Blood Poisons The Purest Teaching

Ophelia Benson, PZ Myers, and Jerry Coyne are dismissing the bizarre notion that lacking the New Atheists somehow lack credibility for lacking martyrs.

On this topic, Nietzsche has already far more eloquently said far more than I ever could:

Zealously and with much shouting they drove their herd over their bridge: as if to the future there were but one bridge! Verily, these herdsmen thesmelves still belonged among the sheep!

Little minds and capacious souls these shepherds had: but, my brothers, what little domains have even the most capacious souls been up to now!

Blood-signs they wrote on the way that they walked, and their folly taught that one proves the truth with blood.

But blood is the worst witness of truth; blood poisons the purest teaching, turning it into hearts’ delusion and hate.

And if one goes through the fire for one’s teaching—what does that prove! It is more, verily, if one’s own teaching comes out of one’s own blaze!

Sultry heart and cold head: where these come together there arises the roaring wind, the ‘Redeemer’.

Thus Spoke Zarathustra: A Book for Everyone and Nobody (Oxford World’s Classics) (Graham Parkes’s translation), Second Part, Section 4.

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