– Why do I know a thing or two more? Why am I generally so clever? I have never thought about questions that are not real ones – I have not squandered myself. – I have no personal experience, for example, of true religious difficulties. I am entirely at a loss to know how ‘sinful’ I am supposed to be. Likewise I have no reliable criterion for what a pang of conscience is: from what one hears about it, a pang of conscience seems to me unworthy of respect… I would not want to abandon an action after the event; I would prefer to leave the bad outcome, and consequences out of the question of value all together. If the outcome is bad, it as all too easy to lose the correct perspective on what you have done: a pang of conscience seems to me a kind of ‘evil eye’. Cherishing something that goes wrong all the more because it went wrong – that is more my kind of morality.
~Friedrich Nietzsche – ‘Why I am So Clever’, Ecce Homo
I really don’t know what it is about this old crackpot, but his language is just classic. I’ve sadly only really been exposed to Ecce Homo, his final book in his final years (when he was really losing his mind, and apparently that’s saying something…). I’ve just ordered a few of his other works to see the difference in his clarity of idea construction, since certainly when reading Ecce Homo there is really no sensible development of thought, but more ramblings from one topic to another and another. He still has very thought-provoking, at least for me. 🙂