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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An omniscient and omnipotent God who does not even take care that His intentions can be understood by His creatures—could He be a God of goodness?  A God who for thousands of years has permitted innumerable doubts and scruples to continue unchecked as if they were of no importance in the salvation of mankind and who nevertheless announces the most dreadful consequences for anyone who mistakes his truth?  Would he not be a cruel god if being himself in possession of the truth he could calmly contemplate mankind in a state of misery tormenting itself as to what was truth?  However perhaps he really is a God of goodness and was unable to express Himself more clearly?  Perhaps he was not intelligent enough?  Or not eloquent enough?  All the worse!  For in such a case he may himself have been deceived as to that which he calls his "truth" and may not be far from being another "poor deceived devil!  "Must he not therefore experience all the torments of hell at seeing His creatures suffering so much—and even more suffering through all eternity—when he himself can neither advise nor help them except as a deaf and dumb person who makes all kinds of equivocal signs when his child or his dog is threatened with the most fearful danger?  A distressed believer who argues thus might be forgiven if his pity for the suffering God were greater than his pity for his "neighbours"; for they are his neighbours no longer if that most solitary and primeval being is the greatest sufferer and stands most in need of consolation.  Every religion shows some trace of the fact that it owes its origin to a state of human intellectuality which was as yet too young and immature: they all make light of the necessity for speaking the truth: as yet they know nothing of the duty of God the duty of being clear and truthful in His communications with men.  No one was more eloquent than Pascal in speaking of the "hidden God" and the reasons why He had to keep Himself hidden all of which indicates clearly enough that Pascal himself could never be entirely comfortable on this point: but he speaks with such confidence that one is led to imagine that he must have been party to the inner secret at some time or other.  He seemed to suspect that the deus absconditus was in some respect immoral and was too much ashamed and afraid of acknowledging this to himself: consequently like a man who is afraid he spoke as loudly of it as he could.  
 

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