Dingo the Dissident

THE BLOG OF DISQUIET : Qweir Notions in the Armpit of Diogenes by DINGO the DISSIDENT binge-thinker since 2008.

Wednesday, 27 April 2022

Nietzsche and Christianity.

Recently, at the swap-library on the street,  I picked up Nietzsche's Daybreak: Thoughts on the Prejudices of Morality. It was sitting beside a volume by Jodi Picoult - which I'm glad I also took home.

Christianity worries me as it worried Nietzsche.  How a perfectly bland, simplistic and harmless (if mealy-mouthed) doctrine, turned on its head, imbued with magic and endowed with miracles, came, through a whole series of historical accidents, to be a religion of millions and the arbiter of morality in the world, has quite simply gobsmacked me as it outraged Nietzsche.  And it is not the belief in Jesus as Saviour (from Original Sin) which has vexed me, but the ordained (Hegelian) necessity of the scapegoating of Judas - which makes Christianity more primitive than the other two Abrahamic religions.

Moreover, tenderness and loving-kindness should not be preached as a Moral Duty but celebrated as spontaneous feeling, 'essential humanity'.

Nietzsche's book on the mutability of morality is simply a kind of daybook of numbered jottings.  Like everything he wrote, it is pretty tedious and wordy.  I think it is best dipped into once or twice a year.  But I have noted down a few :

47. Words lie in our way!  Wherever primitive mankind set up a word, they believed they had made a discovery. How different the truth is! they had touched on a problem, and by supposing they had solved it they had created an obstacle to its solution. [cf Wittgenstein: The world we live in is composed of the words we use.]

87. The moral miracle. In the sphere of morality, Christianity knows only the miracle...  In the New Testament, the canon of virtue, of the fulfilled law, is set up: but only in such a way that it is the doctrine of impossible virtue...

222. When fanaticism is desirable. Phlegmatic natures can be inspired to enthusiasm only by being made into fanatics.

297. Ruinous. The surest way of ruining young people is to teach them to respect those who think as they do rather than those who think differently.

405. Luxury. An inclination for luxury lies in the depths of our being, and demonstrates that superfluity and excess are the waters in which our souls most like to swim.

564. Just beyond experience! Even great spirits have only a hand's breadth of experience. Beyond it their thinking stops and their endless, stupid vacuity begins.

574. Do not forget!  The higher we soar, the smaller we seem to those who cannot fly.

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