shake them with the prophecy of the “last man.” a decadent and shameful remnant of humans with their “little pleasures” and uncomprehending blinking reminiscent of Calhoun’s (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_B._Calhoun) “beautiful ones,” rats who do nothing all day but groom themselves, incapable of more, heralding the end of a community that has forgotten how to be one. But the villagers raucously prefer to be Last Men.

Rope walker traversing a stage in front of an audience including two monkeys.
Gerard van der Gucht in Fables by John Gay. 1685.

Humans will be stepped on by the Übermensch, as well as over, and Zarathustra commends wise humans who prepare the way. “Going under” is offering and sacrificing to make way for the Overman. Following is Nietzsche’s tale of the rope dancer in the village:

Thus Spoke Zarathustra (The first part of the first part.)

“When Zarathustra arrived at the nearest town which adjoineth the forest, he found many people assembled in the market-place; for it had been announced that a rope-dancer would give a performance. And Zarathustra spake thus unto the people:
I TEACH YOU THE SUPERMAN. Man is something that is to be surpassed. What have ye done to surpass man?
All beings hitherto have created something beyond themselves: and ye want to be the ebb of that great tide, and would rather go back to the beast than surpass man?
What is the ape to man? A laughing-stock, a thing of shame. And just the same shall man be to the Superman: a laughing-stock, a thing of shame.
Ye have made your way from the worm to man, and much within you is still worm. Once were ye apes, and even yet man is more of an ape than any of the apes.
Even the wisest among you is only a disharmony and hybrid of plant and phantom. But do I bid you become phantoms or plants?
Lo, I teach you the Superman!
The Superman is the meaning of the earth. Let your will say: The Superman SHALL BE the meaning of the earth!
I conjure you, my brethren, REMAIN TRUE TO THE EARTH, and believe not those who speak unto you of superearthly hopes! Poisoners are they, whether they know it or not.
Despisers of life are they, decaying ones and poisoned ones themselves, of whom the earth is weary: so away with them!
Once blasphemy against God was the greatest blasphemy; but God died, and therewith also those blasphemers. To blaspheme the earth is now the dreadfulest sin, and to rate the heart of the unknowable higher than the meaning of the earth!
Once the soul looked contemptuously on the body, and then that contempt was the supreme thing:—the soul wished the body meagre, ghastly, and famished. Thus it thought to escape from the body and the earth.
Oh, that soul was itself meagre, ghastly, and famished; and cruelty was the delight of that soul!
But ye, also, my brethren, tell me: What doth your body say about your soul? Is your soul not poverty and pollution and wretched self-complacency?
Verily, a polluted stream is man. One must be a sea, to receive a polluted stream without becoming impure.
Lo, I teach you the Superman: he is that sea; in him can your great contempt be submerged.
What is the greatest thing ye can experience? It is the hour of great contempt. The hour in which even your happiness becometh loathsome unto you, and so also your reason and virtue.
The hour when ye say: “What good is my happiness! It is poverty and pollution and wretched self-complacency. But my happiness should justify existence itself!”
The hour when ye say: “What good is my reason! Doth it long for knowledge as the lion for his food? It is poverty and pollution and wretched self-complacency!”
The hour when ye say: “What good is my virtue! As yet it hath not made me passionate. How weary I am of my good and my bad! It is all poverty and pollution and wretched self-complacency!”
The hour when ye say: “What good is my justice! I do not see that I am fervour and fuel. The just, however, are fervour and fuel!”
The hour when ye say: “What good is my pity! Is not pity the cross on which he is nailed who loveth man? But my pity is not a crucifixion.”
Have ye ever spoken thus? Have ye ever cried thus? Ah! would that I had heard you crying thus!
It is not your sin—it is your self-satisfaction that crieth unto heaven; your very sparingness in sin crieth unto heaven!
Where is the lightning to lick you with its tongue? Where is the frenzy with which ye should be inoculated?
Lo, I teach you the Superman: he is that lightning, he is that frenzy!—
When Zarathustra had thus spoken, one of the people called out: “We have now heard enough of the rope-dancer; it is time now for us to see him!” And all the people laughed at Zarathustra. But the rope-dancer, who thought the words applied to him, began his performance.
