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Additional resources for Hugo von Hofmannsthal: poets and the language of life
I borrow from the verb schlepp because in its Yiddish form, familiar to most English speakers, it accurately describes what the stone-bearers do. Nietzsche's exact words are "Der moderne Mensch schleppt zuletzt eine ungeheure Menge von unverdaulichen Wissenssteinen" (I, 232). " Philosophy is tolerated because as moderns our trepidation for engaging life prohibits us from banning philosophy outright: "Yes, we think, write, print, speak and teach philosophicallyeverything is permitted to this extent; but it is different with respect to our actions, in so-called life: here only one thing is permitted and everything else is simply impossible" (I, 240).
So for example in the foreword to Human he discussed his feeling of emancipation from Wagnerian romanticism and his subsequent invention of more appropriate company namely the free spirits. In the terrifying interval between faith, friendship, idealism, and the search for one's own life, Nietzsche learned to respect the role of perspective. " This argument against absolute valuations, a very honest argument, attempts to give to life what is life's, even at the expense of abject disappointment. For Nietzsche goes on to explain that the greatest perceived injustice is wrought by "life in its smallest, narrowest, paltriest and most nascent" forms; life cannot do otherwise, even in its flimsiest manifestations, than to assert itself as the end of all development, to assert itself against everything else, including "the higher, the greater, the richer" (I, 443).
However, I do not mean to imply that Nietzsche's terms are readily found in the German language, either in educated usage or in the vernacular; it is precisely his focus on the self, in the face of Western grammar orientation that deflects from the self, that prompted his inventiveness. Continuing now with his thought: "This single morality that has been taught hitherto, this unselving morality, betrays a will to the end, it denies life in the most basic way" (II, 1158). The basis of Christianity is altruism, deflection from the self, and in the early meditation "On the Use and Disadvantage of History for Living," Nietzsche claimed that Christianity glorifies one's last moment, the memento mori, because it is the culmination of our allegedly inferior earthly life and the beginning of our eternal life (I, 259).