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Thus Spake Zarathustra A book for all and none

4.06  ·  Rating details ·  93,883 ratings  ·  2,880 reviews
This book was converted from its physical edition to the digital format by a community of volunteers. You may find it for free on the web. Purchase of the Kindle edition includes wireless delivery.
Kindle Edition, 289 pages
Published May 12th 2012 (first published 1883)
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YASSINE EL Maazouz Because you look at the world through blurred lenses, this book will clean them for you if you are ready to be free.
Jester It is a book of ideas that does not fit neatly into the categories of novel or non-fiction. As a philosophical work, it is not the traditional essay.…moreIt is a book of ideas that does not fit neatly into the categories of novel or non-fiction. As a philosophical work, it is not the traditional essay. It is full of symbolism, so subsequent readings are beneficial, though the first time is special. Nietzsche does not want to persuade anyone into any system of belief. This work is an action, something to be witnessed. He wants his work of art to dance. (less)
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4.06  · 
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 ·  93,883 ratings  ·  2,880 reviews


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Clint
Aug 22, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's like Jesus, but cooler.
Shawn
May 10, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Horror movies never frightened me in the same way certain works of literature and film did. Reading through Zarathustra as a teenager was a singularly powerful experience; the work defies categorization or genre, time or place. I was warned that Nietzsche was dangerous for young readers (like Machiavelli) because he went insane. This I HAD to read. It was my first encounter with existential thought, a stinging critique of the very nature of values and belief. The events in the book are more like ...more
Szplug
Apr 25, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
How you liking them apples, Jede-fucking-diah?!

Thus spoke Barnaby Jones.

I read this book back around 2001 or 2002. I wasn't much concerned with writing reviews back then—and how weird is that?—but, deeming Nietzsche a pretty smart guy, I scribbled down a bunch of notes and quotes. Since I've not a single review by Friedrich N. at this place, I thought, in lieu of anything more insightful or intelligent, to copy those notes out below, verbatim. And after having done so, I'm not quite sure what I
...more
Luís C.
Friedrich Nietzsche establishes in his best-known book the bridge of man with his primary nature. More than a parody of the metaphysical imagery, the book states that man has undergone to an abstract force, invisible. Zarathustra reveals to man that life is ruled by chance and that the decline of human nature comes in the expectation that there will be something or someone directing it in life.
The teachings of Socrates are fought here because life for Nietzsche is a force, not an objective. The
...more
Riku Sayuj
Feb 04, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Verily have I overshot myself in my vanity into thinking that I was ready to attempt this book. Humbled am I now.

I probably got less than one-third of what Nietzsche was fulminating on. Maybe in another two reading or so... maybe with a different translation... ?

Can anyone who has read this help me out? Is the second half of the book just plain abstruse or was it just me?
Aubrey
I have at all times written my writings with my whole heart and soul: I do not know what purely intellectual problems are.
There is a great deal of Nietzsche that I agree with, and hoards with which I vehemently do not. I've been accumulating quotes of his for five years now, quotes whose inherent lack of context made me like him more than I do now. I still love many of his phrases as much as I did before, but if we ever met, we would not like each other at all.

Despite that muddle, I am gratefu
...more
Catherine
Aug 17, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy, classics
The best way that I can describe this book is as a religious experience, which is kind of paradoxical because the main idea of the book is that “God is dead.” When Zarathustra, the ancient Persian prophet, emerges from his 10-year solitude and exclaims that God has died, he doesn’t mean that literally. Rather, he means that the concept of God as a gateway to finding meaning in life is dead and that the meaning of life should be found not in religious worship but within the self as an exemplar of ...more
Katie Muffett
Feb 18, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who feels they should read Nietszche but are turned off by his other books
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Miquixote
Incredibly interesting ideas. For sure you will be thinking about what is said here for a long, long time.

This most famous book of Nietzsche delves into the central idea: the "eternal recurrence of the same", also the parable on the "death of God", and the "prophecy" of the Übermensch. Nietzsche himself claims it is "the deepest book ever written". (he wasn’t one prone to humility…)

A fictionalized prophet descends from his recluse to mankind, Zarathustra, and turns traditional morality on its
...more
Katy
Jun 06, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Please note: Read in 2007 from an on-line edition for personal research and edification. Reactions to it are my own.

