Friedrich Nietzsche, The Wanderer and His Shadow (Der Wanderer und sein Schatten).

The Wanderer and his Shadow, the second supplement to Human, All Too Human, first published in 1880.


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Origin of Pessimists.  A snack of good food often decides whether we are to look to the future with hollow eye or in hopeful mood.  The same influence extends to the very highest and most intellectual states.  Discontent and reviling of the world are for the present generation an inheritance from starveling ancestors.  Even in our artists and poets we often notice that, however exuberant their life, they are not of good birth, and have often, from oppressed and ill nourished ancestors, inherited in their blood and brain much that comes out as the subject and even the conscious colouring of their work.  The culture of the Greeks is a culture of men of wealth, in fact, inherited wealth.  For a few centuries they lived better than we do (better in every sense, in particular far more simply in food and drink).  Then the brain finally became so well stored and subtle, and the blood flowed so quickly, like a joyous, clear wine, that the best in them came to light no longer as gloomy, distorted, and violent, but full of beauty and sunshine.  

Friedrich Nietzsche, "Ecce Homo" Ebook

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