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Excerpt from Human, All-Too-Human, Vol. 1: A Book for Free Spirits
Nietzsche's disease must not be looked upon in the same way as that of an ordinary man. People are inclined to regard a sick man as rancorous; but any one who fights with and conquers his disease, and even exploits it, as Nietzsche did, benefits thereby to an extraordinary degree. In the first place, he has passed through several stages of human psychology with which a healthy man is entirely unacquainted; eg'. He has learnt by introspection the spiteful and revengeful spirit of the sick man and his religion. Secondly, in his moments of freedom from pain and gloom his thoughts will be all the more brilliant.
In support of this last statement, one instance may be selected out of hundreds that could be adduced Heinrich Heine Spent the greater part of his life in exile from his native country, tortured by headaches, and finally dying in a foreign land as the result of a spinal disease. His splendid works were composed in his moments of respite from illness, and during the last years of his life, when his health was at its worst, he gave to the world his famous Romancero. We would likewise do well to recollect Goethe's saying.
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