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Twilight of the Gods: Page 855
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“Neid” and “Noth” down upon the Gibichungs in T.3.3?]) already suffer [“Noth”] our spite [schon giebt ihnen Noth unser Neid”] (:#? [Bruennhilde reference from T.1.3?]). He who wrenched (#19 vari:) the ring from me, Wotan, that furious robber, was worsted by his own kind: to the Waelsung he forfeited (#20a?:) power and might: (#19/#20a:) in company with the whole kindred of gods (:#19/#20a [dies out?]) he awaits his end (#42 end frag [an impressive cadence which was heard prior to #115 in Waltraute’s narrative of Wotan’s fate from T.1.3, evidently in the form #57a (“das Ende”)/#20a/#42 harmony or end frag?]) in dread [“Angst”]. Him do I fear no more: he must fall with all the rest!

 

Alberich reassures Hagen by telling him that those they fight in nightly feud already suffer their spite (“schon giebt inhen Noth unser Neid”). Wotan, he says, was overthrown by one of his own, and forfeited his power to the Waelsung (Siegfried). Alberich, referencing Wotan’s forfeit of his power to Siegfried, is alluding to the Feuerbachian notion that when religion could no longer be sustained as a set of beliefs and articles of faith, it lives on in feeling, in the art of music. Accompanied by a #19/#20a hybrid variant, Alberich notes that Wotan and the gods now await their end in Valhalla in dread (as we hear #42’s end fragment, which now has become a motival sign for the gods’ end). Wotan (man’s religious faith) has, Alberich says, now been neutralized, so Alberich no longer fears him. At this moment in world history, in other words, the State no longer suppresses independence of thought to protect religious faith. The nightly feud which Alberich mentions here is the war over who controls the Ring, which represents the power of conscious human thought. Is it to be those who misuse the Ring’s power to sustain subjective illusions, or those who use the Ring’s might to full advantage, in order to exploit nature’s power and control men through objective knowledge? Those dedicated to subjectivism possess only a psychological power, but those dedicated to objective knowledge possess actual power over the physical world and the world of men.

[T.2.1: C]

Wotan’s defeat, though brought about by his own kind, from within his own ranks, is not complete. Although Wotan, as the representative of the gods, man’s religious belief, had to concede the truth to Alberich, and go under, Wotan’s subjective ideal of a world known aesthetically, through feeling rather than objective thought, lives on in Siegfried, the secular artist-hero whose inspired art holds its own in the modern, scientific world which ought to belong entirely to Hagen. Alberich’s victory over the gods (i.e., over man’s longing for transcendent value, man’s dependence upon self-delusion for happiness) will only be complete when Siegfried, the archetypal secular artist-hero of the modern era, also succumbs to the same curse of consciousness which forced Wotan to go under, the natural necessity which compels all that is unconscious to rise to consciousness over time, and which labors to make our common hoard of knowledge of the world and ourselves increase and advance. Hagen, in other words, must find out where the artist-hero Siegfried is vulnerable, since Siegfried, unlike religious man, does not stake a claim on the power of the truth (the Ring) which scientific man could contradict, refute, and undermine. Alberich again asks if Hagen is sleeping:

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