Zarathustra, however, looked at the people and wondered. Then he spake thus:
Man is a rope stretched between the animal and the Superman—a rope over an abyss.
A dangerous crossing, a dangerous wayfaring, a dangerous looking-back, a dangerous trembling and halting.
What is great in man is that he is a bridge and not a goal: what is lovable in man is that he is an OVER-GOING and a DOWN-GOING.
I love those that know not how to live except as down-goers, for they are the over-goers.
I love the great despisers, because they are the great adorers, and arrows of longing for the other shore.
I love those who do not first seek a reason beyond the stars for going down and being sacrifices, but sacrifice themselves to the earth, that the earth of the Superman may hereafter arrive.
I love him who liveth in order to know, and seeketh to know in order that the Superman may hereafter live. Thus seeketh he his own down-going.
I love him who laboureth and inventeth, that he may build the house for the Superman, and prepare for him earth, animal, and plant: for thus seeketh he his own down-going.
I love him who loveth his virtue: for virtue is the will to down-going, and an arrow of longing.
I love him who reserveth no share of spirit for himself, but wanteth to be wholly the spirit of his virtue: thus walketh he as spirit over the bridge.
I love him who maketh his virtue his inclination and destiny: thus, for the sake of his virtue, he is willing to live on, or live no more.
I love him who desireth not too many virtues. One virtue is more of a virtue than two, because it is more of a knot for one’s destiny to cling to.
I love him whose soul is lavish, who wanteth no thanks and doth not give back: for he always bestoweth, and desireth not to keep for himself.
I love him who is ashamed when the dice fall in his favour, and who then asketh: “Am I a dishonest player?”—for he is willing to succumb.
I love him who scattereth golden words in advance of his deeds, and always doeth more than he promiseth: for he seeketh his own down-going.
I love him who justifieth the future ones, and redeemeth the past ones: for he is willing to succumb through the present ones.
I love him who chasteneth his God, because he loveth his God: for he must succumb through the wrath of his God.
I love him whose soul is deep even in the wounding, and may succumb through a small matter: thus goeth he willingly over the bridge.
I love him whose soul is so overfull that he forgetteth himself, and all things are in him: thus all things become his down-going.
I love him who is of a free spirit and a free heart: thus is his head only the bowels of his heart; his heart, however, causeth his down-going.
I love all who are like heavy drops falling one by one out of the dark cloud that lowereth over man: they herald the coming of the lightning, and succumb as heralds.
Lo, I am a herald of the lightning, and a heavy drop out of the cloud: the lightning, however, is the SUPERMAN.—
When Zarathustra had spoken these words, he again looked at the people, and was silent. “There they stand,” said he to his heart; “there they laugh: they understand me not; I am not the mouth for these ears.
Must one first batter their ears, that they may learn to hear with their eyes? Must one clatter like kettledrums and penitential preachers? Or do they only believe the stammerer?
They have something whereof they are proud. What do they call it, that which maketh them proud? Culture, they call it; it distinguisheth them from the goatherds.
They dislike, therefore, to hear of ‘contempt’ of themselves. So I will appeal to their pride.
I will speak unto them of the most contemptible thing: that, however, is THE LAST MAN!”
And thus spake Zarathustra unto the people:
It is time for man to fix his goal. It is time for man to plant the germ of his highest hope.
Still is his soil rich enough for it. But that soil will one day be poor and exhausted, and no lofty tree will any longer be able to grow thereon.
Alas! there cometh the time when man will no longer launch the arrow of his longing beyond man—and the string of his bow will have unlearned to whizz!
I tell you: one must still have chaos in one, to give birth to a dancing star. I tell you: ye have still chaos in you.
Alas! There cometh the time when man will no longer give birth to any star. Alas! There cometh the time of the most despicable man, who can no longer despise himself.
Lo! I show you THE LAST MAN.
“What is love? What is creation? What is longing? What is a star?”—so asketh the last man and blinketh.
The earth hath then become small, and on it there hoppeth the last man who maketh everything small. His species is ineradicable like that of the ground-flea; the last man liveth longest.
