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The Ring of the Nibelung
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plant life, and where they are present it is natural, necessary in fact, that there should be plants suited to the animal and human organisms, and serving as food. (…)

(…) Just as it is meaningless to ask why there is anything at all, so it is meaningless to ask why this particular thing is as it is and not otherwise … .” [232F-LER: p. 129]

 

[233F-LER: p. 131]

“I am well aware that these few superficial remarks do not explain the origin and nature of organic life. We are far from the stage of scientific development that will enable us to solve this problem.” [233F-LER: p. 131]

 

[234F-LER: p. 134]

“… though there are numerous phenomena in nature whose physical, natural ground we have not yet discovered, it is absurd to resort to theology for that reason. What we do not know, posterity will find out. How many things that our ancestors could explain only through God and His purposes we have derived from the workings of nature! There was a time when even the simplest, most natural, most necessary things were explained exclusively by teleology and theology. (…) On the one hand man’s ignorance, on the other his egoist tendency to explain everything with reference to himself, to think the world in his own image, lead him to transform the involuntary into the voluntary, the natural into the intentional, the necessary into the arbitrary.” [234F-LER: p. 134]

 

[235F-LER: p. 134]

“ … infinite diversity is a basic principle of life; likeness would annul the necessity of existence … .” [235F-LER: p. 134]

 

[236F-LER: p. 136]

“A God … is merely the hypostatized and objectified essence of the human imagination. A God has all the wonders of the imagination at his command; a God can do everything; like man’s desires, like man’s fancy … .” [236F-LER: p. 136]

 

[237F-LER: p. 137]

“ … in nature it is impossible to tell who is the lord and who the vassal, because all things are equally important, equally essential; here there are no privileges; the lowest is as important, as necessary as the highest … . And this very fact that the organism is a republican community, that it owes its existence to cooperation among equal beings, is the source of material evil, of struggle, illness, and death; but the cause of death is also the cause of life, the cause of evil is also the cause of good. A God, on the other hand, is a monarch, an absolute, unrestrained monarch who does what he pleases, who is ‘above the law,’ but makes his arbitrary commandments into laws for his subjects, regardless of how contrary such laws may be to the subjects’ needs.” [237F-LER: p. 137]

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