Friedrich Nietzsche, The Gay Science.  Die fröhliche Wissenschaft.

First published in 1882.

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We Unintelligible Ones.

Have we ever complained among ourselves of being misunderstood, misjudged, and confounded with others; of being calumniated, misheard, and not heard?  That is just our lot alas, for a long time yet!  Say, to be modest, until 1901, it is also our distinction; we should not have sufficient respect for ourselves if we wished it otherwise.  People confound us with others the reason of it is that we ourselves grow, we change continually, we cast off old bark, we still slough every spring, we always become younger, higher, stronger, as men of the future, we thrust our roots always more powerfully into the deep into evil, while at the same time we embrace the heavens ever more lovingly, more extensively, and suck in their light ever more eagerly with all our branches and leaves.  We grow like trees that are difficult to understand, like all life!  Not in one place, but everywhere, not in one direction only, but upwards and outwards, as well as inwards and downwards.  At the same time our force shoots forth in stem, branches, and roots; we are really no longer free to do anything separately, or to be anything separately.  Such is our lot, as we have said: we grow in height; and even should it be our calamity for we dwell ever closer to the lightning!  Well, we honour it none the less on that account; it is that which we do not wish to share with others, which we do not wish to bestow upon others, the fate of all elevation, our fate.  
 

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