Nietzsche on Truth-Faith

Letter from Friedrich Nietzsche to his sister, Elisabeth Forster Nietzsche (1865):

As for your principle that truth is always on the side of the more difficult, I admit this in part.  However, it is difficult to believe that 2 times 2 is not 4; does that make it true?  On the other hand, is it really so difficult to simply to accept everything that one has been brought up on and that has gradually grown deep roots — what is considered truth in the circle of one’s relatives and of many good men, and what, moreover, really comforts and elevates man?

Is that more difficult than to strike new paths, fighting the habitual, experiencing the insecurity of independence and the frequent wavering of one’s feelings and even one’s conscience, proceeding often without any consolation, but ever with the eternal goal of the true, the beautiful, and the good?  Is it decisive after all that we arrive at that view of God, world, and reconciliation which makes us feel most comfortable?

Do we after all seek rest, peace, and pleasure in our inquiries?  No, only truth — even if it be most abhorrent and ugly.  Still one last question: if we had believed from childhood that all salvation issued from someone other than Jesus — say from Mohammed — is it not certain that we should have experienced the same blessings?

Faith does not offer the least support for a proof of objective truth.  Here the ways of men part: if you wish to strive for peace of soul and pleasure, then believe.  If you wish to be a devotee of truth, then inquire.

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