Posted by: Patrick Allen Foster | April 2, 2015

Irreverent Quote for the Day

One morning the prisoners entered the yard for work, but the warden was not there. Some, as their manner was, set to work at once; others stood idle and gazed defiantly around. Then one of them strode forward and cried, “Work as much as you will or do nothing, it all comes to the same. Your secret machinations have come to light; the warden has been keeping his eye on you of late, and will cause a terrible judgment to be passed upon you in a few days’ time. You know him; he is of a cruel and resentful disposition. But now, listen: you have mistaken me hitherto. I am not what I seem, but far more: I am the son of the warden, and can get anything I like out of him. I can save you — nay, I will save you. But remember this: I will only save those of you who believe that I am the son of the prison warden. The rest may reap the fruits of their unbelief.” “Well,” said an old prisoner after an interval of silence, “what can it matter to you whether we believe you or not? If you really are the son, and can do what you say, then put in a good word for us all. That would be a real kindness on your part. But have done with all talk of belief and unbelief!”

Nietzsche, The Wanderer and His Shadow (Human, All Too Human, Part II) (1880),
A. 84.


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