Annotated Synopsis: Described by Nietzsche himself as "the deepest ever written", the book is a dense and esoteric treatise on philosophy and morality, featuring as protagonist a fictionalized Zarathustra. A central irony of the text is that Nietzsche mimics the style of the Bible in order to present ideas which fundamentally oppose Christian and Jewish morality and tradition.

The o
...more
Chris
Sep 24, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of my top 3 favorite books of all time. It’s a story, it’s a sermon, it’s poetry, it’s philosophy. It seems heavy reading at first, but it grows progressively easier once you get used to his language and ideas. Zarathustra’s style is Biblical, almost like one of the Old Testament prophets lamenting society’s turning away from the truth, and he preaches and raves like a prophet too. His message is a bit different, enjoining his listeners to turn away from a traditional notion of God a ...more
John Kulm
Apr 03, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition


I haven’t been able to sincerely laugh in a long, long time. This book gave me what I needed: a logical basis for accepting laughter into my life again.



I didn’t expect the intuitive introvert atheistic existentialist Nietzsche to have anything to say about laughter, but laughter was one of the primary themes here. This book isn’t just a collection of a philosopher’s wisdom. Nietzsche journeyed deep inside himself for his writing – so deep that he lost his own sanity and ultimately couldn’t agai
...more
Veronica
Jun 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Nietzsche, like many great thinkers, contradicts himself enormously. He writes that the mob is "innocently crooked, it always lies" and that "nothing is more valuable and rare today than honesty." But we are told earlier on by a murmuring dwarf that "everything straight lies...all truth is crooked, time itself is a circle." These notions may not be mutually exclusive, but if one reads each character in this novel as an expression of his beliefs, it is easy to spot many incongruities. Perhaps he ...more
Geoff
Jul 08, 2015 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
I read this when I was in my late teens; therefore, I have never read it, it is to be read by me now that I more capable of reading and thinking...
Mr.
Oct 07, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Nietzsche's Thus Spoke Zarathustra remains one of the most powerful and cryptic tomes in the history western thought. Is this a work of philosophy or poetry? Due to the immense power of Nietzsche's writing, it remains highly readable, even for those who are not usually comfortable reading philosophy. In the prologue, Nietzsche describes Zarathustra's isolation in the mountains and his intention to descend so that he can teach mankind. Zarathustra proclaims that God is dead and the overman, the s ...more
Ross Blocher
Thus Spoke Zarathustra is a messy, self-serious heap of obscure references and ungracious philosophy wrapped in a mountain of bad allegory. And yet, there are moments of brilliance hidden in the midden pile of Nietzsche's impenetrable poetry and prose that almost make it worth the effort. This may be the longest short book I've ever read. Granted, the original was in German, and I read an English translation. Apparently it was already arcane and replete with wordplay and personal references in i ...more
Jeremy

Of the Modern Reader

So Zarathustra dwelt among the trees, in the musty flat spaces where the air was stifling, and his breath was shallow; his face set grim; and his body ached, ached as if he had been run upon by a multitude. And he had.

There was a wind and a fluttering as of birds, and a man stepped out of the air. He seemed warm and old but young enough to be butchered, as is the fate of unproductive sheep. And the man spoke: ‘I know you, Zarathustra; you are one who goes both after and befor
...more
Giorgi
Oct 25, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: +18
it is impossible to experience this book and remain identity
David Sarkies
Feb 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Philosophers of Modernism
Recommended to David by: Stewart Wymer
Shelves: philosophy
The Evolution of Humanity
5 March 2014

It is from this book that one comes across the ideas that Fredrick Nietzsche is particularly famous for, that being the concept of the ubermensch and will to power as well as the idea that when one gazes into the abyss the abyss gazes into you (though that quote actually comes from 'Beyond Good and Evil' though there are references in this book about gazing into the abyss). This is probably the book that many of us who have heard of Nietzsche (which I suspec
...more
Vincent Flock
Jan 23, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Though I doubt that I could read the German version as easily as I once could, I still much prefer it to the translations. If you must read a translation, make it the Walter Kaufmann version, which is, in any case, easiest to find beyond being the best that I have seen. Side note: Kaufmann's translation of Goethe's Faust is also one of the best you will find for that work.

