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In understanding the ideology promoted by this most totalitarian government, (I write in 2000) imagine a moderately intelligent career woman in early middle age reading Zarathustra.
Every one of Zarathustra thoughts is a threat to her. Attacking the value system by which she has achieved the status and success of which she is so proud.
Pursing her lips at each free spirited thought, each of which is felt as a threat to her own hard-won power and status.
The system of values and ideas that have brought her the status and success of which she is so proud.
Big sister.
If Zarathustra represents life, she stands for death.
This the modern ideology. Purse lipped disapproval of every single point Nietzsche makes, because it undermines her security.
A revolting ideology. Yet once it is understood, something might be done.
Some people want to suppress ideas because they are so convinced there is no such thing as truth, so they are never going to be suppressing it, and one idea is a as good as another.

Zarathustra, the Antichrist. Nietzsche suggests that Christianity is essentially the ideology of the weak against the strong, the foolish against the wise, falsehood against reality, a revolutionary weapon against everything well constituted. But that is not all it was, nor even everything that Paul was.
There is in modern society an aggressive nihilism, impervious to truth, & reason, giving self confidence to the weak against the strong, women against men, the coloured population against dead white males.
No argument however good can make any headway and dent this massive self assurance which has no warrant in reality.

258 Is Zarathustra really a profound book?


Wagner raised emotion to a particular pitch. About this Nietzsche, though responsive to the excitement, felt unease, as craving the excitement and satisfaction, but not on those tyrannous terms. So instead of music he offers the written word, primarily prose.
Philosophy of a sort. Intoxicating thought. Zarathustra.
This Nietzschean mood is quite capable of appealing to a child. Myself at age 12 or thereabouts.
Neither Wagner nor Cosima could ever have accepted his later ideas because they grew out of opposition. Cosima found Zarathustra grotesque and uncouth. From her viewpoint she was right.

Solitariness of Nietzsche’s mood from its dissident quality. The dissident emotion can appeal even to the child. William Brown,


What is this idea of surpassing, this superman ideal? This idea that what is not to succeed must be better than what went before. As if a satisfactory happiness has never so far been possible. As if even Roderic Borgia failed to attain to it. As if there is something to achieve that has not yet been achieved.

Is this nothing but an ideal, like a religious idea, to promote the achievement of affirmation?

All of it is as some kind of ideal, like a blasphemous ideal, to promote human purposes.
Everything Zarathustra does is like a defiance of Christianity
The Christian idealism likewise impossible, unrealistic, so is the superman, only it is an alternative.
The Ubermensch is not something that will ever appear. Its function is different. The point is not to become that, because what could that be? It is the alchemy one performs on one’s own life, the great work, the affirmation. And part of that work is a blasphemous parody of the Christian religion, of the Christian sacredness that has ruled and oppressed so long in the world of spirit. If Zarathustra is a true work of genius then it is an inspirational poem, and not simply a philosophical treatise.
Its function is the same as that of the Antichrist.
Such blasphemy is exhilarating because it defies and overcomes.
The Ubermensch is a new mythical being. Slightly terrifying, the being who appeared to a hallucinated Hitler (according to Rauschning).
Such poetry has fulfilled its function when it makes me feel good & it induces a feeling of well being.
Always remember the parody of the gospels.
The book is full of paradoxes All the myths we are given have something like a blasphemous function. They are not to be taken entirely at face value. Their real point, their value and effect is not contained entirely within themselves.


Ways to read Zarathustra. As one reads the Bible, dipping into it for inspiration. In calling it the most profound book humanity possesses he is obviously taking on the Bible.

Idea of reading Zarathustra like the Bible, or like Stirling says we should read the Bible.


29 Zarathustra, its strangeness. The challenge to Christianity. What I wrote about it is right, but not persuasive and forceful enough. Genuine prophetic inspiration. A religious message, written at a religious pitch. Not a parody in the sense of a dragging down to earth, not a low blasphemy. A high blasphemy, a refutation. Adoption of the religious manner, the prophetic manner, with perfect seriousness. Not just the style but the whole emotional mode. He has to show that he can grasp this, that religious inspiration is not something beyond him. This is a serious task, to create real myths, not mere allegories.

A book at least as rich as the Bible.
But not his whole message. This view of Zarathustra. I’m sure I’m right. But I don’t altogether understand it is the most popular of his books.

H A Reyburn calls it the outpouring of a soul. I would say it is more than that. Really it is as playful as Ecce Homo It does not appear to be because that is what it is doing. The prophetic style is intense and serious to an extreme degree.
Really Nietzsche is not so over-earnest. To write in this style, to master it, brings a joyful playfulness.
Serious historical task, Culmination of ‘God is Dead’. The philosophy of affirmation. But having achieved this, putting his opinions in this intense earnest prophetic mode, he can discard it. He doesn’t really want converts. The whole book is in one sense tongue in cheek. To talk about divine laughter is not in itself amusing. But there is a joke. How you can actually provoke emotion comparable to Wagner’s.

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