It is true that the old world belongs to the philistine. But one should not treat the latter as a bugbear from which to recoil in fear. On the contrary, we ought to keep an eye on him. It is worth while to study this lord of the world.
He is lord of the world, of course, only because he fills it with his society as maggots do a corpse. Therefore the society of these lords needs no more than a number of slaves, and the owners of these slaves do not need to be free. Although, as being owners of land and people, they are called lords, in the sense of being pre-eminent, for all that they are no less philistines than their servants.
As for human beings, that would imply thinking beings, free men, republicans. The philistines do not want to be either of these. What then remains for them to be and to desire?
What they want is to live and reproduce themselves (and no one, says Goethe, achieves anything more), and that the animal also wants; at most a German politician would add: Man, however, knows that he wants this, and the German is so prudent as not to want anything more.
The self-confidence of the human being, freedom, has first of all to be aroused again in the hearts of these people. Only this feeling, which vanished from the world with the Greeks, and under Christianity disappeared into the blue mist of the heavens, can again transform society into a community of human beings united for their highest aims, into a democratic state.