(1844 - 1900)
Thus Spake Zarathustra
sublime one saw I today, a solemn one, a penitent of the
spirit: Oh, how my soul laughed at his ugliness! (thus
"WILL to Truth" do ye call it,
ye wisest ones, that which impelleth you and maketh you ardent?
Will for the thinkableness of all being:
thus do I call your will!
All being would ye make thinkable: for
ye doubt with good reason whether it be already thinkable.
But it shall accommodate and bend itself
to you! So willeth your will. Smooth shall it become and subject to the
spirit, as its mirror and reflection.
That is your entire will, ye wisest ones,
as a Will to Power; and even when ye speak of good and evil, and of estimates
Ye would still create a world before which
ye can bow the knee: such is your ultimate hope and ecstasy.
The ignorant, to be sure, the people- they
are like a river on which a boat floateth along: and in the boat sit the
estimates of value, solemn and disguised.
Your will and your valuations have ye put
on the river of becoming; it betrayeth unto me an old Will to Power, what
is believed by the people as good and evil.
It was ye, ye wisest ones, who put such
guests in this boat, and gave them pomp and proud names- ye and your ruling
Onward the river now carrieth your boat:
it must carry it. A small matter if the rough wave foameth and angrily
resisteth its keel!
It is not the river that is your danger
and the end of your good and evil, ye wisest ones: but that Will itself,
the Will to Power- the unexhausted, procreating life-will.
But that ye may understand my gospel of
good and evil, for that purpose will I tell you my gospel of life, and
of the nature of all living things.
The living thing did I follow; I walked
in the broadest and narrowest paths to learn its nature.
With a hundred-faced mirror did I catch
its glance when its mouth was shut, so that its eye might speak unto me.
And its eye spake unto me.
But wherever I found living things, there
heard I also the language of obedience. All living things are obeying
And this heard I secondly: Whatever cannot
obey itself, is commanded. Such is the nature of living things.
This, however, is the third thing which
I heard- namely, that commanding is more difficult than obeying. And not
only because the commander beareth the burden of all obeyers, and because
this burden readily crusheth him:An attempt and a risk seemed all commanding
unto me; and whenever it commandeth, the living thing risketh itself thereby.
Yea, even when it commandeth itself, then
also must it atone for its commanding. Of its own law must it become the
judge and avenger and victim.
How doth this happen! So did I ask myself.
What persuadeth the living thing to obey, and command, and even be obedient
Hearken now unto my word, ye wisest ones!
Test it seriously, whether I have crept into the heart of life itself,
and into the roots of its heart!
Wherever I found a living thing, there
found I Will to Power; and even in the will of the servant found I the
will to be master.
That to the stronger the weaker shall serve-
thereto persuadeth he his will who would be master over a still weaker
one. That delight alone he is unwilling to forego.
And as the lesser surrendereth himself
to the greater that he may have delight and power over the least of all,
so doth even the greatest surrender himself, and staketh- life, for the
sake of power.
It is the surrender of the greatest to
run risk and danger, and play dice for death.
And where there is sacrifice and service
and love-glances, there also is the will to be master. By by-ways doth
the weaker then slink into the fortress, and into the heart of the mightier
one- and there stealeth power.
And this secret spake Life herself unto
me. "Behold," said she, "I am that which must ever surpass
To be sure, ye call it will to procreation,
or impulse towards a goal, towards the higher, remoter, more manifold:
but all that is one and the same secret.
Rather would I succumb than disown this
one thing; and verily, where there is succumbing and leaf-falling, lo,
there doth Life sacrifice itself- for power!
That I have to be struggle, and becoming,
and purpose, and cross-purpose- ah, he who divineth my will, divineth
well also on what crooked paths it hath to tread!
Whatever I create, and however much I love
it,- soon must I be adverse to it, and to my love: so willeth my will.
And even thou, discerning one, art only
a path and footstep of my will: verily, my Will to Power walketh even
on the feet of thy Will to Truth!
He certainly did not hit the truth who
shot at it the formula: "Will to existence": that will- doth
For what is not, cannot will; that, however,
which is in existence- how could it still strive for existence!
Only where there is life, is there also
will: not, however, Will to Life, but- so teach I thee- Will to Power!
Much is reckoned higher than life itself
by the living one; but out of the very reckoning speaketh- the Will to
Power!"Thus did Life once teach me: and thereby, ye wisest ones,
do I solve you the riddle of your hearts.
Verily, I say unto you: good and evil which
would be everlasting- it doth not exist! Of its own accord must it ever
surpass itself anew.
With your values and formulae of good and
evil, ye exercise power, ye valuing ones: and that is your secret love,
and the sparkling, trembling, and overflowing of your souls.
But a stronger power groweth out of your
values, and a new surpassing: by it breaketh egg and egg-shell.
And he who hath to be a creator in good
and evil- verily, he hath first to be a destroyer, and break values in
Thus doth the greatest evil pertain to
the greatest good: that, however, is the creating good.Let us speak thereof,
ye wisest ones, even though it be bad. To be silent is worse; all suppressed
truths become poisonous.
And let everything break up which- can
break up by our truths! Many a house is still to be built!Thus spake Zarathustra.
qu'on fait n'est jamais compris mais seulement loué ou blâmé.
Nietzsche, Gay Science