He who fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. - TheEnglishAussie

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In The Birth of Tragedy, Nietzsche focuses on the gods Apollo and Dionysus, because he says that they represent the two natural impulses in human beings (which motivate us towards the arts). Apollo is characterized in art such as sculpture, which represents visual and physical beauty, whereas Dionysus in characterized in the musical arts, and represents intoxication. It is important to note that this intoxication does not simply refer to the results of the consumption of alcohol (although it sometimes can include it) (p. 33).

As these two forms of art “run parallel to each other” they eventually “generate an equally Dionysian and Apollonian form of art – Attic tragedy” (p. 33). Nietzsche says that these two ideas necessitate one another, exclaiming “And behold: Apollo could not live without Dionysus! The 'titanic' and the 'barbaric' were in the last analysis as necessary as the Apollonian” (p. 46).

It is in the greatest art that both of these impulses are seen, such as in Raphael's Transfiguration, which shows the balance between the Dionysian and the idea of pain and suffering, through Jesus, a manifestation of Apollo. This suffering, felt by all humankind, is something that Nietzsche says one must fight to will yourself to continue to live, so that one can create beautiful art.

It is this idea of suffering and willing oneself to live that carries on into The Gay Science, where Nietzsche famously states “God is dead” (p. 181). This is where Nietzsche comes back to the idea of suffering for the sake of art. A prime example being Ludwig van Beethoven. He sacrificed his life to make beautiful art, in the form of a symphony, and in turn gained nothing from it personally. He died in order to create something great- an affirmation of life itself. It is in this example that we can see the correlation between the greatest suffering and the greatest joy.

God's death, proclaimed by the “madman” (p. 181) is a catastrophe in Nietzsche's eyes. He thinks that man has collectively taken over the place of God, and that nothing remaining is profound or mysterious. The laughing atheists, are painted in a negative light, as they do not grasp the gravity of the situation. It is a catastrophe comparable to the death of a star, it is dead, but we simply cannot see it yet.

-Fucking me, I w

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