“We have discovered happiness”—say the last men, and blink thereby.
They have left the regions where it is hard to live; for they need warmth. One still loveth one’s neighbour and rubbeth against him; for one needeth warmth.
Turning ill and being distrustful, they consider sinful: they walk warily. He is a fool who still stumbleth over stones or men!
A little poison now and then: that maketh pleasant dreams. And much poison at last for a pleasant death.
One still worketh, for work is a pastime. But one is careful lest the pastime should hurt one.
One no longer becometh poor or rich; both are too burdensome. Who still wanteth to rule? Who still wanteth to obey? Both are too burdensome.
No shepherd, and one herd! Every one wanteth the same; every one is equal: he who hath other sentiments goeth voluntarily into the madhouse.
“Formerly all the world was insane,”—say the subtlest of them, and blink thereby.
They are clever and know all that hath happened: so there is no end to their raillery. People still fall out, but are soon reconciled—otherwise it spoileth their stomachs.
They have their little pleasures for the day, and their little pleasures for the night, but they have a regard for health.
“We have discovered happiness,”—say the last men, and blink thereby.—
And here ended the first discourse of Zarathustra, which is also called “The Prologue”: for at this point the shouting and mirth of the multitude interrupted him. “Give us this last man, O Zarathustra,”—they called out—“make us into these last men! Then will we make thee a present of the Superman!” And all the people exulted and smacked their lips. Zarathustra, however, turned sad, and said to his heart:
“They understand me not: I am not the mouth for these ears.
Too long, perhaps, have I lived in the mountains; too much have I hearkened unto the brooks and trees: now do I speak unto them as unto the goatherds.
Calm is my soul, and clear, like the mountains in the morning. But they think me cold, and a mocker with terrible jests.
And now do they look at me and laugh: and while they laugh they hate me too. There is ice in their laughter.”
Then, however, something happened which made every mouth mute and every eye fixed. In the meantime, of course, the rope-dancer had commenced his performance: he had come out at a little door, and was going along the rope which was stretched between two towers, so that it hung above the market-place and the people. When he was just midway across, the little door opened once more, and a gaudily-dressed fellow like a buffoon sprang out, and went rapidly after the first one. “Go on, halt-foot,” cried his frightful voice, “go on, lazy-bones, interloper, sallow-face!—lest I tickle thee with my heel! What dost thou here between the towers? In the tower is the place for thee, thou shouldst be locked up; to one better than thyself thou blockest the way!”—And with every word he came nearer and nearer the first one. When, however, he was but a step behind, there happened the frightful thing which made every mouth mute and every eye fixed—he uttered a yell like a devil, and jumped over the other who was in his way. The latter, however, when he thus saw his rival triumph, lost at the same time his head and his footing on the rope; he threw his pole away, and shot downwards faster than it, like an eddy of arms and legs, into the depth. The market-place and the people were like the sea when the storm cometh on: they all flew apart and in disorder, especially where the body was about to fall.
Zarathustra, however, remained standing, and just beside him fell the body, badly injured and disfigured, but not yet dead. After a while consciousness returned to the shattered man, and he saw Zarathustra kneeling beside him. “What art thou doing there?” said he at last, “I knew long ago that the devil would trip me up. Now he draggeth me to hell: wilt thou prevent him?”
“On mine honour, my friend,” answered Zarathustra, “there is nothing of all that whereof thou speakest: there is no devil and no hell. Thy soul will be dead even sooner than thy body: fear, therefore, nothing any more!”
The man looked up distrustfully. “If thou speakest the truth,” said he, “I lose nothing when I lose my life. I am not much more than an animal which hath been taught to dance by blows and scanty fare.”
“Not at all,” said Zarathustra, “thou hast made danger thy calling; therein there is nothing contemptible. Now thou perishest by thy calling: therefore will I bury thee with mine own hands.”
When Zarathustra had said this the dying one did not reply further; but he moved his hand as if he sought the hand of Zarathustra in gratitude.”

