nietzsche, sils maria

Travel Notes — Sils Maria

Sils lies six-thousand feet above the sea
Here Nietzsche came and spent some summertimes
The little room he lived in you can see
Not far from where the church sends forth its chimes
Sils is where Zarathustra was conceived
Think high think power and then overcome
He left most past philosophies ungrieved
Sadly he could not see what was to come
The people he despised adopted him
And used his language to describe their way
The wretched world was soon torn limb from limb
I hear his theories are the rage today
A sculpted eagle sits on Nietzsche’s lawn
Across the street I look at it and yawn

By Stephen C. Rose


Sils-Maria Notes Summer 2005

Here are a few notes I jotted in my notebook last summer when I visited Sils-Maria, the spot 6000 feet above sea level where Nietzsche caught the vision which became the centerpiece of his understanding. I am currently deep into Heidegger´s treatment of N which relies almost entirely on the book Will To Power which was compiled after Nietzsche´s death.

Personally I feel the scholarly debate as to whether we should go with books N himself published or notes that he either could not or did not want to publish is fairly unimportant because we are all, scholar or no, going to come up with our own thoughts regardless. And we will never know if there is an authoritative group of words N would have bequeathed us had he been able to complete his revaluation of values.


Sils-Maria Notes:

Nietzsche engages in verbal overkill, calling the Apocalypse of John the ¨”most wanton of all literary outbursts that vengefulness has on its conscience.” (Geneology of Morals, Kaufman, 55)


Nietzsche cottons to honor, yet war and cruelty make him ill and he is both for the body and for health.


Clearly good for N is the revaluation of the value of vengefulness, the eschewing of revenge. In this he is one with Jesus. Both are pragmatists of a sort.


N´s veneration of Rome, like Gibbon´s, creates a perspective from which one can correctly skewer Christian vengefulness. But neither N nor Gibbon is able in their value systems to elevate the incalculable value of the I AM, of the I Will Be. This is the time of the death of God. But this simply reflects God´s disgust with human appropriations.


This is the God who seeks no worship, countenances no feasts, takes sides in no battle, but merely languishes in the bodies of the blind.


Jesus is the teacher who calls this One Abba — a short-lived effort to reclaim the I AM and the I Will Be for us.


Every significant vacation I have had has brought rain.


To be continued.