Friedrich Nietzsche, Daybreak:  Reflections on Moral Prejudice. Morgenröte: Gedanken über die moralischen Vorurteile (also could be translated as The Dawn).

Written and published in 1881.

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What?  Does true morality consist of consideration of the most direct and immediate consequences for other people of our actions and making decisions on this basis?  This is only a narrow and bourgeois morality even though it may be a morality: but it seems to me that it would be more superior and liberal to look beyond these immediate consequences for other people in order to pursue more distant goals even at the risk of causing suffering to others—as for example by encouraging the spirit of knowledge in spite of the certainty that our free thought will have the instant effect of plunging others into doubt, grief and even worse suffering.  Have we not at least the right to treat other people as we treat ourselves?  And, when thinking of ourselves, if we do not think in such a narrow and petite bourgeois fashion about immediate consequences and suffering – then why should feel compelled to do so when thinking of others?  Supposing that we felt ready to sacrifice ourselves, what is there to prevent us from sacrificing other people—just as States and Sovereigns have to date sacrificed one citizen to another "for the sake of the general interest" as they say?  We too however have general interests, perhaps even more general than theirs: so why may we not sacrifice a few individuals of this generation for the benefit of generations to come?  So that their suffering, anxiety, despair, blunders and misery may be deemed essential because a new plough is to break up the ground and render it fertile for all.  Finally we communicate to other people the point of view by which he is enabled to feel himself a victim: we persuade him to carry out the task for which we employ him.  Are we then without pity?  If however we wish to achieve a victory over ourselves beyond our pity is not this a higher and freer viewpoint and disposition than that in which we only feel secure after having ascertained whether an action benefits or harms our neighbour?  On the contrary, it is by means of such sacrifice—including the sacrifice of ourselves as well as of our neighbours—that we should strengthen and elevate the general sense of human power - even supposing that we actually attain no more power than this.  Yet even this itself would be a positive increase of happiness.  Then if even this.  Yet not a word more!  I see that you have understood me.  
 

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