[Continues with the burial of the rope dancer in the forest.]

The Project Gutenberg eBook of Thus Spake Zarathustra, by Friedrich Nietzsche. https://www.gutenberg.org/files/1998/1998-h/1998-h.htm#link2H_4_0004


Nietzsche & Faust:

[https://www.google.ca/books/edition/Historical_Dictionary_of_Nietzscheanism/JbwaAAAAQBAJ?hl=en&gbpv=0 p111]

Faust is saved by God via his constant striving—in combination with Gretchen’s pleadings with God in the form of the eternal feminine.
Though this grace is ‘gratuitous’ and does not condone Faust’s frequent errors with Mephistopheles, the angels state that this grace can only occur because of Faust’s unending striving and due to the intercession of the forgiving Gretchen. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faust

“Man is evil”—so said to me for consolation, all the wisest ones. Ah, if only it be still true to-day! For the evil is man’s best force.
“Man must become better and eviler”—so do I teach. The evilest is necessary for the Superman’s best.
It may have been well for the preacher of the petty people to suffer and be burdened by men’s sin. I, however, rejoice in great sin as my great CONSOLATION.—
Such things, however, are not said for long ears. Every word, also, is not suited for every mouth. These are fine far-away things: at them sheep’s claws shall not grasp!
The Project Gutenberg eBook of Thus Spake Zarathustra, by Friedrich Nietzsche. https://www.gutenberg.org/files/1998/1998-h/1998-h.htm

The need to show that as the consumption of man and mankind becomes more and more economical and the “machinery” of interests and services is integrated ever more intricately, a counter-movement is inevitable. I designate this as the secretion of a luxury surplus of mankind: it aims to bring to light a stronger species, a higher type that arises and preserves itself under different conditions from those of the average man. My concept, my metaphor for this type is, as one knows, the word “overman”.

On that first road which can now be completely surveyed, arise adaptation, leveling, higher Chinadom, modesty in the instincts, satisfaction in the dwarfing of mankind–a kind of stationary level of mankind. Once we possess that common economic management of the earth that will soon be inevitable, mankind will be able to find its best meaning as a machine in the service of this economy–as a tremendous clockwork, composed of ever smaller, ever more subtly “adapted” gears; as an ever-growing superfluity of all dominating and commanding elements; as a whole of tremendous force, whose individual factors represent minimal forces, minimal values.

In opposition to this dwarfing and adaptation of man to a specialized utility, a reverse movement is needed–the production of a synthetic, summarizing, justifying man for whose existence this transformation of mankind into a machine is a precondition, as a base on which he can invent his higher form of being.
Nietzsche sees humanity as facing an unprecedented crisis in our time which will require a transformation or evolution of humankind. The evolution Nietzsche has in mind is philosophical rather than physical. It will require a questioning of the entire Western philosophical tradition and a completely different attitude toward life. The source of the crisis for Nietzsche lies in the longing for the afterworld, the desire which has shaped the Western tradition since Socrates to be liberated from the prison of the body and of earthly existence. In contrast to this longing, Zarathustra emphasizes that one should “remain faithful to the earth.” The further evolution of humankind thus requires overcoming the mind/body, spirit/nature dualism that has shaped much of Western thought. The second idea presented in Thus Spoke Zarathustra is the will to power. This notoriously difficult idea is still often misconceived as simply a desire for power. The will to power for Nietzsche is not, however, something that one could choose to have or not, but is rather a characteristic of everything that lives. The question is not whether one should have the will to power or not, but rather what kind or quality of will to power will manifest. The evolution of humankind will involve a transformation of will to power. The third idea brought forth through Zarathustra is the idea of eternal recurrence. The idea is so bizarre that some commentators on Nietzsche don’t even consider it, and yet the central drama of what Nietzsche regarded as his most important book turns on Zarathustra’s struggle to call up from the depths this abysmal thought

