Friedrich Nietzsche, The Gay Science.  Die fröhliche Wissenschaft.

First published in 1882.

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We Artists! When we love a woman we have readily a hatred against nature, on remembering all the unpleasant natural functions to which every woman is subject ; we prefer not to think of them at all, but if once our soul touches on these things it twitches impatiently, and glances, as we have said, contemptuously at nature : we are hurt; nature seems to encroach upon our possessions, and with the profanest hands.  We then shut our ears against all physiology, and we decree in secret that "we will hear nothing of the fact that man is something else than soul and form!  "The man under the skin" is an abomination and monstrosity, a blasphemy of God and of love to all lovers.  Well, just as the lover still feels with respect to nature and natural functions, so did every worshipper of God and his " holy omnipotence " feel formerly : in all that was said of nature by astronomers, geologists, physiolo gists, and physicians, he saw an encroachment on his most precious possession, and consequently an attack, and moreover also an impertinence of the assailant!  The "law of nature" sounded to him as blasphemy against God ; in truth he would too willingly have seen the whole of mechanics traced back to moral acts of volition and arbitrariness : but because nobody could render him this service, he concealed nature and mechanism from himself as best he could, and lived in a dream.  Oh, those men of former times understood how to dream, and did not need first to go to sleep!  and we men of the present day also still understand it too well, with all our good will for wakefulness and daylight!  It is enough to love, to hate, to desire, and in general to feel, immediately the spirit and the power of the dream come over us, and we ascend, with open eyes and indifferent to all danger, the most dangerous paths, to the roofs and towers of fantasy, and without any giddiness, as persons born for climbing we the night walkers by day!  We artists!  We con cealers of naturalness!  We moon struck and God struck ones!  We death silent, untiring wanderers on heights which we do not see as heights, but as our plains, as our places of safety!  
 

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