THE ANTICHRIST
By
Friedrich Nietzsche
Translation: H.L. Mencken

12.

I put aside a few sceptics, the types of decency in the history of philosophy: the rest haven't the slightest conception of intellectual integrity. They behave like women, all these great enthusiasts and prodigies--they regard "beautiful feelings" as arguments, the "heaving breast" as the bellows of divine inspiration, conviction as the criterion of truth. In the end, with "German" innocence, Kant tried to give a scientific flavour to this form of corruption, this dearth of intellectual conscience, by calling it "practical reason." He deliberately invented a variety of reasons for use on occasions when it was desirable not to trouble with reason--that is, when morality, when the sublime command "thou shalt," was heard. When one recalls the fact that, among all peoples, the philosopher is no more than a development from the old type of priest, this inheritance from the priest, this fraud upon self, ceases to be remarkable. When a man feels that he has a divine mission, say to lift up, to save or to liberate mankind--when a man feels the divine spark in his heart and believes that he is the mouthpiece of supernatural imperatives--when such a mission in. flames him, it is only natural that he should stand beyond all merely reasonable standards of judgment. He feels that he is himself sanctified by this mission, that he is himself a type of a higher order! . . . What has a priest to do with philosophy! He stands far above it!--And hitherto the priest has ruled!--He has determined the meaning of "true" and "not true"!

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