He needs the opposition of the masses, of the “leveled”, a feeling of distance from them! he stands on them, he lives off them. This higher form of aristocracy is that of the future– Morally speaking, this overall machinery, this solidarity of all gears, represents a maximum in the exploitation of man; but it presupposes those on whose account this exploitation has meaning. Otherwise it would really be nothing but an overall diminution, a value diminution of the type man–a regressive phenomenon in the grand style.

It is clear what I combat is economic optimism: as if increasing expenditure of everybody must necessarily involve the increasing welfare of everybody. The opposite seems to me to be the case: expenditure of everybody amounts to a collective loss: man is diminished–so one no longer knows what aim this tremendous process has served. An aim? a new aim?–that is what humanity needs.

The Will To Power
Order Of Rank
The Doctrine Of The Order Of Rank 866 (Spring-Fall 1887)


Nietzsche & Goethe:

Nietzsche didn’t think any human had reached the status of Übermensch, but there were those who came close, among them Goethe, Socrates, Jesus, Julius Caesar, Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Shakespeare and Napoleon.

Nietzsche considered Goethe among the greatest of humans. He writes of him in The Twilight of the Idols:

“Goethe.—No mere German, but a European event: a magnificent attempt to overcome the eighteenth century by means of a return to nature, by means of an ascent to the naturalness of the Renaissance, a kind of self-overcoming on the part of the century in question.—He bore the strongest instincts of this century in his breast: its sentimentality, and idolatry of nature, its anti-historic, idealistic, unreal, and revolutionary spirit (—the latter is only a form of the unreal). He enlisted history, natural science, antiquity, as well as Spinoza, and above all practical activity, in his service. He drew a host of very definite horizons around him; far from liberating himself from life, he plunged right into it; he did not give in; he took as much as he could on his own shoulders, and into his heart. That to which he aspired was totality; he was opposed to the sundering of reason, sensuality, feeling and will (as preached with most repulsive scholasticism by Kant, the antipodes of Goethe); he disciplined himself into a harmonious whole, he created himself. Goethe in the midst of an age of unreal sentiment, was a convinced realist: he said yea to everything that was like him in this regard,—there was no greater event in his life than that ens realissimum, surnamed Napoleon. Goethe conceived a strong, highly-cultured man, skilful in all bodily accomplishments, able to keep himself in check, having a feeling of reverence for himself, and so constituted as to be able to risk the full enjoyment of naturalness in all its rich profusion and be strong enough for this freedom; a man of tolerance, not out of weakness but out of strength, because he knows how to turn to his own profit that which would ruin the mediocre nature; a man unto whom nothing is any longer forbidden, unless it be weakness either as a vice or as a virtue. Such a spirit, become free, appears in the middle of the universe with a feeling of cheerful and confident fatalism; he believes that only individual things are bad, and that as a whole the universe justifies and, affirms itself—He no longer denies…. But such a faith is the highest Of all faiths: I christened it with the name of Dionysus.”


The Twilight of the Idols; or, How to Philosophize with the Hammer. The Antichrist

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Last_man. []
  2. “Da bin ich! – Welch erbärmlich Grauen
    Faßt Uebermenschen dich! Wo ist der Seele Ruf?”. The Project Gutenberg eBook of Faust: Eine Tragödie [erster Teil], by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. https://www.gutenberg.org/cache/epub/21000/pg21000-images.html []