As for the work itself, what can I possibly say that has not already been written in praise of this epic? The criticism one m
...more
Mark
Jun 20, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Nietzsche tends to be one of those philosophers that readers either really like (the literary crowd who reads the occasional philosopher) or really don't like (the philosophy crowd who reads the occasional novelist). I suppose I am one of the latter. While I enjoy reading some of Nietzsche's works, I enjoy them most when he centers them around his "ideal man" concept. "Thus Spoke" doesn't seem to be one of those. Simply put, the sections are short situational stories concerning Zarathustra and d ...more
Joshua Nomen-Mutatio
Aug 21, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People That Have Already Read A Substantial Amount Of Nietzsche's Other Work
"Have you ever said Yes to a single joy? O my friends, then you have said Yes too to all woe. All things are entangled, ensnared, enamored; if ever you wanted one thing twice, if ever you said, "You please me, happiness! Abide moment!" then you wanted all back. All anew, all eternally, all entangled, ensnared, enamored--oh then you loved the world. Eternal ones, love it eternally and evermore; and to woe too, you say: go, but return! For all joy wants--eternity."

Someday I'm going to go through m
...more
Nathan
After years of hearing about Nietzsche's contributions to western philosophical culture, and after reading countless texts that referenced, examined or quoted him, I finally decided to tackle one of his books in full. But now, having done so the only honest reaction that I can offer is "what the !@#$ did I just read." Call me a philistine, but I got nothing out of this book and it seems to me that the whirlwinds of hype surrounding Nietzsche could be a case of literary "emperors new clothes." Th ...more
Rakhi Dalal
I didn't have the heart to go through it. I apologize, Nietzsche, but you don't interest me anymore.
Adam
Absolutely fucking based.

Mεδ Rεδħα
Back cover - Thus spoke Zarathustra is a masterful philosophical work. It has upset the thinking of the West. "Nietzsche demolishes, he undermines," said Gide. He definitely puts the man in question. Poet-prophet, Zarathustra retires into the mountain and returns among the men to talk to them. His essential lesson: "Want to liberate. His leitmotif: reject what is not wanted, conquered as such, all that is undergone. This is the meaning of the famous: "Become the one you are. Virtue is often the ...more
Morgan
Jan 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
First off, Nietzsche is not a Nazi. He doesn't share Nazi ideas and most likely would have hated the Nazis. There is a Nazi connection to this book, but it has nothing to do with Nietzsche or his writing. His horrible sister, who was a Nazi, rewrote a few of his text to make it look like her brother supported her goals. The Nazi's read this book for moral reason, but at the same time they misread his ideas. There are several articles and books that go deeper into this part of Nietzsche's life th ...more
Michael
250118 later later addition: rereading a book comparing nietzsche and buddhism 221016 / 301112 which suggests he begins, follows, similar conception of general culture (of nihilist attitudes) that are prejudiced in favour of being (concept/illusion) over becoming (as evident reality/not illusion), a reflection of weakness, impotence, exhaustion, but nz and bd come to somewhat opposed resolutions: nz decrying bd's 'decadent' negation of life v301112s his own 'affirmation' of life... well i have t ...more
Laura
Jul 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: german, philosophy
Friedrich Nietzsche is one of the most influential, yet sadly misunderstood philosophers in history. Thus Spake Zarathustra discusses the superman, asserting that courage and strength is good and that weakness and humility is bad, and it discusses the process of self-surpassing and becoming. Unfortunately, out of ignorance and serious misinterpretation, Nietzsche is often associated with Hitler and the Nazis, on account of Hitler's grievous misinterpretations of his philosophy (and yes, Hitler d ...more
Kyle Wright
Nov 18, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Nobody
Zarathustra, the character through which Nietzsche vicariously spews forth his world-view, is a pompous, narcissistic, ego maniac that is so obsessed with how right he is, he can't see just how terribly wrong he ends up being. Nietzsche constantly contradicts himself, uses poor logic and reasoning, and pushes for a social order that benefits only the elite. I'm appalled of Nietzsche's idea that the great men of the world should walk all over the little, regular people to achieve their greatness. ...more
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Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche was a German philosopher of the late 19th century who challenged the foundations of Christianity and traditional morality. He was interested in the enhancement of individual and cultural health, and believed in life, creativity, power, and the realities of the world we live in, rather than those situated in a world beyond. Central to his philosophy is the idea of “life- ...more
“I am a forest, and a night of dark trees: but he who is not afraid of my darkness, will find banks full of roses under my cypresses.” 1824 likes
“The higher we soar the smaller we appear to those who cannot fly.” 1801 likes
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